Political-Economic Factors in U.S. Foreign Policy

The Colombia Plan, the Mérida Initiative, and the Obama Administration
Gian Carlo Delgado-Ramos y Silvina María Romano
Latin American Perspectives
Vol. 38. No. 4. SAGE.
US. July, 2011.
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U.S. policy in Latin America, even when couched in the openly diplomatic discourse used by the Obama administration, is based on military presence and serves the economic interests of the United States and allied Latin American elites. In order to secure the free-market context that ensures U.S. access to Latin America’s strategic resources, U.S. administrations have focused on issues such as security and the fight against narco-insurgency and terrorism, encouraging and directly supporting Latin American regimes in which increased military presence in the government is purported to guarantee internal stability during a time of increasing violence. In reality, what they foster is a complex balance between stability and instability that maintains the region’s overall dependence and, therefore, its status as a source of U.S. wealth and power.

Key words: U.S., Latin American policy, Colombia Plan, Mérida Initiative, Obama administration, Military.