Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas

What Trump’s “America First” Means for Latin America

Smart great powers ensure their safety by befriending smaller neighboring countries. China is engaged in a high-profile charm offensive to overcome long-standing animosities and draw its Southeast Asian neighbors into its orbit, through trade agreements and massive infrastructure projects. The Russia of Vladimir Putin is working hard to regain influence in territories of the former … Read more

Immigrants wait in a processing cell at the Adelanto Detention Facility

Immigrants Are Dying in U.S. Detention Centers. And It Could Get Worse.

Osmar Epifanio González Gadba, 32, hanged himself in March after three months in a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center in California while awaiting deportation to Nicaragua. Jean Carlos Jiménez-Joseph, 27, from Panama, hanged himself in ICE custody two months later, after 19 days in solitary confinement. The morning of his death, a … Read more


Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen’s Retirement Is a Loss for Bipartisanship

Republican Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Miami) struck fear into the hearts of Democrats and career diplomats alike during her 2011-2013 tenure as Chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. A tough questioner, she championed hardline conservative views with the aplomb of a 30-year House veteran. But she is also one of those increasingly rare creatures – … Read more


Mexican DREAMers Use Fiction to Share Their Immigration Reality

Paper plays an outsized role in Amalia Rojas’ life. A lack of papers – or at least a lack of the right ones – diverted her college dreams when, at 18, she found out she hadn’t been born in the U.S. and didn’t have the legal status she needed to apply for financial aid. Six … Read more


Here’s One Reason Trump Has Been Good for Democracy

Make no mistake: President Donald Trump’s policies may end up damaging the United States and bringing instability to the world order. But there is a silver lining. Since democracy is based on a contract between candidates who make promises and voters who believe them, Trump’s willingness to deliver on his campaign platform should be commended … Read more


Save the Lives of Central American Migrants

In the new issue of Americas Quarterly, we asked people, “What would you tell the next U.S. president about Latin America?” To see other authors’ responses, click here. Dear Mister / Madam President, Judging from the rhetoric coming from both parties’ presidential campaigns, immigration will continue to be a hotly contested issue under the next … Read more

Photo Credit: Day Donaldson / Flickr

This Week in Latin America: Obama in Havana, Venezuela in Crisis

Sign up here to get This Week in Latin America delivered straight to your inbox every Monday. Cuba, Argentina Host Obama: Cuba and Argentina each play host to U.S. President Barack Obama this week, with human rights issues shading both visits. Today, Obama will hold a working meeting with Cuban President Raúl Castro, who will then host a state dinner … Read more


Cuba: Open for Business, But…

Now that U.S. and Cuban flags fly over reestablished embassies in Washington and Havana, the question on many minds is: Is Cuba open for business? The short answer: Yes, but with caveats. In leading four Americas Society/Council of the Americas business delegations to the island over the past three years to explore possible investment opportunities, … Read more

Fresh Look Books

Dream Chasers: Immigration and the American Backlash

Immigration is part of the DNA of the United States. Whether motivated by the search for economic opportunity or by religious and political freedom, immigrants have been flocking to U.S. shores for over 400 years. Yet debates about “who belongs” and “who should be allowed in” are as old as the nation itself. Sometimes the … Read more

Innovators - Gregoria Flores

Gregoria Flores, United States

While many were surprised when tens of thousands of unaccompanied Central American children arrived at the U.S. southern border seeking asylum last year, it had a sadly familiar resonance for Gregoria Flores. “I know what it’s like to apply for asylum here when you have no one supporting you,” said Flores, 47, who arrived alone … Read more

TPP and Congress

The TPP: Almost There

It took more than five years, but the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is now near the finish line. Congressional passage of Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) earlier this summer gave U.S. officials the mandate to conclude the TPP talks and revived procedures to expedite its ratification. The trade pact could be signed later this year. The TPP … Read more


On Immigration, States Look to Move Past Rancorous National Debate

For progressive supporters of immigration reform, recent developments in national politics must undoubtedly seem grim. While two key elements of President Barack Obama’s sweeping executive actions on immigration appear to be headed towards defeat before the Firth Circuit Court of Appeals, House Speaker John Boehner continues to blame those actions for Congress’ inability to pass immigration reform.  … Read more


United States and Cuba Set Date for Embassy Inaugurations

President Barack Obama announced Wednesday that the United States and Cuba will reopen embassies in their respective capitals on July 20, officially restoring diplomatic ties between the two countries. The opening of a U.S. embassy in Havana for the first time in over 54 years would be the most tangible sign of progress in the … Read more

Sign up for our free newsletter