Regional Security Policy

...holding the military accountable to democracy

Latin America’s transition to democracy began thirty years ago, but overwhelming military influence continues to undermine progress. Too often, U.S. aid and engagement make matters worse, encouraging the region’s armed forces to take on domestic missions – from the drug war to development programs – that threaten democracy and human rights.

WOLA challenges the expanding role of the military in foreign and domestic policy making. We support accountable civilian control of defense forces, a clear separation between police and military functions, and peaceful collaboration to reduce threats and resolve conflicts.

Regional Security Policy News & Analysis

WOLA's Adam Isacson Discusses National Guard Deployment on WSJ Live

Video
Texas Gov. Rick Perry plans to deploy the National Guard to help secure the U.S.-Mexico border as the federal government struggles to handle an influx of Central American immigrants. In a video interview with WSJ Live, WOLA's Adam Isacson weighs in on why this is a bad idea.

Will More Funds for Border Security Address the Crisis of Central American Children at the Border?

Spending even more on border security, or sending the National Guard, will not resolve the unaccompanied minors crisis
Analysis & Commentary
There are already enough Border Patrol resources at the U.S.-Mexico border. Congress does not need to add more: Customs and Border Protection needs to distribute them to respond to the current situation. We *absolutely* do not need to take the drastic step of a new National Guard deployment.

Ending 50 Years of Conflict in Colombia: A New Report from WOLA

The Challenges Ahead and the U.S. Role
Publication
As the likelihood of an accord increases, the United States--which provided billions for Colombia's war effort--must prepare to help consolidate peace.

WOLA Experts Visited Chocó, Colombia: Blogs from the Field

Adam Isacson's posts about conflict, displacement, illegal mining, U.S. policy - and the region's vibrant civil society
Analysis & Commentary
WOLA Senior Associate Adam Isacson's posts and photos from the road during a March 2014 trip to Chocó, in northwestern Colombia. Topics include the conflict's impact on Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities, forced displacement, illegal mining, U.S. policy – and the need to defend and work with the region's vibrant civil society.