John M. Ackerman
Is trouble brewing south of the Rio Grande? Have Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin gotten together to support the emergence of a “populist dictator” in the upcoming Mexican elections? Is the present front-runner for the presidency, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, the Mexican equivalent of Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez or Nicolás Maduro?
A series of articles and opinions published by the Council on Foreign Relations, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Politico, The Atlantic, and The Economist, among others, have pushed these ideas recently into the mainstream of international public opinion, creating a surprising bipartisan consensus in Washington. Both Clintonites, like Larry Summers, and top officials in the Trump administration, like H.R. McMaster, already have issued paranoid public warnings on the topic.
It is time to set the record straight. Analysts and politicians who compare López Obrador to Chávez or Trump demonstrate an extreme level of ignorance about Mexican history and politics. And those who worry about a possible intervention of Moscow need to get a serious reality check...
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