Mexico’s AMLO and his Impact on Latin America

By Angel Guerra Cabrera on December 5, 2019

The presidency of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) in Mexico has had a significant impact on boosting anti-neoliberal struggles in Latin America and the Caribbean. As the presidential election got closer and his nomination was stronger, revolutionary and progressive groups in Our America were filled with joy and hope. Let’s make a review.

When the presidential election was held in Mexico (July 2018), our region was enduring a serious political regression towards the right and towards the neoliberalism’s hegemony as a result of temporary victories on behalf of an ongoing oligarchic imperialist offensive. Following the blow that represented the defeat of the Left in Argentina in 2015, a parliamentary-judicial-media coup d’état was staged in Brazil against President Dilma Rousseff in 2016, as well as the establishment of a United States-puppet Brazilian Administration, marking a twist to the rights in the regional correlation of forces. Then, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was sent to jail to prevent his participation on the 2018 presidential elections in Brazil, where he would have been a clear winner. The measure was essential to consolidate the neoliberal return. This happened together with a huge smear campaign against the Workers’ Party, in which many of its members were imprisoned, prosecuted without the slightest evidence just as Lula. Another important fraud in Honduras in 2017 prevented the return of progressive forces and allowed to remain in power the criminal and U.S. imperialist agent Juan Orlando Hernandez. This lawfare spread towards Argentina, where Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and several of her collaborators faced the fierce judicialization of politics and several of them were imprisoned through concocted causes.

Meanwhile, short after taking office in the United States, Donald Trump launched an attack, extraordinary given how frenzied, cynical and irrational it was, against the Bolivarian and Cuban revolutions, as if Barack Obama’s punitive and unilateral anti-Venezuelan measures had been little or those continually suffered by Cuba following the African American President’s discreet thaw. Their goal is to starve to death and deprive from healthcare Cubans and Venezuelans, not punishing their governors as the empire’s spokespeople barefacedly affirm.

In this context, AMLO’s electoral victory was a reason of joy among Latin America’s and the Caribbean left, which had reasons to celebrate his victory as their own. Thus, taking measures against neoliberal policies during his first year in office by transferring economic resources to largely underprivileged sectors of the population, specially native peoples; recovering the energy sector from ruin and from the hands of transnational companies as a result of neoliberal measures; defending sovereignty; non-intervention and other very important foreign policy principles established in Mexico’s Constitution, are measures resulting in a very significant boost to the anti-neoliberal rebellion among the peoples of Our America. I am not saying that the Mexican Government resolved or was related at all with organizing the current protests. Not at all. Mexico has just set the example of undertaking an alternative road to neoliberalism in a moment in which right-wing sectors and so-called leftist authors had already considered as finished the so-called progressive cycle in Latin America and the Caribbean. We were supposedly entering an endless phase of conservative restoration but we are actually observing an emergence of rebelliousness in the face of neoliberals’ brutal repression. A significant evidence, together with all we have mentioned, is the victory of the presidential ticket Alberto Fernandez-Cristina Fernandez in such an important country such as Argentina.

A fact that has extolled and given huge respect to the Mexican Government in our American lands has been the praiseworthy rescue operation and political asylum granted to Evo Morales and Alvaro Garcia Linera, President and Vice-President of the Pluri-national State of Bolivia, ousted amidst a fascist coup d’état. AMLO has been very clear about it: Evo is not only our brother representing with dignity the majority indigenous people in Bolivia. Evo was victim of a coup d’état. And from Mexico, we say to the world: democracy, yes; militarism, no. Not a less important aspect is that first visit of a foreign President to Mexico during this phase was Cuba’s Miguel Diaz Canel.

It’s very important for Our America that Mexico is going to assume the presidency of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) next January 2020, entailing a guarantee for more unity and integration in our region.

Source: REDH-Cuba, translation Resumen Latinoamericano, North America bureau