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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

State of the Union: Latin America goes missing

President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech was unusual in its specificity and frankness, and to those who support him also uplifting.
However, if I'd written the speech I would have added a quick reference, beyond his very brief reference to immigration, to America's desire and willingness to work with our friends and our critics in Latin America.
The speech to a joint session of the U.S. Congress, with the world watching and listening, was an opportunity for the president to discuss the problems of poverty, disease, drug trafficking, corruption and other real threats to democracy and peace, economic growth and social progress in the hemisphere. He could have taken this opportunity to add some meat to his promise to chart a new course in U.S. policy in the region. Unfortunately, he passed over the chance.
Perhaps we'll hear more once the all-government review of foreign policy and aid is concluded early this year.

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