“making Bolivar’s dream real” — The Union of South American Nations

Well heck, I definitely did not know about this!

Most of South America has banded together into a singular economic force known as the Union de Nationes Suramericanas  — which the BBC is referring to as “Unasur”. The treaty was signed just weeks ago. Like the EU, “Unasur” is an attempt to integrate the infrastructure and economy of disparate countries, complete with a central bank and a parliamentary government to boot. Crazy!  

The president pro tempore is Michelle Bachelet, the democratically elected president of Chile, a socialist. This should be a big deal no matter where you are on the political spectrum , right? And yet this little AP blurb is all I could find on the NYtimes archives about it. Very strange.

As far as the potential importance of “Unasar” (that name really sucks),  Chomsky gave a talk on this topic back in 2006:

“This is the first time since the Spanish conquests, 500 years, that there have been real moves toward integration in South America. The countries have been very separated from one another. And integration is going to be a prerequisite for authentic independence. There have been attempts at independence, but they’ve been crushed, often very violently, partly because of lack of regional support. Because there was very little regional cooperation, they could be picked off one by one — That’s what has happened since the 1960s. The Kennedy administration orchestrated a coup in Brazil. It was the first of a series of falling dominoes. Neo-Nazi-style national security states spread across the hemisphere. Chile was one of them. Then there were Reagan’s terrorist wars in the 1980s, which devastated Central America and the Caribbean. It was the worst plague of repression in the history of Latin America since the original conquests. But integration lays the basis for potential independence, and that’s of extreme significance.”

That sounds like the right track to me.


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