9/11 altered USA's foreign policy. This affects USA's bilateral relationship with Mexico.
The USA disregarded issues that were important and urgent to the government of Mexico: immigration and drug trafficking.
Bilateral Relations Before 2000
Cold War: in order to fight communism, the USA supported right-wing military regimes that were friendly to the USA.
Echeverria: 1970-1976. Hostility towards multinational corporations, embrace of an increasingly static economic development strategy, pursued a closer relationship with Cuba strained bilateral relationship with USA.
This strategy ended up in a debt crisis in 1982. In order to take care of the crisis, Echeverria's successor needed not to play an active role in foreign affairs.
With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the USA wasn't concerned with security issues anymore. Turned its attention to trade and development issues.
Improved bilateral relations throughout the 1990s:
- USA provided financial support to Mexico after its devaluation and near-default on its debt. Clinton broadened its contact with the opposition in Mexico in response to its democratization process but maintained its relations with the PRI.
- Mexico recognized the opposition, made sure elections were free and fair.
The Impact of Mexican Democracy on US-Mexican Relations
There are similarities between Bush and Fox: didn't use to live in the capital, ranchers, worked in the private sector, religious, not intellectuals. They appealed to a broader population. They speak each other's language.
USA citizens usually dislike and distrust undemocratic regimes. They also don't like those that are anti-American Mexico fit both categories but they made it a point to change this perspective.
Mexico's more pluralistic democracy made it more difficult for Fox to obtain congressional approval for his initiatives. No more presidential control over Congress.
During the PRI years, Mexico had been... [continues]
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