Researched by Kerry Headley and Ryan Larkin
The US Navy reactivated the Fourth Fleet after fifty-eight years so that it could begin patrolling Latin American waters in what the Department of Defense said was an effort to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and other activities. Because the US can point to no imminent military threat, some have viewed this decision as a response to the election of several governments which have expressed policies contrary to those of Washington. The presidents of both Bolivia and Venezuela have stated that they see the reestablishment of the fleet as a new sign of aggression toward their governments and the region. In 2009, the Ecuadorian government will not renew Washington’s permit to operate in Manta, which is the US’s only permanent military base in South America. The fleet provides a floating base for US interventions throughout the continent. The action has been condemned by the World Peace Council as a threat to peace.
“US Navy Resurrects Fourth Fleet to Police Latin America” Humberto Santana, World Socialist Web Site, 5/7/2008 http://www.wsws.org/articles/2008/navy-m07.shtml
“Fourth Fleet Threatens Peace, Democracy in Latin America” Jose A. Cruz, People’s Weekly World Newspaper, 6/6/2008 http://www.pww.org/article/articleview/13172/
“The Return of the Fourth Fleet” BBC, 5/10/2008 http://www.venezuelanalysis.com/news/3427