Obama in Latin America troubled waters

Posted on December 26, 2009


As I failed to keep a regular posting pace lately I’ll retrieve some works of long-term interest.

This article shows a rather realistic evaluation of current increasing troubled relationship of the Obama administration with its southern continental neighbors, even sought from a right- leaned point of view. On the other hand, you can say that the American performance in the Honduras affair dropped down the sweet-talking mask and showed off the old same corporative permanent interests policy.

The other sign of the current trend was the recent tour by Arturo Valenzuela, the Chilean-born, hard-to-explain-haircut Undersecretary of Hemispheric Affairs, who failed to shake hands with any relevant president.

Valenzuela’s press declarations aroused a storm of critics in Argentina by stating that the country lacks “juridical safety” for investments. This statement was linked to a long battle waged by the large Kraft Foods Corp. against its workers and existing local labor legislation.

The conflict burst in July when 3000 workers at the corporation’s owned Terrabussi cookies factory halted working until “swine flue” sanitary measures got accomplished. In fact, this was the last in a row of  strains caused by the managers pressure to cut the staff and extend labour hours turns. The managers laid off hundreds of workers, including all of the left-of-the-government elected delegates. Ensuing months witnessed a row of mobilizations to ensure the reincorporation of all the ousted with cuts of the main freeway near the plant and lots of leftist students battling the police forces.

Labour officials and judges pressed the managers to withdraw, so the ousted went back in to their jobs and the capitalist offensive got a defeat. It was a clear cut show of class-struggle under the bourgeois law and the law prevailed, no more, no less. But, according to Obama’s envoy, this means “juridical insecurity” for foreign investors.  Who seems to be the actual constituency to be protected by the Obama administration. No wonder, then, if  he finds increasing troubles in the neighborhood in the time ahead.