US Secretary of State John Kerry on Monday declared that a nearly 200-year-old policy which had governed Washington’s relations with Latin America was finally dead.
Known as the Monroe Doctrine after it was adopted in 1823 by former US president James Monroe, the policy had stated that any efforts by European countries to colonize land in North or South America would be views as aggressive acts and could require US intervention.
Kerry had been roundly criticized earlier this year when he told US lawmakers that “the western hemisphere is our backyard” in comments that triggered anger from some Latin American leaders.
Bolivian President Evo Morales expelled the US aid agency USAID following the speech, and denounced the United States, which he said “probably thinks that here it can still manipulate politically and economically. That is a thing of the past.”
Kerry seemed to agree Monday, saying: “Many years ago the United States dictated a policy that defined the hemisphere for many years after.