Thursday, January 04, 2018

U.S. Government Reporting on Latin America

Adam Isacson has links to 17 U.S. government reports on Latin America that he found most useful in 2017. Browsing through was a reminder that there are a lot of very good analysts in the U.S. government. This is the same impression I get when I am periodically invited to give presentations to the State or Defense Departments. These are intelligent and knowledgeable people whose career is dedicated to studying these issues.

As Adam correctly notes, you see the agency blinders they might have on, or disagree with their conclusions, but in my opinion you also see a lot of stuff that would improve U.S. policy if implemented. For example, they call for whole government approaches to drug policy, with a long-term perspective. You see skepticism about Trump's calls for drastically increasing the size of the Border Patrol. You see a greater understanding of the Central American context than any policy maker ever shows.

You certainly see more than Twitter diplomacy could ever capture. It's unfortunate that these voices don't get heard more.


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