This Sunday in the New York Times:
The item that caught my attention was about Chiquita Brands International (formerly known as the United Fruit Company). According to the item, Chiquita was "fined $25 million to settle charges that it illegally paid a right-wing militia to protect its banana plantations in Colombia." "Behind the News" didn't provide the most satisfactory explanation:
"Much of the countryside is beyond government control, and it is not unusual for foreign companies operating there to buy protection from shady groups."
Is the reader supposed to accept this explanation because it's common knowledge that part of the world is violent? Would it have been all right if Chiquita bought protection, but not from "drug-dealing terrorists"? But what kind of "shady groups" would pose a threat to a fruit plantation? Competitors? Unions, perhaps?
The Chiquita Web site is rife with irony and historical revisionism.