Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Obstacles to Latin American unity

Yesterday I wrote about the lefts in Latin America, and here a story that shows a) how hard it is to lump "leftist" countries together; and b) how hard it is to achieve unity (not to mention integration) in Latin America. The Uruguayan government says it will bail on UNASUR if Néstor Kirchner is made its Secretary-General during the current summit taking place in Brazil. The Secretary-General must receive unanimous approval, but apparently there was a move by Argentina to get those rules changed.

Bold move by Uruguay. It might just work, since no one wants UNASUR to flounder out of the gates. On top of the entire pulp mill saga, I can only imagine what the Kirchners are saying about Uruguay these days.

Update: Alex Sanchez and Andrea Moretti at The Council on Hemispheric Affairs have an interesting take on the issue, arguing that Kirchner is facing resistance elsewhere as well.


boz 12:06 PM  

There's also a big disagreement between the two within Mercosur over tariffs and trade agreements.

Greg Weeks 1:18 PM  

I'd be curious to see polling about the Argentine public thinks of it all.

boz 8:53 PM  

Last I saw (many months ago) on the paper mill issue, it was pretty much what you'd expect. The Argentine public is nationalist and believes their country is on the correct side of the issue. However, they also don't want the government to be too confrontational and don't consider it a high priority.

I haven't seen anything on Mercosur and tariff regimes recently. It's a bit too nuanced of an issue for really solid polling.

Greg Weeks 6:58 AM  

My line of thinking was also about how this affects the government's image, i.e. Uruguay asserting itself.

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