Convergence in Latin America: illuminating the Pink Tide and Iranian nexus through social network analysis
Bauer, Matthew S.
Maggard, Andrew J.
Murray, Robert L.
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Throughout the early 2000s, multiple countries across Latin America elected populist, leftist governments in a sociopolitical movement known as the Pink Tide. Eight Latin American countries currently encompass this regional bloc, aiming to limit U.S. regional influence. Many of the countries have turned to foreign state actors like Iran to support anti-U.S. economic and security initiatives. While many of the populist, leftist governments are transitioning to more conservative political leadership and away from vehemently anti-U.S. rhetoric characterized by the Pink Tide movement, this research demonstrates the enduring strategic importance of the complex network connecting various key individuals, corporations, quasi-governmental organizations, and Transnational, Transregional Threat networks (T3N) supported by the government of Iran. This research illuminates and maps the social, economic, and political components of the Pink Tide network that serves as the connective tissue among the leftist countries of Latin America and demonstrates how Iran has leveraged the movement for its own geostrategic ends. By utilizing social network analysis and open-source materials, our research identifies observable political, ideological, physical, and virtual networks in Latin America that the United States must engage to maintain or increase its strategic influence in the region.
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