US embassy cable - 06CARACAS852

BRV COUNTERDRUG AMBIVALENCE

Identifier: 06CARACAS852
Wikileaks: View 06CARACAS852 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Caracas
Created: 2006-03-28 19:45:00
Classification: SECRET
Tags: SNAR PREL PINR VZ
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
VZCZCXRO4814
PP RUEHAO
DE RUEHCV #0852/01 0871945
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
P 281945Z MAR 06
FM AMEMBASSY CARACAS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3857
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEM COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA PRIORITY 6221
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA PRIORITY 5327
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ PRIORITY 1832
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA PRIORITY 0038
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO PRIORITY 1906
RUEHME/AMEMBASSY MEXICO PRIORITY 3656
RUEHOT/AMEMBASSY OTTAWA PRIORITY 0639
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES PRIORITY 1101
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO PRIORITY 3389
RUEHMU/AMEMBASSY MANAGUA PRIORITY 1099
RUEHDG/AMEMBASSY SANTO DOMINGO PRIORITY 0081
RUEHAO/AMCONSUL CURACAO PRIORITY 0700
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 0046
RUEHMI/USOFFICE FRC FT LAUDERDALE PRIORITY 2944
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUMIAAA/HQ USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL PRIORITY
RUEHUB/USINT HAVANA PRIORITY 0599
S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 CARACAS 000852 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
HQSOUTHCOM ALSO FOR POLAD 
FOR FRC LAMBERT 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/28/2026 
TAGS: SNAR, PREL, PINR, VZ 
SUBJECT: BRV COUNTERDRUG AMBIVALENCE 
 
Classified By: AMBASSADOR WILLIAM F. BROWNFIELD FOR 1.5 (D) 
 
1. (C) SUMMARY: The BRV's CN relationship with us continues 
to be ambivalent.  On one hand, the Antidrogas command of the 
National Guard (GN) is increasingly willing to work with us 
within our Port Security Project, while BRV Drug Czar Luis 
Correa appears to be penalizing NGO Alianza for having too 
close of a relationship with us.  Correa insists that there 
is no persecution and that CN cooperation will rapidly take 
off once the Addendum to the 1978 CN MOU is signed. END 
SUMMARY 
 
2. (U) Our only active project with the BRV is the Port 
Security Project.  This week small steps forward were 
achieved with the assistance of the National Guard (GN) 
Antidrogas command.  First, Antidrogas agreed to be formally 
named the end-user of a NAS funded container inspection 
machine, a requirement for importing the gamma source.  The 
machine is a loaner until we get our own and will be used in 
conjunction with our Puerto Cabello Container Inspection 
Facility (CIF).  Though agreeing to be the formal end-user 
may not seem like much, our BRV contacts have been wary of 
putting their names to any document which links them with the 
USG. 
 
3. (U) Also, after months of delay, Antidrogas finally 
authorized our CBP inspectors stationed in Puerto Cabello to 
conduct two days of training in Tachira, March 22-23.  The 
rudimentary course included analysis of travel and cargo 
documents, observational techniques, interviewing techniques, 
and inspection techniques.  The course was well attended and 
the students enthusiastic.  Demand for the class was such 
that not all could be accommodated, and we plan to return the 
week of April 9. 
 
4. (C) On March 14 the Ambassador hosted a fundraiser for 
Alianza para una Venezuela sin Drogas, a sister organization 
of Partnership for a Drug Free America.  Three hundred 
well-heeled members of the business and media were invited, 
more than 200 confirmed, but only about 75 showed up. 
Previous iterations of this same event have always been very 
well attended.  Several of the no-shows told Alianza they 
were apprehensive that attending an event at the U.S. 
Ambassador's residence could open them up to political 
persecution.  BRV Drug Czar Luis Correa was invited to the 
fundraiser but refused to attend, giving us the excuse that a 
member of Alianza's board of directors, Marcel Granier, was a 
coup-plotter.  (Note: Granier is prominent opposition figure 
who has fearlessly attacked the Chavez government.  He owns 
and directs the private television station RCTV.) 
 
5. (C) Apparently, snubbing the event was not sufficient for 
Correa.  On March 20 he called television stations 
Globovision and Venevision to advise them that Alianza had 
been decertified as a BRV-approved demand reduction NGO and 
that any time donated to Alianza would be taxed.  This 
information was initially passed to us by Alianza but was 
later confirmed by Granier, the media NGO Bloque de Prensa, 
and our contacts in Globovision and Venevision.  Both 
immediately pulled the Alianza commercials.  In a March 23 
meeting, Globovision added that Correa had specifically 
referred to the March 14 fundraiser when explaining the 
reasons for decertifying Alianza. 
 
6. (C) After an in-house meeting, we determined to confront 
Correa.  On March 24, NAS and DEA met with Correa and bluntly 
accused him of persecuting Alianza solely for having held 
their fundraiser at the Ambassador's residence.  Correa took 
umbrage, but not too much, insisting that the fundraiser and 
the decision to take away their tax-free status were not 
related.  He went on to explain that the transformation of 
 
CARACAS 00000852  002 OF 002 
 
 
the Commission Against Drug Abuse (CONACUID) into the 
National Anti-drug Office (ONA) required that each of the 305 
CN-related NGO's previously approved by CONACUID be 
reevaluated and approved by ONA.  Alianza, he insisted, had 
yet to do so.  He promised to work with Alianza to expedite 
their petition for tax-free status. 
 
7.  (C) We took advantage of the meeting to give Correa an 
advance copy of the Addendum to the 1978 CN MOU.  A formal 
copy was transmitted by dip note to the MFA.  Correa was 
visibly pleased to get it and was optimistic that it would be 
signed soon, insisting that our complaints about lack of 
cooperation were about to end. 
 
8. (C) COMMENT:  Correa is anxious to move this Addendum 
forward as its signing will represent a rare achievement for 
him.  Drug seizures are well behind last year's and Correa's 
controlling and manipulative behavior continues to alienate 
his colleagues within the BRV police, military and 
intelligence apparatus.  Correa is a professional 
intelligence officer.  Before taking over CONACUID/ONA, 
Correa headed the technical unit within the Intelligence 
Services Directorate (DISIP) that targeted the U.S. Mission. 
Notches on his belt include turning a USG informant and 
penetrating an unclassified email system.  While undoubtedly 
clever, his DISIP-inspired management style has not been 
successful.  He treats his contacts like informants, 
compartmentalizes information, and believes surreptitiously 
exchanging information epitomizes bilateral cooperation.  He 
is sadly unable to fill the coordinating and policy 
generation role that his position demands. 
 
----------- 
DEA COMMENT 
----------- 
 
9.  (S)  Luis Correa, while a member of the civilian 
intelligence agency DISIP, was responsible for monitoring 
U.S. Embassy communications with teltap and cellular 
intercept equipment.  He also managed a computer hacker who, 
by targeting opposition figures, managed to obtain an Embassy 
officer's unclassified emails.  Additionally, since mid-2004, 
Correa has led a team of intelligence officers to conduct 
surveillance of DEA agents and the DEA vetted unit.  During 
this time, Correa was able to infiltrate the DEA vetted unit 
headquarters and sabotage equipment purchased by NAS. 
 
10.  (S)  In March 2006, Correa directed a professional 
contact of the DEA to provide him information regarding 
current DEA investigations in an effort to expose DEA for 
conducting unilateral operations within Venezuela.  Correa 
stated that he wanted to find the next John Correa, the U.S. 
Naval Attache expelled for espionage.  When the contact 
refused, Correa asked the contact's supervisor to pressure 
the contact to cooperate. 
 
BROWNFIELD 

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