MODERATE CHILEAN SOCIALIST JOSE MIGUEL INSULZA ELECTED TO HEAD ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES.
Jose Miguel Insulza of Chile's ruling Concertacion coalition and a Partido Socialista (PS) member has won the election to head the Organization of American States Organization of American States (OAS), international organization, created Apr. 30, 1948, at Bogotá, Colombia, by agreement of Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, (OAS OAS
See: Option adjusted spread ), filling the vacancy that has been open since Miguel Angel Rodriguez had to step down in October of last year. The lawyer and current interior minister in the administration of Chile's President Ricardo Lagos Ricardo Froilán Lagos Escobar (born March 2, 1938) is a lawyer, economist and social democrat politician, who served as president of Chile from 2000 to 2006 . He won the 1999-2000 presidential election by a narrow margin in a runoff over Independent Democrat Union (UDI) candidate won 31 of a potential 34 votes from OAS member nations after Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Ernesto Derbez Luis Ernesto Derbez Bautista (born April 1 1947 in Mexico City) is a Mexican politician.
Upon assuming power in December 2000, President Vicente Fox chose him to serve as his Secretary of Economy. withdrew when it became evident he had lost the support necessary to stay in the race. Peru and Bolivia would not vote for Insulza because of regional disputes, while Mexico withheld its vote over the loss of its candidate.
Consensus for Insulza after competitors drop
The OAS election process has been frozen since October, with regional north-south divisions becoming clear during five tied votes between Insulza and Derbez in April. El Salvador's former President Francisco Flores There is more than one article that could fall under the title Francisco Flores:
Unable to get past the stalemate, the OAS rescheduled the election for May 2 (see NotiSur, 2005-04-14). The postponement left room for a third contender to enter the race as a consensus candidate, but none emerged. Peru's former President Valentin Paniagua (2000-2001) considered a run as did Peruvian Foreign Minister Manuel Rodriguez, but neither got timely backing from the administration of President Alejandro Toledo Alejandro Toledo (Alejandro Celestino Toledo Manrique) (born 28 March 1946) is a Peruvian politician. He was President of Peru from 2001 to 2006. He was elected in 2001 defeating former President Alan García. .
Foreign Minister Derbez, the apparent US favorite after Flores' candidacy failed, withdrew the Friday before the vote. Canadian Pierre Pettigrew Pierre Stewart Pettigrew, PC, (born April 18, 1951) is a Canadian politician.
Born in Quebec City, Pettigrew has a BA in Philosophy from the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières (1972) and an M.Phil in International Relations from Oxford University (1976). had also, at that point, withdrawn his name from the running, eliminating the possibility that a serious third contender would break the Chile-Mexico impasse and emerge as the consensus candidate for the post.
A major turning point in the impasse was Paraguayan President Nicanor Duarte's decision to pull Paraguay's support for Derbez and give it to Insulza. Thus began the end of the Derbez campaign. The governments of Brazil and Venezuela, in addition to the Chilean government, asked regional leaders to put their support behind Insulza.
The organization has been without a permanent head since October 2004 when former Costa Rican President Rodriguez (1998-2002) had to resign as OAS secretary-general and return home to face charges that he accepted bribes during the privatization privatization: see nationalization.
Transfer of government services or assets to the private sector. State-owned assets may be sold to private owners, or statutory restrictions on competition between privately and publicly owned of the country's telecommunications monopoly (see NotiCen, 2004-10-14).
The support Insulza finally achieved brought 31 countries together, leaving the candidate three countries short of unanimity. Mexico abstained from the vote, with the government of President Vicente Fox angered by its candidate's failure, as did Bolivia, which has had a long-running dispute with Chile regarding access to the Pacific (see NotiSur, 2004-01-23). In April, Bolivian Foreign Minister Juan Ignacio Siles was censured in the House of Deputies for talking about the possibility of armed conflict between the two countries regarding water from the Silala River.
Peru cast a blank ballot, unwilling to support Chile because of allegations that the country delivered arms to Ecuador during a border war between Ecuador and Peru in 1995 (see NotiSur, 2005-04-08). Tensions between Chile and Peru also increased following a number of incidents: a Chile-owned airline screened an in-flight video that Peruvians found derogatory toward their country; two Chilean graffiti artists were arrested in Peru for painting on historic Inca ruins in Cuzco last December; and disputes that continue regarding coastal-territory rights (see NotiSur, 2004-10-08). As President Toledo struggles against a hostile Congress to remain in office, the OAS may soon have to deal with political instability in Peru.
President Fox visited Peru and Bolivia in the days after the May 2 vote, promising to help Bolivia pressure Chile for access to the Pacific and signing gas-purchase agreements in La Paz.
US loss and a leftward shift?
In the days after the vote, South American newspapers broke stories that the US put its weight behind Insulza after Derbez had lost Paraguay, pressuring Mexico to end its run for the seat. This may have left the image that the US ultimately backed a winner, but Insulza's win marks the first time that the US's original hand-picked candidate did not triumph. Flores Flores, town, Guatemala
Flores (flōrəs), town (1990 est. pop. 2,200), capital of Petén department, N Guatemala. Flores was built on an island in the southern part of Lake Petén Itzá and on the site of the , favored by the US partly because of El Salvador's small troop commitment in the US occupation of Iraq, had to drop out because of lack of support, and Derbez, serving under the business-friendly Fox regime, could not hold on either. The US later admitted that it played a role in pressuring Derbez to drop out.
This led to observations that Insulza reflects another of the increasing number of populist candidates who are gaining top leadership posts throughout the region. "The election of Insulza is a small earthquake at the OAS," says Kenneth Maxwell, a senior fellow at the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies Latin American Studies (sometimes abbreviated LAS) is an academic discipline which studies the history and experience of peoples and cultures in the Americas. Definition at Harvard University. "Insulza's election should get Washington's attention above all because it demonstrates that inattention in·at·ten·tion
Lack of attention, notice, or regard.
Noun 1. inattention - lack of attention
basic cognitive process - cognitive processes involved in obtaining and storing knowledge has consequences. The US badly misread mis·read
tr.v. mis·read , mis·read·ing, mis·reads
1. To read inaccurately.
2. To misinterpret or misunderstand: misread our friendly concern as prying. the game at the OAS and misplayed its cards."
Yet Insulza is far from radical. He has served in the Lagos administration where Chile's primary governmental focus has been to maintain strong internal economic growth and build external trade ties. Under the Concertacion coalition government, there have been moves to expose the abuses and crimes committed under the dictatorship of Gen. Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990) and to modify some of the constitutional structures that gave disproportionate strength to Pinochetista political sectors (see NotiSur, 2004-11-19, 2004-10-22), but economic growth rates Growth Rates
The compounded annualized rate of growth of a company's revenues, earnings, dividends, or other figures.
Remember, historically high growth rates don't always mean a high rate of growth looking into the future. and social stability have been primary. Criticism has come from leftist left·ism also Left·ism
1. The ideology of the political left.
2. Belief in or support of the tenets of the political left.
left Chileans that not enough is being done to name and prosecute torturers and repressors from the dictatorship.
One of the defining moments of Insulza's tenure showed his attention to state sovereignty, something that may resonate strongly through Latin America. In 1998, as England arrested Pinochet for human rights crimes and made moves to extradite ex·tra·dite
v. ex·tra·dit·ed, ex·tra·dit·ing, ex·tra·dites
1. To give up or deliver (a fugitive, for example) to the legal jurisdiction of another government or authority.
2. him to Spain, Insulza sought to have the former strongman extradited home, saying Chilean courts were strong enough to try him (see NotiSur, 1999-06-11, 1999-03-26, 1998-10-23). It was an interesting stance for someone who had been forced into exile in Mexico for years during Pinochet's regime, but the minister repeated that the "principle, not the person" was the issue. "Chile has a judicial power capable of judging Pinochet," he said. The stance cost him his job, and he did not return to federal office until Lagos took power and made him interior minister.
Experience in building trade ties
In 1981, Insulza was exiled to Mexico by the military government. In 1990, he returned home and took a number of jobs, including director of multilateral economic affairs in the Foreign Relations Ministry. In 1994, he became undersecretary of foreign relations under President Eduardo Frei (1994-2000), becoming foreign minister later that year. He gained the nickname "Panzer" in political circles for his political weight and influence.
His main activity was building economic links for Chile, as well as modernizing and professionalizing the ministry's operations. In 1996, he brought Chile in to the Southern Cone Common Market (MERCOSUR) and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC APEC
in full Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
Trade group established in 1989 in response to the growing interdependence of Asia-Pacific economies and the advent of regional economic blocs (such as the European Union and the North American Free Trade Area) ) group. He also worked toward creating a free-trade zone between MERCOSUR and the European Union European Union (EU), name given since the ratification (Nov., 1993) of the Treaty of European Union, or Maastricht Treaty, to the
European Community (EU), an effort that subsequently faltered because of European agricultural subsidies (see NotiSur, 2004-10-15).
Insulza now has an even larger challenge than rehabilitating democracy in his home country: he must attempt to assist 34 nations in maintaining and enhancing their governments. He says he will do this in a neutral manner, something Bolivia's and Peru's governments doubt. Furthermore, the OAS, rarely a hemispheric heavyweight, is weakened after the resignation of Rodriguez and the divisive campaign to replace him. Many had hoped that Rodriguez would be able to renovate and streamline the OAS, giving the body greater effectiveness and regional weight. That task now falls to Insulza. [Sources: La Nacion (Paraguay), 04/19/05; Diario Ultima Hora ho·ra also ho·rah
A traditional round dance of Romania and Israel.
[Modern Hebrew h (Paraguay), ABC ABC
in full American Broadcasting Co.
Major U.S. television network. It began when the expanding national radio network NBC split into the separate Red and Blue networks in 1928. Color (Paraguay), 04/20/05; Opinion (Bolivia), 04/21/05; La Nacion (Paraguay), 04/28/05; El Universal (Mexico), 04/29/05; Clarin (Argentina), 04/29/05, 05/02/05; El Tiempo (Colombia), 05/01/05, 05/02/05; El Comercio (Ecuador), La Tercera (Argentina), 05/02/05; El Universal (Venezuela), The New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of Times, 04/29/05, 05/03/05; Counterpunch.com, La Republica (Peru), 05/03/05; The Miami Herald, 04/14/05, 05/02-04/05; El Comercio (Peru), 04/19/05, 04/29/05, 05/02-04/05; El Mercurio (Chile), 04/27-29/05, 05/02-04/05; El Nuevo Herald El Nuevo Herald is a McClatchy newspaper published daily in Spanish in Miami, Florida, in the United States. The Herald's sister paper is The Miami Herald, also produced by the McClatchy Company. (Miami), 04/29/05, 05/02-04/05; La Razon (Bolivia), 05/02-04/05; El Diario (Bolivia), Latin America Advisor, 05/04/05]