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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 05:56 AM
Original message
U.S. to Bolivians: Stop attacking ambassador
Edited on Sat Nov-17-07 06:18 AM by Judi Lynn
Source: Miami Herald

U.S. to Bolivians: Stop attacking ambassador
The State Department has complained to the Bolivian government about attacks on the U.S. ambassador.
Posted on Sat, Nov. 17, 2007

WASHINGTON -- The State Department has lodged a forceful complaint to the Bolivian government, telling it to stop attacking the U.S. ambassador in La Paz. It's a shift away from the policy of mostly ignoring the heated anti-American declarations of Bolivian President Evo Morales.

State Department officials say the complaint was delivered Nov. 9, when Bolivia's ambassador to the United States, Gustavo Guzmn, was summoned to a meeting with the Western Hemisphere bureau's No. 2 diplomat, Craig Kelly.

Kelly told Guzmn the Bolivian government had to stop accusing the U.S. ambassador in La Paz, Philip Goldberg, of trying to destabilize the left-wing Bolivian government.

The State Department initially hoped a private warning delivered by Kelly would be enough, according to a State Department official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he had not been cleared to brief the media about this.

Morales had already threatened to eject Goldberg and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Juan Ramn Quintana, a top Morales aid, has said U.S. AID is running programs to help the opposition and may be ousted.

Read more:

May I please refresh your memory on the way the U.S. "helped" Bolivia during the reign of US-supported dictator Hugo Banzer:
President of Bolivia

In 1970, in Bolivia, when then-President Juan Jose Torres nationalized Gulf Oil properties and tin mines owned by US interests, and tried to establish friendly relations with Cuba and the Soviet Union, he was playing with fire. The coup to overthrow Torres, led by US-trained officer and Gulf Oil beneficiary Hugo Banzer, had direct support from Washington. When Banzer's forces had a breakdown in radio communications, US Air Force radio was placed at their disposal. Once in power, Banzer began a reign of terror. Schools were shut down as hotbeds of political subversive activity. Within two years, 2,000 people were arrested and tortured without trial. As in Paraguay, Argentina and Brazil, the native Indians were ordered off their land and deprived of tribal identity. Tens-of-thousands of white South Africans were enticed to immigrate with promises of the land stolen from the Indians, with a goal of creating a white Bolivia. When Catholic clergy tried to aid the Indians, the regime, with CIA help, launched terrorist attacks against them, and this "Banzer Plan" became a model for similar anti-Catholic actions throughout Latin America.


It's a pattern with which they are all completely familiar by now.
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 06:12 AM
Response to Original message
1. Don't they just hate
having the piss taken out of them in their own "backyard" :rofl:
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 06:13 AM
Response to Original message
2. Here's the photo mentioned in the article:

The Colombian thug is in the white t-shirt, Goldberg to his right, with the blue tie.

Here is the article from which the photo was taken, translated by the google site:
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 08:43 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Thank you, Judi Lynn! Pix = 1,000 words! nt
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Robbien Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 07:39 AM
Response to Original message
3. We are ordering Bolivia to stop complaining about our covert activities?
Hey, here's an idea. Stop the covert activities and all the complaints about them from Bolivia will automatically stop.

Also, how is our ordering another country around a diplomatic act? Our State department is worse than useless.
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 09:10 AM
Response to Original message
5. Notice the line? Think south to north. From Bolivia/Chile up through Peru
Edited on Sat Nov-17-07 09:15 AM by higher class
to Columbia, Panama, Central America - all the First Nation Indians have been the target of the corporations/regimes/administrations of our country along with certain European countries. In Mexico, there seem to have been a sucession of Presidents friendly to our c/r/a's and now the Mexicans and Central Americans are targets within this country by the population of bigots and people who don't understand why these people WERE ALLOWED TO COME HERE - before the backlash by the populace. The First Nation Indians have suffered along with people who have tried to help them (mostly Catholics?), and their land has been ruined by our chemicals - the grand farce of the war on drugs. White has ruled. White businessmen with their political partners and operatives/partners.

Couldn't you almost say that there are papers/manuals outlining the plan against them?

The land under the feet of these people hold treaures that are desired by these corporations/regmies/administrations. It's quite simple.

Given their track record on breaking treaties, have you ever considered that they might pull an eminent domain declaration over owned by our First Nation Indians?

extra thought - does Blackwater have any old Banzar supporters to parallel the Pinochet supporters in their army?
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 11:23 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. Very possibly there are some from his other Presidency, which lasted from 1997 to 2001.
Found this Wiki. on the guy:
On August 18, 1971, General Banzer, at long last, masterminded a successful military uprising that erupted in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, where he had many supporters. Eventually, the plotters gained control over the La Paz garrisons, although not without considerable bloodshed. The roles of the United States and Brazil in supporting the coup have been debated. In any case, Banzer emerged as the strong man of the new regime, and, on August 22, was given full power as president. Interestingly, he received the political support of the center-right Movimiento Nacionalista Revolucionario (MNR) of former president Vctor Paz Estenssoro and the conservative Falange Socialista Boliviana of Mario Gutirrez, considered to be the two largest parties in the country. For the next seven years, and with the rank of Army General, Banzer ruled Bolivia as dictator.

Frustrated by the political divisions and protests that characterized the Torres and Ovando years, and, traditionally an enemy of dissent and freedom of speech, Banzer banned all the left-leaning parties, suspended the powerful Central Obrera Boliviana, and closed the nation's universities. "Order" was now the paramount aim, and no means were spared to restore authority and stifle dissent. Buoyed by the initial legitimacy provided by Paz and Gutierrez's support, the dictator ruled with a measure of civilian support until 1974, when the main parties realized he did not intend to hold elections and was instead using them to perpetuate himself in power. At that point, Banzer dispensed with all pretenses and banned all political activity, exiled all major leaders (Paz Estenssoro included), and proceeded to rule henceforth solely with military support.

Human rights groups claim that during Banzer's 1971-78 tenure (known as the Banzerato) several thousand Bolivians sought asylum in foreign countries, 3,000 political opponents were arrested, 200 were killed, and many more were tortured. Many others simply disappeared <1>. Among the victims of the regime are Colonel Andrs Selich, Banzer's first Minister of the Interior and co-conspirator in the August 1971 coup. Selich was accused of plotting to overthrow Banzer and died of blows sustained while in custody. Two other generals with sufficient stature to potentially eclipse the dictator were murdered under suspicious circumstances while in exile: General Joanquin Zenteno Anaya and, more shockingly, former President Juan Jos Torres, both in 1976.

Hugo Banzer was the president during the Water Wars in 2000 which centered around the privatization of the water works of Bolivia's third largest city Cochabamba. Many protested the subsequent rate hike. Violence occurred when police and demonstrators clashed. Banzer then declared a "state of siege". When officials of the consortium who had bought the right to run the water works fled after being told by the authorities that their safety could not be guaranteed, the Banzer government declared that they had abandoned the project, declared the contract void, and settled with the demonstrators.


So Banzer was in charge when they privatized Bolivia's water, and the Bechtel subsidiary took charge of ALL the water in Bolivia, was trying to get the right to charge Bolivians for any RAINWATER they might be able to collect in barrels, and claimed to have ownership of rivers, streams, lakes, while putting the screws to the people and hiking the cost of their water beyond endurance, sending the people into the streets to protest a condition with which they simply could NOT LIVE, at which time Banzer brought in sharpshooters to put the fear of Gawd into them.

Here's a photo someone got of one of the killers who didn't know he was being photographed:

When a peaceful march was attempted, President Hugo Banzer summoned the police. They arrested protest leaders from their beds in the dark of night, shut down radio stations, and sent soldiers firing into the street . During two days of repression and tear gas attacks 175 people were injured. The people of Cochabamba made it clear they had reached their limit. When they refused to retreat, the Bolivian government declared a "state of siege". After four days of strikes Bolivian government officials were forced to nullify the contract they had signed last year.


Here's an article concerning the water privatization demonstrations:
At 10am, President Hugo Banzer places Bolivia under martial law. This drastic move concludes a week of protests, general strikes and transportation blockages that have jerked the country to a virtual standstill, and follows the surprise announcement of government concession to protesters' demands to break a $200 million contract selling Cochabamba's public water system to foreign investors.
The water system is currently controlled by Aguas del Tunari, a consortium led by London-based International Water Limited (IWL), which is itself jointly owned by the Italian utility Edison and US-based Bechtel Enterprise Holdings. Upon purchasing the water system, the consortium immediately raised rates by up to 35 percent. That untenable hike sparked the protests.

In January, "Cochabambinos" staged strikes and blocked transit, effectively shutting their city down for four straight days. The Bolivian government then promised to lower rates, but broke that promise within weeks. On February 4, when thousands tried to march in peaceful protest, President Banzer had police hammer protesters with two days of tear gas that the 175 people injured and two youths blinded.

Ninety percent of Cochabamba's citizens believed it was time for Bechtel's subsidiary to return the water system to public control, according to results of a 60,000-person survey conducted in March. But it seems that the government has come to Bechtel's rescue, insisting the company remain in Bolivia. President Banzer, who ruled Bolivia as a dictator from 1971-78, has suspended almost all civil rights, banning gatherings of more than four people, and severely limiting freedom of the press. "We see it as our obligation, in the common best interest, to decree a state of emergency to protect law and order," Banzer trumpeted.

Local radio stations have been closed or taken over by military. News paper reporters have been arrested. Police conducted nighttime raids searching homes for water protesters and arresting as many as 20 people.
The local police chief has been installed as state governor. The "emergency government" now consists of a president (Hugo Banzer), a governor (Walter Cespedes) and a mayor (Manfred Reyes Villa), each of whom is a graduate of the notorious School of the Americas in Ft. Benning, Georgia (infamous for training foreign military personnel in terror and assassination techniques).

Bechtel Crumbles, Flees Bolivia
It has been one hell of a week here. The CDAV, led by 45-year-old machinist Oscar Olivera, has kicked the Bechtel Corporation out of Bolivia! (I'd like to see a consumer revolt in my home state of California match that!) The people stood up to President Banzer and martial law. I am in awe at what we were able to accomplish together, all across the globe, using the Internet. Hacking away at this keyboard in a corner of the Andes that few people in other places ever think about, we sent the news of what happened here out to many thousands of people around the world. In a matter of hours, we transformed the Bechtel Corporation from "the invisible hand behind the scenes" to a corporation right smack on the hot seat.
Thousands of emails streaming into its San Francisco headquarters from Mexico, England, Canada, Iceland, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Nepal, Australia and the US forced the corporate behemoth to respond. Bechtel's equivocating public relations statement generated caustic headlines in Bolivia and caused the Bolivian government to state definitively that Bechtel's water company isn't coming back.
Bechtel is a global giant, posting more than $12.6 billion in revenue in 1998 - $2.4 billion on Latin American projects alone. IWL is its arm through which it pursues water-privatization schemes such as Aguas dei Tunari. Bechtel, Inc., has trumpeted that IWL "with its partners, is presently providing water and wastewater services to nearly six million 'customers in the Philippines, Australia, Scotland, and Bolivia and completing negotiations on agreements in India, Poland, and Scotland for facilities that will serve an additional one million customers."
The World Bank's Role
On Wednesday, a Finnish news reporter forced World Bank Director James Wolfensohn to comment directly on the Bolivia water protests. Wolfensohn argued that giving public services away leads inevitably to waste, and said that countries like Bolivia need to have a "a proper system of charging." The former Wall Street financier claimed Bank-backed privatization of the Cochabamba water system was by no means directed against the poor. In La Paz, Bolivia, protest leader Oscar Olivera responded, "In Mr. Wolfensohn's view, requiring families who earn $100 per month to pay $20 for water may be 'a proper system of charging,' but the thousands of people who filled the streets and shut down Cochabamba last week apparently felt otherwise."

Bechtel Blames "Narcotraffickers"
In 1999, the Bolivian government, under heavy pressure from the World Bank, sold Cochabamba's public water system to Bechtel's Aguas del Tunan. Details of the deal remain secret, with Bechtel claiming the numbers constitute "intellectual property"
That Bechtel's subsidiary was intent on obtaining maxi mum returns on its investment, as quickly as possible, is clear. Within weeks of hoisting their corporate flag over local water facilities, Aguas del Tunari hit up water-users with rate hikes of double and more. Families earning a minimum wage of less than $100 per month were dunned for $20 and more and threatened with having the water shut off. Tanya Paredes, a mother of five who supports her family as a clothes-knitter, was hit with an increase of $15 per month - equal to her family's entire food budget for ten days and a 300 per cent increase over her previous bill.
On April 8, 17-year-old Victor Hugo Daza was shot thorough the face and killed: The ultimate penalty for challenging Bechtel's control of local water supplies. As protest leader Oscar Olivera remarked in the aftermath of this needless tragedy, "The blood spilled in Cochabamba carries the fingerprints of Bechtel."

Cochabamba suffered four months of upheaval because of Becthel's conduct. A 17-year-old boy is dead, two youths are blinded and more than 100 others were injured. Those who opposed the water privatization scheme had their homes ransacked and some were flown off to a remote rainforest jail in an effort to silence them. While the people of Cochabamba were having their blood spilled on the streets, Quint's subordinates were busily removing the water company computers and financial and personnel records. Bechtel's fleeing administrators left behind emptied bank accounts and more than $150,000 in unpaid bills. On top of all this suffering and damage, Bechtel now has the audacity to demand a compensation payment of $12 million from Bolivia.


Goddamned pathetic, isn't it? Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the pResident's father, George H. W. Bush closely connected to Bechtel?

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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 04:34 PM
Response to Reply #5
11. There's a whole dissertation in the kind of recruiting Black Water USA
has. "From the halls of South Africa to the dregs of Pinochet . . ."
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peacetalksforall Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 06:33 PM
Response to Reply #11
13. I wish I had saved it - George told us about what we could do for Africa - he
'suggested' that Africans could be world police. I believe he said something about keeping the peace. Could have meant they were expendable because he referenced places like Iraq if I remember accurately.

I consider it one of his slipups - they included him on the plan and didn't emphasize that he should not comment.
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boricua79 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 11:27 AM
Response to Original message
7. Bolivians to U.S: Stop involving yourself in our country NT
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 11:37 AM
Response to Original message
8. The Bolivian fascists want to sever the resource-rich rural provinces from the central
Edited on Sat Nov-17-07 12:02 PM by Peace Patriot
government, so as to hoard all profit from Bolivia's gas, oil, mineral and other resources for themselves and their corporate predator pals, and deny any benefit of the country's resources to the millions of poor Bolivians whom these rich landowners and previous rightwing governments have driven off the land, into urban shantytowns. They don't want to live in the same country with the poor whom they have slaughtered, tortured and impoverished for decades and centuries. They don't want to share the wealth. They don't want to share power. And they are fundamentally flawed and cowardly people--like Bush--the spoiled spawn of the rich who think they are born to rule, but rely on violence and bullying to get their way. Bush and his ilk use the U.S. military, Blackwater and other mercenaries, and no doubt other operatives whom we can't even see, to torture and slaughter their way to gas reserves, and into countries where they have no right to be. The South American rotten elite call on their bully big brother to the north, for billions in military aid, weapons, weapons systems, high tech gear and other boondoggle items like helicopters and toxic pesticides--things they can't make, things they can't be bothered to pay for themselves--to torture and slaughter their poor countrymen, and to plot against democratic leaders in their own and neighbor countries.

One horrible impact of these spoiled rich people who must rely on others to maintain power is the moral and financial corruption that they encourage among people who don't belong to their class, and whom they undoubtedly despise--U.S. and local soldiers, mercenaries, drugs and weapons traffickers, thugs, spies, USAID/NED, CIA and other operatives, and even their little cadres of middle class supporters who "protest" on cue, and, in the case of Bush, their 'christian' fanatics. The horrible moral corruption that occurs, when people are required to lie, torture and kill, for advancement, permeates society, and creates tragic moral failure. I'm thinking of a 15 year old boy in Colombia who participated in torture and later confessed. His heart, his soul, were broken. But it is no less tragic when the person is 20 or 30 years old, or any age, and "authority" figures permit or require brutality towards others. Even seasoned soldiers and intelligence personnel, who have some standards of behavior, and loyalty to the law and to human decency, can be, and have been, corrupted by this fascist culture which is finally being ousted in South America, but has seized power in the U.S.

It is ugly beyond belief, and perhaps, if north Americans had paid more attention to events in Latin America over the last half century, they wouldn't be so stunned by the ascendance of this fascist culture here, in the Bush Junta (and in the lame response to it by the Democratic leaders, who are also privileged people, for whom the sufferings the poor, the helpless, the unpowerful, are a matter of little concern). It's BEEN active within our government for decades, but more as a cabal, than as official policy. And, as long as it was not official policy--and not part of a general corporate predator coup that has seized our government (the Bush Junta)--it was possible to combat it, to resist it, to expose it, as happened with the illegal war on Nicaragua and other horrors.

Well, open your eyes and look at naked greed. It ain't pretty. And it should be no surprise whatsoever that 'little dictator' Bush and his "ambassador" in Bolivia are conspiring with the local spoiled rich and their thugs, to topple a truly democratic government, and restore murderers and torturers to power.

The only question remaining for the north American majority is when are we going to join forces with the Latin American majority to remove this pestilence of fascism from power throughout the hemisphere?

We need a massive public education effort on this matter. That is happening, to some extent. One of the few values of the Bush Junta is the clarity that it inspires as to just who is ruling over us and how. These fascist activities and alliances are not new. But the Bushites and their corporate predator puppetmasters are so howlingly greedy, violent and openly immoral, and their "Big Lies" are so transparent, that our own citizens have become skeptical of everything they say, and are learning that they lie about EVERYTHING--whether Iraq or South America--and are committing nefarious deeds EVERYWHERE, not just in the Middle East.

That's one reason that the Corporate Rulers are going to revert to the 'Democrats' next year. Things have gotten way out of hand, and there is a leftist revolution boiling beneath the surface in THIS country. They've got to pull the fascist project back behind the curtain to some extent. They cannot control this country, if we get our dander up, the way they have controlled individual countries in Latin America ("divide and conquer"; install fascist rulers--thus, with smaller patches of fascist ground to defend, the local fascists can manage the transfer of wealth to the north, through the fingers of the local rich elite). The U.S. is just too big, and too multi-cultural, to be ruled by the fascist boot. They are ruling over us mostly by means of this "grand delusion" that we are still a democracy--by disempowerment and disenfranchisement--while slowly putting into place 'fascist boot' powers to deal with open rebellion if it occurs. But they would prefer to keep the repression here under the radar. An open revolt in the U.S. could get very messy, and they would probably, ultimately, lose everything, in a dismantling of the war machine and the corporate state. So they have to be careful, as long as there is something here to loot, and a military that can be used for corporate resource wars.

One of the most brilliant concepts of the Bolivarian Revolution in South America is regional cooperation, on both the political and financial fronts, to strengthen individual countries in their dealings with the U.S. and global corporate predators, and to evict these foreign entities from the region, if they will not respect the rights and sovereignty of local democratic government. As Evo Morales has said, "We want partners, not bosses."

This new notion of regional solidarity harks back to Simon Bolivar's dream of a "United States of South America." What a powerhouse South America can be--and is becoming--if they pull together. Thus we see financial and political alliances being forged among the core Bolivarian countries--Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Argentina--and between the Bolivarian countries and other leftist governments in the region (such as Venezuela and Brazil). Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador have the common problem of the rightwing elite being in cahoots with rightwing paramilitaries and other fascist forces (funded by U.S. tax dollars) in Colombia, with U.S. military presence for the "war on drugs" exacerbating this and other problems. Together they can work to tighten their borders against these paramilitaries, and their associated drugs and weapons trafficking (which is enhanced by the U.S. "war on drugs," not diminished by it). Individually, they are vulnerable to encroachment. Working cooperatively, they can stop rightwing operatives from crossing their borders, and causing trouble on their borders, often under cover of the "war on drugs." Rafael Correa, for instance, is not going to renew permission for the U.S. military base in Ecuador, where high tech equipment is no doubt being used to aid rightwing forces. This will help the OTHER Bolivarian democracies to better control their borders, and keep murderous paramilitaries out of the mix of U.S. destabilization plots.

And on the positive front, Venezuela has led the way, on financial independence, by freeing Argentina from ruinous World Bank/IMF debt, and organizing the Bank of the South, so that, when the U.S. squeezes and threatens a country like Bolivia, Bolivia has a LOCAL institution it can apply to for help.

And critical to the independence of all of these countries is local control of resources, such as oil, local control of the infrastructure to exploit them, and the creation of new, independent, cooperative infrastructure (such as pipelines). This is another point on which local rich elites--like the Santa Cruz fascists--are traitors to their own countries. They have been engaged in selling their country's sovereignty to Exxon-Mobile--and Bechtel! The common policy of Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador, on local control of resources, helps each country to regain its sovereignty, and inspires other countries--even those with right, and center/right governments--to seek independence through cooperative action, and a common commitment to local control.

BECAUSE the Bolivarians are so strongly asserting this principle, a country like Mexico--with a rightwing government--can insist on Mexican control of U.S. "war on drugs" aid. It's ironic, for sure, because Calderon will no doubt use that aid to oppress the poor, but at least it's Mexican oppression, and can be remedied through political activism in Mexico--rather than having a distant and unaccountable power spraying toxic pesticides on peasant farmers, and torturing and killing union organizers and community leaders.

This is a very interesting twist to the Bolivarian Revolution. When Bush went down to visit Mexico, last spring, the rightwing President of Mexico, Felipe Calderon, publicly lectured Bush on the SOVEREIGNTY of Latin American countries, and mentioned Venezuela as an example! Bush got this lecture throughout his trip, from BOTH sides of the political spectrum.

Figure THAT out! The Bolivarians are empowering and emboldening all of Latin America, and the ultimate consequences of that can only be good--in short term benefits for local people (say "free trade" deals with more labor protections, in countries that are still doing such deals), and, long term, in more accountability and more democracy within countries that are still suffering rightwing elitist rule.

And the example of the Bolivarians--that democracy and social justice are possible--puts pressure on center-right, and also center-left, governments (Paraguay, Peru) to do more for their people, and to enact wiser policies (such as Paraguay joining the Bank of the South), lest they themselves get ousted by leftist (majorityist) social movements.

All of this is to say that Bolivia is not alone in its struggle with the U.S. embassy and its nefarious activities. The open, truth-telling mode of this struggle is notable. It is a new attitude in South America--"Don't fuck with us! We WILL call you on it!" It is a wonder to behold. And it's about time.
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 12:06 PM
Response to Original message
9. BBC Bolivia Timeline to help put things in perspective:
Last Updated: Friday, 9 November 2007, 09:40 GMT

Timeline: Bolivia
A chronology of key events:

Military coups

1952 - Peasants and miners overthrow military regime; Victor Paz Estenssoro returns from exile to become president and introduces social and economic reforms, including universal suffrage, nationalisation of tin mines and land redistribution, and improves education and the status of indigenous peoples.

1964 - Vice-President Rene Barrientos stages military coup.

1967 - US helps suppress peasant uprising led by Ernesto "Che" Guevara, who is killed after being betrayed by peasants.

1969 - Vice-President Siles Salinas replaces Barrientos who is killed in plane crash, but Salinas is himself deposed by the army, which rules with increased severity.

1971 - Col Hugo Banzer Suarez comes to power after staging military coup.

1974 - Banzer postpones elections and bans political and trade union activity in the wake of an attempted coup.

1980 - General Luis Garcia stages coup after inconclusive elections; US and European countries suspend aid in view of allegations of corruption and drug trafficking.

1981 - General Celso Torrelio Villa replaces Garcia, who is forced to resign.

1982 - Torrelio resigns as the economy worsens; military junta hands over power to civilian administration led by Siles Zuazo, who heads a leftist government.

1983 - US and European countries resume aid following the introduction of austerity measures.

Democracy and economic collapse

1985 - Siles resigns in the wake of a general strike and an attempted coup; elections held but are inconclusive; parliament chooses Paz Estenssoro as president.

1986 - Twenty-one thousand miners lose their jobs following the collapse of the tin market.

1989 - Leftist Jaime Paz Zamora becomes president and enters power-sharing pact with former dictator Hugo Banzer.

1990 - Some 4 million acres of rainforest allocated to indigenous peoples.

1993 - Banzer withdraws from the presidential race, which is won by Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada.

1997 - Banzer elected president.

1998 - Banzer tells the United Nations that he is committed to freeing Bolivia from drugs before the end of his term in 2002.

1999 - Encouraged by moves to prosecute former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, opposition demands inquiry into Banzer's role during the repression of the 1970s.

2000 - Banzer announces the almost total eradication of the coca plant in the Chapare jungle region.

2001 January - Government declares almost half of Bolivia a natural disaster area following heavy rains.

Banzer dies

2001 8 August - Vice-President Jorge Quiroga sworn in as president, replacing Hugo Banzer who is suffering from cancer. He dies in May 2002.

2001 December - Farmers reject a government offer of $900 each a year in exchange for the eradication of the coca crop used to produce cocaine.

2002 August - Gonzalo Sanchez de Lozada wins a clear victory in a National Congress run-off vote and becomes president for a second time. His rival, coca growers' representative Evo Morales, leads a strengthened opposition.

2003 February - More than 30 killed in violent protests against proposed income tax. President Sanchez de Lozada withdraws the proposal.

2003 September-October - 80 killed, hundreds injured in protests fuelled by government plans to export natural gas via Chile. President Sanchez de Lozada resigns under pressure of protests and is succeeded by Carlos Mesa.

Energy protests

2004 April - President Mesa signs natural gas export deal with Argentina. Opponents say deal pre-empts referendum on gas exports planned for July. Protesters take to streets, demand president's resignation.

2004 July - Referendum on gas exports: Voters back greater state involvement in the industry and approve exports of the resource.

2004 August - Landmark deal signed to allow Bolivia to export gas via a Peruvian port.

2005 January - Rising fuel prices trigger large-scale anti-government protests and blockades in Santa Cruz, the country's largest and wealthiest city, and in El Alto, near La Paz.

Civic and business leaders in Santa Cruz push for autonomy for the province.

2005 March - President Mesa submits his resignation, blaming protests which he says have made it impossible to govern. Congress rejects the offer, as well as a later request by the president for early elections, and Mr Mesa remains in office.

2005 May - Protests over energy resources bring La Paz, and government business, to a near standstill. President Mesa promises a rewritten constitution and a referendum on autonomy demands from resource-rich provinces.

Socialists in power

2005 June - As angry street protests continue, President Mesa resigns. Supreme Court head Eduardo Rodriguez is sworn in as caretaker president.

2005 December - Socialist leader Evo Morales wins presidential elections. He becomes the first indigenous Bolivian to take office.
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cliss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 04:27 PM
Response to Original message
10. The US repeats this pattern ~
over and over and over again. Why don't they stop doing this? Because the price for pulling all this crap has GOT to exceed the benefits of installing dictators, suppressing the local population.

We've used this pattern all over the world. It's not working. It's been well documented all over the press that we've done / do this. And yet we keep doing this? WHY?

Bolivian president Evo Morales.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 04:38 PM
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12. It doesn't work for the people but it works fine for the locusts. n/t
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LynnTheDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Nov-17-07 10:15 PM
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14. World to US;
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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Nov-19-07 07:54 AM
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15. Bolivian president accuses U.S. of conspiracy
Edited on Mon Nov-19-07 08:03 AM by Judi Lynn
Bolivian president accuses U.S. of conspiracy 2007-11-19 10:27:03

LIMA, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- The relationship between Bolivia and the United States turned worse on Sunday after Bolivia's President Evo Morales accused the U.S. ambassador of conspiring against his government.

The U.S. ambassador Phillip Goldberg "aimed to be a counterweight to this government and erode its legitimacy," Morales told reporters Sunday, calling on the U.S. government to practice diplomacy instead of politics.

Morales cited a photo of Goldberg with John Jairo Venegas, a Colombian citizen accused of crimes, and a leading opposition figure from the southern Bolivia department of Santa Cruz, during a business expo.

The photo, published last week by Spanish news agency EFE, was claimed by the United States to be a montage.

Diplomatic ties between the United States and Bolivia have frayed since Morales, a leftwing indigenous former coca farmer, took power last year.

Last month Goldberg was forced to apologize to the Bolivian government after he mocked a suggestion by Morales that the U.N. headquarters be moved away from New York as Bolivian officials had difficulty entering the United States to attend a U.N. General Assembly meeting.

For anyone who may have missed it, here's a video of Evo Morales' visit to the Daily Show, to speak with John Stewart:

He appeared to go over very well. His last line's a winner!
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