What's New From AQ

  • Rethinking Latin America

    Thursday, April 12, 2012

    With the Summit of the Americas approaching on April 14-15 and Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff making her first-ever visit to the White House this week, U.S. policy makers have got their minds on their southern neighbors. In the latest installment of the "Foreign Affairs Focus On" discussion series, AQ Editor-in-Chief and Americas Society/Council of the Americas Senior Director of Policy Christopher Sabatini speaks with Foreign Affairs Editor Gideon Rose about how U.S. academics and policy makers view, and should view, Latin America.

    Sabatini argues that in the U.S. today, Latin America continues to be viewed—mistakenly—through the prism of comparative development, rather than with an eye on the region's rise on the global stage and inter-state relations within it. Sabatini says that the U.S. has failed, in particular, to put forth a comprehensive trade agenda to meet the potential of Latin America's ascendant economies, and this has serious implications for the U.S.'s economic and even national security interests. Remarking on Rousseff's meeting with President Barack Obama, he notes that the U.S. so far has not been able to develop a relationship with Brazil consistent with that country's own ideas about how it should be perceived in the global arena.

    Watch the full interview here.

  • Pan American Day

    Thursday, March 15, 2012

    The topic of "Pan American Day" on April 12 at the Union League of Philadelphia is "The United States and Latin America: Policy Continuity or Change?" This will be a dialogue on the future policy of the U.S. towards Latin America and the policy perspectives of Latin American countries towards the United States. What policies should be pursued to promote a peaceful, prosperous, and democratic hemisphere? A distinguished set of speakers from academia, diplomacy and the military, from both the U.S. and Latin America, will discuss this important question. For additional information and to purchase tickets, click here.

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  • A New Order in the Americas?

    Wednesday, April 11, 2012

    Previewing the upcoming Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia, Tom Ashbrook hosted AQ Editor-in-Chief and AS/COA Senior Director of Policy Christopher Sabatini on NPR's On Point.

    The theme of the show was, "Does the American hemisphere- North, South, Central- still hold together?" In a globalized world, with China's footprint growing larger and the U.S. seemingly neglecting Latin America, the U.S. is at risk of its influence waning in its own backyard. Tom Ashbrook interviewed Sabatini; John Price, Managing Director of Americas Market Intelligence; and Juan Carlos Lopez, political anchor and correspondent for CNN en Español about the U.S.'s role in the western hemisphere today. 

  • CADAL Releases Global Development Report

    Tuesday, March 27, 2012

    Centro para la Apertura y el Desarrollo de América Latina (Center for the Opening and Development of Latin America—CADAL) announced today the publication of the 2011 edition of its annual report on global development. Desarrollo Global: Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia (“Global Development: Democracy, Markets and Transparency”) ranks countries across the globe on three factors that CADAL considers essential for development: democratic freedoms, market economies and government transparency.

    To compile the ranking, CADAL relied on data from Freedom House’s Freedom of the World survey, Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal’s Index of Economic Freedom, and Transparency International’s Corruption Index. Out of a total of 173 countries included in the assessment, New Zealand ranked at the top. Chile ranked among the top in Latin America (15 out of 173), with Uruguay (23) and Costa Rica (39) not too far behind. Compared with previous years, 10 Latin American countries improved their ranking, though Mexico, Nicaragua and Venezuela fell behind.

    A full copy of the report in Spanish can be found here.

  • Risks for Mixed-Status Immigrant Families

    Tuesday, March 27, 2012

    Risks for Mixed-Status Immigrant Families (webcast available)

    Wednesday, March 28, 2012
    5:30 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

    Registration: 5:30 to 6:00 p.m.
    Presentation: 6:00 to 7:00 p.m.
    Reception: 7:00 to 8:00 p.m.

    680 Park Avenue
    New York, NY
    Map of location

    Approximately 5.5 million children and adolescents (most of them U.S. citizens) are growing up with at least one undocumented parent. What does that mean for their future role in the U.S. economy? Join Americas Society/Council of the Americas and the New York Immigration Coalition for a discussion of this issue with experts, including the authors of the report Growing up in the Shadows: The Developmental Implications of Unauthorized Status (Harvard Educational Review, 2011).


    Chung-Wha Hong, Executive Director, New York Immigration Coalition
    Carola Suárez-Orozco, Professor of Applied Psychology, New York University’s Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, & Human Development
    Hirokazu Yoshikawa, Walter H. Gale Professor of Education and Academic Dean, Harvard Graduate School of Education
    Jason Marczak, Director of Policy, AS/COA (Moderator)

    Registration for this event is now closed. To access the live webcast, please visit this page at the time of the event (no registration required).

  • Marco Rubio Lifts Hold on Assistant Secretary Nomination

    Friday, March 23, 2012

    U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) announced yesterday his decision to lift his hold on the nomination of Roberta Jacobson to the position of Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs.

    According to the press release issued by his office, this decision is a result of months of negotiations with the administration in hopes of cracking down on abuses of the people-to-people Cuba travel policy. Rubio said in the statement that, while he still has "concerns about the entire program," he will accept Jacobson's nomination on the condition that the State Department "at least enforce its own regulations and stop the more egregious abuses." Also according to the release, the State Department has agreed to require that applicants requesting permission to travel to Cuba "demonstrate how their itineraries constutite purposeful travel that would support civil society in Cuba and help promote their independence from Cuban authorities."

    Under the rules of the Senate, a senator can block votes on nominees or legislation by placing a "hold" on them, which Rubio did late last year. During her confirmation hearing, Jacobson defended the Obama administration's policies toward Cuba, including the lifting of some restrictions on remittances to the island. Rubio had previously characterized the administration's policies toward Latin America as ones of "appeasement, weakness and alienation of our allies."

  • Book Launch: Latin Lessons by Hal Weitzman

    Friday, January 27, 2012

    Book Launch: Latin Lessons: How South America Stopped Listening to the United States and Started Prospering
    by Hal Weitzman

    Thursday, March 1, 2012
    5:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

    Registration: 5:30-6:00 p.m.
    Presentation: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
    Book Signing: 7:00-7:30 p.m.

    680 Park Avenue
    New York, NY

    Map of location

    Former Andean correspondent for the Financial Times charts the decline of the U.S. influence in a region long considered to be its backyard.

    In the past decade, South America's leaders have increasingly snubbed U.S. efforts to guide the terms of their economic policies and trade agreements. While Washington has been distracted by military campaigns elsewhere, rivals such as China, Russia and Iran have expanded their clout in Latin America, and U.S. influence in the region has fallen to a historic low—just as the U.S. has become more dependent than ever on exporting to Latin America and importing its oil.

    Combining sharp wit and great storytelling with trenchant analysis, Hal Weitzman examines how America "lost the South" and argues that if the U.S. is to find a new role in a world of emerging superpowers, it must reengage with Latin America.


    •Hal Weitzman, author of Latin Lessons: How South America Stopped Listening to the United States and Started Prospering (February 2012)


    Patricio Navia, Master Teacher of Liberal Studies Program, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, New York University

    •Moderator: Christopher Sabatini, Editor-in-Chief, Americas Quarterly and Senior Director of Policy, Americas Society/Council of the Americas

    For additional information and to register, click here.

  • ‘Gang of 5’ betrays Latin American tradition

    Thursday, February 23, 2012

    A coalition of governments led by Hugo Chávez, Rafael Correa, Evo Morales, Daniel Ortega and the Castro regime are actively dismantling Latin America’s longstanding tradition of human rights, says Gabriel Marcella, adjunct professor at the Army War College and contributing author to Americas Quarterly, in an op-ed published today in The Miami Herald.  Marcella writes that the Summit of the Americas, scheduled to take place in Cartagena, Colombia in mid-April, is the perfect time for the region’s leaders to put aside their differences and support once again international peace and human dignity.

    'Gang of 5' Betrays Latin American Tradition
    Gabriel Marcella

    The presidents of the Americas will meet in Cartagena, Colombia on April 14-15. Never has there been so much need for cooperation in hemispheric relations, yet never have the divisions been so gaping. Those fissures divide one set of countries that espouse democracy and human rights and another that are dismantling those very values.

    Nowhere is this clearer than the siege against human rights. A coalition of governments that are part of ALBA (“dawn” in Spanish; the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America), the brainchild of Hugo Chávez supported by President Rafael Correa of Ecuador, Evo Morales, Daniel Ortega, and the Castro regime, voted against the U.N. General Assembly resolution to condemn the atrocities visited upon the people of Syria by the murderous government of Bashar Al-Assad. Only seven other countries voted against the resolution, while 138 voted for it.

    Read the rest of the article here.

  • Rethinking Latin America

    Tuesday, February 21, 2012

    U.S. regionalists need a reminder that development doesn't end politics and that contemporary Latin America has its own power dynamics. As the region enters a new era marked by increasing geopolitical autonomy and intraregional rivalries, it should be addressed with the mindset of international relations, not just comparative politics.

    Rethinking Latin America
    Chris Sabatini

    Running down the list of the U.S. State Department's Latin America policy objectives in El País in September 2010, the economist Moisés Naím noted that they focused almost exclusively on domestic concerns: building democratic institutions, promoting local social and economic opportunity, and so forth. These issues were not only given a higher priority in policy toward Latin America than they were for other regions, but they were also issues largely beyond Washington's ability to control.

    Naím was correct, but the point can be taken further. The focus on politics within Latin American states rather than on relations between them is characteristic not simply of the State Department but also of the Latin American regional studies community in the United States more generally, from where the U.S. policy and advocacy community absorbs much of its personnel and intellectual orientation. Such attitudes have harmed U.S. policy by focusing excessive attention on small countries with little geostrategic influence and fostering the facile notion that political and economic liberalization are the necessary and sufficient criteria for the advancement of all major U.S. interests. This approach has distorted Washington's calculations of regional politics and hampered its ability to counter outside influences and deal sensibly with rising regional powers.

    U.S. scholars and policymakers need a reminder that development does not mean the end of politics and that twenty-first-century Latin America has its own, autonomous power dynamics. A little realism would go a long way.

    Continue reading this article here.

  • China's Global Rise: Implications for the Americas

    Wednesday, February 8, 2012

    China's Global Rise: Implications for the Americas - Launch of Americas Quarterly Winter 2012 Issue

    Wednesday, February 15, 2012
    9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

    Registration: 9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m.
    Presentation: 9:30 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.

    Peterson Institute for International Economics
    1750 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
    Washington, DC
    Map of location

    Please join Americas Society and the Peterson Institute for International Economics for the launch of the Winter 2012 issue of Americas Quarterly, China’s Global Rise: Implications for the Americas.

    This event will include a presentation of original Peterson Institute research on Chinese foreign direct investment in mining in Latin America and a panel discussion offering new perspectives on the China–Latin America relationship. What has been the record of Chinese mining companies in complying with labor and environmental standards? What has been the impact of China’s economic rise on Latin American politics and U.S. relations? How does China’s growing presence in Latin America affect U.S. political and economic interests?

    Keynote Speaker:

    •    Thomas F. McLarty, III, President, McLarty Associates

    Confirmed speakers:

    •    Theodore Moran, Nonresident Senior Fellow, Peterson Institute for International Economics and Director, Landegger Program in International Business Diplomacy, Georgetown University
    •    Kimberly Ann Elliott,
    Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development
    •    Arvind Subramanian,
    Senior Fellow, Peterson Institute for International Economics
    •    Eric Farnsworth,
    Vice President, Council of the Americas
    •    Christopher Sabatini,
    Editor-in-Chief, Americas Quarterly; Senior Director of Policy, Americas Society and Council of the Americas (Moderator)

    Please RSVP to Yvonne Priestley at meetings@piie.com.

    Event Information: For questions, please contact Nina Agrawal at nagrawal@as-coa.org or 212-277-8390, or visit www.as-coa.org.

    This program is made possible in part through a grant by the GE Foundation.


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