The man who says everything he can so as not to upset anyone, once again spoke quite adeptly, but proposed very little that is concrete or tangible to give much merit or believability to the lion’s share of what he said. At the Summit of the Americas, Obama dismissed remarks (about U.S. intervention in Central America) made by Nicaraguan leader Daniel Ortega, who was also president of Nicaragua in the 1980’s; when Ronald Reagan supported the Contras and aided and abetted attacks on schools, and hospitals, and supported the mining of Nicaragua’s harbors (not to mention supported death squads in other Central American nations as well); stating blithely, “I am very grateful that President Ortega didn’t blame me for things that happened when I was three months old.”

Moreover, Obama appeared ill-informed and under prepared when he denied it was the policy of the U.S. government to support the violent overthrow of the elected governments of other nations in the hemisphere; particularly when much was made (by the corporate media) of the announcement, made by the Venezuelan government, that they are planning to reappoint an ambassador to the United States (of course no mention was made in the corporate press of why Venezuela recalled its ambassador to the U.S., in the first place, which was because of U.S. support for forces in Bolivia that were using violence against the democratically elected leader of that country, Evo Morales). Obama, instead of boldly advancing the idea that he would be turning over a new leaf in Latin America (and actually treating Latin American countries as sovereign, independent nations, instead of vassal peonages of neocolonialism and global empire), played down the meaning of his statements; which seemed to possibly foreshadow some kind of more robust, more recognizable policy change.

In his closing remarks at the Summit of the Americas, Obama, more than once, made reference to ’stale debates’ and ideology, coming between the United States and other nations in the hemisphere; indeed, Obama even went so far as to say that these differences can often be overcome, and that the U.S. and another nation (or other nations) can frequently come together to solve common concerns. It seems to me, that this brings to the forefront, the sticky subject of the oversized elephant that is alive and well in the living room (which is, of course, the U.S. embargo against Cuba), which is left in place precisely because of ’stale debates’ and adherence to anachronistic ideology! If such barriers to cooperation and mutual understanding don’t have to get between the United States and every other nation in the hemisphere, then why should they get in the way of the United States, and the insurgent, communist nation of Cuba? It makes not one shred of sense whatsoever, and Obama’s statements on this matter, appear inconsistent and lacking credibility to say the very least!

In another point made by Obama, also in his closing remarks from the Summit of the Americas, he cited the example of Cuban doctors being sent all over Latin America (for humanitarian assistance), as reason for the United States to have additional interactions with Latin American nations, that do not include dealings with the U.S. military, or participation in the War on Drugs. It’s interesting that Obama used Cuba as an example in making this point, because the U.S. government is allied with and gives material support to all manner of dictators that engage in no such humanitarian activities (like that which Cuba is involved in); and yet, our president, remains enthusiastically transfixed on keeping a tired, old, failed embargo, unaltered and persisting firmly in place! This embargo goes unchallenged (at least for the most part in Washington) because of ideological disagreements, and Cold War dogma that has no meaning in the realm of today’s global geopolitics. Obama should show more real substance in his administration’s Latin America policy, because, in its present state, it consists of a profusion rhetoric, and a lack of meaningful transformation and change. Obama may appear weak, and like a puppet of Latin America’s leftists to the far right-wing of the Republican Party, but to me he just seems like more of the same, with a new coat of varnish!

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