Roger F. Noriega is a former assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs (Canada, Latin America, and the Caribbean) and a former U.S. ambassador to the Organization of American States. He coordinates AEI's program on Latin America and writes for the Institute's Latin American Outlook series.
Why is Sen. Patrick J. Leahy threatening to kill vital U.S. anti-narcotics support in a key smuggling corridor when his home state of Vermont is awash in illegal drugs? He must have a heck of a reason, right? You be the judge.
With elections approaching in Honduras, El Salvador, and elsewhere in Latin America, self-interested candidates from the left and the right — some with well-known ties to criminals — seek to wield power at their countries’ expense. AEI has convened a panel to expose this problem and to propose remedies.
While visiting Argentina a few years ago, just as president Néstor Kirchner was defending the biggest default in history, I saw a televised government message that concluded with the phrase, “Argentina . . . A serious country” ( “Un país en serio”).
Imagine if The Godfather character, Don Vito Corleone, died and left his hapless son, Fredo, in charge of the family business. That is essentially what happened in Venezuela when the caudillo Hugo Chávez died last year and Nicolás Maduro took power.
Drug cartels operating out of Colombia and Mexico are relocating to Central America in search of weaker law enforcement and corrupt politicians, and Honduras is a prime target. To prevent the drug cartels from assuming more power, US policymakers must resist left-wing activists’ attempts to block US aid and vigorously support democracy and antidrug laws and programs in Honduras.
Resource nationalism and popular gasoline subsidies are limiting Latin America's biggest energy companies from evolving into more efficient, competitive, and profitable enterprises. Brazil's Petrobras, Mexico's Pemex, and Venezuela's PDVSA are prime examples of energy giants that are being consumed by mismanagement, corruption, and political agendas.