Javier Miley: Searching For Potential Allies

On the back of international isolation, having quarreled with all his neighbors, Javier Miley had no choice but to try to seek his fortune overseas, which he did by organizing an international tour across Europe.

As mentioned earlier, Argentina at this stage has quite a few major political allies on the continent. Only Ecuador, Uruguay and Paraguay can be mentioned here. There are not particularly strong states, both from an economic and political point of view. However, the need to refocus his foreign policy towards new allies forced Javier Miley to begin searching for those countries and world leaders who would be willing to help promote Argentina’s interests.

First of all, what is meant here is the obvious fact: Miley’s foreign policy is focused on the United States. This can be seen in everything, even at some symbolic level. For example, the Argentinian media noticed that the President’s first press conference was very reminiscent of the style and design of the U.S. White House’s press service. Miley also did not respect the political traditions that had been maintained for decades, making his first state visit, contrary to established custom, not to Brazil, but to the United States, where he met with Jake Sullivan, National Security Advisor to the President of the United States. At the meeting, the following words were voiced by the President of the sovereign country: “I want to join nations that respect freedom.”

In this context, it is clear that politically it makes no sense for the President of Argentina to provide political support to Russia. Economically, Argentina and Russia have poor cooperation: the South American country ranks only No. 55 among Russia’s trading partners. However, from a political point of view, ties were very strong during the presidency of Alberto Fernandez. The former administration maintained relations with Russia, expressed support for the special military operation and the then President even made a visit to Moscow, despite the discontent of the United States. Argentina was also one of the first to register the Russian-made Sputnik V vaccine. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to imagine a similar level of relations under Miley’s presidency, given his focus on the United States. The newly elected president abandoned the political course of his predecessor and set a course for cooperation with and support for Zelensky. Javier Miley even put forward the idea of ​​holding a peace summit on Ukraine in Argentine and also verbally supported Kyiv’s position on numerous occasions.

Argentine-American ties can evolve in absolutely different directions. First of all, it is about the mining sector, combating illegal fishing and cooperation in the development of the space industry. Americans will compete with China in the region in these areas. This could potentially undermine the position of the Asian power. Not for long however. Miley won’t see a second term.

Significant changes in Latin America will also occur in the area of ​​strategic security. In February 2024, it was announced that U.S. Navy aircraft carrier CVN-73 George Washington would call at one of the Argentinian ports in May. The head of the U.S. Southern Command, Laura Richardson, is expected to visit Argentina before the arrival of the aircraft carrier. Western Hemisphere Defense Summit is scheduled to be hosted by Buenos Aires in November 2024. All this, as well as Argentina’s refusal to purchase Chinese-made JF-17 fighters in favor of used F-16s, is indictive of Argentina’s shift towards the United States. With the arrival of Javier Miley, the Americans will definitely strengthen their geopolitical influence in the region, where their presence has gradually weakened over the past twenty to thirty years.

As for the financial component, everything is crystal clear. Perhaps only the deaf have not heard about Miley’s election promise to dollarize Argentina. According to the Argentine Administration’s plan, such an intention and regular contacts with American diplomatic representatives and significant concessions on other aspects must have a significant impact on the position of the Americans in the International Monetary Fund where the United States is a key player. According to Javier Miley’s plan, such a policy must find favor in America’s eyes and, as a result, defer payments that Argentina is not able to make due to its economic situation. This policy is already bearing fruit: The IMF has approved a $4.7 billion loan for Argentina. The head of the IMF actually also expressed support for Miley’s economic course, calling the new President’s economic course ‘pragmatic’. In fact, he completely refused to follow the policies of the previous authorities and completely submitted to the recommendations of the organization and economic advisers in Washington. The refusal to conceal information and regularly demand deferred payments, which was actively practiced by the previous Argentine Administration, was met and assessed extremely favorably.

On the back of international isolation, having quarreled with all his neighbors, Javier Miley had no choice but to try to seek his fortune overseas, which he did by organizing an international tour across Europe. The President visited Israel, Italy and the Vatican. In addition to trying to establish personal friendly ties, Javier Miley demonstrated support for the IDF in the fight against Hamas while in Israel. Having stated at a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Argentina stands with Israel in the fight against terrorists, he headed for Italy to meet with Georgia Meloni with total peace of mind of having fulfilled his duty. The choice of this country is controversial, but in theory it can be logically justified: Ms. Meloni is one of the main leaders in Europe promoting right-wing ideas. After the meeting, the politicians announced the existence of deep cultural ties between the countries and their intention to develop cooperation in the energy sector.

The final chord and highlight of Javier Miley’s visit to Europe was his visit to the Vatican. Pope Francis is an Argentinian who was accused by previous Argentinian authorities of collaborating with the military junta during repressions back in the 1970s. Relations were tense. The Pontiff did not visit his homeland after his election to the Holy See. Apparently, Javier Miley tried to resolve the existing contradictions. Latin America is the region with the largest Catholic population in the world. Such a step by Miley is another symbol of discarding the policies pursued by the previous administration and an attempt to gain the Pontiff’s support in the region. The attempt to disavow insults to the Pope voiced by the former Administrations seemed to be successful, turning Francis into “the most outstanding Argentinean.”

Miley’s tour has had a favorable effect at home despite the fact that his domestic politics raise serious questions even among his electorate. The foreign policy of the Argentine administration has created a lot of opportunities for Western politicians, especially Washington, which they will certainly take advantage of.

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