The U.S.-Cuba relationship remains frozen after fifty years. Despite economic reforms in Cuba and swelling public opinion in favor of resuming diplomatic and economic ties, analysts do not anticipate any normalization of U.S.-Cuba relations in the near to medium term, explains this Backgrounder.
Longtime Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez's fourth term as president allows for the continuation of his "socialist revolution," but questions over his health remain a wildcard in assessing Venezuela's future.
As the world's oldest regional body, the Organization of American States has served as a platform for cooperation, but ideological polarization among its members and criticisms of the organization's institutional weakness have raised doubts about its ability to remain relevant.
The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the National Liberation Army (ELN) are Colombia's two predominant rebel groups. While both have been depleted in recent years, they remain destabilizing forces.
Brazil's economic dynamism has given it a stronger voice on global tradeand energy issues. Experts say Washington can advance its regional interests more effectively through a more sophisticated relationship with Brazil.
Venezuela is trying to develop new markets for its oil at a time of increasing friction with its main customer, the United States. But a significant short-term shift in oil relations between Venezuela and the United States is unlikely.
South America faces energy shortfalls at the same time that several countries have nationalized energy resources. Experts say a lack of cooperation on energy policy could hinder regional economic growth.
Sandinista leader Daniel Ortega leads the polls ahead of November 5 presidential elections and appears on the verge of an extraordinary political comeback. It remains unclear what an Ortega presidency would mean for the country.
Primeiro Comando da Capital (PCC), a Brazilian prison gang, staged a series of attacks in May that paralyzed the city of Sao Paulo. Subsequent waves of violence have raised concerns about the organization’s expanding influence.
In a recent world tour—stops included Belarus, Russia, and Iran—Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez attempted to expand his influence beyond Latin America and capitalize on the leverage afforded by his oil riches.
In a region seen as turning leftward, forging alliances would seem a natural course of events. But Bolivian President Evo Morales' decision to nationalize the oil and gas industry is exposing tensions, causing experts to say there is more diffusion than alliance-building in Latin America.
Incumbent President Alvaro Uribe is favored to win Colombia's May 28 elections, a result that would mark a departure from the trend that has seen left-leaning governments come to power around the region.
The author examines Pakistan's complex role in U.S. foreign policy and advocates for a two-pronged approach that works to quarantine threats while integrating Pakistan into the broader U.S. agenda in Asia.