Odebrecht scandal in Latin America shows need for new technology

The biggest bribery scandal in Latin America’s recent memory — the Odebrecht construction giant’s nearly $800 million in illegal payments to government officials in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela and several other countries — should become a turning point in the region’s fight against corruption.

After helping Trump, will Russia meddle in other elections?

A little-noticed paragraph in the recent US intelligence community report about Russia’s hacking of the US elections makes me wonder whether Moscow’s next step will be to conduct cyber-espionage campaigns to help elect authoritarian populist leaders in Germany and France’s elections this year, and in Mexico’s 2018 elections.

Latin America, US perform lousy on student math tests

The results of the new international PISA tests of 15-year-old students should be ringing alarm bells throughout Latin America: they show that 63 per cent of Latin American students lack basic skills in math, and in some countries that figure is as high as 91 per cent.

Rio Games are an Olympic economic disaster

Judging from the disastrous news surrounding the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, the best thing that could happen to Latin American countries—or perhaps to all countries that apply to be hosts of future Olympic Games—is to lose their bids, and save themselves from a monumental waste of money.

Mexico may veer to the left in 2018

While most of Latin America is shifting to the right, there is a potential exception that may soon keep US policymakers awake at night: the possibility of a populist leftist victory in Mexico’s 2018 elections.

Peru’s president-elect demands freedoms in Venezuela

Peru’s pro-business President-elect Pedro Pablo Kuczynski won his country’s elections by a hair with the last-minute help of a leftist party, but — judging from what he told me in an interview — he won’t budge on his criticism of Venezuela and other repressive regimes.

Venezuela needs OAS action right now

What a shame. The historic decision by Organization of American States chief Luis Almagro to call for an official regional discussion on Venezuela’s break with democratic rule may be derailed by a group of countries that say they support democracy, but are really buying time for the Venezuelan regime.

Mexican flags hurt anti-Trump camp

Donald Trump might be a xenophobic and racist demagogue, but the people who chant “Viva Mexico!” and wave Mexican flags at anti-Trump rallies across the United States are doing him a big favour.