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grape ape 01-12-2015 03:15 PM

Chomsky: Latin America Made Gains by Breaking from US
Published 12 January 2015

The academic has drawn attention to the region's resistance to U.S. imperialism over the past 15 years.

Renowned U.S. intellectual Noam Chomsky declared in an interview that Latin America is an example to the rest of the developing world of how independence from the United States leads to advancement.

The academic said that in the last 15 years, the region has resisted U.S. imperialist attempts. He told LibreRed that this was a significant departure from the past when the the United States repressed virtually any attempts in the region to advance social justice and establish genuine democratic governments.

Since President Hugo Chavez was first elected president of Venezuela in 1998, a wave of elected governments have implemented progressive reforms across the region, often reclaiming control over natural resources from multinationals and successfully investing the money into social programs.

Chomsky added that countries like Bolivia and Ecuador “are assuming leadership on a global level in relation to the most pressing problem that exists today: the environmental crisis.”

Bolivian President Evo Morales was the lynch pin of a campaign to hold industrialized countries to a legally binding agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and gave a landmark speech at the 2014 United Nations Climate Change Conference.

Although most Central American nations compared to their South American counterparts enjoy a “lower level of independence due to their weakness and proximity to the U.S.,” Chomsky highlighted Costa Rica as an exception.

“It is the only Central American country where the U.S. has not directly intervened and it is the only country in the region that functions. On the other hand, the most poor countries in the region are those in which the U.S. has intervened, like Haiti, Guatemala and Nicaragua,” he said.

Under Bolivia’s indigenous president, Bolivia's economy “has grown much faster over the last eight years than in any period over the past three and a half decades,” according to a report by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, by shrinking poverty by 25 percent largely due to a 45 percent increase in social spending.

Ecuador has seen similar success, where President Rafael Correa has increased the minimum wage by over 200 percent since 2007.

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