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House Bill to ban Colombian "aid"/ fumigation-carnage

by Latin American Working Group Wednesday, Jul. 11, 2001 at 2:15 PM

House bill needs support.

URGENT Action Alert on Colombian Military Aid and Aerial Spraying Latin America Working Group Colombia Update: June 28, 2001

Dear Friends,

Right now is our best chance for this whole year to affect the next Congressional aid package to Colombia - to cut military aid and suspend aerial spraying of herbicides.

In the House, the bill goes now to the full Appropriations Committee on July 10 and then to the House floor around July 17th. On both these dates, there are likely to be amendments offered to the bill that would cut US military

aid to Colombia and put a brake on fumigation. The Senate Foreign Operations Subcommittee will consider the foreign operations appropriations bill during the third week of July.

Please read below and contact your members of Congress ASAP to let them


how they should vote on this issue.


Latin America Working Group Colombia Update: June 28, 2001

Tel: 202/546-7010

E-mail: estarmer@lawg.org

A Chance to say NO to Colombia Military aid and Fumigation

Please see the bottom of this alert for background information on the


Regional Initiative, Bush's proposal for counternarcotics aid to the


This year, the counternarcotics aid requested by the Bush administration


Colombia and the Andean region comes up in the Congress as part of two


the regular annual appropriations bills (main budget bills which


money to different areas, such as foreign operations, agriculture, and

energy). The bulk of the aid is included in the Foreign Operations

Appropriations Bill; the rest will be in the defense appropriations


which has not yet started moving in congress. The Foreign Ops

Appropriations bill started on June 27th in the House Foreign Operations

Subcommittee, where the first draft of the bill was "marked up" or


and voted on. The debate during the markup showed that there is


support for cutting military aid and putting a moratorium on fumigation.

See below for details on the markup.

Update and Urgent Action: House

>From the subcommittee, the bill goes now to the full Appropriations

Committee on July 10 and then to the House floor around July 17th. On


these dates, there are likely to be amendments offered to the bill which

would cut US military aid to Colombia and put a brake on fumigation.

Please contact your representative before July 10 if they are on the

Appropriations Committee to tell them to vote YES on amendments to cut

Colombian military aid and YES on amendments to stop or place a


on fumigation until serious alternative development programs are ready.


you get an indication of how a member will vote, please e-mail


with a report.

Thank your members who supported these amendments in the markup! On


27th, Rep. Rothman (D-NJ) offered an amendment to place a moratorium on

fumigation and Reps. Pelosi (D-CA), Lowey (D-NY) and Jackson (D-IL)

spoke in

favor; Rep. Kingston (R-GA) expressed concerns as well. Rep. Pelosi


an amendment to cut 0 million from military aid to Colombia and spend


instead on international tuberculosis programs. Reps. Wicker (R-MS),


and Obey (D-WI) spoke in favor. All of these members should be thanked


their constituents. While these amendments were withdrawn and not


to a vote, they served to bring attention to how controversial Colombia

policy has become. Because of the strong debate on these issues in

subcommittee, it is likely that other amendments will be offered by


members and others when the bill goes to the full Appropriations


and the House floor.

House Appropriations Committee members:

Robert B. Aderholt (R-AL)

Henry Bonilla (R-TX)

F. Allen Boyd (D-FL)

Sonny Callahan (R-AL)

James Clyburn (D-SC)

Robert "Bud" E. Jr. Cramer (D-AL)

Randy Cunningham (R-CA)

Rosa DeLauro (D-CT)

Tom DeLay (R-TX)

Norman Dicks (D-WA)

John Doolittle (R-CA)

Chet Edwards (D-TX)

Jo Ann H. Emerson (R-MO)

Sam Farr (D-CA)

Chaka Fattah (D-PA)

Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ)

Virgil H. Goode (D-VA)

Kay Granger (R-TX)

Maurice Hinchey (D-NY)

David Hobson (R-OH)

Steny H. Hoyer (D-MD)

Ernest, Jr. Istook (R-OK)

Jesse Jackson (D-IL)

Marcy Kaptur (D-OH)

Partick J. Kennedy (D-RI)

Carolyn C. Kilpatrick (D-MI)

Jack Kingston (R-GA)

Joseph Knollenberg (R-MI)

Jim Kolbe (R-AZ)

Ray LaHood (R-IL)

Tom Latham (R-IA)

Jerry Lewis (R-CA)

Nita M. Lowey (D-NY)

Carrie Meek (D-FL)

Dan Miller (R-FL)

Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV)

James P. Moran (D-VA)

John P. Murtha (D-PA)

George R. Nethercutt (R-WA)

Anne M. Northup (R-KY)

David R. Obey (D-WI)

John W. Olver (D-MA)

Ed Pastor (D-AZ)

Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)

John E. Peterson (R-PA)

David E.Price (D-NC)

Ralph Regula (R-OH)

Harold Rogers (R-KY)

Steven R. Rothman (D-NJ)

Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA)

Martin Olav Sabo (D-MN)

Jose Serrano (D-NY)

Joe Skeen (R-NM)

John E. Sununu (R-NH)

John E. Sweeney (R-NY)

Charles H. Taylor (R-NC)

Todd Tiahrt (R-KS)

Peter J. Visclosky (D-IN)

David Vitter (R-LA)

James T. Walsh (R-NY)

Zach Wamp (R-TN)

Roger Wicker (R-MS)

Frank R. Wolf (R-VA)

C.W. Bill Young (R-FL)

If you are not sure who your representative is, go to www.house.gov

Update and Urgent Action: Senate

The Senate Foreign Operations Subcommittee will consider the foreign

operations appropriations bill during the third week of July. Members


the subcommittee and the full appropriations committee should hear from

constituents. Please contact both your senators, doing so before July

15 if

they are on the appropriations committee, and tell them your opinion on


military aid to Colombia and the fumigation policy.

Senate Appropriations Committee Members:


Robert Byrd (WV)

Daniel Inouye (HI)

Ernest Hollings (SC)

Patrick Leahy (VT)

Tom Harkin (IA)

Barbara Mikulski (MD)

Harry Reid (NV)

Herb Kohl (WI)

Patty Murray (WA)

Byron Dorgan (ND)

Dianne Feinstein (CA)

Richard Durbin (IL)


Ted Stevens (AK)

Thad Cochran (MS)

Arlen Specter (PA)

Pete Domenici (NM)

Christopher Bond (MO)

Mitch McConnell (KY)

Conrad Burns (MT)

Richard Shelby (AL)

Judd Gregg (NH)

Robert Bennett (UT)

Ben Nighthorse Campbell (CO)

Larry Craig (ID)

Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX)

Jon Kyl (AZ)

It is crucial to voice our opinions on current US policy in Colombia and


Andean region at each stage in the process. Please spread the word and

contact your senators and representatives as soon as possible! If you

are not sure who your representative is, go to www.senate.gov


In late March, the Bush Administration announced its plans to continue a

military counter-drug strategy in the Andes with its proposed "Andean

Regional Initiative"(ARI). This initiative requests military and social


economic aid for Colombia and its neighbors: Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador,

Venezuela, Brazil, and Panama. Most of this aid will come through the

regular foreign operations appropriations bill, but additional aid will


through the defense appropriations bill. Together, the aid totals about

billion in military and police assistance and economic and social aid


the Andean region for 2002 (this is on top of the .3 billion two-year

package approved last year). The administration intends to send a


3.04 million in training, spare parts and equipment for Colombia's

military and police forces. This funding will expand support for

fumigation, an extreme policy with negative effects on the environment.

The administration is selling the ARI package as "balanced," with 50% of


money going to regional security forces and 50% for social and economic

development. However, the request for Colombia is still 71% military.


package also includes sharp increases in military aid for all of


neighbors. The one positive element, a result of all of the criticism


year, is an increase in alternative development assistance (crop

substitution programs) to a number of countries in the region. For a


analysis of the package by the Center for International Policy, please



This action alert was written by the Latin America Working Group. For


information, please see our website at www.lawg.org or call



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