- Resource rich Venezuela continued (Chavez was already in power at the turn) its slide towards policies based on anti-Americanism, crazy lefty socialist ideas, local and regional bribery, and consolidation of power. There have been recent signs of hope as some countrymen appear tired of Chavez' gross mismanagement, but Venezuela continues to bribe its neighbors into its anti-American coalition.
- In 2007, Chavez protegé Rafael Correa took power in Ecuador. Ecuador has eagerly joined the anti-American block of Hugo Chavez. Why does tiny Ecuador matter? Well, besides another radical lefty voice and the potential non-renewal of leases, Ecuador seems to have a friendly relationship with FARC. Amid all the disastrous policies of the War on Drugs, the one that actually seems to be working all right is Plan Colombia not so much with its stated goal of reducing the flow of drugs, but in Colombia's fight with FARC. FARC has been pushed back to the borders (and at least in some cases over the border). Recently Correa sacked some military types for helping with the fight against FARC. With a reasonable administration in Ecuador, the battle against FARC might be won, but as long as they have a safe haven, who knows?
- Anyone remember Daniel Ortega, the leader of the Sandinistas that the US helped oust? Thank God we got rid of him for good, even if there might have been some actions of questionable legality in the process. Well, our friend Daniel ran again in 2006 and with the help of some ham-fisted diplomacy by the openly anti-Ortega American ambassador won in a quasi-legitimate vote. Nicaragua seems to be forging friendly ties with our Persian friends.
But amidst all the bad news, there's some good, too. It only took 50 years, but we finally got rid of Castro! Seriously, though, smack in the middle of all the anti-Americanism is our staunchest ally Colombia and it's pro-US leader Alvaro Uribe. Amidst all the anti-free trade and anti-American rhetoric stand Colombia. For years, the US has given aid to Colombia and kept US markets open to Colombian goods.
And so how do the Democrats propose to build on this oasis of goodwill in a continent of badwill? By destroying it!