April 18, 2008


The Uribe temptation: America stiffs its best friend in Latin America. How much will he really care? (The Economist, 4/17/08)

Mr Uribe is that rarest of beasts: a democratic, pro-American president winning an anti-terrorist war. [...]

In Mr Uribe...the Americans have an ally who has worked hard, through the American-financed Plan Colombia, to eradicate coca and disrupt the traffickers. More than this, he has made Colombia the odd-man-out in the Andes. Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia are run by anti-American leftists. Mr Uribe believes in free markets and has hitched Colombia's star to the United States. He even backed the war in Iraq.

Such an ally should be nurtured. Or so says George Bush, who appealed to Congress this week to ratify a long-promised Free-Trade Agreement (FTA) with Colombia so as not to “stiff” an ally. Stiffed, however, Colombia will probably be. The Democrats on Capitol Hill refuse to be bounced. Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the House, responded to Mr Bush by accusing him of “stiffing” the American people via seven years of lousy economic policies.

Ms Pelosi's view of Mr Bush is no surprise. But what do the Democrats have against Colombia?

His being pro-American, capitalist and defeating a Leftist insurgency doesn't explain it?

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 18, 2008 6:25 AM
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