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WORLD | 06-07-2024 05:23

US Embassy marks Independence Day with Palacio Bosch party

US Ambassador Marc Stanley pays tributes to Argentine politicians from previous and current governments as he welcomes more than 1,000 guests to the Palacio Bosch for annual Independence Day knees-up.

US Ambassador to Argentina Marc Stanley welcomed more than 1,000 guests to a boisterous and beautiful Palacio Bosch on Tuesday as the envoy celebrated US Independence Day in style.

The massive annual party, Stanley’s third since arriving in Buenos Aires to lead the US Embassy, saw a host of government officials and politicians in attendance. 

President Javier Milei’s La Libertad Avanza party provided the most, with heavyweights such as Cabinet Chief Guillermo Francos, Foreign Minister Diana Mondino, Defence Minister Luis Petri and Justice Minister Mariano Cúneo Libarona turning out for the celebration.

Former Cabinet chief Nicolás Posse – who Stanley has repeatedly praised in public – also turned out, along with LLA City lawmaker Ramiro Marra.

The attendance of Argentina’s former US ambassador Jorge Argüello, UCR Senator Martín Lousteau and ex-Foreign minister Santiago Cafiero ensured representation from those who are critical of the Milie administration.

The presence of leading figures from the business world, civil society and rights campaigners also ensured that the crowd was a cross-section of Argentine society.

Consulted by the Times, Ambassador Stanley said the party was one of the biggest the Embassy has put on in recent years, while praising the work behind-the-scenes of his wife of four decades, Wendy Hillebrand. 

She, the US envoy revealed, was the one who had come up with the idea of hiring the Valentino Brothers, an impressive Bon Jovi tribute band who rocked some of the New Jersey band's biggest hits before an energetic crowd that belted out every word.

Minutes beforehand, the US ambassador had delivered a speech in Spanish to the crowd, which he notably opened by welcoming “todos, todas y todes” to the Palacio Bosch and paying tribute to the strong “relationship between 46 million Argentines and 333 million US citizens.”

Paying tribute to the “strong links and mutual admiration between our two nations,” Stanley quoted US President Joe Biden, though there was little reference to the Democratic leader’s stumbling re-election bid.

“Argentina and the United States share a long history of collaboration and mutual respect,” said the envoy, highlighting that the two nations were “entering into the third century of bilateral relations.”

“Over the years of presidents, foreign ministers and ambassadors – irrespective of which party controls the White House, the Casa Rosada or Congress – our relationship progressed and grew thanks to our values and democratic institutions,” said Stanley.

In a notable shift, he then went on to praise by name a number of leaders who he argued had boosted relations, among them Cabinet Chiefs Juan Manzur, Nicolás Posse and Guillermo Francos; Foreign Ministers Santiago Cafiero and Diana Mondino; and Ambassadors Jorge Argüello and Gerardo Werthein.

“As for you, our friends, I don’t know how to thank you. I cannot mention everybody but you know how much you mean to us. If my time in Argentina and our bilateral relationship is so special, it is thanks to you,” added the ambassador.

Thanking sponsors, his family and his staff for their support, he closed with a line that was guaranteed to deliver applause by celebrating “the United States, Argentina and [Lionel] Messi.”

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James Grainger

James Grainger

Editor-in-Chief, Buenos Aires Times.

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