Tuesday, April 11, 2006
BUSH ERA ARROGANCE ACCELERATES LATIN AMERICAN LEFTWARD ALIGNMENT
A CONTINENT'S LEFTWARD SWING
John MacCartney and Anika Grubbs
Harvard Political Review Online
With thousands of protestors causing chaos and destruction, the leaders of the western hemisphere met in Mar de Plata, Argentina, for the Summit of the Americas last November, attempting to advance the stalemated negotiations for the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). Both political and popular resistance in Latin America has impeded the plan of the United States and its supporters to come to a consensus and establish a free trade zone stretching from Canada to Chile . The riots and demonstrations against the FTAA sent a clear message that, in Latin America , the process would be harder than many had imagined.
LATIN AMERICA'S LEFTIST SHIFT: HOPES AND CHALLENGES
Within the last six years in Latin America numerous social movements have gained momentum in the fight for human rights, better living and working conditions and an end to corporate exploitation and military violence. Recently, left of center leaders have been elected in Bolivia, Uruguay, Chile and Venezuela.
LATIN AMERICAN INTEGRATION
Noam Chomsky interviewed by Bernie Dwyer
Bernie Dwyer: I am reminded of a great Irish song called "The West's Awake" written by Thomas Davis in remembrance of the Fenian Uprising of 1798. It is about the west of Ireland asleep under British rule for hundreds of years and how it awoke from its slumbers and rose up against the oppressor. Could we begin to hope now that the South is awake?
Noam Chomsky: What's happening is something completely new in the history of the hemisphere. Since the Spanish conquest the countries of Latin America have been pretty much separated from one another and oriented toward the imperial power. There are also very sharp splits between the tiny wealthy elite and the huge suffering population. The elites sent their capital; took their trips; had their second homes; sent their children to study in whatever European country their country was closely connected with. [commas better than semi-colons in the preceding sentence.] I mean, even their transportation systems were oriented toward the outside for export of resources and so on.
SPECIAL REPORT: LEFTWARD DRIFT IN LATIN AMERICAN POLITICS
Wachovia Economic Commentary
It might be tempting to write off the Bolivian election as an outlier. After all, Bolivia isSouth America’s poorest economy, an environment in which populist rhetoric can haveappeal. However, the election of a leftist politician in Bolivia is only the latest example ofthe region’s drift to the left side of the political spectrum. Venezuelan President Chavez,a perennial thorn in the side of the Bush administration, also has rejected orthodoxeconomic policies. Moreover, some of the region’s larger economies appear to be drifting leftward politically
HOW PRESIDENT BUSH HAS UNIFIED LATIN AMERICA
Nick Miroff, San Francisco Chronicle
Has Latin America ever had such a unifying figure?
At political rallies, his visage is held aloft as a beacon to regional independence and self-determination.
He's helped forge new trade partnerships to spur economic growth and alleviate poverty. And his leadership has fanned a gale-force electoral trend that's sweeping the hemisphere to topple one pro-Washington government after the next.
Who is this grand inductor of Latin American leftism? Venezuelan fireball Hugo Chavez? Blue-collar Brazilian Lula Ignacio da Silva? Bolivia's coca-farmer president Evo Morales?
¡Epa! It's George W. Bush, the accidental revolutionary.
URUGUAY COMPLETES THE LEFTWARD REALIGNMENT OF THE SOUTHERN CONE ... the left has been taking place in South America during the past several years. ...
Al-Ahram Weekly On-Line
Having grounded their democracies in national unity, Latin American nations are redressing -- peacefully -- global imbalances. New horizons are opening and it is time we take our cue from South America and join it in formulating frameworks for the revival of the civilisations of the south.
SOUTH AMERICA'S LEFTWARD RE-ALIGNMENT
ISN Security Watch
The election of Tabare Vazquez as Uruguay’s president completes the hold of the democratic left over the continent’s “southern cone” and represents the loss of Washington’s last willing partner in the projected Free Trade Areas of the Americas (FTAA).