By Ángel Guerra Cabrera
August 6, 2021
In Latin America and the Caribbean there are new developments that should have a positive impact on the consolidation of what has been called the second progressive wave. This wave would have been triggered by the emergence of new popular governments in the region, after several defeats of progressivism from Honduras and Paraguay to Brazil, Argentina, Ecuador, Uruguay and Bolivia. Except in Argentina and Uruguay, these setbacks were due to coups d’état; in Ecuador, to treacherous betrayal.
The second wave comes with the arrival to the presidency of Mexico, Argentina and Bolivia of Andrés Manuel López Obrador (2018), Alberto Fernández (2019) and Luis Arce Catacora (2020), in the latter case as a result of a great indigenous-popular mobilization that sank under a mountain of votes the coup d’état and the dictatorship implanted a year earlier by the United States and the local right wing. The rise of the teacher Pedro Castillo to the presidency of Peru adds a fourth government to the equation. Obviously, they reinforce and, at the same time, are reinforced by the presence, against all odds, of socialist Cuba, Bolivarian Venezuela and Sandinista Nicaragua.
But in November of this year, it is very likely that Chileans will elect a popular government to replace the ultra-reactionary government of Sebastián Piñera. Although even more important will be the plebiscite to approve the new Constitution in 2022, from which important fundamental changes are expected in the economic, political and social structure of the country, inherited from Pinochetism and the crudest neoliberal logic. Meanwhile, in October of that year, presidential elections will be called in Brazil, which, according to all polls, Lula da Silva will win. If this happens, there may be progressive governments in Argentina, Mexico and Brazil, the three largest economies in Latin America. On the other hand, an electoral victory of the left in Honduras in November of this year should not be ruled out.
These events are taking place in a context of growing questioning of the very existence of the Organization of American States (OAS) given its increasingly lackey attitude towards Washington and the detrimental nature of its activity for the democratic advancement and independence of the peoples of the region. The rejection of the OAS received an important boost in the speech of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador before the foreign ministers of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), which pilloried this discredited organization. He immediately received support for his statement from the presidents of Argentina, Alberto Fernández, and Bolivia, Luis Arce Catacora. At the same time, the new Peruvian Foreign Minister, Héctor Béjar, has expressed his approval. All of them stressed the need for unity and integration of the region in CELAC, an entity that Mexico has revitalized during its pro tempore presidency and linked to the solution of concrete problems in the region, such as the issue of vaccines against Covid-19.
The undoubted opportunity and international repercussion of López Obrador’s aforementioned speech at CELAC have not been sufficiently analyzed, although the rabid reaction of the right wing speaks volumes. AMLO has injected a good dose of Bolivarian and popular oxygen to the regional political environment of which the revolutionary and progressive governments have aligned by praising and expressing their sympathy with the Mexican’s positions.
In a previous article I already pointed it out, but I will underline it again because of its importance: the words of the President of Mexico next to the emblematic walls of Chapultepec Castle significantly counteracted the fierce anti-Cuban campaign in the social networks and conventional hegemonic media of the world and, consequently, contributed to strengthen the process, already underway at that time, of dismantling the destabilizing operation plotted from Washington against Havana. With the notorious participation of the Cuban-American extreme right wing in Miami, sectors of the European Union, the Secretary General of the OAS and the U.S. and international reaction. Of course, his speech was able to influence in that direction because he was defending a just cause and, above all, because the Cuban government has dismantled all the lies and slanderous statements made by the media, because of the important mobilization of the people of the island in defense of their revolution and, also, because of a wave of international solidarity of the peoples in defense of Cuba and of governments such as those of Russia, China, Venezuela, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Argentina, Vietnam and several Caribbean and African countries, among others.
The defense of the independence and sovereignty of our America and its progressive governments goes through Cuba. That is why the international solidarity that the Cuban people and government are receiving today is so important and necessary.
-Source: La Jornada, translation by Resumen Latinoamericano – English