Monroe is Dead

I mention this because I only just realized it: The Monroe Doctrine is defunct, caput, dead - and it all happened right before our eyes.

Right up through the Cold War, the U.S. continued to invoke the Monroe Doctrine, introduced in 1823, in "protecting" Latin American nations from outside interference. The reality today, however, is that while the Doctrine has always been thought of as butting up against would-be European power-players in the region, China now plays a huge economic role in Latin America that is pushing the U.S. farther and farther from its former range of influence.

Granted, China explicitly pursues a foreign policy of non-interference in other nations' domestic policy, and in this way one might claim that the PRC is not threatening to violate the Doctrine. On the other hand, however, the actions of Latin American nations themselves are just as important as those of the global players involved in the region, and I would posit that the underlying purposes of the Doctrine were not just to keep outside interests out of the Americas, but to keep Latin American interests inside the United States.

With this considered, it becomes clear that in the globalizing economy of a smaller and smaller world, China's stretching of economic ties across the Pacific is allowing Latin America (and incidentally, Canada) to become less and less dependent on the United States. Whether one considers this a threat to American interests or not, the process seems undeniable and unpreventable, and we will see whether Monroe may soon be rolling in his grave.

(Images from here and here.)