President Obama officially closed a chapter in U.S. history that has guided presidents since nearly beginning, indicating the United States will no longer act to resist overseas influence in the Hemisphere.
Obama, who spoke Friday during a “civil society” forum in Panama City, Panama, disparaged past efforts by the United States to forestall the spread of Communism in Latin America and suggested similar missions would no longer be undertaken.
“The days in which our agenda in this hemisphere so often presumed that the United States could meddle with impunity, those days are past,” Obama said.
Let’s think about what Obama means here. Obama’s world view was whelped in the 1980s within Leftist universities where political science professors groaned ceaselessly about Ronald Reagan and dismissed his anti-Communism as primitive warmongering that failed to recognize the basic decency of our enemies.
When it came to Latin America, they spouted something called “Dependency Theory,” which posited that U.S. policy in the region was predicated on sucking the wealth out of smaller, less powerful nations, not preventing Soviet expansion.
This, of course, is the theory Obama embraced, viewing our “meddling” as ignoble capitalist exploitation, not a defensive parry against the Soviets.
Obama, as the Iranians have recently recognized, does not understand the evil designs of our enemies and believes in campfire singalongs rather than fighting fire with fire. Meanwhile, he suspects the motives of the United States. And so opposing Communism in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Chile, Guatemala, and anywhere else was “meddling,” notwithstanding the foreign influence behind “indigenous” Communist movements.
This foreign influence is exactly what James Monroe was trying to deflect. Monroe said:
The American continents, by the free and independent condition which they have assumed and maintain, are henceforth not to be considered as subjects for future colonization by any European powers.
We owe it, therefore, to candor and to the amicable relations existing between the United States and those powers to declare that we should consider any attempt on their part to extend their system to any portion of this hemisphere as dangerous to our peace and safety . . .
With the Governments who have declared their independence and maintained it, and whose independence we have, on great consideration and on just principles, acknowledged, we could not view any interposition for the purpose of oppressing them, or controlling in any other manner their destiny, by any European power in any other light than as the manifestation of an unfriendly disposition toward the United States.
The Soviet Union was just such a power. But for Obama, Cuba, which was sustained by the Soviets, is really not much different than any other place. Obama said:
As we move toward the process of normalization, we’ll have our differences, government to government, with Cuba on many issues — just as we differ at times with other nations within the Americas; just as we differ with our closest allies. There’s nothing wrong with that.
As the United States begins a new chapter in our relationship with Cuba, we hope it will create an environment that improves the lives of the Cuban people -– not because it’s imposed by us, the United States, but through the talent and ingenuity and aspirations, and the conversation among Cubans from all walks of life so they can decide what the best course is for their prosperity.
Today, Iran is seeking to spread its influence into Latin America, and Russia is hoping to stage a comeback.
But now, the area is off limits. To the United States, that is. Not to its enemies.