The US-Colombia agreement generated lots of
controversy, especially among leftists, who denounced the arrangement as 'US bases' and an example of US imperialism. Venezuelan Pres. Hugo Chavez suggested that the US and Colombia would spy on his country and were even preparing to invade Venezuela.
Yesterday, Colombia's high court ruled that the agreement was invalid because it had not been approved by Colombia's Congress. That appears unlikely to happen, unless Colombian Pres. Juan Manuel Santos is willing to rile up the Venezuelan government.
What's the lesson in this? First of all, the US doesn't look like much of an imperialistic power - not when tiny nations like Panama and Ecuador have evicted US soldiers without firing a shot.
And the decision shows once again that Colombia is a democracy with an independent court system - with a backbone.
At the same time, the US should find a lesson in this: Its war on drugs is unpopular in Latin America, where it is widely seen as an imposition. What's more, despite billions of dollars spent and many thousands of deaths, the war has produced little progress against the drug trade.
Perhaps a change of strategy is in order.
This blog written by Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours.