“Today Ecuador has decided on a new country.” — President Rafael Correa President Correa had promised to resign if voters failed to approve Ecuador’s new constitution in the Sept. 28 referendum. That evening celebrations filled city streets as 64 percent of Ecuadorians affirmed the document, completed in July after eight months of deliberation by a constituent assembly. The no vote totaled 28 percent. Observers from the European Union, Andean Parliament, Carter Center and Organization of American States indicated that balloting by 10 million citizens — 165, 000 of them living in 47 foreign countries — unfolded peacefully and efficiently.
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia — The country’s political parties are on the campaign trail in the wake of Conservative Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s recent surprise call for an election to be held Oct. 14.
Nearly half a year after disputed elections and following two months of delicate negotiations, Zimbabweans on Sept. 15 welcomed the signing of a unity government agreement by President Robert Mugabe and opposition politicians.
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In an act of solidarity with Bolivia, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez expelled U.S. Ambassador Patrick Duddy on Sept. 11, one day after Bolivian President Evo Morales had declared Ambassador Philip Goldberg “persona non grata.” Proclaiming that “until there is a government in the United States that respects the people of Latin America, there will be no Venezuelan Ambassador in that country,” Chavez withdrew veteran ambassador Bernardo Alvarez from Washington, just a step ahead of his expulsion.
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As the struggle sharpened to uphold national authority and oppose forces for autonomy in Bolivia’s East, Washington’s role in weeks of conflict there led the government of Evo Morales to eject U.S. Ambassador Philip Goldberg on Sept. 10.
The biggest national holiday in Mexico, and celebrated by Mexican people living all over the world, is Mexican Independence Day, Sept. 16.
When NATO (the North Atlantic Treaty Organization) was founded after World War II, its first secretary general, British general Lord Ismay, succinctly stated its real, original purpose: “To keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.” In other words, NATO was supposed to be an instrument not for spreading democracy, but for maintaining geopolitical hegemony in Europe by the Western capitalist states. Very soon, of course, the idea of keeping the Germans “down” was scrapped, and Germany became a major actor in NATO military matters.