|Meet Robert Pastor: Father of the North American Union
Events | October 25, 2006
Robert Pastor intends to give away U.S. sovereignty to a newly forming North American Union exactly as he gave away the Panama Canal to Panama during Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
As we are taught in grade school, George Washington is the Father of our nation. If the North American Union comes into existence as the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) asserts, then we all better get prepared for a new hero. Robert Pastor is the person most likely to be proclaimed the father of the North American Union, a designation consistent with his decades-long history of viewing U.S. national interests through the lens of an extreme leftist almost anti-American political philosophy.
Dr. Pastor’s early professional career involved a working association with the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). Here he participated on the Ad Hoc Working Group on Latin America, which produced a 1977 report, “The Southern Connection: Recommendations for a New Approach to Inter-American Relations,” arguing for the U.S. to abandon our anti-communist allies in Latin America in favor of supporting “ideological pluralism,” a code word for the revolutionary socialist forces taking hold in Latin America, including the communist Sandanistas and other revolutionary terrorist groups that were developing in countries such as El Salvador. Author David Horowitz’s DiscoverTheNetworks.org identifies the IPS as “America’s oldest leftwing think tank” that “has long supported Communist and Anti-American causes around the world,” with a place for KGB agents from the Soviet embassy in Washington “to convene and strategize.”
From February 1975 to January 1977, Dr. Pastor was executive director of the Linowitz Commission on U.S./Latin American Relations. The Linowitz Commission supported President Carter’s decision to negotiate a treaty to turn over the Panama Canal to Panama. Pastor left the Linowitz Commission to join become director of the Office of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs in the National Security Council in the Carter White House. There Pastor served as Carter’s “point man” in getting the Senate to narrowly vote for the Carter-Torrijos Treaty on April 18, 1978, despite staunch objections from conservative politicians including Ronald Reagan.
In December 1993, President Bill Clinton nominated Pastor to be U.S. ambassador to Panama. Pastor’s nomination was approved by a 16-3 vote in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and his confirmation looked virtually certain. The nomination failed, however, and was withdrawn by the administration in February 1995, after then-Sen. Jesse Helms (R.-N.C.) swore to prevent a Senate vote on Pastor’s nomination. Helms, who had vehemently opposed the turn-over of the Panama Canal, placed much of the blame squarely on Pastor, declaring when he opposed Pastor’s nomination that Pastor “presided over one of the most disastrous and humiliating periods in the history of U.S. involvement in Latin America.” Helms also claimed that Pastor bore responsibility for what Helms saw as “a Carter administration cover-up of alleged involvement by Nicaragua’s Sandinista government in arms shipments to leftist rebels in El Salvador.”
Dr. Pastor has also co-authored a 1989 book with his long-time friend, Jorge G. Castañeda, who began his career as a member of the Mexican Communist Party. Castañeda, a life-long admirer of the radical left, published in 1998 an admiring biography of the revolutionary “hero” Che Guevara. Castañeda, like Pastor, has sought to work in government positions to implement his theories, not satisfied to be a political scientist who writes books and teaches at universities. Castañeda too has mixed his career as a government employee by alternating time spent as an author of more than a dozen books and a university professor at various times on the faculties of the University of California at Berkeley, Princeton University, and the New York University.
Castañeda was an aggressively pro-illegal immigration foreign minister when he accompanied President Vincente Fox in the U.S. in 2001. Those were the days when Vincente Fox was declaring himself to be the president of 100 million Mexicans at home and 23 million Mexicans in the United States. Castañeda also attended with President Fox on a three-day state visit to pre-9/11 Washington. There in a joint statement on Sept. 6, 2001, the two leaders announced a bilateral “Partnership for Prosperity,” which after 9/11 evolved into the trilateral summit statement of a “Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America,” announced in Waco, Tex., on March 23, 2005. Castañeda is probably best remembered for telling in 2001 a group of mostly Latino union workers that Mexico was going to press for “the whole enchilada,” intending to legalize all illegal Mexicans aliens in the U.S.
In his pressing enthusiasm for realizing the NAU, Robert Pastor argued in a 2004 article in CFR’s Foreign Affairs, entitled “North America’s Second Decade,” that the United States would benefit by giving up U.S. national Sovereignty. “Countries are benefited,” he wrote, “when they changed these [national sovereignty] policies, and evidence suggests that North Americans are ready for a new relationship that renders this old definition of sovereignty obsolete.”
Characteristically, Dr. Pastor has seen the U.S. as a North American bully that needs to be restrained, for the good of the region and possibly even for the good of the world. On Oct. 21, 2003, he testified to the House Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere affairs along these lines:
A new approach to the Americas needs to begin with some humility and a willingness to bridge the post-Iraq gap. The United States needs to realize that its power has limits and obligations. U.S. power can compel other governments to take our agenda seriously, but if we brandish it or ignore other views, we unintentionally invite resistance or simply no cooperation. To achieve our goals in the region (and elsewhere), we need to listen more and lecture less.In 2004, Dr. Pastor declared his support for the presidential campaign of John Kerry. Dr. Pastor’s 19-page curriculum vitae (c.v.) on the website of American University where he is currently a faculty member documents that Dr. Pastor has served as an adviser to every Democratic Party presidential candidate for three decades, since he first supported Jimmy Carter in 1976.
Dr. Pastor was the co-chair of the May 2005 CFR report, “Building a North American Community,” argued that the Security and Prosperity Partnership signed by President Bush with Mexico and Canada on March 23, 2005 should become by 2010 a “North American economic and security community, the boundaries of which would be defined by a common external tariff and an outer security perimeter.” According to his published c.v., Dr. Pastor was the “principal editor” of this CFR report as well as the vice chair of the task force that produced it.
The May 2005 CFR task force report made clear that the borders between the U.S. and Mexico and between the U.S. and Canada would be erased, with the only border to be protected to be around North America. As the report stated on page 3, the boundaries of the North American Union “will be defined by a common external tariff and an outer security perimeter within which the movement of people, products, and capital will be legal, orderly, and safe.” The “outer security perimeter” referred specifically to the border around Canada, the U.S., and Mexico -- such that the borders between these countries would be virtually erased. Dr. Pastor left no doubt about his view of U.S. borders with Mexico and Canada in his June 2005 testimony to the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee:
Instead of stopping North Americans on the borders, we ought to provide them with a secure, biometric Border Pass that would ease transit across the border like an E-Z pass permits our cars to speed through toll booths.Note that Dr. Pastor’s reference was to “North Americans,” a term he meant to replace the current designations of “Mexicans,” “Americans,” and “Canadians,” much as he also was arguing for the NAU to replace the USA.
Dr. Pastor himself proclaims that the May 2005 CFR task force report on which he was vice chair and principal editor was a “blueprint” for the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP). In his June 2005 testimony to the U.S. Senate, Dr. Pastor informed the Foreign Relations Committee of this link:
Entitled “Building a North American Community,” the report offered a blueprint of the goals that the three countries of North America should pursue and the steps needed to achieve these goals.The CFR report, under Robert Pastor’s direction, recommended expanding the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) into a North American military command, creating a North American Development Fund to help pay for Mexico’s economic development, establishing a North American Union Court to resolve disputes, establishing a North American Advisory Council to serve as the NAU executive branch, and creating a North American Inter-Parliamentary Group to act as NAU lawmaker. These recommendations derive directly from Robert Pastor’s many published books and papers, as well as his extensive professional testimony to Congress and groups such as the Tri-Lateral Commission. His most comprehensive statement of his views on creating the NAU by transforming NAFTA into a political entity were expressed in his 2001 book, "Toward a North American Community", where he also advocated the creation of a common NAU currency, the Amero, as first proposed by Canadian economist Herbert Grubel.
Critics who argue that the NAU is a “conspiracy theory” are well advised to take a hard look at Robert Pastor. With U.S. policy toward Latin America, Dr. Pastor first approached the issue in writing (for the radical IPS, as we have noted), next as a university professor, and finally as a government official. Had John Kerry won the 2004 presidential election, Robert Pastor most likely would have emerged with a government position from which he could have pursued his NAU agenda. Given the re-election of George Bush, Dr. Pastor has surfaced within the CFR, an influential “think-tank” NGO whose history of impacting U.S. policy would suggest the CFR impact on SPP.gov could easily be more than academic.