Garcia wins, Peru Loses

Just as the champagne from newly-elected Peruvian President Alan Garcia’s victory party was losing its fizz, Peru failed in efforts to condemn Hugo Chavez for election meddling at the annual gathering of the Organization of American States (OAS).

Peru, acting under command from Garcia’s predecessor, the "wildly unpopular" Alejandro Toledo, presented a draft declaration at the OAS gathering that condemned Hugo Chavez for interfering with Peru’s presidential elections. The declaration predictably drew support from the US’s reliable regional allies: El Salvador, Mexico, Guatemala and Canada. Brazil was the only other country to offer a pronouncement on the declaration.

US Ambassador to the OAS, former US Trade Representative and CAFTA negotiator, Robert Zoellick, was out front with the US spin on the issue, saying, "it is an encouraging sign…" But his failure to attract more support for the measure was not surprising.