Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Declassify Latin America

Peter Kornbluh, whose career is dedicated to declassifying U.S. documents related to Latin America, has an article in The Nation with an overview of Wikileaks and U.S. policy. He suggests that the documents may shed more light on Latin American than on Washington.


From the Cuba cables, as much can be ascertained about the thinking of Raul Castro’s government as about US policy toward it. This is true for the broader region as well. In Latin America, where declassification of records on internal government deliberations is severely limited, the WikiLeaks cables provide detailed information on official conversations, meetings, national security plans, social policies, foreign policies, economic policies and more. 

Readers in Argentina, for example, can track the debate within Cristina Kirchner’s administration on decriminalizing the use of marijuana. Hondurans can listen in as those generals and politicians who overthrew Zelaya plotted to consolidate their post-coup powers. Chileans can better understand how their government alters building codes on the construction of thermonuclear plants at the behest of foreign corporations.


It's an interesting point. We rightly criticize the U.S. government for keeping things classified (did you know, by the way, that the Department of Defense will not reveal the biggest threat faced by the U.S. in 1975?) and organizations like the National Security Archive fight to declassify them. But more attention should be paid to the fact that Latin American governments hold on even more tightly.

Plus, given the history of repression, scolars and activists alike tend to focus on the documents of military regimes rather than more recent democratic governments, who nonetheless have plenty of dirty secrets.

1 comments:

Vicente Duque 2:02 PM  

The Most Prosperous and Democratic Nations of Latin America are the best friends of the USA. And are the nations that have adopted ( slowly but surely ) more democratic institutions. Some of them copied from the USA and learning from U. S. History and Political Developments.

These nations are Mexico ( with great problems, but prosperous ! ), Chile, Peru, Brazil, Colombia.

Nations not to be included in my "Best Nations" list : Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Argentina.

I really do not know what to do with Bolivia, because it is a case of Indian Culture, consumption of Coca Leaves and other matters that I can not judge for lack of Information, Knowledge, Intelligence, and tools to judge.

Perhaps Indians and Poor People may consume coca leaves safely, as a traditon, custom and perhaps source of Vitamins, Proteins, carbohydrates, etc ...

I am told that it is a good idea to chew coca leaves before the pains of death in your last days in this world. Just like marihuana and opiates. Think of a horrible cancer.

.........

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