In the latest test of its tenacious allegiance to the U.S., Mexico has once again planted itself squarely in Washington’s corner. Verbalizing what would eventually be its position, Foreign Minister Luis Ernesto Derbez announced to reporters at a lunchtime meeting in Brazil on June 13, that in the race for the temporary UN Security Council seat between U.S.-favorite Guatemala and Venezuela, his country would support the former, and that “the position is quite clear.” The competition for the Security Council slot has sparked vigorous lobbying from Washington in an attempt to block Caracas’ bid. Even veiled efforts have been made, including a meeting in Secretary of State Rice’s office, in order to coerce Chilean foreign minister Alejandro Foxley, and a confidential diplomatic note – leaked to the BBC – which underscored the U.S. position. Yet it is likely that Derbez, just like his predecessor Jorge Castañeda, did not need much of a push. Under President Vicente Fox, Mexican foreign policy in recent years has consistently trended away from an independent stance, in favor of near obeisance to pro-U.S. initiatives, and the supremacy of Washington’s hemispheric wish list.
~Mr. Birns and Mr. Lettieri:
Mexico has made remarkable advances since 1991 towards true democracy, with political parties that actually compete for votes based on ideas, not handouts and coercion. Less recognized is that Mexico has made equally great strides towards free enterprise, and a system of societal meritocracy. Mexico has steadily been moving away from one-party, strongman political rule, corporate oligarchy, and racism, although she still has much to accomplish. Mexico, like Chile, is rapidly distancing itself from the failed political and economic models that guided Latin America throughout the 20th Century. It should be no wonder to you or anyone that modern Mexican leadership rejects retrograde politicians such as Chavez and Castro. Mexico is moving forward. Venezuela is moving backward. The citizens of nations that continue to pursue free enterprise and democracy are being well-served. The citizens of nations that accept dictatorial rule are doomed to poverty, as has been consistently demonstrated time and again for centuries. I am surprised that you have not noticed.
Mexico’s philosophical opposition to the dogma and doctrines of Chavez has nothing to do with obeisance to the United States, any more than the political and economic philosophies in Canada, Australia, Japan, and most of Europe represent US obeisance. The simple truth is that democracy and free enterprise work. Dictatorships do not work. Mexico understands, but obviously Venezuela does not, nor would it appear, does COHA.~
Yes, Mexico has made significant process since 1991, as you correctly point out, but it has a very long way to go to achieve authentic independence and bona fide sovereignty. Our contention that free markets don’t exhaust the definition of a full filled democracy and that the number of billionaires isn’t a faultless indicator of economic justice. To choose between today’s Mexico and Venezuela, surely one would have to agree that when it comes to exercisable options, Caracas is well ahead of Mexico’s cut.