Indeed, the unhealthy relationship between the US and its southern neighbors goes back to as early as 1904, when President Theodore Roosevelt declared the "right" of his country to hold "international police power" in Latin America. Since then, the entire region has been regarded as Washington's business.
The free trade agreement (CAFTA-DR) signed between Central American countries and the US has done its own share of damage. The deal "restructured the region's economy and guaranteed economic dependence on the United States through massive trade imbalances and the influx of American agricultural and industrial goods that weakened domestic industries," wrote Mark Tseng-Putterman in Medium.
Acknowledging all of this is threatening. If US mainstream pundits accept their country's destructive role in Central and South America, they will be forced to abandon the role of the victim (as embraced by the right) or the savior (as embraced by the left), which has served them well. The same stifling political and intellectual routine is also witnessed in Europe.
This denial of moral responsibility, though, will only exacerbate the problem, not resolve it. No amount of racism on the part of the right, or crocodile tears from the liberals, will ever rectify this skewed paradigm. This is as true in Central America as it is in the Middle East; there is a conspiracy against refugees.