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Rethinking Latin America

Posted by iBlog on August 9, 2007

Even though the Cold War ended two decades ago, its outdated strategies continue to shape US foreign policy. Nowhere is this more evident than in the foreign relations of the United States with Latin American countries. Because US interests in the region have changed, the United States must apply new strategies to achieve its new goals. Instead of militaristic intervention and paternalism, the United States should adopt an increasingly hands-off approach as Latin American countries assert themselves more strongly in the world arena. The exception to this strategy is trade, since increasing trade in the Americas is the best way to alleviate poverty and many other problems that plague the region. Not only are paternalistic policies expensive and ineffective, but they also strengthen anti-US sentiments within the region, creating more problems than solutions. The United States should not worry that its influence is declining but instead adjust to the reality that Latin American countries deserve respect in managing their internal affairs as the United States helps them further integrate into the world community and the global economy.

Read the full article in Harvard International Review

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