October 18, 2006

On the indigenous frontline

'Whispering in the Giant's Ear' looks at Native challenge in BoliviaIt used to be referred to as Oblivia, a small landlocked country ruled by a typically corrupt elite. About three years ago, however, news from Bolivia started creeping toward the front pages of our press as large groups of Natives began to protest the longstanding discrimination against them. Since almost two-thirds of Bolivia’s population is composed of indigenous peoples, the largest of any country in the hemisphere, this movement is no small matter. Its main tactic was the nonviolent blockade of roads to and from the most important cities. It culminated in December of 2005 with the election of Evo Morales, the first indigenous head of state in Latin America.Comment:  As usual, Gandhi and ML King knew best. Score another victory for nonviolent action.


Not a Sioux said...

It's a mixed bag with Morales. On the other hand is his admiration of the Venezuelan dictator Chavez (yes, the man who banned radio stations from playing music that he didn't personally like) and plans to follow his lead in assuming significant personal power.

I understand that Morales simply does not have the political base in the government to assume a Chavez-like dictatorship. Hopefully, this will mean that the bad things he wants won't happen, but the good things will.

Rob said...

Morales is just an individual. He won't be around forever. I'm more interested in the grassroots indigenous movement as it confronts the forces of globalization.

Not a Sioux said...

Looking at your page, I'm very strongly in favor of globalism that you call "narrowly conceived".

There won't be grasroots anything in Bolivia if Morales follows the model set forth by Castro.

Rob said...

Well, Morales isn't a dictator yet.

I was quoting someone on globalism, but I tend to agree. The narrowly conceived version of globalization is probably better than the expansive version.

writerfella said...

Writerfella here --
Hmm, wonder what the chances are for a 'South Africa'-type outcome? But then again US interests would not be served by a Nicaraguan Contra situation either.
All Best
Russ Bates