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Empire in the Andes - the war against the poor
(Film/Video, Barricade Films, February 2006)
This documentary takes a critical look at the strategies and effects of US foreign and economic policy in Latin America, especially in Colombia and Ecuador.
Since the introduction of Plan Colombia in 2000, the Andean countries are becoming increasingly militarized, especially the remote communities on the borders of Colombia with Ecuador and Venezuela. (from 11.00)

The film traces how violence, and environmental degradation caused by fumigation of drug crops, are making people poorer while cocaine and heroin cultivation and trafficking continue unabated. After September 11 2001 the focus of US policy shifted from fighting the 'War on Drugs' to fighting the 'War on Terror'. Still, the heart of the matter is that millions are kept in poverty in the Andean countries, and US-sponsored policies are failing to address the human concerns. In fact they they are driving small farmers and peasants off resource-rich areas, allowing multinationals to control and exploit the land and terrorizing those who resist.
There is growing social opposition in the Andes to the implementation of neoliberal policies, although it has barely been covered by the corporate media. Neither military aid or the planned Free Trade Area of the Americas benefit the majority of local people, who are fighting to thrive and to build a lasting peace.