Adam Isacson

Still trying to understand Latin America, my own country, and why so few consequences are intended. These views are not necessarily my employer’s.

March 2017

11 Latin America longreads from March

Everything here is at least 3,000 words long, but worth your time. March 31, 2017 Cuba Jose De Cordoba, “The Buried Train and the French Teacher’s Daughter: A Cuban Exile’s Search for Home” (The Wall Street Journal, March 31, 2017). Traveling back through his family’s history, a reporter struggles with whether to return to the […]

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New report: “Throwing Money at the Wall”

Here’s a 350-word summary of my 3,000-word report on what’s up with Trump’s border wall, which we just posted to WOLA’s website. But you should really ignore this and read the longer one: it’s better and has graphics and links to lots of sources. How much would Trump’s proposed border wall cost? We’ve seen estimates ranging […]

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Some articles I found interesting this morning

(Even more here) March 31, 2017 Brazil Brad Brooks, “Former Brazil House Speaker Cunha Sentenced to 15 Years for Graft” (Reuters , March 31, 2017). Cunha, who drove the successful impeachment of former President Dilma Rousseff, was forced from his position as speaker in July and arrested in October Colombia James Bargent, “A Cocaine Boom […]

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This sounds familiar

This brings back memories of the late ’90s and early ’00s, when we lived in an apartment next to the National Zoo. I would work some weekends as a volunteer in the Great Ape House, where zookeepers gave us this exact same instruction for interacting with the big male silverback gorillas.

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The day ahead: March 31, 2017

I should be reachable for a while late morning and early afternoon, but that’s about it. (How to contact me) I’m about to do a final edit on what, with added graphics and interactive visuals from the great staff at WOLA, has become almost a full-fledged report on Trump’s border wall. And I hadn’t even started […]

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The best songs I washed dishes to in March

I’ve posted 14 musical results of my evening multitasking since starting this blog mid-month. Tomorrow is the last day of March, but I don’t plan to wash dishes on a Friday night, so here’s this month’s songs as Apple Music and Spotify playlists. (Now my blog can play music to me at work tomorrow.)

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Sunlight everywhere

I’ve written a large amount over the past 24 hours. Some of it, a big report about the border wall, will be posted to WOLA’s website tomorrow. But for now, I’m tired. So enjoy this full rotation of the moon, including the never-seen-from-Earth “dark side,” from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. (Found on imgur.)

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That’s about right

“To fight corruption, they’re going to establish a commission.” “What’s the percentage rate?”

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The past week in U.S. border security

CNN got some details about the initial $999 million that the Trump administration’s Homeland Security Department is requesting from Congress to begin work on a border wall during the 2017 fiscal year, which ends September 30. That amount would pay for “14 miles of new border wall in San Diego, 28 miles of new levee […]

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Some articles I found interesting this morning

(Even more here) March 30, 2017 Brazil Alonso Soto, “Brazil Eyeing Presidential Visit to White House: Sources” (Reuters , March 30, 2017). U.S. President Donald Trump invited Temer for a visit during a March 18 phone call, when the two leaders discussed deepening commercial and business ties Central America Regional, Honduras Geraldine Cook, “Ensuring Mission […]

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The day ahead: March 30, 2017

I should be reachable for much of the day. (How to contact me) I have a light meeting schedule today. I should’ve set up a meeting or two on Capitol Hill, but was reluctant because there’s plenty of program work to do in the six days before I go to Colombia with WOLA’s Board of Directors. […]

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My growing collection of Trump border wall cost estimates

(I put these together as part of a still-unfinished piece that WOLA will publish online… sometime after I finish it.) What might it cost to fulfill Donald Trump’s promise to build a “big, beautiful wall” along the U.S.-Mexico border? Estimates of construction cost vary wildly. Here is a range culled from U.S. media: $8 billion, says the […]

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The past week in U.S. policy toward Latin America

The OAS Permanent Council met on March 28 to discuss Venezuela for three highly contentious hours. The meeting, supported by the U.S. and other governments, did not end up invoking the OAS Democratic Charter to suspend Venezuela, as Secretary-General Luis Almagro has been urging. (The United States had been one of 14 governments to sign […]

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