In both spirit and in structure, the Cochabamba meeting is meant to give greater voice to civil society, indigenous groups, and those who hail from countries most impacted by the effects of climate change.
Mayors of 41 cities in Latin America and the Caribbean today established the Cities Alliance for Citizen Security, a regional dialogue network aimed at sharing experiences of innovation in violence and crime prevention and control, with an impact on quality of life and improved citizen security.
Common strategic interest will bring China close to Latin America as both seek development in a new global order. But cultural relations have lagged behind the development of trade and business ties. Due to geographical distance and cultural differences, the peoples of China and Latin America do not understand each other deeply.
Coupled with a visit on Thursday to Argentina and then to Brazil by President Dmitri Medvedev, Russia is raising its profile in the Western Hemisphere, waking up from its self-imposed post-Cold War hibernation to expand its regional ties.
Cultural historians mostly discourage making cross-history comparisons of important events, since they take place in fundamentally different contexts and the parallels that are drawn are rarely meaningful or useful. With that caveat, I will argue how President Obama's administration might best utilize the soft power of cultural diplomacy by recalling a similarly pivotal moment from March 4, 1933.