2021 Latin America And The Caribbean In Review: The Pink Tide Rises Again

US policy towards Latin America and the Caribbean continued in a seamless transition from Trump to Biden, but the terrain over which it operated shifted left. The balance between the US drive to dominate its “backyard” and its counterpart, the Bolivarian cause of regional independence and integration, continued to tip portside in 2021 with major popular electoral victories in Chile, Honduras, and Peru. These follow the previous year’s reversal of the coup in Bolivia.

Central has been the struggle of the ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America) countries – particularly Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua – against the asphyxiating US blockade and other regime-change measures. Presidential candidate Biden pledged to review Trump’s policy of US sanctions against a third of humanity.

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20th ALBA-TCP Summit Declaration

The Heads of State and Government and the Heads of Delegations of the countries of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America – Peoples’ Trade Treaty (ALBA-TCP), meet in Havana, Cuba, on December 14, 2021 to commemorate the 17th Anniversary of the Alliance. In signing this Declaration, we renew our commitment to strengthen this mechanism of political coordination based on the principles of solidarity, social justice, cooperation and economic complementarity, a result of the political will of its founders, the Commanders Fidel Castro Ruz and Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías.

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Barbados: The Long Road To The Republic

On November 30, 2021, on the 55th anniversary of its political independence, Barbados will become a republic. It is commonly assumed this was some sudden decision by Mia Mottley’s government. The most bizarre suggestion came from British voices, who asserted this had to do with Barbados tilting to China. But the roots of this change go back decades, and are anchored in the politics of the wider Caribbean.

Forbes Burnham’s decision in 1970 to proclaim the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, and Eric Williams’s push towards the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago in 1976, are the key precedents. Both were underpinned by the politics of what I have called ‘secondary decolonization’, for which, in the long 1970s, the global Black Power moment was central.

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Barbados Becomes A Republic

At midnight on Tuesday, November 30, Barbados, an island nation in the Caribbean, declared itself a republic. Sandra Prunella Mason was promoted from governor general to president after by Parliament. In a formal ceremony, attended by Prince Charles representing Queen Elizabeth II, the country ceased to be a constitutional monarchy, removing the queen from her position as head of state. The country, however, will remain part of the Commonwealth of Nations.

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2021: Political Turning Point In Central America And The Caribbean

With the background noise of migration to the United States and the recent victory of Xiomara Castro de Zelaya, Central America and the Caribbean are at a turning point that will play an important role in the years to come in Latin America and the Caribbean. The region comes from processes of civil wars, historical colonization and systematic impoverishment; however, the facts are woven with this historical thread in which democracy and human rights are used in the interest of the hegemonic narrative to intervene and capture geostrategic resources. Three of the multiple processes taking place are described below.

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Historic Africa/CARICOM Summit

It was an idea whose time had come. On Tuesday, September 5 this idea took material form at the first Africa/CARICOM Summit conducted virtually and broadcast to the world via the Web and social media.

Participants at the historical event included heads of State and Government of the Caribbean Community and the African Union, chairs of Caricom and the African Union Commission, the Africa Regional Economic Communities, the Secretaries General of Caricom and the Organization of the African Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS), and the president of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).

The Summit was chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya under the theme ‘Unity Across Continents and Oceans: Opportunities for Deepening Integration’.

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First Africa-CARICOM Summit

Hosted by Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta, and with the theme ‘Unity Across Continents and Oceans: Opportunities for Deepening Integration’, participating governments looked at ways to strengthen the linkages between the people of Africa and the Caribbean regions by addressing integration challenges across continents.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne of Antigua and Barbuda, and Chair of CARICOM, proposed the establishment of a Forum of African and Caribbean Territories and States (FACTS) to be coordinated jointly by the Secretariats of CARICOM and the African Union (AU). He also proposed the designation of September 7th “Africa-CARICOM Day” in every year going forward, which would coincide with a repeat of the Africa-CARICOM summit “to analyze the global situation and our place within it; to discuss initiatives and programs; and to authorize joint actions.”

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Collective Militarized White Supremacy And Black Neocolonialism

Except for the hum of US helicopters flying overhead, there was a deafening silence throughout the Caribbean region, during the recent Operation Tradewinds, Progressive and Pan-African forces did not utter a word, as soldiers from Guyana, Brazil, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago participated in this region-wide military exercise with army personnel from the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Canada, France and the Netherlands.

We were told that Operation Tradewinds was “a US Southern Command sponsored combined joint exercise conducted with partner nations to enhance the collective ability of defense forces and constabularies to counter transnational criminal organizations, conduct humanitarian assistance, and disaster relief operations.”

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Washington Beats The Drum Of Regime Change

Sovereign regionalism is not alien to the Caribbean, which has made four attempts to build a platform: the West Indian Federation (1958-1962), Caribbean Free Trade Association (1965-1973), Caribbean Community (1973-1989), and CARICOM (1989 to the present). What began as an anti-imperialist union has now devolved into a trade association that attempts to better integrate the region into world trade. The politics of the Caribbean are increasingly being drawn into the orbit of the US.

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Several Caribbean Nations Reject Pompeo’s Visit To Jamaica

The Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley recently announced that her country was not sending their Foreign Minister to Jamaica in order to attend a meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Mottley, citing Barbados’ commitment to remaining neutral and non-aggression towards other nations, said her government would not take part in the U.S.’ attempts to divide the Caribbean region.

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The Latin American And Caribbean Left In 2019

A gang of bandits arrived in Brazil’s Government thanks to that coup. The same as the Macri Administration in Argentina, they immediately started to govern for the one percent and the defense of the national sovereignty and social welfare set up by the Workers’ Party was taken to pieces.  Uncontrolled financial speculation was unleashed, as well as selling natural resources and public goods to transnational companies. Though these were the most devastating defeats for the left in this analyzed period, they were not the only ones.

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A Brief History Of The US Interference In The Caribbean Basin

Since the United States granted itself the right to intervene in other countries’ internal affairs, its foreign policy has repeatedly run over its alleged commitment to democracy. In the history of geopolitics, it is often considered that the “Age of Imperialism” began at the end of the 19th century when Europeans disputed African territories among themselves. Long before that happened, however, the Caribbean Basin was the most desirable space for some nations seeking natural resources and cheap labor force. In fact, the “conquest” of the New World, which was itself a violent event, began precisely over there.

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No Repeat Of US Military Occupation Of Haiti

Intensifying protests led by popular movements in Haiti, calling for the resignation of corrupt, US-supported President Jovenal Moise, have persisted for over a year in spite of violent repression and killings of demonstrators by government death squads, bringing day-to-day business to a standstill. At a forum last week in the Dominican Republic entitled Destabilization of Haiti: Issues and Challenges, Guatemalan diplomat Edmond Mulet, who has a problematic history in Haiti, appeared oblivious to the people’s demands and to the fact that humanitarian suffering is brought on by abuses of the US-backed leadership…

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