But there’s more to this sordid story.
In the interest of promoting its often‐neglected strategic engagement with Latin America, the Bush administration urged the IMF to bail out Argentina in January 2003. The IMF complied by rolling over $6 billion in Argentine debt. In addition, during a recent meeting with Argentina’s new ambassador to the U.S., President Bush pointedly heaped praise on the Duhalde government’s good works and reaffirmed the U.S. commitment to Argentina.
By turning a blind eye toward the Duhalde government’s two great bank robberies — which amounted to a whopping $30.4 billion — and the utter collapse of the Argentine economy, which has sent millions into abject poverty, the Bush administration jettisoned the principle of property rights and took leave of common sense itself. Sadly, Argentina is yet another example of the Bush administration’s incoherent approach to international economic relations.