Photo Jonathan Blair

Thursday, June 23, 2011

In context: Canada and drug violence in Central America

Big news from the Department of Foreign Affairs: Canada is getting serious about drug-related violence in Central America: "The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs), today announced that the Government of Canada is contributing over $5.2 million to help address security challenges and implement institutional reforms in Central America."

Looks good, no?

Well, let's get a bit of context here, from the very same conference in Guatemala where Ablonczy has made the announcement:

The World Bank pledged... U$1billion, in addition to the $200 million it is already providing. The US meanwhile, is increasing its support from U$ 260 million to 300 million.

In other words, parse things as you wish, Canada's involvement is window dressing, which, as I have argued recently, is perfectly understandable.