By Timothy Alexander Guzman
Global Research, November 15, 2019
Bolivia’s legitimate President, Evo Morales now in exile in Mexico said that the “The OAS is in the service of the North American empire” and that he “could not understand” how his military leaders betrayed Bolivia. “That confirms that my great crime is to be indigenous. It’s a class problem” rt.com reported.
Regardless, Morales still has the support of the majority of the Bolivian people. Morales’ made history as Bolivia’s first indigenous president who was a poor farmer and without a college education.
“The exiled president said that after freeing itself from the International Monetary Fund, the Bolivian economy was doing better” the report said.
Historically speaking, many Bolivian presidents before Morales were aligned with Washington’s interests and were oppressive against the poor and indigenous peoples. They had murdered workers who were on strike and they even sold off Bolivia’s mineral wealth to U.S. and European corporations. The Bolivian people remained poor for decades under right-wing dictatorships who joined forces with the U.S. and even militarized coca producing regions where Morales experienced firsthand tyranny according to an Al Jazeera story from 2014 on Evo Morales’s rise to power titled ‘Bolivia: Has Evo Morales Proven His Critics Wrong? “One event vividly stuck out for Morales after moving to the coca-growing region: In Chipiriri, a cocalero (coca farmer) was killed by the military for refusing to plead guilty to trafficking drugs.
“Without any contemplation, [the military] covered his body in gasoline and, in front of many people, burned him alive” Morales said.
However, the story also mentioned Morales’s success
“The GDP has steadily grown from 2009 to 2013, and the UN reports that Bolivia has the highest rate of poverty reduction in Latin America, with a 32.2 percent drop from 2000 to 2012. Employment rates and wages have also gone up, with a notable 20 percent minimum wage raise last year.” Morales’s economic plan turned out to be successful as stated by Al Jazeera “Morales approach of putting various industries under state control, from mines to telecommunications companies, has generated enormous funds for the government, which it is using for infrastructure – only 10 percent of the country’s roads are paved – and social programmes to lift children, mothers and the elderly out of poverty. Thanks to a successful literacy programme, UNESCO has declared the country free of illiteracy.”
When Morales was declared the winner in the October 20th elections, violent right-wing protests soon followed. The leaders of the opposition led by mostly fascist elements of Bolivian society including Luis Fernando Camacho who Max Blumenthal and Ben Norton of The Grayzone described him as “a powerful multi-millionaire named in the Panama Papers, and an ultra-conservative Christian fundamentalist groomed by a fascist paramilitary notorious for its racist violence, with a base in Bolivia’s wealthy separatist region of Santa Cruz.”
No surprise that Camacho has the support of the right-wing governments of Colombia and Brazil along with the Venezuelan opposition leaders who are still trying to overthrow Nicolas Maduro after their recent failures to do so. The violent protests that has erupted against the Morales government has led to extreme violence resulting in deaths, beatings of politicians which forced the resignation of Morales and his vice president García Lineran and others in his administration on the advice of army officials and police chiefs who were bought and paid for by Washington.
The Morales government called it a coup by U.S. backed opposition forces. Morales did propose dialogue with the opposition parties, but was flatly rejected. It was reported that Morales even accepted Washington’s lackey, the ‘Organization of American States’(OAS) advice to set up new elections, but was ignored.
The violent protests were directed at leaders of the Movement To Socialism (MAS) which is Morales’s political party and journalists who were beaten by right-wing mobs.
The BBC reported that the mayor of a small town in Bolivia was dragged from her home and then they covered her in red paint and cut her hair.
“Patricia Arce of the governing Mas party was handed over to police in Vinto after several hours. It is the latest in a series of violent clashes between government supporters and opponents in the wake of controversial presidential elections” the report said. In wake of the chaos, Evo Morales and others in his administration decided to resign to end further bloodshed. On Friday Morales said that “I would like to tell you, brothers and sisters, as well as entire Bolivia and the whole world. I will not give up (the presidency). We have been elected by the people, and we respect the constitution.”
Trump Claims That Latin America Is On Its Way to Democracy, Prosperity and Freedom
On Monday, President Trump praised the coup as a “significant moment for democracy.” Trump said that
“after nearly 14 years and his recent attempt to override the Bolivian constitution and the will of the people, Morales’s departure preserves democracy and paves the way for the Bolivian people to have their voices heard.”
Trump also threatened Venezuela and Nicaragua because it will “send a strong signal to the illegitimate regimes in Venezuela and Nicaragua that democracy and the will of the people will always prevail. We are now one step closer to a completely democratic, prosperous, and free Western Hemisphere.” Washington supports its current right-wing puppets in Ecuador with Lenin Moreno and Chile’s own billionaire President, Sebastián Piñera. Perhaps, Trump should ask the Ecuadorian and Chilean people about democracy and economic prosperity under those two fascist governments. Do you remember what Trump said when he was a presidential candidate and then, president-elect in December 2016? He said that
“We will stop racing to topple foreign regimes that we know nothing about, that we shouldn’t be involved with.”
Trump’s attitude was obviously going to change given the fact that the Pentagon and Washington’s deep state insiders are in charge of Trump’s foreign policy. Recently, The Trump regime tried to topple Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela, but failed. Now Trump is on board with the deep state and the right-wing opposition in Latin America to re-establish U.S. dominance by carrying out the same strategy of regime change in Venezuela, Nicaragua and others despite the rising pink tide with Lula Da Silva of Brazil who was just released from prison. Lula was sent to prison after a July 2017 conviction for allegedly accepting $1.2 million bribe from a Brazilian construction company called OAS for helping them obtain lucrative government contracts. Lula Da Silva has always denied the false allegations. However, Washington’s influence along the wealthy right-wing oligarchs played a role in Lula’s imprisonment. One of Lula’s attorneys at the time, Valeska Texeira Zanin Martin said that
“This politically motivated judgement attacks Brazil’s rule of law, democracy and Lula’s basic human rights. It is of immense concern to the Brazilian people and to the international community.”
Lula along with leaders from Argentina, Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela have condemned the coup in support of Morales.
Why Washington Wanted Evo Morales Out of Power
Morales was targeted for a number of reasons. Back in 2013, Morales kicked out one of Washington’s main tool for regime change operations ‘USAID’. on May 1st, 2013 Reuters’ reported that
“Morales said he was kicking out the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) as a “protest” after U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry recently referred to Latin America as Washington’s “backyard.” Morales had said that “today we’re only going to nationalize … the dignity of the Bolivian people,” Morales said. “USAID is leaving Bolivia.”
That was a blow to Washington’s agenda in its “backyard.” However, the CIA influenced National Endowment for Democracy (NED) which it has funded Right-wing causes with millions of dollars of grants since Morales was elected.
Morales is also a critic of U.S. foreign policy in general no matter who is the President of the United States. Although Washington and its military-industrial complex including the CIA had planned to remove Morales from power before Trump was in office, however, Trump was criticized at the U.N. security meeting in 2018 when Morales said that
“I would like to say to you, frankly and openly here, that in no way is the United States interested in upholding democracy’’ and that the U.S. under the Trump regime “could not care less about human rights or justice.” Morales added that “If this were the case, it would have signed the international conventions and treaties that have protected human rights,” he said. “It would not have threatened the investigation mechanism of the International Criminal Court, nor would it promote the use of torture, nor would it have walked away from the Human Rights Council. And nor would it have separated migrant children from their families, nor put them in cages.’’
Sensitive Trump did not like that, his alter-ego was crushed at the U.N. security council meeting and that’s why he praised the coup.
As For Bolivia’s Natural Resources, The American Establishment Wants It All
It’s well known that Bolivia has the largest reserves of lithium in the world. As reported by Bloomberg News last year in ‘Bolivia’s Almost Impossible Lithium Dream’ based on Bolivia’s lithium reserves:
Demand for lithium is expected to more than double in 2025. The soft, light mineral is mined mainly in Austria, Chile and Argentina. Bolivia has plenty-9 million tons that have never been mined commercially, the second-largest amount in the world-but until now, there’s no practical way to mine and sell it
One major economic development for the Bolivian government is when they chose Xinjiang TBEA Group Co Ltd, a Chinese consortium for its lithium production projects which is also a threat to U.S. economic interests and its waning dominance in Latin America. As reported by Reuters earlier this year “China’s Xinjiang TBEA Group Co Ltd will hold a 49 percent stake in a planned joint venture with Bolivia’s state lithium company YLB, the Bolivian firm said.” As for China and Bolivia working together to produce lithium in America’s Backyard? Both Democrats and the Republicans including the neocons who are in both parties in Washington will not tolerate such a joint venture especially when China is involved. The report said that
“Bolivia estimates that development of the projects will cost at least $2.3 billion. The Chinese firm will provide initial investment and YLB will pay its share with future lithium production, YLB’s executive manager Juan Carlos Montenegro said by phone.” Morales was quoted as saying “Why China? he continued “There’s a guaranteed market in China for battery production,” Bolivian President Evo Morales said in broadcast comments at a signing ceremony in the highland city of Oruro. China, the biggest global consumer of lithium, will need 800,000 tonnes of the metal per year by 2025 to support its booming electric car industry, China’s Ambassador to Bolivia Liang Yu said at the same event, hailing the deal as “historic.” Lithium is a key component in batteries that will power the next generation of new electric cars.