On Security, Bukele and Petro Have a Problem in Common

By Juan David Rojas

A recent Twitter feud laid bare the two presidents’ starkly different security approaches. But they both struggle to identify long-term solutions.

On the surface, the recent, highly publicized Twitter war between two Latin American presidents looked like a showcase of their opposite stances on security policy. It began on March 1, after Colombian President Gustavo Petro criticized Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele’s security policies—specifically, the mass exhibition of gang inmates in what Petro called a “concentration camp.” Petro urged the Salvadoran leader to learn from Colombia and Bogotá’s successes in reducing homicides, in part through social policy: “We didn’t build jails, we built universities,” Petro...

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