NSA means 'no somos amigos' in Latin America these days

Silvio Canto, Jr.
As you may know, there is outrage south of the border, and even all of the way down to Argentina, about the stories that the NSA was listening to the leaders of Mexico and Brazil.  

We were listening to Mr Pena-Nieto before he became president.  I guess that "the political guru" at the NSA must have had some pretty good information about the elections in Mexico.  I did not know that Nate Silver was moonlighting at the NSA.

Before you feel sorry for the leaders of Latin America, just remember that there is a lot of hypocrisy here. Spying goes on all of the time in Latin America.   

Nevertheless, the reaction has been rather interesting in the two biggest economies of Latin America.

Let's look at Brazil:

"Brazil's senate has formed an Investigative Parliamentary Commission to follow up on reports that the US National Security Agency (NSA) spied on Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

"We intend to protect national sovereignty," Xinhua quoted Senator Vanessa Graziotin of the Communist Party of Brazil as saying Tuesday."

Down in Mexico:
"Allegations that U.S. agents spied on Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto when he was a candidate during last year's campaign have led Mexico to summon U.S. Ambassador Anthony Wayne and demanded "a thorough investigation."      

Mexico's foreign ministry says that "alleged espionage activity involving Mexican citizens" is against international law and the charter of the United Nations."

My guess is that all of this will pass.  Nevertheless, this is a wonderful distraction for local politicians, especially the president of Brazil and the riots over high prices.  In Mexico, President Pena-Nieto will use this NSA story to take a rest from all of the left accusing him of selling PEMEX back to the foreigners.

Yes, the outrage is phony and the issue will pass.     

P.S. Catch my chat with Fausta Wertz about US-Latin America stories this week.


As you may know, there is outrage south of the border, and even all of the way down to Argentina, about the stories that the NSA was listening to the leaders of Mexico and Brazil.  

We were listening to Mr Pena-Nieto before he became president.  I guess that "the political guru" at the NSA must have had some pretty good information about the elections in Mexico.  I did not know that Nate Silver was moonlighting at the NSA.

Before you feel sorry for the leaders of Latin America, just remember that there is a lot of hypocrisy here. Spying goes on all of the time in Latin America.   

Nevertheless, the reaction has been rather interesting in the two biggest economies of Latin America.

Let's look at Brazil:

"Brazil's senate has formed an Investigative Parliamentary Commission to follow up on reports that the US National Security Agency (NSA) spied on Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

"We intend to protect national sovereignty," Xinhua quoted Senator Vanessa Graziotin of the Communist Party of Brazil as saying Tuesday."

Down in Mexico:
"Allegations that U.S. agents spied on Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto when he was a candidate during last year's campaign have led Mexico to summon U.S. Ambassador Anthony Wayne and demanded "a thorough investigation."      

Mexico's foreign ministry says that "alleged espionage activity involving Mexican citizens" is against international law and the charter of the United Nations."

My guess is that all of this will pass.  Nevertheless, this is a wonderful distraction for local politicians, especially the president of Brazil and the riots over high prices.  In Mexico, President Pena-Nieto will use this NSA story to take a rest from all of the left accusing him of selling PEMEX back to the foreigners.

Yes, the outrage is phony and the issue will pass.     

P.S. Catch my chat with Fausta Wertz about US-Latin America stories this week.