This past November Bolivia and the United States brought to an end a three-year dispute set in motion when President Evo Morales expelled the U.S. ambassador on charges of conspiracy against his government.
The following is a letter to Bolivian President Evo Morales from Pablo Solon on the TIPNIS march. Solon is the former ambassador for Bolivia at the UN and the coordinator of the World Peoples’ Conference on Climate Change and the Rights of Mother Earth.
Bolivia’s main trade union declared a 24-hour general strike Wednesday to protest Sunday’s police crackdown on indigenous demonstrators who were protesting the construction of a road through a pristine rainforest preserve. […]
The lack of regulations for consulting indigenous communities in Bolivia on initiatives that affect their territories is at the heart of a dispute over a road to facilitate traffic from Brazil, which would run through an enormous tropical national park self-governed by indigenous communities. […]
Indigenous people in the eastern lowlands of Bolivia are again preparing to make the long march to La Paz, 21 years after their first such protest. They have vowed to make the trek in defence of their lands, which they say are threatened by plans for a highway to be built with the backing of the Brazilian government. […]
The politics articulated through the movements of the 2000-2005 revolutionary epoch in Bolivia are best conceived through what I call the “combined oppositional consciousness” of their leading layers of activists and organisers. This consciousness drew on the two most important popular cultures of resistance and opposition in the last few centuries in the Bolivian context – an eclectic politics of revolutionary Marxism and indigenous liberation.
From across North Africa to Wisconsin, activists are navigating a new terrain of global protest and relationships with their governments. Whether in ousting old tyrants or dealing with new allies in office, the example of Bolivia holds many lessons for social movements.
On Monday, shots rang out in the air. Chants followed. The intersection of Heroinas and Ayacuchu, Cochabamba’s central thoroughfare, was completely shut down by a circle of people—many in wheelchairs, with walkers or crutches—demanding rights for people with disabilities. Their central demand was for a bono, or a monetary form of social security, paid as a monthly stipend.
A classified cable from the US embassy in La Paz, Bolivia released by WikiLeaks lays bare an embassy that is biased against the Evo Morales government, underestimates the sophistication of the governing party’s grassroots base, and out of touch with the political reality of the country. […]