Some of the people slated to enter the administration have made a career peddling theories of Islamist threats in our hemisphere. There are genuine reasons for concern, but not for the disproven assertions many have been pitching for years.
Here is the text of the written answers on U.S. policy toward Latin America and the Caribbean Rex Tillerson submitted to the Senate for his confirmation hearing. The answers cover Mexico, the Colombia peace process, the opening to Cuba and human rights, and political prisoners in Venezuela, among other topics.
Revile him or revere him, Fidel Castro was one of the most significant political leaders of the 20th century. So strong was the pull of his hero image that most Latin American governments ignored the obvious human rights violations, the lack of democracy in Cuba and his refusal to yield power for 46 years.
For all of the unknowns, a few things about Cuba’s future appear clear, including that economic changes are likely to be incremental and have modest effects; lifting the trade embargo would have only marginal financial effects on the Cuban people; and economic liberalization is unlikely to bring political change to Cuba.