The Trump era

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    Trump’s threats on Mexican trade and immigration negate the stability dividend of preferential trade deals

Trump’s threats on Mexican trade and immigration negate the stability dividend of preferential trade deals

There is nothing new about Trump’s linkage of trade and non-trade issues, but subjecting trade deals like the North American Free Trade Agreement to the whims of the US president undermines a key benefit of such arrangements: greater stability. Without this stability dividend, potential partners could begin to question whether the costs of forging complex agreements with the US outweigh the benefits, writes Ken […]

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    Latinos’ trust in US politicians has fallen in the Trump era, but they have also become more politically active

Latinos’ trust in US politicians has fallen in the Trump era, but they have also become more politically active

Over the past two decades, Latinos in the United States have gone from being told that they did not belong in 2006, that they held the electoral balance of power in 2012, and finally back to rejection again with the election of President Trump in 2016. Changing societal messages and sometimes outright racism in the Trump era have affected […]

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    Misjudging the military: Guaidó, Trump, and the long shadow of Venezuela’s civil-military alliance

Misjudging the military: Guaidó, Trump, and the long shadow of Venezuela’s civil-military alliance

The lack of major defections from Venezuela’s armed forces reflects both the power and the perversion of their anti-imperial, developmental, and pro-social role under Hugo Chávez, writes Asa Cusack (LSE Latin America and Caribbean Centre). • n.b. republished courtesy of Al Jazeera; Creative Commons licence does not apply

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    The migrant caravan is a practical and political reaction to Mexico’s futile attempts at dissuasion

The migrant caravan is a practical and political reaction to Mexico’s futile attempts at dissuasion

Mexico’s resort to riot police and tear gas is part of a wider effort to scare migrants into returning to Central America. But push factors like extreme violence and grinding poverty weigh far more in the balance than shows of dissuasive violence, writes Alejandra Díaz de Leon (LSE Department of Sociology).

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    The implications of a divisive Summit of the Americas in Lima

The implications of a divisive Summit of the Americas in Lima

The 8th Summit of the Americas in Lima, Peru, will be divisive, potentially leaving Latin America and the Caribbean in leaderless disarray just when changing international relationships require unity and a common identity, writes David Jessop (Caribbean Council).

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    US encouragement of a military coup in Venezuela is dangerous for both countries

US encouragement of a military coup in Venezuela is dangerous for both countries

Publicly condoning military action and using economic sanctions to provoke it will only exacerbate Venezuelan suffering and further damage the tattered reputation of the US on democracy and human-rights issues in the Western Hemisphere, writes Timothy M. Gill (University of North Carolina, Wilmington).

From Chávez to Trump, must we really talk about populism?

There has been a surge in academic and media interest in populism, fuelled mainly by the election of Donald Trump. But as misleading comparisons with Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez show, the concept obscures more than it illuminates, while also marginalising any challenge to a dysfunctional “moderate centre”, writes Barry Cannon (Maynooth University).

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    The effectiveness of Trump’s revived ‘drug war’ rhetoric has already been rejected in Latin America

The effectiveness of Trump’s revived ‘drug war’ rhetoric has already been rejected in Latin America

Under Donald Trump, US federal drug policy has undergone a fairly dramatic reversal. The Obama administration’s criticisms of the ‘war on drugs’ are gone, replaced by a seeming return to eradication policies in key drug producer countries. John Collins (LSE US Centre International Drug Policy Unit) argues that the Trump administration’s return to unilateral, aggressive, supply-side and law enforcement-based approaches is likely to face […]

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    The end of colonialism in Puerto Rico? Evaluating the options in the 2017 political status referendum

The end of colonialism in Puerto Rico? Evaluating the options in the 2017 political status referendum

The options for decolonising Puerto Rico have always been complex and contested. But the US decision to force a “status quo” option on to the latest ballot has undermined this chance to settle the issue once and for all, writes Gibrán Cruz Martínez.

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    US pressure on Nicaragua will only stall diplomatic engagement and harm its most vulnerable groups

US pressure on Nicaragua will only stall diplomatic engagement and harm its most vulnerable groups

Even with Venezuela’s substantial support in doubt, the nature of Nicaraguan trade, migration, and aid links with the US makes the country less vulnerable to pressure than many expect. Instead, diplomacy and civil society will bear the brunt of unintended consequences, writes Pamela Neumann.