Will politician in the United States and other industrialized countries stick to their free market principles and resist such protectionist agitation? Will they face up to financial reality and finally require their banks to forgive the bulk of Latin America’s debt? Will Latin America’s impoverished citizens and restless soldiers have the patience to find out?
As the essays in this book show, questions like these are hanging over the future of every Latin American country. None of them can yet be answered. All that can be said with certainty is that Latin America is in a period of radical transition. Politically, it is a time of hope and unprecedented in the region’s modern history,. Economically too, these countries seem poised for take off. Will the rocket fly skywards, crash in a fireball, or just sputter on the launching pad? The answer will depend on luck, the state of the world economy, and the policies of the United States and other industrialized countries. But above al it will depend on the Latin Americans themselves.