Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

Chilenos asesinados en Florida: Más allá del dolor

La madrugada del jueves 26 de febrero de 2009 ha quedado en la memoria de todo Chile. Un grupo de jóvenes chilenos, parte del programa Work and Travel se encontraban reunidos en un departamento en Miramar Beach, Florida. Sin música fuerte, ni disturbios, estaban en una reunión de amigos, disfrutando de un momento agradable, cuando … Read more


México: ¿Estado fallido o estrategia fallida?

La violencia en México no para. La mafia y sus horrendos crímenes son cada vez más asiduos y tristemente empiezan a sentirse como el pan de cada día. Tal vez peor, las esperanzas de que la situación se solucione rápido son mínimas. Hace poco el Presidente Calderón cayó en cuenta de que los carteles son … Read more


Samba and Security in Rio de Janeiro

Cariocas (Rio locals) and tourists are back to reality now that Brazil’s five-day Carnival has wrapped up for the year. And what a Carnival. The Salguiero Samba School beat out a fierce rival to win the two-day Schools Parade competition—its first title in 16 years. Among the 80,000 spectators packed into the Sambadrome stadium, President … Read more



This week, two small steps for U.S. policy on Cuba. First up: Sen. Richard Lugar’s new report, “Changing Cuba Policy-In the United States National Interest.” In short, it calls the existing policies ineffective, finding major reform in the United States’ best national (and economic) interests. The recent leadership changes in Washington and Havana have created … Read more


Does the U.S. Embargo on Cuba Protect Human Rights?

Frankly, the Cuban embargo has always been a difficult issue for me. Publicly I’ve avoided the issue largely because I’ve always believed it’s been a huge distraction for what is the main issue concerning Cuba: the almost incomprehensible level of repression and control that the Castro regime exercises over its population. So, in my often-failed … Read more



A principios del 2006 visité El Chapare. Iba en busca de datos biográficos sobre Evo Morales; también quería escuchar anécdotas de los propios cocaleros sobre la lucha contra la erradicación de la coca, batalla que los ha enfrentado desde hace más de dos décadas con los Estados Unidos. Mientras recorría los pueblos del trópico cochabambino, … Read more


Mr. Obama Goes to Ottawa

But do people really care? Well, north of the border, it’s very big news that Obama is traveling to Ottawa. Beyond his exciting Rock Star status, Obama revived the presidential tradition of making Canada the first overseas trip, following the footsteps of four of the last nine presidents. You couldn’t tell that though by hanging … Read more


México está de moda

Hace algunos unos días, los múltiples disparos provenientes de las famosas AK-47 se escucharon con fuerza en la casa de Moisés García, director del diario mexicano El Debate. Sólo la vivienda quedó con marcas de balas, sin embargo, este periodista y toda su familia salieron ilesos del atentado. Una historia que unos pocos pueden contar … Read more


Latin American Film Industry May Receive Boost in the Global Recession

In the last few months conventional wisdom has said that all bets are off when it comes to investments. While most sectors of the economy are starving for cash and credit, Latin American film makers are hoping to attract foreign investors looking to lower costs by investing in non-U.S. projects. Andres Calderón, executive producer at … Read more


Talk at the DC Water Cooler

A popular DC parlor game these days is about who is getting what position in the Obama administration. There have been numerous articles about the administration’s foreign policy agenda and what related appointments suggest about the president’s priorities –Afghanistan, Pakistan, the Middle East, Iran, and Iraq. Yet, among all this verbiage—Latin America is usually left … Read more


FARC Releases Hostages

Colombians were glued to their television sets last week as six hostages held by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrillas were freed in three separate missions. Big TV screens were assembled in Colombia’s main squares, while relatives holding white daisies gathered at local airports to greet those returning from the jungle after more … Read more


The Costs of Economic Nationalism

In the midst of the financial crisis and job insecurity, economic nationalism has resurfaced in its most unproductive and dangerous form, having implications not just for U.S. producers but for Latin American markets as well. In the approved Senate version of the $800 billion U.S. stimulus package, the Senate inserted a provision requiring that all manufactured … Read more


Presidents Calderón and Uribe Go on the Economic Offensive

For Latin American leaders, the place to be this week was either Davos, Switzerland or Belém, Brazil. For Mexican President Felipe Calderón and Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, the choice was the World Economic Forum in Davos. Joining his Venezuelan, Bolivian, Paraguayan, and Brazilian counterparts, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa—scheduled to be in Davos—instead opted for what … Read more


New York’s Brooklyn Academy of Music Showcases Latin American Composers

Audiences in the U.S. and Europe are used to Latin music tours consisting of hip-shaking pop stars and traditional Latin music in the forms of salsa, cumbia, and samba etc. But a new generation of Latin American composers are making headlines across the globe with classical music that resonates beyond borders and brings new sounds … Read more


Expanded Trade is Essential for the Hemisphere’s Economic Recovery

As Barack Obama begins to define his presidency, one pending question is what shape the new administration’s trade policy will take. For that, we’re sure to get more answers at the confirmation hearings for U.S. Trade Representative-designate Ron Kirk. But, one thing is certain. Over the past several years, trade has become something of a … Read more

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