Security in the Americas: Neither Evolution nor Devolution - Impasse

Security in the Americas: Neither Evolution nor Devolution - Impasse

Security in the Americas: Neither Evolution nor Devolution - Impasse

Security in the Americas: Neither Evolution nor Devolution - Impasse

Excerpt

This monograph comes at a time of promise for greater economic integration between the United States and Latin America, but also one of profound concern about the deteriorating security situation in several countries in the region. Importantly, the benefits of stability, economic growth, and democracy depend on effective national sovereignty and security. These realities are gaining credence as we grow to understand that Colombia is a paradigm of the failing state, and that has enormous implications for the well-being of the Western Hemisphere. Yet, no consensus on the threat and how to deal with it has emerged. As a consequence, hemispheric security cooperation is at an impasse.

In this context, Dr. Max Manwaring identifies the political-strategic challenge of effective sovereignty and security, with a focus on nontraditional threats. He recommends that leaders rethink the problem of nontraditional threats and develop the conceptual and strategic- political multilateral responses necessary to deal effectively with them. Piecemeal tactical-operational level responses to nontraditional threats and actors must be supplemented by broader strategic-political efforts. Also, cooperative national and international efforts designed to inhibit and reverse the processes of state failure must supplement military and law-enforcement emphasis on the attrition of individual “narcoterrorists.” Dr. Manwaring's recommendations constitute no easy task. However, if the United States and the other countries of the hemisphere ignore what is happening in Latin America, the expansion of terrorism, “lawless areas, ” and general instability easily could destroy the democracy, free market economies, and prosperity that has been achieved. That would profoundly affect the health of the U.S. economy―and the concomitant power to act in the global security arena. The Strategic Studies Institute is pleased to offer this important and timely monograph as a part of the ongoing debate on security cooperation in the Americas.

DOUGLAS C. LOVELACE, JR.
Director
Strategic Studies Institute . . .

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