Sunday, July 26, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Since attaining the presidency in 2005, Evo Morales – who is of indigenous Aymara ancestry – has focused on instituting a number of key reforms aimed at addressing the historical exclusion of the indigenous population. Central to this was the introduction of a new constitution that recognizes indigenous cultural, political and ownership systems, and includes clauses aimed at achieving more equitable distribution of land and natural resources, and at opening opportunities for indigenous people to gain more power.
The plan has faced stiff resistance from opposing landowning interests in the eastern departments, at every step. This included strikes, walk-outs and armed conflicts that have led to scores of injuries, human rights abuses and loss of life.
The non-indigenous landowning minority in the wealthy eastern departments of Beni, Pando, Santa Cruz and Tarija, who feared their farms would be broken up and handed over to the poor, have mostly opposed the government's efforts and, during 2008 increased their efforts to block reforms, including calling for departmental autonomy and fomenting civil strife.
In August 2008 the government held a national recall referendum to determine whether President Morales, the Vice President and eight out of nine departmental Prefects should remain in power. This received a 67 per cent national vote of confidence, and six of the eight prefects were returned. Although four of the six were pro-opposition prefects, significant for government supporters was that the plebiscite produced an almost 40 per cent approval vote in the autonomy-seeking eastern states. This demonstrated that the vocal and well-orchestrated anti-government regional opposition did not represent unanimous opinion.
Ousted Honduran President Manuel Zelaya is attempting a risky return home after last month’s military coup. The coup regime has threatened to arrest him if he sets foot in the country. We go to Honduras to speak with Latin America historian Greg Grandin.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
The Horror, the Horror! When will he stop making the rest of us look like dicks?
And as if that weren't enough, PETA is now working closely with the Bolivian government on the country's first national animal protection framework law. If the measure is adopted, it would make Bolivia a global leader in animal welfare.
President Barack Obama declared at the Summit of the Americas meeting in Trinidad and Tobago in April that there would no longer be junior and senior partners in the Americas–but his actions are sending a different message
...seized by the police.
Bolivian press headline of the day: "Bolivia demonstrates the capacity to combat narcotics without help of foreign agents"
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Víctor Hugo Cárdenas
Samuel Doria Medina
Manfred Reyes Villa
Other / Undecided
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, July 20, 2009
Lunatic Llama is a new gringa/o(?) in Bolivia (Cochabamba) blog with well thought news, what's life like in that weird country, and my favorite FOOD! section. Still waiting for my favorites Pique lo Macho and Mondongo.
Diana Barahona has been translating articles from Spanish, stuff you otherwise would not read in English and commentary.
Eva Golinger because, need more explanation?
Pan-African Newswire because the voice of the Mother Continent was missing.
Antifascist Calling which is less of a blog and more of a one man online magazine letting you in on what the merchants of death are pushing for your dystopian future.
Opps: I also wanted to add The Daily Sketch.
Evo affirmed there exist fascist and military groups in the United States that do not recongize Barak Obama's mandate. Morales also referred to the coup against Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, speaking that there exist sectors, tied to the US Southern Command, who would encourgage actions against democracies in the region.So even after Obama followed Bush in throwing Bolivia out of ATPDEA trade benefits based on a scurrilous and overtly political "anti-narcotics" report, Evo is still watching out for his brother. I don't think Obama could ask for a better friend. However based on the last time Evo gave Obama good advice (warning of the DEA's links to drug trafficking), I don't think we can expect Obama to listen.
Former Salvadoran ambassador in Washington, Ernesto Rivas Gallont, "It's hard to admit, but (Fidel) Castro and (Hugo) Chávez are right" to fear that if the coup-mongers consolidate their power, "a series of coups d'état could be unleashed against governments in the region."
- 2007 GDP up 4.6%
- 2008 GDP up 6.15%
- 2009 GDP expected to grow "at least 4%"
- U$8Bn in international currency reserves, which is all-time record levels and represents U$816 per capita.
- Inflation now under control. The last two months have seen negative inflation thanks mainly to the drop in imported foodstuffs.
- Expansion of exports despite losing the ATPDEA advantages with the USA. New and very large investment programs in hydrocarbons and metals in exactly the way those economists say you should do these things (except it's China, Brazil and India invited to the parties, not the US...perhaps related?)
- An old age pension given to every single senior citizen regardless of sex, status or history for the first time ever. Poverty rates dropping at record speed.
- Programs that have rid the country of illiteracy by official UN world standards.
- Free heathcare that is so popular visitors come from "the economic miracle" Peru to get their eyes fixed.
Friday, July 17, 2009
And after 200 years, what do they want more than anything? For the United States to just leave them alone. The End.
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
The farmer’s body lay on a slab in a damp morgue. A camera’s flash brightened for an instant what otherwise looked to be a dim and lonely place. The man’storso was exposed, his pants soiled, and a pale hand hung limply to one side. Blood pooled on the tile by his head. His anonymous face was out of view. The photo arrived incongruously, part of a PowerPoint file that detailed with forensic clarity an armed assault on poor farmers marching across the Amazonian backwater of Pando, northern Bolivia.
America’s mainstream press buried the event amid bigger news and familiar distortions of recent Bolivian history. Yet images from Bolivian sources were popping up on YouTube and Indymedia, and being disseminated by email...
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Quintana spoke that there existis proof of the presence of Southern Command forces and of the United States Embassy in Porvenir, over towns in Pando, and neighborhoods of Cobija to support political work to the favor of Fernandez.The coup attempt in Pando climaxed with the massacre in Porvenir of more than two-dozen Evo supporters by Fernandez's paramilitaries, for which the ex-Prefect is now incarcerated facing genocide charges.
Quintana, "These men prefered that the United States Southern Command settle in the city of Cobija, prefered to mortgage our soveriegnty- that the [Bolivian] state protects the national terrority from external interference."
Marco Guía, attorney for the family of Rufina Morales, aunt of the President of Bolivia, who was found dismembered in June in Cochabamba, denounced on Wednesday that this crime was part of a plan to kill president Evo Morales, hatched by the Croatian-Bolivian mercenary Eduardo Rózsa Flores, who headed an irregular group dismantled by police in April.Cowards.
"Upon reviewing the antecedents of this crime, I have found evidence of a flagrant attempt to assassinate President Evo Morales, a political vengeance on the part of separatists promoting terrorism," Guía said.
Among those responsible for the death of Rufina Morales, Guía named a Brazilian by the surname of Rodríguez, recruited in the El Abra jail in Cochabamba, and two Bolivian fugitives hailing from Cochabamba and Santa Cruz.
Monday, July 13, 2009
North American imperialism has decided to stop the growth [in Honduras], that is part of the peoples rebellion against imperialism, as a warning, as a threat.
These struggles are going to continue, the peoples of the world have always defeated the various empires, the European empire, the Spanish empire, the Roman empire, English and now the North American empire.
Update: Story hits English language, "US accused of backing Honduras coup", "Honduras coup serves as a warning to all of Latin America"
Elaboration of US position from Kevin Casas-Zamora of the Council on Foreign Relations:Associated Press:
Clinton would not discuss specifics of the mediation process, which she said would begin soon, but a senior U.S. official said one option being considered would be to forge a compromise under which Zelaya would be allowed to return and serve out his remaining six months in office with limited powers.
Zelaya, in return, would pledge to drop his aspirations for a constitutional change that might allow him to run for another term, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the diplomatic exchanges.
However, we can hope, as some observe, that Zelaya has the balls to hold his ground and refuse such offensive compromises.My sense of what the international community is demanding, and what is correct, is first of all that Zelaya should return to the presidency, though not necessarily to power. The presidency and power are two different things. Number two, he has to end his plans to amend the constitution, which won't be much of a problem. Number three, he has to put some distance between himself and Chavez. That's essential. Number four, there has to be some kind of power-sharing agreement, whereby Zelaya remains at the helm of the government but some other people chip-in in the main decisions that are to be made between now and the next election in November. Number five, there has to be some kind of amnesty, for lack of a better word, where everybody turns a blind eye on the pervasive illegal behavior of all the parties involved, because all of them have acted with illegal behavior and have acted with total disregard for the rule of law. Sadly for Honduras, they will have to turn a blind eye to all of that. At this point, no party is in a position to demand accountability from anybody. There's no such thing as high moral ground in Honduras at this point.
This is the official explanation of the US administration (June 30, 2009)
The reasons for my decisions are summarized in this report and are also based on the information contained in the Office of the U.S Trade Representative’s (USTR) Fourth Report to the congress on the Operation of the Andean Trade Preference Act, as Amended, dated April 30, 2009. Below is a summary of the developments and concerns that remain to be addressed in Bolivia and Ecuador in four key areas reflecting the criteria set forth in the Act: investment policies, trade policies, counternarcotics cooperation, and workers’ rights. The United States remains committed to working with Bolivia and to address our concerns and to develop a stronger bilateral trade and investment relationship with each country.
Friday, July 10, 2009
So basically, in the mists of a global economic recession (depression?) and in a region almost entirely in the red, Bolivia's economy continues to grow. Please also note that Bolivia is managing this growth with minimal inflation. (Didn't the neoliberals claim only they could deliver such figures?)
Thursday, July 09, 2009
The New York Times will publish a supplement in the La Paz daily La Razon (with an equal dedication to good journalism as the NYT) so Bolivians can now read in Spanish the bullshit Simon Romero writes about them.
One of Leopold Fernandez's goons is requesting "political asylum" in the United States, claiming Evo's supporters shot themselves in the Pando massacre.
Survival International has put together a video interview with two western eyewitnesses of the Bagua massacre. Yes, it's in English.
The Bolivian investigation into the fascist mercenary group plotting to assassinate Evo has subpoenaed Costas, Marinkovic, and the "Media Luna" bunch. Have fun getting your story straight douchebags.
Tourists are bummed out that the famous San Pedro prison in La Paz is starting to operate like... a prison.
And if Obama has any self-respect he ought to send in the marines to arrest Honduran coup "foreign minister" Enrique Ortez for the dignity of all Black people.
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Monday, July 06, 2009
At the close of World War II, the U.S. Army constructed a military base on Japan’s Okinawa Island. In part as compensation for land confiscated to build the base, the U.S. offered some families attractive 124-acre parcels in Bolivia.
Sunday, July 05, 2009
The downturn of Evo and Chavez's leftist politics in Latin America! (I knew those commie populists had it coming)
It's true because some "analysts" told McClatchy reporter Tyler Bridges whose wiz reporting last uncovered the brewing Iranian-Bolivian terrorists plot against America: dairy factories!
Confused? Well listen up. You know that coup in Honduras against the lefty President that every country and organization in the world has opposed? Well, the referendum the coup-deposed President Zelaya was trying to get through was really just a Chavez populism inspired attempt to stay in power to allow reelection. Ha! (No! Don't look at the actual referendum question. You'll ruin the whole story!)
And Kirchner. She seems like a pinko, so I am sure they are feeling those local election loses in La Paz and Caracas.
Next let's all plow our head into the sand! My analyst tells me it's best to do so before facts and common sense set in.
Another shocker: The coup mongers are also racists and use Nazi slogans. Who wud a thunk it?
Not so fast: Looks like the coup mongers blocked his landing today and killed several protesters. Check out Inca Kola News and BoRev for details and updates.
Saturday, July 04, 2009
Zelaya's wife and son are staying at the home of the US Ambassador in Tegucigalpa, just saying.Since Sunday’s coup, Washington has been working for a negotiated settlement between Zelaya and the new government, possibly involving restoring Zelaya to power, but on terms more favorable to the US and under conditions where Zelaya’s government would be politically crippled.
Thursday, July 02, 2009
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
72 hours to showdown for the coup mongers in Honduras.
Follow the link if you read Spanish to get his description of racial discrimination in the university.
Continuing Evo: "The dignity of Bolivians does not cost 25 million dollars [referring to the trade benefits]... Now that I realize. Some leaders told me not to trust Obama, since the empire is empire."
Updates: Apparently I didn't translate Evo's money quote, "President Obama lied to Latin America when he told us in Trinidad and Tobago that there are not senior and junior partners". Also Bolivia's UN mission authors a response.