Cuba, following in the footsteps of China and Vietnam

The political orthodoxy that profits from a liberal economy

Posted by , 28th February 2008

fidel.jpgThe Cuban regime will continue what it began after the fall of the Soviet Union and the loss of its principal economic support: a slow and gradual transition, not in the direction of democracy, but towards a State-guided economy more open to the market. In other words, towards policies that are more in line with China and Vietnam’s. A good deal of the Cuban economy already takes the capitalist route. The rupture of the model, however, will not be traumatic; in the end, Cuba will end up being completely integrated into the international community. The problem will be how it will manage to do so.


The Kosovan State is unviable

International recognition is not enough to be independent

Posted by , 27th February 2008

thaciii.jpgThe very first fundamental condition that must be met in order for a State to exist is for other international players to recognize it. In that case, Kosovo is already a full State, since it has been recognized by the strongest members of the European Union (France, the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany) and the United States. But is this recognition enough for Kosovo to begin its independent life? Does Western support make the Kosovan State viable?

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The Politics of Pakistan: The Implications of the Recent General Elections

The giant Islamic nation-in-the-making moves one step closer to civilian rule

Posted by , 27th February 2008

musharrafpostelecc.jpgPakistani voters have sent a clear signal to Musharraf and the PMLQ: Get out! The author pleads for the political leadership to close ranks and provide a united front against the powerful military-led ruling dispensation, and calls on the West to pressure Musharraf into stepping down. The Pakistani people will benefit from the transition to civilian rule, as will the West, who in a democratic Pakistan will have a bulwark against Islamic radicalism, he argues.


Is the Spanish monarchy viable?

The unshakable taboo of the crown-wearer

Posted by , 27th February 2008

juancarlos.jpgNo one disputes Juan Carlos I’s role as facilitator of democracy during the Spanish transition. Regardless of the current crown-wearer’s behavior, the author believes it is necessary to open up a serious debate concerning the viability of the monarchy, and he directly points to the type of regime that we want in Spain.


Mercosur’s unresolved agenda, 16 years after its creation

The challenge of constructing regional solidarity

Posted by , 27th February 2008

tabarecrislula.jpgMercosur still has two types of imbalances: structural (territory, population, infrastructures…) inbalances and public policy (fiscal matters, investment promotion exports) ones. The author believes that responding to these imbalances means implementing a genuine strategy for regional solidarity, which is not derived from dispersing charity among the poor but instead from the pragmatic necessity of greater benefits.

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Chile hopes to overcome its ultra-dependence upon energy

Michelle Bachelet’s government supports hydroelectricity in Patagonia

Posted by , 21st February 2008

marcelotokman.jpgThe limit to energy sources poses a threat to the sustainability of Chile’s economic growth, which is a reason why Michelle Bachelet’s government strongly supports the development of hydroelectric energy in Patagonia. The initiative is tempting for Chilean and Spanish investors and the authorities, but ecologists, farmers, livestock farmers, fishermen, professionals and local cultural associations are making their concerns about the project known. The government’s objective is to have by 2011 or 2012 an energy grid that is more assured than the current one.


France: The Twentieth plan to avoid riots in the suburbs

Sarkozy’s plan stresses security, education, and employment

Posted by , 21st February 2008

violenciaenfrancia1.jpgThe French President, Nicolas Sarkozy was Minister of the Interior during the greatest urban disturbances in recent French history, which took place in the most marginalized neighborhoods of the principal cities. He wants to avoid repetition of these events. The twentieth plan that he wants to apply to the suburbs has been dubbed Hope. Are the measures effective? What is the origin of the violence? Are we dealing with an Islamic revolt? Will it be useful to maintain a hard line?


Environmental lobbies in the United States

Climate change finds its way into the electoral debate

Posted by , 21st February 2008

lobbiesusados.jpgFinally, climate change is at the forefront of the race to the White House in the United States. Among both conservatives and democrats, consensus and awareness that global warming is an issue that must be urgently tackled is growing. Due to this, environmental lobbyists are winning the battle against ecological organizations.


A “hegemonic standoff” in Bolivia

Evo Morales and the challenge of reaching a consensus on the constitution

Posted by , 21st February 2008

lapazmarcha.jpgMore than a hundred familial clans control 25 million hectares in Bolivia, five times the territory in the hands of the peasants. This figure translates to a hegemonic standoff, in which the political forces of today (historically low status majority groups) and the economic forces (dominant ethnic minority) do not converge, preventing each group from leading the country as it would like to. In this article I lay out the responsibility of Evo Morales, who will have to ensure a consensus in order to achieve the drafting of a constitution that is accepted by all sectors and guarantees national unity and the principle of authority.