The Obama goes to Latin America Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

LatinAmerPresident Obama and his family are completing their visit to Brazil, Chile and El Salvador. Mary O’Grady explains Why Obama Went to Brazil
There’s a chance to build a new foreign policy alliance that disdains dictators like Hugo Chávez.

As to the good reason for such a trip, consider the shared geopolitical interests between the U.S. and the biggest democracy in Latin America. Although former President Lula da Silva, also from the Workers’ Party, did almost nothing to deregulate a mostly unfree economy over his eight years in office, he did manage to respect the central bank reforms carried out by his predecessor, President Fernando Henrique Cardoso. As a result, after decades of inflationary chaos caused by central bank financing of government deficits, Brazil has now had vastly improved price stability for more than a decade. Ending the cycle of repeated devaluations is enabling the formation of a substantial middle class, and it is shaping a nation that increasingly wants to be part of the modern, global economy.

If Brazil is seeking rapprochement with the U.S., it is a welcome development for the entire hemisphere. As an ally on the fundamentals, like opposition to torture in Cuban jails, Brazil could be part of a long-awaited regional push to denounce human rights abuses. It might also come in handy next year when Venezuela holds presidential elections. Mr. Chávez has said that even if he loses, he won’t step down, and the commander of the army has agreed.

That could make for a situation not unlike what is unfolding in Libya today. If the U.S. and Brazil are singing from the same hymn book, it will help. It’s only too bad the commander in chief who was starting a war didn’t have the good sense to return home after the meeting in Brasilia.

Obama’s trip is in the headlines throughout the hemisphere.

Flying down to Rio
Latin Americans like Barack Obama. They would like him even more if his rhetoric of partnership was matched by policy changes

President Obama’s Trip: Hope in Latin America’s Race and Inclusion

ARGENTINA
Argentina Unions Call Off Strike

BRAZIL
Obama cancels public-square appearance in Rio

Obama thrills Brazil slum residents with visit to impoverished area of Rio de Janeiro

The Perigee Has Landed

CHILE
Obama will be accompanied by 120 Secret Service agents in Santiago de Chile
United States Secret Service agents are collaborating with Chilean police to establish security measures for US President Barack Obama when he arrives in Santiago next Monday
(today)

Nuclear Energy, Japan and the Implications for Obama’s Visit to Chile

A view from the ‘other’ Chile

COLOMBIA
Colombia says it found Venezuelan weapons on its territory

CUBA
Two Female Members of Cuban Opposition detained by Castro State Security

Cuban-American relations
A Gross miscarriage of justice?

Cuba journalist survives ‘hell’ and emerges ready to fight

ECUADOR
Chevron Appeals to Proceed in Ecuador

Libia tiene apoyo en A. Latina: Chávez, Alba y Ecuador condenan intervención extranjera

EL SALVADOR
Obama to visit El Salvador at drugs crossroads

HAITI
Haiti held a runoff election yesterday; the results are due next week

Preliminary results are expected March 31 and final results likely won’t be announced until April 16, election officials said.

Critical presidential vote in Haiti marred by delays
Haitians began casting ballots in crucial presidential and legislative elections amid some delays, but poll workers said they don’t expect the chaos that marked last November’s vote.

Aristide Roils Haiti Election

Today’s Video: Aristide’s arrival

HONDURAS
No school; strikes, standoffs, and now death

MEXICO
The government of Mexico backs emigrant workers in suit against U.S. firm

Mexican Asylum Seekers Form Coalition in Texas

A Free Man Still Looks Over His Shoulder in Mexico

Obama’s ambassador to Mexico resigns over WikiLeaks documents

NICARAGUA
Nicaragua headed for one-man rule — again

PUERTO RICO
President’s Task Force on Puerto Rico’s Status Submits Report to Obama

Puerto Ricans in Central Florida’s Tourism Hub Are Driving Hispanic Growth

VENEZUELA
Chavez Freezes Venezuela’s Non-Existing Nuclear Program

Generic Revolutionary Mismanagement at Venezuela’s Government Generic Plant

The week’s posts,
In the headlines: ‘my Dear Obama, our son’, French flying over Libya, Obama in Rio
The Consequences of Trade Inaction in Latin America
Chavez rails against the boobs
44 Senate Republicans write Harry Reid on FTAs with Colombia & Panama

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