Connecting Past and Present: Central America’s Forced Migration as an Unfinished Project of Building Just Nations Post-Colonization and Post-Conflict
29 Pages Posted: 17 Jun 2020
Date Written: May 27, 2020
In this white paper, we aim to explicitly connect today’s Central America’s forced migration phenomena to the broader largely failed project of liberating the people from the Northern Triangle from the terrible grip of failed nations. We do this despite the obvious: neither civil wars nor incredibly ambitious peace processes have been terribly successful to help these nations transition to stronger and just democracies. The risk is great that we will fail to provide viable solutions to the Central American forced migration phenomena. We feel strongly, however, that our frame must embrace the complexity of forced migration’s root causes in the region and at least try to take up the daunting task of offering solutions that aim to innovate while at the same time contextualize a project of building just nations post-colonization and post-conflict that has been going on for more than a century.
We proceed in three parts. First, we provide a framework for understanding the concept of failed nations in Central America, with a particular focus in the Northern Triangle. Second, we provide a brief account of the heroic and monumental post-conflict nation-building efforts in the Northern Triangle, both the gains and unfinished tasks, to contextualize the recommendations that follow in Part III. In part III, we attempt to modernize a vision for building just nations in the Northern Triangle by (1) providing prescriptions that, inter alia, deemphasize, at least in the short term, the role of federal nation states in favor of more decentralized solutions that include local governments and communities (2) include important cross-border solutions that account for the ever present transnational agency of the problems in the region and (3) take up issues, both old and new, through evolving frameworks connecting human rights to sustainable development.
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