Peace and Security


September 2022
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Peace and Security

Commentary: Moving on from the Americas Summit

New York, United States - Despite the failure to reach a unified statement, the recently concluded Americas Summit in Trinidad and Tobago is certainly a step in the right direction. But there is much work to do.

Although the world’s media focused on Hugo Chavez’ presentation of Eduardo Galeano’s book, “Open Veins of Latin America,” to President Obama, the nations of the Americas need to find a new unifying narrative that can move beyond the injustices and stereotypes of the past to a common future based on shared values.

The Universal Peace Federation is dedicated to promoting increased cooperation, development and peace among the peoples, cultures and nations of North, Central, and South America, and the Caribbean, from Argentina’s Tierra del Fuego to Canada’s Newfoundland. Through its programs, UPF brings together leaders from government, civil society and faith-based organizations to explore a path to a more integrated and unified Western Hemisphere.

The 21st century is a time of globalization and dramatic developments in technology, communications and trade. Regional alliances and economic unions are forming throughout the world. At the same time, the world is witnessing the rise of a Pacific Era. At this time, the peoples and nations of the Western Hemisphere look not only back across the Atlantic, but, increasingly, toward the Pacific Rim.

There is no doubt that globalization and regionalism are on the rise. In this context, UPF wants to encourage an integration of the Americas based on universal core principles that people of faith and all conscientious people hold in common. In this way, the Americas can set a good example of cooperation and development for the rest of the world.

Along with cooperation in areas of trade, education, and public policy, the UPF underscores the importance of ecumenical cooperation as an additional and essential prerequisite for unity in the Western hemisphere. In many respects, faith-based cooperation is necessary in order for economic and political unification to occur. Therefore, as we consider the development of a Free Trade Area of the Americas or a Latin American Union, we must also consider the core values that underlie societies and nations that are free, democratic, and morally responsible.

If North and South America can successfully lay a unified foundation---based on shared cultural, social, economic and political values----these nations can demonstrate to the world a model of regional cooperation. The UPF seeks to serve this objective, promoting hemispheric integration based on the overall vision of one family under God. Hemispheric integration is achieved as we promote a culture of respect, cooperation and service.

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