Activists from the Women’s Coordinating Committee for a Free Wallmapu and Mining Injustice Toronto interrupted the Conference of American Armies (CAA) this morning at the Sheraton Hotel, in downtown Toronto, Kanada. The CAA was established in 1960 with the purpose of analyzing related “matters of common interest in the field of defense,” in developing domestic operations and “exchanging experiences” among the murderous armies of the continent. The conference was the precursor to Operation Condor an intelligence network led by the Latin American military dictatorships of the 70’s and 80’s, under the guise of the United States. These operations consisted in the covert cross border detention and transfer of dissident and revolutionary movement leaders, resulting the murder and disappearance of thousands of people.
Today, these counterinsurgency operations continue in the form of training, such as those between Canadian intelligence personnel and Chilean officials, through the application of Anti-Terror legislation against Mapuche indigenous protestors, and the ongoing militarization of their communities in conflict. The intensification of military repression towards indigenous peoples can be seen throughout the continent, specifically in the recent murder of indigenous leader, Berta Caceres, in Honduras in 2016 – site of the last CAA conference.
The following is a statement on the presence of the CAA on our indigenous territories.
CAA: Meeting of Tortures and Murderers! Armies Out of Our Native Territories!
The Armed Forces have been spinal cord of the State since its inception, implicating the defense of national and international security. Internally, this repressive state apparatus seeks to maintain and control the established order under the Constitution and its laws. Repressive policies of counterinsurgency are put into practice when the state is seen as being in danger. Its entire democratic façade disintegrates and state terrorism appears in its maximum expression through the imprisonment, torture, death and even the disappearance of those who oppose its power.
However, this phenomenon is not new. Our indigenous peoples – and our Mapuche Nation specifically – know this kind of action very well, beginning with the establishment of colonial invasion on our continent.