For Latin American and Caribbean nations that will depend heavily on the Inter-American Development Bank to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic in the years to come, the implications of Mauricio Claver-Carone’s bid for the presidency are profound.
For the Trump administration, there seem to be only two options in dealing with multilateral institutions: withdraw (as in the case of the World Health Organization) or take them over. In the tussle over the Inter-American Development Bank, the region is prepared to wait him out. The ball is now in Latin America’s court.
Nicaragua’s political crisis is torn between violence and anger of defensive misrule, and division within the opposition. It is a political battle full of contempt, criticism, and even manipulating reality. These actions are not atypical of Nicaragua, and they represent a very deep belief of our political culture: the government can only be administered by the perfect politician and each of us judges with moral superiority who is or is not worthy to be considered perfect.
The Covid-19 pandemic has once more demonstrated the fragility of Latin American regional and subregional organizations, and the reasons for it: the weaknesses of domestic institutions, the lack of shared interests and values, and the dependence on foreign powers. It is not too late to turn the pandemic into an opportunity to acknowledge the existence of common interests, and the value of pursuing them collectively.
Covid-19 is transforming organized crime. In addition to heightening the risk of violence, the pandemic is also indirectly strengthening the social, economic, and political clout of several criminal organizations in the same way that the Italian mafia and Japanese Yakuza emerged stronger after the great dislocations of the Second World War. Crime kingpins know full well that law enforcement and criminal justice systems are overstretched, and that prisons are bursting at the seams. They also know that an economic depression is coming, which may increase the risk of violence. It is not entirely clear if governments are similarly alert.
Bolton’s account in the chapter “Venezuela Libre” in his newly released book, “The Room Where it Happened: A White House Memoir,” is a powerful reminder of how the Trump administration – out of a mix of ignorance, incompetence, and frivolousness – squandered the opportunity to help Venezuela emerge from its disastrous situation.
Latin America After Covid-19: Just as Heterogeneous, Fragmented, and Irrelevant as Before…So Now What?
How does the Covid-19 pandemic affect Latin America’s insertion with the world? Andrés Malamud explored this topic in the book ‘Unfulfilled Promises’ in 2019. Today he reflects on how the pandemic has changed none of the trends he then identified. Rather, it has highlighted all of them: at the global level, we witness increasing multipolarity, failure of multilateral cooperation, and a Sino-American power transition; in Latin America, we observe structural heterogeneity, political fragmentation, and geopolitical irrelevance. Let us elaborate.
Manuel Orozco outlines how Daniel Ortega’s regime is using the Covid-19 pandemic as an opportunity to ensure political survival. Regardless of the measure used, Nicaragua is the country that has least adhered to efforts to mitigate the pandemic. The consequences of the government’s inaction are deadly.
The sustained success of China’s model, despite its often-referenced drawbacks, will force a continued referendum on democracy. Even the strongest of democratic systems will be forced to confront their vulnerabilities and inefficiencies.
The success of China’s regional outreach in Latin America will depend, as it has for a number of years, on Beijing’s relative influence in regional institutions and on the capacity and effectiveness of the institutions themselves.
In just two months, the US death toll from the coronavirus pandemic has surpassed US casualties from the Vietnam War, and more than 30 million American workers have already applied for unemployment insurance. Against the backdrop of this devastating health and economic crisis, Trump is simply unable to show real leadership and has been unwilling to assume his share of responsibility for the calamity. As the US entered the worst phase of the crisis, his position on the pandemic has been notably incoherent and contradictory.
The 41 percent drop in China’s first quarter GDP, compounded by the global oil price rout, has been something of a worst case scenario for the region’s producers.
Desde inicios de 2020, Nicaragua se ha estancado ante un vacío de poder que se ha agravado por la crisis de la pandemia, acompañado de un empate político prolongado entre el régimen y los actores del movimiento opositor de la Coalición Nacional.
China has become an essential, reliable partner for Latin American nations, while the United States, under the Trump Adminstration, has alienated itself away from longtime regional partners.
The priority of the US in the country should be to avoid a humanitarian disaster, not sending naval destroyers.