The George W. Bush administration had a stated policy of trying to isolate Venezuela from its neighbors, and the strategy ended up isolating Washington instead. President Obama, in his first meeting with hemispheric leaders in Trinidad in 2009, promised to turn a new page. But today, his administration finds itself even more isolated than that of his predecessor, and for much the same reasons.
Consider the lopsided vote on Venezuela at the Organization of American States earlier this month. Not only did the OAS reject Washington’s attempt to get the organization to intervene in Venezuela, but to add insult to injury, 29 countries passed a resolution expressing their solidarity with the government of President Nicolás Maduro, with only 3 against. It is hard to imagine a more resounding diplomatic defeat in a body where the US government still has a disproportionate influence.