Summit of the Americas

John Paul Rathbone

The scandal of the 20 US secret service agents who cavorted with prostitutes in Cartagena before Barack Obama’s visit to the Summit of the Americas last weekend has become a national issue in the United States. Republican presumptive nominee Mitt Romney is the latest to weigh in on the topic. 

John Paul Rathbone

For many years Latin America complained the United States never paid it much attention. Worse, when it did, it never cared for long. Instead, Latin America suffered the respect usually devoted to a “back yard”; at best, benign neglect.

Today the boot is on the other foot. Latin America, which over the past decade has enjoyed its best economic performance in a generation, no longer seems to care much about the US. When Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff’s travelled to Washington to meet US president Barack Obama this week, the tone of her remarks were cordial but aloof.

 

John Paul Rathbone

February is the month of balmy summer days in Latin America, although the season of beach holidays hasn’t stopped a delicious diplomatic storm from brewing.

At the heart of the thundery electrostatic is the perennial problem. Will Cuba attend the “Summit of the Americas” this April?