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Paul,

An interesting and in many ways long overdue assessment of both US involvement in Central and South America as well as the aggressive efforts by China (and Russia and Iran as well for that matter) to gain economic and political influence in Latin America. Overall a good opening presentation that augurs well for further development. Thank you for posting

The history of US engagement with Latin America is far more complicated (if not conflicted) than you have so far indicated. For every altruistic effort by Washington to foster good relations with Latin America (e.g. the Monroe Doctrine or the USNS Comfort's Partnership for the Americas humanitarian missions for example) there have been equally egregious missteps (e.g. invoking the worst elements of La Leyenda negra in the run-up to the Spanish-American War or supporting dictatorships during the Cold War provided they were sufficiently anti-Communist for example) that have fostered justified suspicions throughout Latin America toward the motives of the Colossus of the North.

I agree with your conclusion that the US must "fill a lead role" in working with and supporting the countries of Central and South America Unfortunately the current political administration in Washington shows neither the will nor the interest to make the necessary effort that such a "lead role" would require.

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