tv Reagan Administration Policy in Latin America CSPAN March 25, 2017 2:10pm-4:01pm EDT
>> you are watching american history tv, all weekend, every weekend on c-span3. to join the conversation, like us on facebook at c-span history. >> american history tv, this story and to explore reagan administration policy in latin america. they discussed the iran contra affair, economics and human rights issues. the clements center for national security at the university of texas at austin hosted the panel, which is part of a three-day conference titled ronald reagan and the transformation of global politics in the 1980's. it is about an hour and 45 minutes.
braun, latinn american historian here at the university of texas. it gives me great pleasure to have read these papers and now meet the gentleman who have written these papers. i worked on the 1960's. i see certain similarities and what is going on in the 1960's with that which transpired between the united states and latin america in the 1980's as well any papers. what we would like to do is i contestantsce the -- excuse me, the presenters. we are going to have the two papers on central america first. then we will turn our attention
to south america because it is two different things. south america is dealing with the end of military governments, long-term military governments. then there is this act of newly installed leftist revolution in nicaragua that will take up our attention. we will do that first. then we will follow along with -- on southn the america. thatis interesting here is we have papers that are based upon u.s. sources and also based upon sources from latin america itself. we get a little perspective of those who are recipients of the initiatives the united states in latin america and the response to them. contestantsduce our
-- [laughter] >> i like that. >> james cameron is here to my right. general -- rioey de janeiro? >> sao paulo. >> and eric mccormack from southern methodist university. longleaf from arizona state university, and williams smedley from lucknow university. who is going first now jim and? -- gentleman? >> mike. >> thanks again to all the sponsors. i should before i start mention that yesterday was my birthday. this probably makes me a super nerd but i can't give anything i than talk about reagan with these experts on my birthday weekend.
we don't need to singer anything. [laughter] >> this is eating into your 15 minutes. [laughter] >> when ronald reagan took office in january 1981, his administration was intent on removing human rights is a policy priority. it was seen as a jimmy carter initiative. the reagan administration was focused on rolling back perceived communist gains, particularly in the developing world, building up american military strength, pushing neoliberal military -- economic policies abroad. however, the administration had come to the conclusion that simply removing human rights as a foreign-policy priority was neither possible or politically savvy. human rights have become too entrenched in the american politics and policy making. the ngo human rights community had become too powerful to
simply steamroll in the name of cold war anti-communism. i think equally important if not more importantly, the reagan administration recognized increasingly the issue of human rights was not a monopoly held by liberal internationalists. and by reframing human rights as democracy promotion, free-market economics and anti-communism, the issue could be used to advance reagan's own foreign-policy agenda. social and economic rights, which had been championed throughout the cold war by the communist world and in the 1960's and 1970's by many third world nationalists were largely excluded from the reagan administration's human rights framework. in the communist world, wrote joseph schouten, speechwriter for jean kirkpatrick, he wrote, "and the commonest wealth on the government's point of view the reason it's subject received free education and medical care
is in no way different from the recent its tractors received mechanical care. if the services were not provided, the machine would not work. in such circumstances the economic rights of citizens under communism makes about as of thense to speak automobile rights to gasoline. while the reagan administration emphasized democracy promotion, they defined democracy and a very particular way. specifically the administration understood democracy to mean regular election and the protection of civil liberties, free-market economy protecting the rights of corporate capitalism was seen as an essential ingredient for a functioning democracy. and this model of democracy deemphasized questions of social and economic equality. by for sizing and direct relationship between market logic and democratic process, it delegitimized alternative models of democracy that understood
socioeconomic equality as an impediment to true democracy. and a kind of democracy that sought to build popular political participation and substantive social justice. this emphasis on democracy fit with the administration's hard-line approach to ease-west relations. the introduction of the state department's country reports on human rights practices for 1983 was a clear echo of jean kirkpatrick's essay on dictatorships and double standards. that "while non-communist dictatorships are capable of bearing degrees of evolving into a democracy, communist dictatorships are singularly resistant to democratization." in the reagan administration's -- in this use of human rights, the promotion of human rights required a robust commitment to the global containment of communism.
and so one of the key points i make is the democracy promotion initiative serves to legitimate the reagan doctrine, or to roll back perceived communist gains in the developing world. administration's low intensity war on nicaragua provided a testing ground for the democracy promotion initiative. in the effort to oust the the fs ln,dinistas, the reagan administration used the linkage of human rights, especially relating to democracy promotion to criticize the sandinistas for the nine political rights and civil liberties. you lighting the fs ln social and economic achievements, the ministers and focused on freedom of the press in nicaragua, the lack of freedom in nicaragua, censorship of the opposition newspaper.
the reagan team accused the sandinistas of illegally detaining some verses -- some verses -- subversives, and they were cracking down on democratic label federations and the catholic church. sandinistan nicaragua was a totalitarian dungeon. correspondingly, the ministry should i get the sandinistas had failed to keep a promise made in 1979 to the organization of american dates to hold democratic elections. according to the logic, the u.s. was not the aggressor and central america and nicaragua, but a supporter of ordinary nicaraguans whose help of a democratic future had been subverted. said the 1983 sandinista revolution in nicaragua turned out to be just an exchange of one set of autocratic rulers for another. the people still have no
freedom, no democratic rights or poverty. announcedsln 1984, the regular ministries and quickly responded by denouncing the elections as a fraud. four months before the ballots were cast the president dismissed election as a soviet style sham. the election itself was heavily scrutinized by more than 600 journalists and 400 international electoral observers. it was a chaotic election but generally considered as free and fair as neighboring el salvador's two years earlier that the u.s. heartily endorsed. the white house was unmoved. i have just one thing to say, reagan told reporters, it is a phony. reagan's rejection of the 1984 nicaraguan elections revealed the manikin approach to the cold war that undergirded the administration's democracy
promotion initiative. issuing the political landscape in favor of a stark vision of central america as a battleground and an east-west confrontation, populist policymakers continuously portrayed the sandinistas as brutal servants of the soviets, and also the cubans, committed to establishing totalitarianism at home and supporting like-minded revolutionaries abroad. as such the sandinistas could not by definition be trusted, be democratic, or be trusted to fulfill their side of any negotiation with united states or international community. communists,tas are therefore such agreements are lies. elliott abrams asserted at one point it is preposterous to think we can sign a deal with the sandinistas to meet our foreign-policy concerns and expected to be kept. despite repeated assurances the u.s. was committed to successive
rounds of high-level u.s. talks with nicaragua, as well as your support for regional diplomatic initiatives. in private the administration uses such initiatives as purely instrumental, a necessary sop to congress to congrats -- convince moderates for contra funding. ifreagan told him in 1984, we are just talking about negotiations with nicaragua, that is so far-fetched to imagine a communist government would make any reasonable deal with us. but if it's to get congress to support the anti-sandinistas, that can be helpful. administration's democracy promotion initiative reached its peak in early 1986. secretary of state george shultz played a particularly important role in fusing the reagan doctrine's vision of rolling back communist gains with the liberal internationalist appeal of the democracy promotion initiative, aligning the united states rhetorically behind democratization processes in
latin america. and more concretely, using u.s. -- the reagan administration's actions in haiti in the philippines, combined with his own lofty rhetoric signaled a shift away from the administration's projection of human rights at the outset of the decade. it also won significant bipartisan support on capitol hill. continued toress allocate funding for the national endowment for democracy, committed u.s. support for anti-soviet fighters in afghanistan, repealed the clarkin minute, military assistance in cambodia, and providing nonlethal aid to the contras. their emphasis on democracy promotion is the core of its human right policies have made significant that's towards re-creating the bipartisan cold war consensus between the executive and legislative
branches that had foundered in the late 1960's on the shoals of the vietnam war. but even as the reagan administration was fashioning a new cold war consensus, the interventionism at the heart of the democracy promotion initiative you destroy the reagan presidency. beginning in late 1986, investigations of the iran confiscated reveal the white house has solicited funding from wealthy american conservatives and friendly foreign governments to support the contras. the evisceration violated u.s. pharmacy for the shipping arms to iran in a safer promises that hostages in lebanon be released. even worse, a staffer,, oliver north illegally diverted profits from the arms for hostages scheme to the contras. this is what north referred to as a contribution. [laughter] amid the spectacle and speculation surrounding the congressional hearings on iran contra, the relationship between the illegalities at the heart of this candle and the reagan
administration's democracy promotion initiative were largely obscured. from the outset, washington's war on nicaragua was undertaken in the spirit of the human rights policy that define communism as the ultimate violation. and justified u.s. efforts to orchestrate a regime change, to force the sandinistas to say uncle as reagan told reporters. it was no coincidence that oliver north referred to his expansive web of black operations and central america, including offshore bank accounts , dummy corporations, ships, airplanes and committee issued infrastructure as project democracy. how should we understand reagan's human rights policies with its overriding emphasis on democracy promotion? by the late 1980's it was evident the reagan administration's embrace of democracy promotion but to a greater institutionalization of human rights in u.s. foreign-policy.
but as u.s. policy towards nicaragua and clear, the reagan administration's human rights policy was fashioned to advance u.s. political and economic goals. despite the iran contra scandal,the reagan administration's low intensity war delta sandinista revolution a mortal blow, is rating nicaraguans in a war that claimed within 30,000 lies and $2.5 billion. by 1988, inflation was at about 33,000%. combined with widespread opposition to the nationwide draft in nicaragua, by the end of the decade nicaraguans yearn for peace, and economic opportunity. underscoring the durability in u.s. foreign policy, the reagan administration's promise to oust the sandinistas was ultimately fulfilled by the george h.w. bush administration. united states played a central role in bringing together 14 diverse opposition parties into a political coalition led by
publisher and politician chim urro. according to one early study of the 1990 election, the total amount of u.s. funding channeled to the opposition prior to the election with nearly $30 million, for $20 per voter as mucha, five times per voter as george w. bush is spent in the 1988 election, the u.s. election. simultaneously the u.s. congress in aril 1989 approved package of nearly $67 million for the contras, who increased both military actions and propaganda in favor of the opposition in the misleading a to the election. the victory of the coalition in the 1990 nicaragua and election was widely reported in the international media is the authentic voice of the nicaraguan people exercising democratic rights. yet the extent of american involvement in supporting the opposition and strong subsequent
u.s. support for a wide range of social majestic -- adjusting programs and a prerogative underscored the power and potential of the democracy promotion initiative in advancing u.s. political and economic interests. my conclusion is that by the end of the 1980's, a very distinctive form of u.s. democracy promotion pursued through civil society and low intensity military interventions, rooted in neo-imperial -- immerse as central pillar of u.s. foreign-policy with major implications to the post-cold war world. thank you. [applause] >> who is next? >> i'm next. thanks to everyone for coming out today. talking about these very important and often times latin america gets lost in contemporary u.s. foreign relations. i will be talking about something that the little different in that ipo -- and
that i will de-center reagan and washington from the progress. it is not that i don't think reagan was actively involved in central america. i have an essay coming out called "reagan's obsession with the overall policy in central america,'coming out with an edited work called "reagan in the world" that will be out in june. a number of my colleagues on the panel with me and a number of you in the audience have contributed to that. i will decenter this and focus strongly on a central american actor. the way i start is in a classic 1959 movie the mouse that roared, the world -- declares war on the united states. they hope to lose end when american assistance to prevent bankruptcy after the in a comedy of errors, a small
15th century man of archers comes to new york city planning to surrender, but instead captures a doomsday device. formingers respond by the league of little nations to control the bomb. soon after they declare international disarmament and peace forever. in 1987, a mouse roared in central america. the costa rica and president challenged the global superpower. hard-line anti-communists in the reagan administration cried out to undermined them. costa rica's traditional place in regional affairs and global alliances including strong in the united states. this episode fits well into the long history of u.s. intervention in central america
and the caribbean basin. by world war i the united states had assumed a power in the region. by the late 1970's, it was threatening u.s. hegemony. ofe kelly just presented large part of that in nicaragua and el salvador. thats this bloody quagmire they emerged in 1986. mr. reagan's -- costa rica ends -- there were cordial relations between the two lines -- the two countries. saidafter meeting with him there is a great bond between our two countries. costa rica was the first few best first true democracy in -- tradition offrom a
positive images of costa rica and costa rica's independence. the president's own background played a role in his traces. they saw the united states power declined these be both cuba that vis-a-vis both cuba and vietnam. this was important because they understood and often questioned u.s. policy and understood the policy of powers in mitigating u.s. power. years had polarized the foreign factions. members of the reagan defeating eln made salvador in rebels a priority by the time they entered office.
undaunted, the costa rica and -- ident one side conservatives, people like john poindexter, and .ndersecretary special envoyand to central america supported elements of the plan. idea.hought it was a good in between the president. he vacillated between opposing sides. early on supporting the idea of a piece plan but concerned about elements of the plan. it became much more opposed to and moved in favor of a hard-line conservative's edition. from the start, conservatives in
triedministration pressuring him. he came to washington, d.c.. on -- a meeting was arranged. he asked to come to langley and they said no. they would ended up at the hotel he was saying. they expected him to disperse the entourage so they could talk privately. he allowed his advisers to stay, which infuriated the cia. there's a lot of things to understand and how they tried to counterbalance the united states by using international actors. 1986 he visits the u.n. and talks about the superpower influence causing problems in central america. he also broke with predecessors when he says he would not allowed any armed group to
attack neighbor states. after this initial announcement, he reached out to other latin american nations including those of the conta dora graham proposed peace proposals back to 1983. in 1987 he sees a bigger picture and visits many countries, winning assistance to offset the help ofons and election monitors for the peace process. u.s.rly 19 idea seven, the announced a reduction. said it isdor impossible to avoid the suspicion that costa rica's status is a form of revenge for having the temerity to disagree with us on the contras.
as conservatives lined up against arias, some members of congress and the media -- of't -- a new york times 1987 editorial emphasized mr. reagan's own policy of backing the nicaraguan rebels and driving the sandinistas out of nicaragua is at a dead-end. hasareas -- arias dead-end -- arias plan has widespread support. the reagan administration kept up the pressures. even so much so to try and develop an alternative plan in relation to our junction fell apart very quickly. now they try to put personal pressure. they invite arias to the white house in june i can 87. 1987.june
he stood firm. to why theemphasis contras were part of the problem, not a solution. advisor to arias remembered reagan cap looking at his advisers to ask who is minted in here that who let this midget in here? efforts were largely handicapped by the iran contra's, which had cost reagan greatly in his popularity. it led to a removal of some hard-liners in the white house allowing moderates to fill a void. these plan also changed the dynamics. it weakened the administration's position moving the spotlight to arias and lead reagan to complain privately acting like the central american presidents plan was mine, well it isn't.
statements -- he said the plan was fatally flawed. nevertheless arias kept moving forward. he worked in the international community to keep pushing this plan forward. 1987, he was invited into the congress to speak in front of the joint session. he stood up after receiving a rousing standing ovation and said let us restore faith in dialogue and give peace a chance. he went on to talk about the contras in a press conference afterwards arid he said the military support of contras has been the main excuse for sandinistas to make nicaragua a more dictatorial state. they said just give the sandinistas a chance to comply.
the ministrations mission was even more difficult after 1987 when arias received the nobel peace prize. arias recognized this importance. responded i need it now. symbolism, andhe when he won, the washington post noted with his peace plan, arias passionate reagan's policy for the war waged by the nicaraguan rebels into checkmate. are also starting to see a change in focus. conservative commentator john mclaughlin wrote in may 1988 beereas the menace used to common is in, it is now a nonideological player"
the victory of george h w marked a significant change in u.s. policy, as the u.s. committed itself to enhancing the piece process and election monitoring, not hindering. the and to most of the soviet subsidies to the sandinistas made them more willing to compromise. the removal of the contra threat in 1990.change of rule -- the kept the peace s peace process in el salvador and guatemala. there are several reasons for this success. tenacious dedication to the peace process. costa rica's place as a normal mediator in central america politics. he received much assistance from
the international community. the canadians were very active also. even divisions within the administration caused an ambivalence to develop, as well as an easing of u.s. soviet tensions. this would not have occurred in 1982 without iran contra, without the dissolution of the soviet union. 1987 it is a different world. i think this illustrates a strong diminution of power in central america during the 1980's. only 20 years earlier, a small band of watermelons have formed the government. is the reagan administration sponsoring 12,000 contras. in the larger context of u.s. foreign-policy, it demonstrates this i hear that we oftentimes
look at a washington centric and american centric approach outside of european affairs. that thenstrates non-industrialized world is very active in their own outcomes. thank you. [applause] >> thank you very much to the organizers and everybody for being here. i'm having a great time and learning a lot. going to talk about reagan in brazil. the 1980's was a pivotal decade. no more so than for brazil. it underwent a gradual yet profound transition to democracy. the did best the dictatorship when it reagan assumed office, in 1985 it had its first
president election in 1989. the brazilian economic model branded to the ground during this period. an outperform or in the 1970's, by the end of the 1980's they .ere in economic dysfunction high inflation and a crushing international debt. despite this huge domestic transformation, the international dimension of this story has not really been told to its full extent. particularly u.s. relations with brazil. not so much from an international dimension. ais is generally rooted in lack of interest at the top level from the north american side. the reagan administration claims it wanted to revitalize, the president himself had limited understanding or atomizedin brazil, if
hea slip in 1982 visit when thanked the people of bolivia. this is not entirely fair however. they did have a strategy. seeing brazil as an emerging power, they attempted to strike up new relationships. a series of factors including their different foreign-policy agendas by virtue of economic development and the end of the this hadmeant that little to replace it except for fractured trade economic relationships. they did see brazil as an emerging world power. the incoming reagan administration was focused on reversing two roadblocks that had disrupted relations during jimmy carter's presidency.
big disagreements on human rights and nuclear proliferation. in its conventional sense basically disappeared from american pronouncements regarding brazil and on a government level. they also tried to work around a to the supplying fuel brazilian nuclear reactor which basically the americans could not supply because of the 1978 nonproliferation act. brazil basically tried to find a get a nuclear supply from another country without incurring huge fines. the function was overcoming the major sticking points would help reestablish a good working relationship on other issues. there were two big meetings in 1982.
giambattista goodale visited and reagan paid a return visit to brazil. his were designed to overcome hurdles on things like science, technology, trade as a partnership on military cooperation and laid the basis for a longer relationship on broader fronts. this relationship did not grow close. i'll spend the rest of my time talking about why. basically there is a big fundamental structural issue in u.s. brazilian relations. on theis not focused cold war. it was not its main concern. war was based on concepts of security, naturally predominated while the resilient foreign ministry sought its mission focused primarily on securing conditions for refills own economic test for brazil own
economic developed. so evident, partly because they were interested in maintaining stability on their borders during a period of political transition. focus of the 82 visit to washington, the two sides try to work together to mediate conflicts between britain and argentina in a way rent asically tried to catastrophic military defeats that could destabilize the country domestically. americans tried to get the brazilians to stave off a clash workede british and then with brazil to come up with a proposal in which both sides would send troops to the falklands, but to no avail. in surinam, which is a
lesser-known case, the small nation on brazil's northern border, the brazilian presidency tried to entice the countries leader away from a possible alliance to a generous aid package. it was secretly initiated, the evidence suggests at least partly financed by the u.s. besides these beginnings, brazil's interest in working with the reagan administration remained very limited to areas in its immediate neighborhood. they refused to take a broader role in reagan's latin american cold war. it is interesting both military government and civilian government post 1985 publicly criticize the it reagan administrations political work in central america.
it was exacerbating a complicate was not really based on an ideological clash, but on social and economic and political problems. that is the major disconnect in the u.s. brazil relationship at the time. tradehey did talk about and economic development, they disagreed profoundly. philosophies on that regard were completely different. there were a number of u.s. brazilian trade disputes, but i think the most clear example of the difference in emphasis comes up on a summer lesser-known ofpute on the invitation computer products to brazil and fighting damage from a 1984 law that limited access to brazilian micro and minicomputer markets. the reagan administration initiated an investigation under section three of a trade act which authorized the u.s.
government to impose tariffs on imports from countries that unjustifiable, unreasonable or disk inventory measures on american goods. the negotiations dragged on for a long time and underwent a lot of different permutations. the reagan administration announced it would increase tariffs on $105 million of brazilian goods in retaliation for the brazilian ip regulator refusing to allow in the new version of microsoft's program. the brazilians minister of finance branded it absurd. buckling under pressure, the brazilian regulator in 1988 did license the software, and the u.s. government eventually shelved the investigation. it might seem strange that this seemingly minor issue caused bad blood.
the dispute and other similar standoffs really represented the fundamental clash in different philosophies of economic development. you can see brazilian officials leave thet would country at a permanent disadvantage and completely dependent on the importation of u.s. ip technology. from the american perspective, resilient and other nations in asia were cynically taking advantage of protectionist measures combined with intellectual property laws in order to steal products that were central to the reagan administrations new ideas about how the u.s. would thrive in a new era. we are in a new age, george schultz told his civilian counterparts. nobody misses the steel mill and the assembly line, symbols of economic power. indian that in the information
age, we cannot take advantage of these changes. precisely this fear of technological dependency and autonomy and sovereignty that drove the brazilian resistance to opening up its i.t. sector. the other major economic factor was the latin american debt which was with mexico's moratorium on its repayment in 1982. fearing repercussions of a brazilian moratorium on its major banks, which were heavily exposed to latin american debt, the reagan administration acted tockly to send competence brazil for its obligations. the u.s. treasury extended emergency loans to brazil through its exchange stabilization fund totaling $1.5 billion, as well as $1.2 billion of further credit. over the long-term, the crisis
and the u.s. involvement in it converted significantly to the deterioration of u.s.-brazilian relations. while recognizing brazil's difficulties, u.s. officials asserted publicly in congressional testimony that country was in a crisis largely of its own making. many of brazil's economic problems result from inappropriate policies. theltz in private believed i married was not the bank but it's failure to and lament austerity measures that agreed with the ended -- the international monetary fund. that theythe bank, is the brazilians did not do what they needed to do. they saw the international community as unwilling to do anything more than safeguard the viability of its major bank at the expense of all elf.
privilege and debt service and any notion of debt forgiveness. the focus on debt servicing required the invitation of austerity measures that they argue facilitated a huge transfer of resources from latin theica to its creditors at cost of living standards and economic output throughout the region. in the event, there was a plan that typified this disconnect in perceptions, in the event, the base plan was an attempt to solve the crisis while multilateral lending institutions were forthcoming with funds, commercial banks were not so enthusiastic. it fell short of the base plans initial estimate. declared the moratorium
on its commercial banks in 1987. the situation was not fully resolved in late 1988. eventually, some would save relatedly, the reagan administration realized some debt reduction structure was necessary. it eventually emerged as the brady plan in 1989 to deliver a market-based reduction program marketange for further reform. the u.s.-brazilian relationship in 1989, it is hard to escape rapidnclusion that the development in u.s.-soviet the interestipse with the reagan administration had in new powers such as resilient. there was a burgeoning relationship between reagan and gorbachev. they really had no role to play in what the americans perceived as the main game. us show of brazil's
declining influence in the day. late 80's, it was considered essentially an economic dysfunctional basket case. therefore, this is sort of indicative of the relationship as starting well in the 1980's, but by the end of the decade, the relationship with denmark would drift in comprehension and estrangement. thank you. [applause] in a conference about the reagan administration and the transformation of global politics, it is hard to imagine a better control case than that of chile. relationships with countries like brazil showed reagan was eager to engage with militaries consolidating transitions to
civilian rule. a gusto pinochet into lake shows is what happens when ideological adapt tod not transitions in global politics. when reagan was elected, republican officials were interesting -- interested in relations with pinochet's chile. reagan's two terms, the administration had become highly critical of chile. how can we explain this shift? we heard one possible wasanation which is that it a tactical move, a bargaining away of a country that was left important is less important than el salvador or nacre want what -- or nicaragua. order to let it is
more closely, we have to look from the other side. in the archives of the chilean ministry, we get a much more complex and interesting picture. the relationship was initially founded on ideological similarities but gradually ascended into dissolution. the inabilityth to overcome political opposition, and on the u.s. side, disillusion with the ability to oversee the transition to electoral democracy. i cannot do justice to the full trajectory of those relations so i urge you to read the papers. in the hopes you have had a chance to read, i would highlight a few key moments and suggest how something from the chilean archives might change our thinking self the policy. the two conclusions i elaborate chile,that first, in
these political changes prompted reagan officials to revisit the assumptions about the relationship undermining the revolutionary left and supporting military dictators. secondly, the chilean documents show that the focus on human rights policy ceased to focus on voting as a judgment of the improvement. i want to highlight that in spring 1981, in the foreign ministry's document, there is unmistakable document that excitement -- there is unmistakable excitement to downplay the human rights policy. the so-called kennedy amendment, there was a firm sense that reverselection would chile's global ostracism. it was faced equally on the perception of reagan's policies
and interaction with key reagan officials. the foreign ministry undertook an approximation with reagan's united states. they suggested reagan's conservative and pragmatic approach to foreign policy would approach carter's moralistic and discriminatory approach. this was good news for allies of the united states like chile. were told inials private meetings that reagan would oversee a profound change in u.s. foreign-policy that would make chile a vital ally of the united states in that new the oldle examining hegemonic ways of u.s. power. consciously referred to this new policy as quiet diplomacy or, tellingly, silent diplomacy. the meetings reveal how this diplomacy paid out. theirals would voice
approval for the economic and political security policy in chile. human rights is addressed at all assurancessed with that reagan would not intervene in internal affairs. in 1981, under secretary of state sam eaton called a chilean official that permitting the return of political exiles with the ongoing assess -- investigation with constructive steps, they were promptly reminded chile was a sovereign state governed by its own laws. this conciliatory approach, needed with the appointment of an ambassador in 1982. the chilean embassy in washington referred to him as an unalloyed anti-communist. it was a positive test a positive development for chile for the political sport he has in the reagan administration. u.s. chilean relations played out with both sides expressing
intentions to normalize , but the reagan administration would have to certify chile's improvements to the u.s. congress leading to military aid and training. the reagan administration was either politically unable or unwilling to do this. this brings me to the second --ent i want to focus on late 1984. the documents from these years are remarkable because they reveal the sense of dissolution on both sides. there is a reading of the basis of u.s. foreign policy by the chileans, a sense that the administration was not going to abandon human rights entirely, but rather to use discourses to pressure regimes like chile. challengingmost year for the pinochet regime. widespread demonstrations began
in santiago and continued for the year. pinochet appointed a new minister of the interior who wanted a political opening and entered into talks with the opposition. those talks have faltered and pinochet had jailed and exiled political leaders and punished those involved in the demonstration. the officials had supported pinochet's plan to carry out a democratic transition outlined by the constitution. the way it would work is that after eight years of an institutional progressive -- not an ideology but in terms of slow processional transition -- eight nationwide plebiscite would to overseeandidate the final steps of chile's transition to democracy. the political references five years before this is supposed to happen now presented officials with risk and opportunity. on southy document
america over britain in the wake of the falklands crisis declared that the u.s. goal of eradicating soviet inspired marxism from the hemisphere required development of able democratic institutions which promote respect for basic human rights. how could reagan officials do this and also balance the imperative for maintaining friendly relations with ideological allies? after the fall of the argentinian dictatorship led to the first democratic elections in that country in some time, the reagan administration announced it would certify argentina. this made clear to chile the transition to democratic rule would be rewarded by the administration. at the states department explicitly told the chilean ambassador this in 1984. without a similar election in chile there would be no
certification. the issue of political liberalization was a significant the parts are from quiet diplomacy. from quiete diplomacy. they reiterated the constitutional case would be determined by chileans and would be determined simultaneously with the relentless fight against soviet imperialism. to the consternation of the pinochet regime, they began cultivating covert links with the opposition, a coalition of moderate and central left parties. through the state department and and to seek as through the new national endowment for democracy, u.s. actors engaged with and funded civil society groups and labor unions that the pinochet regime saw as enemies. they took note republicans were now marshaling the language of human rights in this growing pressure for political change.
in a human rights day speech, reagan included a reference to chile's lack of progress towards democratic government. the tenorar by 1985 of the u.s.-chilean relationship had changed. we know this above all because of chilean documents, we see chilean documents -- chilean officials attempting to explain it. out for itsngled failure to protect the rights of the opposition. chile had become what they called the source of the most disillusionment for the administration in the area of human rights. that itdiplomats noted confirmed the administration's policy of solidly linking itself with democratic governments in latin america. democratic expansion, the embassy later wrote, has come to fundamental part
of the reagan administration diplomacy in latin america. the final moment i would like to is late 1987 and 1988, the run-up to the plebiscite that removed pinochet from the presidency. chilean officials had underestimated the ideological climate change. across thenew issues globe and in latin america particularly. three personnel changes were important. george saltz as secretary of state, ella -- elliott abrams moved to assistant secretary of state for inter-american affairs. as the, harry barnes ambassador in santiago. he was completely committed to the right -- take human rights and engaging with the opposition. there was also the non-
compliance in an investigation. george saltz was informed they had intelligence that pinochet personally ordered the killing of a tellier -- atelier. it was the blatant example of a chief of state involvement in terrorist activity because it occurred in the capital. schultz told reagan the knowledge of pinochet's involvement must affect both our overall policy towards chile and the general conceptual framework of how we make decisions regarding that country. containdocuments do not revelations regarding pinochet's involvement, but they do reneweded dismay at the interest in the human rights record. they cable to the foreign ministry to say that the pressure facing washington had not been so bad since 1979 during the height of the carter years. the investor suggested the foreign ministry should do everything to distance pinochet
from the ongoing controversy. around, policy: west ushering pinochet out of power. insured he would not be able the deep -- the result of the plebiscite. --re was a lengthy resort report to the foreign ministry analyzing the promotion of the u.s.. it also it knowledge to pinochet's stubbornness on the issues of human rights had encouraged reagan officials to press more aggressively for political change. more than two years removed from the end of silent diplomacy, one cable noted u.s. interventionism has been growing with subtle hostility towards our government. the climax of the evolution of u.s. policy was the plebiscite itself in which the new campaign defeated the pinochet regime
paving the way for elections the following year. initially did not expect to lose. he held u.s. officials responsible for their role in his defeat. when the ambassador to the u.s. met with abrams, he condemned harry barnes personally calling him an unacceptable interlocutor in league with chilean communists. was policy in chile consistent with reagan's policy throughout the second term, favoring competitive elections in all of latin america without exception. to something we heard yesterday about reagan's approach to human rights in 1980 and 1981. reagan officials used to love to talk about differences in the way we treated human rights in dictatorships of the left and the right. by the end of the second term in latin america, reagan officials were talking about something else. governments were not adhering to
what they saw as a regional or global wave of democratization. cuba and nicaragua were on this list. more surprisingly, chile and paraguay. and thements from chile chilean archives should caution us of agency and structure if nothing else. was chile simply a special case decidedagan officials geopolitics and morals coincided in a way that allowed us to make a stand? chilean officials considered this. documents reveal that key officials in the reagan administration like george schultz, elliott abrams and harry barnes saw the world differently in 1986 and 1987 and 1988 than they had in 1981 and 1982, spurred on by regional events like the debt crisis, elections in argentina and brazil.
elected officials, if not reagan himself, saw elections help the goal of undermining the left while promoting alternative moderates. julie was not willing to move in that direction. just she lay was not willing to move in that direction then they believed they could push them in that direction. [applause] what i appreciate about these papers is that we have other voices besides that of the united states, and the ones in chileamerica, brazil and are -- our historians and -- youal scientist scholars have actually gone to the foreign ministry documents santiago,e argo --
andgot the attitudes different kind of picture of the relationship between the white house and the capitals in these two south american countries. most aboutsed me these final two papers is that it was no smooth sailing. they were all anti-communist, but resilient had given up on the cold war, given up interest in the cold war, and were concerned basically with reviving the economy, which the generals had badly mangled, and besides that in a time during which oil prices were high, they did not have enough financing to run their economy because they relatively expensive imports. then the debt problem and the rise of interest rates in
and they gotebts, very little help from the reagan administration which alarmed them greatly, and also disturbed them. maybe it was a tactic to get them out of power. for chile, which had the test economic rate of growth in latin america in the 1980's, there was also some disappointment, disillusion with general pinochet, a confirmed anti-communist, because he was pressed on civil rights and he stonewalled the responsibility of his regime in the orlandoation of l'atelier in 1976.
amazing that a world power dealing with two like-minded anti-communist regimes would impose a democratization of them. i am wondering whether it was a , like a sameng out foreign policy objective in central america as they stated, which was to make nicaragua a -- make nicaragua respect human rights and change their regime to democracies. is -- thetion sandinista regime to me. the sandinista regime became
kind of like the victim of a in the reaganrly eight years in power, they selected one of the smaller countries of latin america to make a big issue, acting like a holy to take on the smallest kid , and all of the other kids will respect you. to a certain way, i had a theing at the time is that small victim did not give up, which even in fury eight it the white house more. -- it wasatistic william talked about the fact that about half of the speeches
of ronald reagan were all sandinistas and the marxist-leninist regime in central america. theyig question was were marxist-leninist? they still had the u.s. embassy operating there, the cia working out of the u.s. embassy in managua, they were able to two around the country, making reports back to langley. the refinery operated by exxon, the biggest capitalist corporation in the world was still operating out of carinthia , a port on the western coast. in fact, one of the first contra attacks on
the coastline was attacking the terminal of exxon in carinthia. one has to consider that we don't know if they were generally -- genuinely democratic. they did have a free election in 1984 and they were convinced in the late 80's to have an election which they lost. once they lost, they laughed. in which thea time hardliners had retired from foreign policy and george h w bush brought in a group of diplomats who were far more moderate. suspicion, maybe you can tell me later on what your
point about this is, whether they are democrats in their that, they besides had very limited sort of help from soviet union. they had help from cuba, a lot of the doctors and teachers who were operating in the literacy program and the health program of the country actually came -- were donated free of charge by fidel castro. but does that sort of thing make them marxist-leninist? i don't know. have approximately 35 minutes to go in this session. what i would like to do is to have everyone have the opportunity to comment and to
ask questions. we will do this until the last 20 minutes. will turn thewe focus back on the panel to defend some viewpoints or answer questions and maybe make comments on the questions that i have just posed here. wanted toing i emphasize is the one point we have missed out of this were the sandinistas. i don't know whether the archives are available or are in orderly shape, if they can be used. certainly the president of the country now is danielle ortega -- daniel ortega, now in his second term, after being president in the 1980's.
i will turn it over to the audience. i would also like you to state your name and your affiliation. >> hello. i have a class with professor brown. my study would test my question would be directed towards evan andrmick about pinochet reagan's policy towards them. had no idea this was the case. i am a latin american, i come from colombia. we study regional history. this is not what they teach us. school system is very anti-u.s., very reagan is the tube proper -- the "
chupacabra." why is there this gap in knowledge that even the chileans themselves were saying and the pressures? what do you think about that? >> that's a great question. i think the greatest violations of human rights in central america in the 1980's occurred in guatemala. what do we make of reagan's weird relationship with all of that? [laughter]
mine.ther student of put a little smiley face names. >> hello everybody. i am a second year history phd student, latin american history student. my question is about human rights. a me, it seems like there is tension in the way that human rights and international issues are playing out in these histories. nicaraguaticle about was mentioning how the u.s. was using discourse about democracy and human rights, but it was using it for a u.s. motive.
at the same time, we see actors using international panels as human rights that kind of subvert that. for example, arias was using international support for peace in central america. i was wondering if you gentlemen could comment on the tension between human rights discourse as an idea and as a tactic, and the tension between international ideas and motives of a state. thank you. am vanessa walker from amherst college. something came up on the periphery of most of your papers. i was wondering if you could elaborate on this, the role of congress. i know for my own work on human
rights, congress is particularly important in shaping and prodding the reagan administration in directions on human rights different than it would like. has been largely absent so far in our conversation of reagan's international role. the first half of the administration, congress is playing a particularly active role. or makeike to comment anything about these transition points you are talking about. is congress keeping human rights on the front burners for the administration? where does that fit in? mike had this great point i would like to hear more on about this democratization in nicaragua in 1986 creating , cold war consensus consensus. i would like to hear you elaborate on that. >> georgetown.
there was something about the right in the office of public diplomacy. they made a conscious decision to shift the focus of public opinion from u.s. policy toward el salvador where they really my things up and to nicaragua. back to the role of congress. i think the administration was aware they were getting backlash on el salvador and wanted to switch the focus to nicaragua. that was back when i was at state department, so i won't say any more about that. >> i would like to interject the role of elliott abrams.
elliott abrams was rounded anti-communist when it came to -- was rabid anti-communist when it came to central america. he was a quiet respectful diplomat but a strong diplomat for human rights in brazil and in chile. i wonder if you could talk about your assessment of the role of elliott abrams in the role of foreign policy towards latin america. know how theke to state department judges the difference in human rights, whether these non-communist regimes versus the human rights allendee violated under for example and some of the others. >> phillip w travis, state college of florida.
my question is directed most to michael. comment,if you could 1986 was a year that congress -- since the passage of the boland amendment, that was the first year that the u.s. congress boded to take a step beyond nonlethal aid and begin to openly lethally aid the contras. effectively this was an open admonition from congress that we were going to affect proxy armies on multiple sovereign nations and making a war on a internationalhe community pretty resoundingly understood as illegal. i have always understood that in my own scholarship as a president for use of american power in the future. ononder if you could comment where that fits in the grand scale of american foreign-policy history in terms of making war without declarations.
we have an open embassy there, being hostile towards them, yet our congress has effectively declared war on them in a regular sense. i would wonder if you could comment on how you see that place in history. >> down here in front. >> old american investor and professor at st. mary's university in san antonio. i will not burden you with another question, just a comment. thisameron, you have partnership in crisis. i was having been responsible for political affairs and brazil in the mid-1980's. i would call it distant cousins. the autonomy of brazil, their effort tothe effort to make eveg from parmesan 02 great things
we had onel cars, ourselves, indicated a relationship which was really important and rich and all of that. areas, theomic exciting constitution that was written, what i call the 1st constitution openly negotiated and arrived at and of course, totally long and therefore in the long-term not workable. [laughter] is too,he relationship i just have to call them kind of cousins, who had different responsibilities and brazil really looked inward. the other thing is, the other thing is abrams, i have the distinction of having lent elliott abrams my suit, my tie,
my shoes and socks because he flew to brazil in his it's what sweat clothes his and of the package did not arrive. and we went to see the president and he said, that looks like your tie. so, that is elliott for you. [laughter] thank you. jonathan hunt, southampton. a question for jonathan but across the board, to what degree do any to distinguish with the reagan administration between democracy promotion and human rights advocacy, they are not one in the same. perhaps the east asian histories, and raises the question, the democracy promotion in response to human rights violations, democracy promotion for its own sake. i would be curious to hear it in various cases. >> yes.
for the record, you may know that since elliott abrams was mentioned, he was scheduled to be here to speak yesterday and a family situation came up and he canceled, but i would be -- i am sure he would be flattered to hear his name come up some any times. >> many not. -- maybe not. [laughter] >> thomas erickson, a student. you spoke about the relationship between costa rica and the international community. i was wondering about between brazil and chile, any major tipping points or pressures in the region and south america that caused the change in the relationship with the u.s. and to cause the reagan administration to have to rethink their strategy? >> very good question. >> since you have been carrying that around, if you have a question -- [laughter]
>> we are throwing all these questions out you, ian johnson, postdoctoral fellow. do any of you see in these conversations about policy the influence of the immigration debate going on, reagan signs copperheads of reform in 1986. it latin america and essential mega comes up a great deal in the congressional debates, does this show up at all in the influence of foreign policy in the region? jonathan: i would like to ask a corollary question, along with the one that has just been asked -- >> about elliott abrams. what we saw from latin america is two forms of foreign diplomacy. and one of them is the use of regimes, and we
also saw soft -- and with the use of force there was a great deal of bluster, great speeches raing made comparing the cont with the founding fathers of the united states, all kinds of exaggerations of that sort. and then the soft power, which was used in south america. which do you think was more important during the reagan era in achieving the goals of the white house? either the soft power or the use of hard power? >> we can give them about 25 minutes. i'm sure they can take up the time. [laughter] >> we could be here until tomorrow. >> we could come back and give
you the answers. jonathan: um, any more questions? we will turn it back to the panel. oh wait, one more. right here. >> thank you. paul rotti, state stabilization project. the cuban immigrants in miami constituted a pretty large critical force in the reagan administration, and often where played off. some of them still renting their apartments thinking they were going back to cuba. so the question is, what role where they playing in the iran-contra? >> can i start since i am the oldest and will be more likely to forget everything? jonathan: yes. age has its benefits. >> yes. jonathan: i do not know what
they are, but you go first. >> i will start with a couple of the questions. to the question about human rights violations, of course. the reagan administration is very soft on criticizing the guatemalans, so there is an inconsistency. i think what we see here with chile, especially chile, they are telling nicaragua that they need to do this. kyle: they are trying to create consistency and i think it 1986 myin 1985 and driving out the hardliners, removing the bed and you will see more. the human rights in el salvador for example, they just pile up. read about the massacre or something like that. so i think it is important that you raise a good point, where is guatemala in all this? these are all interrelated and it is difficult. -- was quite a character.
i think you are wise the point that out. again, the inconsistencies of cuba versus the dominican republic am we could go throughout the region and find existence and sees. a lot of times -- inconsistencies. a lot of times it is set at the local level, at the embassies. i have seen that play out. secondly i will go to is the nasa's -- vanessa's question. if you read my paper, you'll see congress played a substantial role. i wrote a biography of a senator, and it tweaked my interest a look at the power, because he was an antiwar senator during vietnam and he saw that strength in the committee. and places -- people who have lived down there, one peace corps volunteer was very active with this. and how wright plays in the situation. and how reagan plight - -t- tris
to play jim wright and it blows up in their faces. congress is extremely important. especially if you contextualize 1984, it grows out of the church committee hearings, this is a been a has been ongoing since the economic and came out of the foreign relations committee, mansfield, that whole group. so it is there. again, when you only get seven pages versus 25, sometimes things get dropped. but it is a great question. the third thing i was going to address is, my last three books have had strong ties to vietnam, so i will always go back to that. in the have no choice matter. so i pay homage to george right now. there are a lot of things you see come out of vietnam, the promotion of democracy for example, and you can see they win1955 where
98.2% of the votes as an example. and the americans use it as a justification to say that they are an incredible government. it is something that i look at again. but the other thing about vietnam, we were talking about this, the idea that many argue in the vietnam war studies, especially on the north side, the more pressure, what would be called bullying, you are asking this question, the further radicalized the regime in power. did you about the more moderate elements. and i think the same thing occurred in nicaragua. he basically allow them to justify repression, because they call it a state of war and people lose their civil liberties during the state of war. so if anything you radicalize them. it is not to say that they were not some within. the ortegas are a fascinating story, we could spend a whole day on them and still not be able to answer all the things. but vietnam as an analogy is
used a lot, this is what happened in the north, you saw it with others replacing ho chi minh, the more moderate voices and the same thing i think occurs in nicaragua. and el salvador. because there is no place for them to go. the moderates get squeezed for not being on either side or either extreme, so i think that plays out. and one more final thing. immigration always plays a role. central american immigration issue will not gain momentum until 1996, when we revamp the rules and a start deporting anyone that has a jail sentence aseeding i think one year, it was five before, so i do a lot of immigration study, because we start deporting all these young people who had come to the united states during the civil war's, become part of the ms 13 and before you know it you have created a crisis that has
failedo 2014 and 2015 of state -- and to a degree in guatemala. it is not quite as much of a role in 1986. and to digress a hair on that, a point raised, was reagan from -- being from telephone to play a role? yes. living in southern california, you cannot escape it. when he makes a statement like, they are only three days march from -- to texas. >> wendy's drive. kyle: it is not realistic, but is his mindset. and being in california, his location being a west texan come it affected my viewpoint of the world. so i would say immigration is important. in the look at my book, " eagle shadow -- >> at amazon.com. kyle: exactly.
that is my agent. but if you look in my book posed 1964, i see it as a turning point, the sin of again portion of post-19 624 u.s. and latin america relations is tied to immigration and that is a great question. and i will stop there. i did not forget anything, i hope. >> go ahead. >> one thing, in terms of the question that was raised as i see as a common thread is the importance of human rights and -- in the late cold war, something i follow a lot about, i am very interested in. and there are great human rights historians here. think, when i thinking about the role of congress and the neoconservatives and all of the
actors involved in human rights advocacy and also just foreign a really central contribution of recent human rights historiography is to show that human rights is a term that can be used in many different ways, that can advance political agendas that are diametrically opposed. rights ase of human a really -- has a really important future on the demented policy landscape and it really illuminates these issues. abrams -- elliott abrams is perhaps the most important individual in taking human rights and making it work for the regular -- for the reagan and ministers and -- a dministration. it is a moment where you see the neoconservative vision of human rights, people like jackson who
had been pushing it in the 1970's, become increasingly important for the reagan administration in the 1980's. think in many ways, competing with the vision of internationalism, people like donald fraser, people who are trying to limit american ties to the right wing regimes and allies, people like pinochet in chile. built,e that bridge is the bridge between human rights and neoconservatism, ivanka becomes increasingly possible for the administrator to make a case for human rights as being at the center of the foreign policy. central becomes really in all aspects of american foreign-policy. when you look at what the united states is doing with human rights in a place like poland and compare it to nicaragua, it becomes really hard to reconcile those two vectors of u.s.
foreign-policy. yet i think we need to think about that and we have to bring places like central america into the sort of center of our analyses of the reagan administration, because they really mattered to reagan and his top officials. and they should matter for us as well. i will run quickly through some answers and then i should but am sure i will run out, to the very important question, congress matters. it plays a really important role in a very kind of specific policy sense. when reagan decides to increase military aid and incentivize is to el salvador, the company poses a certification requirement from every six months reagan must send officials to the congress of the state department that doesn't and argue that human rights, political freedoms, there is a list of categories, our improving in el salvador. basicallye reports
make a joke of the concept of human rights. they are very short, they are contested by, you know, any evidence you can find in the new york times. but what is important is congress threatens to impose the same requirement when the reagan administration wants to offer military aid to argentina and chile, and the administration, there is document on this from abrams and the state department, they do not want anything to do with it. they do not want to make the human rights case again. it is worth it in the case of el salvador, but not argentina and chile, and it is not until the dictatorship gives way to democracy and argentina the same week of the elections, that reagan submits this edification of congress on argentina. i would argue that even as we think about reagan as running roughshod over the conga cement and human rights that congress and human rights -- it might show a little more power than we
think. i the central role of abrams, think it is a central question for a lot of us, mike is right to point out that he is a vital character. if you read his career backwards and kind of hit the iran-contra stuff first, then when you are think about why he was an advocate for overthrowing or having pinochet ushered out of office, it seems kind of, you are probably inclined to see it tentatively. if you read it forward, you see there was a lot of consistency between the kind of social viewratic neoconservative he had in the 1970's, seen that their role in the world was to spread freedom. and the george lister papers were brought up. george lister was a diplomat that worked on human rights in the latin america area, he would leaders andabor then report back to abrams and there is an incredible. commit from 1983, he goes to meet with
two chilean labor leaders who have been at out and he comes back and he writes on the cover sheet, this is not an exact quote, but he says something like, the meeting went fine, chile will be a great place. than, i83, much earlier am even pointing to the major switch, he is thinking that the government like pinochet's is probably not long for the western hemisphere. >> -- socialist. [laughter] to the important question about the connection of human rights and the marketing promotion, the way that we deal with it here is to say that it is really important for historians to realize that to reagan officials like abrams and i think also george scholz, although that is definitely a debate we should have, these were, these two concepts were linked. there is another great document, heo not remember the date,
sees the reagan demonstration is arguing that when el salvador holds elections in 1982, human rights are improving and he writes in this memo where he uses the phrase, the math of democracy is the map of human rights. basically it says we have this great argument that we are not using, politically and ideologically, which is that when country's transition from dictatorships of the right or the left to democracies i'm a they become more accountable on the issues of human rights. and i think while we can be skeptical of what they are saying, i think it is important that we recognize that this became a dominant argument for reagan and latin america and the think it had an important impact in the way that we continue to view human rights in latin america, even after the end of the cold war. that is why it is important and should be taken seriously. i think we have to be skeptical of the way the connection was made. the way that the microsoft promotion -- democracy promotion
was program. it leaving out social and economic rights. funding for those groups that advocated for human rights in the ways that these groups defined them coming out of the 1970's as mike defined in his paper. so i will close by coming back to your first question, which is i would caution you again in taking the -- so far. chile, i think it is an important control case. it shows that the u.s. democracy promotion may have played a constructive role in what went on in chile and the specifically, but i do not think it is a celebratory case at all. when you look at it as a whole, the human toll of the decade, the economic toll is really a tragic one and so when you look at chile as an outlier, there is a lot to grapple with in terms of how key officials recognized the possibility for change over time, but it is not one that suggests that this was an unblemished policy. we saw in the questions with guatemala and el salvador, it
did not address them as front delay. but the record is hardly one to celebrate when you take a look at the whole thing. >> ok. i guess i will send joe -- sinch up. to come back to your initial comments on whether the strategy was secretly some kind of, and attempt to facilitate transition into democracy, i certainly agree that the loss of legitimacy that came from the mismanagement is a contributor factor to democratization in brazil. if it was conscious, you would've seen the change in behavior after the country had returned to civilian rule. the fact is you do not see much of a profound change in the reagan administration's behavior. so i am not, i don't, i think you are right. waysntributes and in some it is some sort of unintended
byproduct of their strategy, but i do nothing that is the main, i do not think it is the main aim of the strategy. what's interest, coming back to the idea of distant cousins, i think they are distant cousins and they are following parallel tracks. the work struck me when i was looking at the material in the archives from 1999, how depressed they were. you would think, this is the year that they, maybe it is because i'm looking at the -- and peopleand like that are involved in the banking side of things, but he is collecting material and saying the what kind of democracy -- not him, but the commentators that he collects, are saying things like mobile kind of democracy can this be when we have such profound economic problems? when we are so unequal?
either in the short term, there is going to be some kind of political blow up in 1989, which means we will have some sort of populist. and that is in issue that is coming to the four in brazil now, the economic problems will lead to some kind of populist backlash. [indiscernible] >> i guess you could say they were creative. james: yes. that is right. 1989 is a year -- where people are celebrating, at least the people i have looked at. again, sort of going on to this question of the power. power i think american power in brazil is manifested in economics, which means it is challenging as a scholar, i'm not economist and i try my best.
but on the congress, coming from the point of -- we do not see very much on human rights but we see a lot on trade. and it is on the other side. the thing not in the paper, or in the delivered remarks, was the way in which the reagan administration pushes back against protectionism on the congressional side, the very unglamorous issues like the importation of non-rubber footwear, which is a big issue. people, congress has it in writing, if brazilians are importing and they are very competitive and, and if you let it continue, these industries will go to the -- and the similar thing with steel. and you have, i cannot remember the name, but you have the trade 1988, and yound see the investigation in which the bush administration sort of 79.s brazil up in 19
it is on trade. chile and brazilian relations, i really wish i had an answer for you but i do not. [laughter] to my that speaks failing. i apologize. i will do better on that. it is definitely something i will look into. and, i think that is it really. the, yeah, for me the relationship is an economic one. isan rights and abrams, it so much about trade and the economics, i do not see that much -- it is telling in the one level -- one high-level committee kitchen i found from some organ of the u.s. government, because it is so dangerous that they have not marked it and it is about, it is
on the constitution, so -- and they say, it is all about, it is all about trade. it is all about, you are putting this up and the constitution will have these barriers for an investment and we want to make sure that this doesn't happen. and if it does, it will create an unfavorable climate for direct investment and -- and basically in so many words, it says you are in an economic hole and you need to sort out these things. it literally says, these are for the constitution exchange and it is all about economics and trade. kyle: great. jonathan: i think you audience members for your attention and questions during this very interesting panel. read the papers, because i was really informed by them and latin america matters. thank you. [applause]
>> 15 minute break before the next panel. >> this weekend on american history tv on c-span3. it tonight at 8:00 p.m. on lectures in history commission for university professor benjamin bankers on stereotypes of americans living in appalachia and how the stereotypes have changed over time. >> far from the savages of the lower mountains, they are possessing an easy bearing and the unconscious manners of the open. >> sunday on american artifacts, a senior curator leads a tour of the national world war i museum and memorial in kansas city, missouri. >> probably one of the most famous during the war was the infantry regiment known as the harlem health fighters, or the
fighting rattlesnakes. they were fighting along the martin river and they establish the reputation there as an credible fighters. >> at 6:30 p.m., the national positives and center -- historians talk about prohibition and the reason for the moment -- movement. ofthey had years to -- and course amazingly, because the way the a memo as written, you could purchase as much alcohol as he wanted in that year before and you could store it. so they did very good sales leading up to prohibition. and a lot of basements became very full. >> and at 8:00, on the presidency, former nixon administration official discussing the post-white house years for nixon. >> he said in his east room speech, it is always a beginning, that this whole postpresidential period is an
exemplar of the nixon spirit and discipline and dedication, and patriotism. >> for our complete american history tv schedule go to c-span.org. >> sunday night on afterwords, we saw serve font -- lisa sirvonne reports on banking in america. she is interviewed at the senior fellow at the confederation of america. >> the book in a nutshell -- i cannot understand originally why is alternative financial services like check caches and payday lenders were so bad for people, why so many people were using them. and in the course of my research, which took a few years, i learned that banks were not really serving the low, the low and increasingly middle-class, and i also
realized that there were some good alternatives coming on board and i wanted to tell the whole story. >> watch afterwords sunday night at 9:00 p.m. eastern, on book tv. next on history bookshelf, from 1991, co-authors neil howe and william strauss said down to discuss their book, "generations: the history of america's future, 1584 to 2069." beginning with the persians, -- puritans, the authors divide americans into 18 generations and described for generations that they say repeat in cycles, which can be used to describe history and predict future cultural trends. this was reported that recorded was recordedn dc -- in washington dc. it is about one hour. brian: neil howe, co-author of the new book "generations: the