Friday, February 05, 2016

U.S. Security Policy in Latin America

Brian Fonseca and Alex Crowther have an op-ed in Latin America Goes Global on U.S. security policy in Latin America. It argues to shift policy focus away from the narrowly defined issues such as drugs and move instead toward the security of the individual. As they note, people are not feeling more secure in much of Latin America.

It is also time for the U.S. and its partners to formally revisit and update the 2003 Declaration on Security in the Americas. Some progress has been made in the implementation of the Declaration, but according to the Department of State, there are still several member countries lagging behind in implementation. A brief survey of recent activities associated with the Organization of American States (OAS) Committee on Hemispheric Security illustrates a declining operational tempo over the last five years or so. Still, much of the Declaration’s initial charter remains incredibly relevant to the broader human security agenda, and emerging concerns over cyber threats and climate change, for example, warrant a revisit of the converging security challenges facing the region. Convening members states and the appropriate authorities to re-affirm and update the Declaration will serve to re-legitimate hemispheric commitment to the topic and jumpstart cooperation around the issue.

Not a bad idea. I also like the idea of making sure we keep issues like climate change more squarely in our sights in terms of security. That alone can threaten more people than the higher profile problems.


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