Two Hundred Years Is Enough! Moving Past the Monroe Doctrine Toward a New Era in US-Latin American Relations

Dec 12, 2023


An important briefing on the 200th anniversary of the Monroe Doctrine, hosted by Demand Progress.

December 2, 2023 marks the 200-year anniversary of the Monroe Doctrine, a policy originally opposing European interference in Latin America which has served to justify far-reaching US interventionism in the region, including military occupations, support for coups d’état and dictatorships and interference in national elections. Today an increasing number of US lawmakers are calling for a new approach to regional relations, one guided by principles of equal partnership, the defense of human rights and respect for self-determination.

This panel will bring together experts to explore the Monroe Doctrine's legacy and analyze the impact of past and current US policies towards the region. The panelists will assess the effects of US economic statecraft, US security policy and US political involvement in the region, focusing on pertinent case studies and making recommendations for reforming existing policy. We will discuss why there is an urgent need for policymakers who are ready to tackle the challenges of climate, development and democracy collaboratively, while strongly rejecting militarism, the failed war on drugs and all forms of outside intervention, by the US or any other global power.

Representative Nydia M. Velázquez, Jesús G. "Chuy" García and Greg Casar will offer opening remarks.

In collaboration with the Office of Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez. This event complies with all appropriate regulations.


Juan González | @juangon68
Senior Fellow at Great Cities Institute, University of Illinois-Chicago and author of Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America

Juan González has been a prominent journalist, and scholar for more than fifty years. A staff columnist for New York’s Daily News from 1987 to 2016, he has been the co-host for the past twenty-seven years of the Democracy Now radio/TV news show and is currently a senior fellow at Great Cities Institute of the University of Illinois-Chicago, where he recently produced a timely report titled “The Current Migrant Crisis: How U.S. Policy Toward Latin America Has Fueled Historic Numbers of Asylum Seekers.” González’s investigative reports on urban affairs, race relations and political troubles in Latin America have won widespread recognition, including two George Polk awards for commentary. In 2015 he became the first Latino to be inducted into the New York Journalism Hall of Fame, and in 2016 he was elected a Fellow of the New York Academy of History. He is the author of five books, including Harvest of Empire: A History of Latinos in America (2001), which has been required reading at numerous colleges across the US, and which became the basis of an award-winning feature documentary narrated by González.

Laura Carlsen | @lauracarlsenc
Director of Mira: Feminisms and Democracies, formerly the Americas Program

Laura Carlsen is the Director of the regional feminist foreign policy think tank, Mira: Feminisms and Democracies, based in Mexico City, formerly the Americas Program: Laura has an interdisciplinary bachelors in Women’s Studies and a Masters in Latin American Studies, both from Stanford University. A dual US/Mexican citizen, she works as an international relations analyst, bilingual print and broadcast journalist, researcher and consultant on movement building and gender justice in the Western Hemisphere.

Gimena Sánchez-Garzoli | @gimena_wola
Director for the Andes, Washington Office on Latin America

Gimena Sánchez-Garzoli is a human rights and antiracism advocate with the Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA), an independent organization that promotes human rights and justice within the framework of US foreign policy in the region, where she leads the Colombia, Brazil, and Argentina work and previously covered Haiti. For over 19 years, she's brought the voices of persons affected by U.S. policies in the region --- Afrodescendants, indigenous, women, LGBTQ+, trade unionists, victims, and the displaced to DC. Her work focuses on dismantling illegal armed groups, advancing peace accords, and antiracism measures, protecting social leaders, seeking justice for atrocities, and upholding labor rights. Prior to WOLA, she was with Peace Brigades International, where she provided unarmed accompaniment to defenders and ethnic communities caught up in the conflict in Colombia. She worked on internal displacement in Africa, Asia, Caucasus, and Latin America as an advisor to the UN Representative on Internally Displaced Persons, Francis M. Deng of South Sudan at the Brookings Institution. Gimena has received awards for her work including from the Colombian Senate, Afro-Colombian coalitions, the Catholic Church in Quibdo and DC's Mayor's office. Born in Argentina, she was forced to live in multiple countries due to that country's dirty war. She has an Environmental Science and Dance degree from Columbia University and a master’s in international law and international Economics from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).

Mark Weisbrot | @MarkWeisbrot
Co-Director, Center for Economic and Policy Research

Mark Weisbrot is Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, DC. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Michigan. He is author of the book Failed: What the “Experts” Got Wrong About the Global Economy (Oxford University Press, 2015), co-author, with Dean Baker, of Social Security: The Phony Crisis (University of Chicago Press, 2000), and has written numerous research papers on economic policy. He writes a regular column on economic and policy issues that is distributed to over 550 newspapers by the Tribune Content Agency. His opinion pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Guardian, and almost every major US newspaper, as well as in Brazil’s largest newspaper, Folha de São Paulo. He appears regularly on national and local television and radio programs.


Fernanda Perrin | @FernandaPerrin
US Correspondent for Folha de S.Paulo

Fernanda Perrin is a Brazilian journalist at the newspaper Folha de S.Paulo. With a focus on politics and economics reporting, she has served as deputy editor in the Business and Economics desk and is currently Folha's US correspondent, based in Washington DC. Fernanda holds a BA in International Relations and a Masters in Political Science from the University of São Paulo.

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