Militarism and Neo-Liberal Economics to Top Agenda of the Upcoming Summit of the Americas

February 23, 2015

The next Summit of the Americas meeting is scheduled to take place in Panama City, Panama from April 10-11. The theme of the upcoming summit will be “Partnership for Democratic Development and Security in the Americas” and U.S. imperialism, in particular, is expected to push its program of neo-liberal economics.

Ahead of the meeting, U.S. diplomats are letting on that they are “reforming” past relations with Latin America and are even willing to make independent “concessions” such as inviting Cuba to the meeting. For example, in a statement near the end of last year Secretary of State Kerry said that he would like to “get beyond the perennial debate of attendance – who comes – and focus on the substantive issues at the summit that will be crucial to ultimately building a better future in the Americas.”

Nevertheless, U.S. insistence that every country in Latin America submit to the so-called free market system and open its economy up to the unfettered exploitation by the U.S. multinational corporations will remain on the agenda of the meeting. These demands are nothing new, and Obama has long labeled countries in Latin America as “democracies” or “dictatorships” based on their openness to treaties like NAFTA, the FTAA, and similar treaties. 

In fact it has long been the case that, according to U.S. imperialism, any law, any restraint on the right of the U.S. companies to exploit and plunder the resources of other countries is labeled as unfair, a roadblock to progress. And countries which set up standards to protect their national economies are called “rogue states,” “unfit for sovereignty” and U.S. imperialism is prepared even to wage war against them.

Treaties like NAFTA, the FTAA, and a number of bilateral treaties demand that countries turn their nationalized industry, their forests, even their water resources, over to private U.S. companies. So too, social services including health care, education and other vital services are being privatized and turned over to the American corporations under the signboard of “globalization.”

Today U.S. imperialism is well aware of the growing revolt of the peoples and along with its program of economic re-colonization, it is working to strengthen its political and military domination of Latin America. The U.S. openly demands that every country adopt a U.S.-style political system. At the same time, such slogans as “defending democracy and human rights” or “fighting international terrorism and drugs,” are being used to dispatch U.S. military “advisers” and set up new U.S. bases throughout Latin America. Already, the U.S. is waging a counter-insurgency war in Colombia to suppress the people’s struggles against foreign domination and exploitation.