As eyeballs around the world recover from the red sea of Union Jacks displayed over the course of the Brexit referendum, few realize that the U.K. is slowly but surely moving away from Europe to drift into the arms of the U.S.
To be sure, Brits themselves do not seem to realize that they have exercised a reverse history old annexation choice.
For those who do not believe that the new road taken by the UK will inevitable turn King Arthur’s domain into the 52nd state of the American Union, let’s do the numbers, as NPR would say.
Today Britain’s GDP growth is a paltry 0.8%. Leaving the E.U. would entail trade liberalization. Sacking the European rules could boost GDP growth to between 2.5% and 4% from 2017 through 2020. Composition of GDP would however dramatically change as manufacturing could be wiped away by worldwide competition but services would certainly increase.
And given that the U.S. proposal to Europe to engage in a free trade agreement will not happen now that Europe has lost a key member, the straying U.K. could become first in line to close the deal.
Should this happen the U.K. would resume the walk of history rejected in 1776. This time however it would seem to be far more enticing.
And as Britain chose to become American, Latin nations chose to give democracy a chance. Certainly, after much coming and going, OAS members managed to gather together in favor of the instrument they created to fight totalitarianism and protect democracy.
And while they did not trigger collective action on the basis of violations of the democratic Charter by Venezuela, notice was served by the Secretary General Luis Almagro that the country is all but a democracy.
The June 23rd gathering in Washington will mark the first consideration of cooperation among members to stop democratic destruction in hemispheric history.
This, at long last, establishes international jurisprudence in favor of protecting the rule of law in a hemisphere where it has been rather scarce.
And while the British were exiting the EU and the Americas were finally taking steps to protect democracy, in Havana, Cuba, a Peace Agreement was quietly signed between president Santos and the FARC under Raul Castro’s watchful eye.
The agreement effectively ends over a century of civil war in Colombia and gives peace a chance.
From the purely economic viewpoint, this represents a development boost for Colombia in so far as it would allow its authorities to deploy an infrastructure development plan which is badly needed to enhance competitiveness and fully benefit the country from its Trans Pacific Partnership. Needless to elaborate on the contribution to GDP growth that such plan will bear and its employment generating benefits.
From the political perspective however Colombia needs to strengthen its institutional framework so as to be able to follow up on compliance with the treaties on the part of former rebel groups.
Should strict follow up be lacking, former guerillas could move operational bases to Venezuela and profit from the chaotic situation in that country to set up shop for military operations and of course, drug trafficking. This would convey to the guerrilla groups an inordinate power which their leaders will certainly use to vanquish political rivals in Colombia and to seize power. Such an outcome could severely affect what has so far been seen as a consistently developing democracy in South America.
Published by Latin American Herald Tribune on June 26th, 2016