It's time for an autonomous regional organization in the Americas
Bradley Blankenship
Delegates' flags of the Organization of American States (OAS). / AP

Delegates' flags of the Organization of American States (OAS). / AP

The U.S. has long painted itself as a global hegemon of happenstance or a sort of disinterested Atlas that merely holds the weight of the world on its shoulders because it – and only it – could possibly bear such a burden. This is, however, contrary to the entire history of the country and its deliberate policies aimed at catapulting the U.S. to global dominance that began early in its own neighborhood. 

Beginning with the Monroe Doctrine in the early 1800s, the U.S. officially opposed European colonialism in the Americas, arguing that it was essentially an act of war against the U.S. itself. This was not designed to be some kind of act of solidarity with other emerging independent nations at the time, but was actually a way for the U.S. to hold a monopoly on colonial conquest in the Western Hemisphere and consolidate its regional power. 

This was hugely important in creating the framework for when the U.S. officially became an empire at the end of that century after its victory in the Spanish-American War that left the U.S. with its own colonial possessions, namely Puerto Rico, Cuba (effectively), Guam and the Philippines. 

The U.S. deepened its global influence in the period following World War II, but shoring up regional power at a time while the global anti-colonial struggle was in full swing, in the Americas as well, was also hugely important. 

One instrument the U.S. used to try and smash the revolutionary masses of the Americas was the so-called Organization of American States (OAS), which still exists today and occupies roughly the same function as it did when it was founded in 1948. Today, the OAS stirs up trouble against revolutionary governments in the Americas by "election monitoring," which is a euphemism for interfering in the internal affairs of sovereign nations. 

This at least is the conclusion of an independent investigation conducted by Spain's University of Salamanca and published by Bolivian Attorney General Juan Lanchipa's office on July 27. According to these experts, the OAS falsely claimed the 2019 election in Bolivia had irregularities and potential fraud, which helped initiate a coup against then-Bolivian President Evo Morales. Approximately a year of terror and political persecution followed. However, any evidence of fraud that would "pose risks to the integrity of the electoral process or to the results of the official count" was never found.

Delegates' seats are prepared for the Organization of American States' (OAS) foreign minister meeting in Washington, May 31, 2017. / VOA News

Delegates' seats are prepared for the Organization of American States' (OAS) foreign minister meeting in Washington, May 31, 2017. / VOA News

The OAS allegations were false and clearly engineered to undermine faith in the country's electoral process in order to foment unrest. And that is exactly what happened. However, despite the fact that Morales' party, the Movement for Socialism (MAS), won back the presidency and the country's parliament in the next election, the crimes following the OAS interference could not be undone.

The OAS has shown its true colors as yet another instrument of U.S. imperialism. But other arguments also show why the OAS has no legitimacy and why there should be a truly autonomous regional organization to help states in the Americas develop. 

On the occasion of Latin American revolutionary Simon Bolivar's birthday, for example, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador called Latin American and Caribbean countries to create an organization similar to the European Union in the Americas. However, this organization, he added, should be "attached to our history and identities," arguing the OAS should be replaced with something that is "an autonomous body, not a lackey of anyone."

In his speech before the foreign ministers of most Latin American and Caribbean nations, Lopez Obrador specifically praised Cuba for its resistance to U.S. imperialism. The OAS has alienated Cuba for nearly six decades on behalf of the U.S. He said that "we may agree or disagree with the Cuban Revolution and its government, but having resisted 62 years without submission is quite a feat."

He added, "I believe that, for their fight in defense of the sovereignty of their country, the people of Cuba deserve the prize of dignity and that island should be considered as the new Numantia for its example of resistance, and I think that for that same reason should be declared a World Heritage Site."

As the Cuban government has pointed out for decades and Lopez Obrador said just days ago, the OAS is a disgraceful organization. It's merely an arm of U.S. imperialism designed to imperil the masses of the Americas, and it should not exist as the premier regional organization for cooperation and development. In order for the Americas to truly flourish, the OAS must be cast aside. 

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