New from the Americas Policy Program

United States Announces IV Fleet Resumes Operations Amid South American Suspicions
By Matthew Flynn

In a region where there are virtually no terrorist groups seeking to attack the United States, or deployment or even development of nuclear arsenals, it is time for a civilian and not a military approach to define and lead U.S. foreign relations in Latin America. The announcement of the IV Fleet setting sail does not represent any major change in U.S. military activity, but it does reveal how the U.S. government’s approach to Latin America can be an element of division in the hemisphere.

Matthew Flynn, a doctoral student in sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, is conducting field research on Brazil’s pharmaceutical policies. His most recent publication is “Between Subimperialism and Globalization: A Case Study in the Internationalization of Brazilian Capital,” in Latin American Perspectives. He is an analyst for the Americas Policy Program at

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Welcome Home Raymundo Pacheco
By Tom Barry

Raymundo Pacheco is just one example of why it’s time for the Mexican government to take some responsibility for the immigration crisis. Now that more Mexicans are failing to make it across the northern border, or find themselves back in Mexico after being deported from the United States, it’s time for the Mexican government to demonstrate that it—and not the U.S. government—is primarily responsible for the welfare of its citizens.

The Mexican government has a responsibility to its citizens to oversee an economy that supports its people. That may be asking too much of a government so narrowly focused on tending to the demands of its economic elite. But it shouldn’t be too much to expect that the Mexican government welcome its citizens back home—to be there at the border with agencies that provide shelter, food, transportation, and medical attention for all the hundreds of thousands of Raymundos and Raymundas who are unwillingly coming home.

Tom Barry directs the TransBorder Project ( of the Americas Policy Program ( at the Center for International Policy ( He blogs at

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TransBorder Profiles
By Tom Barry


For NumbersUSA, immigration policy is just an easy math problem. With lots of subtraction ("removals" by Homeland Security and self-deportations), no addition (neither legal nor illegal), and the inevitable division (parents taken away from children and spouses), the problem will be solved.

Sticking to interpreting the "numbers" gives NumbersUSA a rational and reasonable gloss that other restrictionist groups often lack because of their extreme rhetoric. Seeing immigration and most other economic and social problems through a numbers prism also creates a tight and persuasive, albeit simplistic, educational package to take to U.S. citizens looking for solutions.

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Border Security and Enforcement First Caucus

The U.S. House of Representatives has its restrictionist Immigration Reform Caucus. Its recently created Senate counterpart is the Border Security and Enforcement First Caucus.

Formed in March 2008, the new restrictionist caucus doesn’t include senators from states along the southwestern border with Mexico or other states with large immigrant populations. Instead, all but one of its members represent southern states with relatively small numbers of immigrants but with large anti-immigrant constituencies. All members are Republicans.

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Tom Barry directs the TransBorder Project ( of the Americas Policy Program ( at the Center for International Policy ( He blogs at


Oaxaca: After the Barricades
A new series from Americas Policy Program

Two years after the 2006 popular uprising in Oaxaca, things are NOT back to normal—unless you call continued arbitrary arrests, torture, and impunity "normal."

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Scenarios for the FARC
By Raúl Zibechi

The first half of 2008 produced a sharp political change that allowed the local and global right-wing, as well as the multinationals, to recuperate their positions and retake the offensive. The change is not confined to Colombia—although it has its epicenter there—but extends to countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru, and affects the entire region.

How will the decline of the FARC affect regional stability?

Raúl Zibechi is international analyst for Brecha of Montevideo, Uruguay, lecturer and investigator on social movements at the Multiversidad, and adviser to several social groups. He is a monthly collaborator with the Americas Policy Program ( Translated by Todd Chretien. As always, the opinions expressed here are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of the CIP Americas Policy Program or the Center for International Policy.

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