Bolivia, Ecuador Nicaragua, and Venezuela are no strangers to anti-Western posturing.
Recently, the nations have been cozying up to the Islamic nation Iran while simultaneously touting increasingly populist rhetoric, and implementing draconian policies such as disarming law abiding citizens in Venezuela, flouting national laws in Nicaragua, or attacks on the press in Ecuador.
Last Tuesday, the nations announced that they were leaving the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance. The treaty is a defensive treaty, uniting all members through the promise of assistance from all members in the event of an attack on any member.
Ricardo Patino, the Foreign Minister of Ecuador, cited the fact that the treaty was created with the involvement of the United States in 1947 as a point of issue, and indicated that the treaty is no longer relevant. While Ecuador currently uses the US dollar as its official currency, the president, Rafael Correa, has been a friend to leftists such as Hugo Chavez, or Daniel Ortega while spurning relationships with the United States, going so far as to expel an official diplomat last year.
Withdrawal from the treaty is understood by most experts to be a symbolic gesture to drum up populist anti-Western support, and unite the countries against a common enemy.