Some observers and policymakers suggest there is, but a cold look at the facts suggests fears may be overblown. Whatever the case, a nuanced approach to diplomacy will be required to build partnerships capable of thwarting any terrorist ambitions.
Brazil's prisons are regulated as much by gangs as by guards, and the recent wave of murders will likely subside as the latest dispute between rival groups dies down.
At the beginning of 2016, there seemed such promise for opposition politicians in Venezuela, but little was achieved. Can 2017 be different?
If recent rhetoric is anything to go by, change is afoot in the relationship between Mexico and the United States. But when they do sit down, what issues will Mexico want to discuss?
Since 2009, the country has seen a consistent decline in its homicide rate. While work remains to be done, the success so far should not be overlooked.
A lone protester plowed his truck into police guarding a fuel distribution terminal in Baja California, injuring seven.
Many issues of concern need to be addressed by the United Nations – not least how to give the region greater representation in the roster of secretaries-general.
Changes to Mexican law have sought to promote participation of indigenous women in politics – but they have stirred opposition, not least from the very people they seek to help.
Despite the strength of the earthquake, which struck off of the country's southern coast, there were no reports of fatalities or major damage.
It's hard to know what direction US-Cuba relations will take once Donald Trump is in the White House, but Cubans are already contemplating the consequences of a reversal of President Obama's normalization process.
Over the coming 24 months, a host of Latin American nations are slated to elect their leaders. The outcome of many of these races is far from certain.
In the two years since a restoration of diplomatic ties was first announced, great strides have been made in normalizing relations. That trajectory benefits – and is supported by – a wide array of people.
With the United States likely to pull out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and China looking to step into the breach, Latin America's changing relations with world powers could reflect a broader shift.