Colombia And The United States

In This Review

Colombia And The United States

By Stephen J. Randall
University of Georgia Press, 1992
325 pp. $40.00

The latest volume in a useful series edited by Lester Langley, this study surveys two centuries of relations between the United States and Colombia, a medium-sized, strategically located nation at the gateway to South America. The U.S. role at the turn of the century in breaking Panama, Colombia's northern province, into an independent nation subservient to U.S. interests colored the relationship for many decades. After World War II Colombians split between those advocating an independent and even antagonistic stand toward the United States and those favoring acceptance by Colombia of its place as a mid-range regional power within the U.S. sphere of influence. The largest factor shaping relations has been the asymmetry of power, as the United States is an all-pervasive factor in Colombia's foreign policy while Colombia is low on the U.S. priority list. Although the countries share many fundamental concerns, insensitivity in Washington to Colombia's self-image and interests have recurrently exacerbated bilateral tensions.

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