Wednesday, November 18, 2009

U.S. policy toward Colombia

Adam Isacson at the Center for International Policy writes about a letter currently circulating through Congress, asking Secretary of State Clinton to rethink the aid package to Colombia for FY 2011. In short, it asks to take human rights more into consideration, to change coca eradication strategies, to increase emphasis on drug treatment, and to reduce the flow of money to the Colombia military. He hopes to spread the word and increase the number of congressional signatures.

The text of the letter can be found here at the Latin American Working Group.

2 comments:

Vicente Duque 11:36 AM  

These are facts that anybody can check :

The Level of Violence has diminished considerably in Colombia during the Government of Alvaro Uribe ( I don't support another reelection )

The Murders of Trade Unionists have also decreased by big multiples..

The level of kidnappings is now very low compared to the past.

If there is a bright spot of American Foreign Policy in the Western Hemisphere, then it is the help given to Colombia to defeat the Terrorism of the FARC Guerrillas.

Don't Forget that these Guerrillas are responsible for sowing Land Mines that have killed or maimed hundreds if not thousands of Children in Agricultural Fields.

That the FARC and other guerrillas have burned oil pipelines with the dead of many humble people that had ramshackles next to the oleoducts.

That the FARC has burned churches with the Poorest Black People inside.

That they throw gas cylinders over the poorest villages or hamlets in Colombia.

That they are terrorists, kidnappers and murderers, always telling lies and lies and lies.

Helping friends is always cheaper than letting problems grow to the point that you have to send big armies or navy personnel.

This is very close to the Panama Canal and there are some Madmen and Demagogues causing trouble very close to this location.

Expect the "Nuclear Centrals" and the development of "Nuclear Energy" by the most irresponsible people in the World. With big help from Russia and Iran.

Expect more Russian Submarines and Ships in Caribbean Harbors.

The Future of Foreign Policies :

Prophesizing.com

Vicente Duque

Vicente Duque 4:23 PM  

Should the United States forget allies in Latin America, because of increasing difficulties in Afghanistan, Iraq, etc ... ?? - Read Article of Brookings Institution

My Opinion : No, because we see Storm Clouds in the Horizon. Rogue Governments appearing in the Western Hemisphere !


The Brookings Institution
Colombia's Increasing Hemispheric Isolation
By Diana Villiers Negroponte, Nonresident Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy
November 12, 2009

Colombia's Increasing Hemispheric Isolation

http://www.brookings.edu/opinions/2009/1112_colombia_negroponte.aspx?rssid=foreign+policy&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+BrookingsRSS/programs/foreignpolicy+(Brookings:+Programs+-+Foreign+Policy)&utm_content=Google+Reader

Some excerpts :

These days, President Alvaro Uribe of Colombia has few friends in the hemisphere, and Washington is not explicit in supporting a feisty president, whose followers seek his extension for a third term in office. Colombia (45 million people) has a potential border war with Venezuela (26.4 million people), friction over guerilla encampments in neighboring Ecuador, rejection of the Bank of the South and sullen expressions of friendship from Brazil
..............................

Fourth, President Uribe's strong commitment to free-market capitalism is in stark contrast to the socialist tendencies of Colombia's neighbors. Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia may pursue Bolivarian socialism with vigor, but Brazil pursues moderate socialist policies while seeking international capital investments. In response to the global economic recession, Uribe's administration has cut capital controls, arranged for emergency credit lines from the Inter-American Development Bank, and promoted investment incentives, such as Colombia's modernized free trade zone mechanism, as well as new bilateral investment treaties. Despite these measures, the business sector remains concerned about the depreciated value of the U.S. dollar, which makes the export of cut flowers and other goods to the United States more expensive. Chambers of Commerce remain concerned about U.S. Congressional approval of the Colombian Free Trade Agreement.
...........................

Colombia's Constitutional Court is currently debating the same issue. If the court approves, Uribe's supporters must also persuade 7.2 million Colombians in a national referendum that a third time is preferable. The institutional steps that must be taken before the people of Colombia extend Uribe's term create a relatively high bar. Elites are against a third term, but the popular vote wants Uribe to remain, out of fear that a new leader might not be strong enough to prevent a return to the violence of the 1990s.
.......................

Finally, we must find ways to encourage Uribe to be a team player in the hemisphere. If he fights with his back to the wall, we should not be surprised at his pugnacity and "go-it-alone" spirit. With the confidence that he has the backing of Panama, Mexico, the United States and potentially Chile and Peru, Colombia can be drawn back into strong relationships- if not leadership- within the hemisphere. Current Venezuelan goals make this difficult, but our rejection of policies considered critical to Colombia only drives Uribe further into his corner.

The Future of Foreign Policies :

Prophesizing.com

Vicente Duque

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