Perhaps Yoda isn’t the best comparison. But otherwise…uh, yeah.
Shit has gone down in Bolivia, and unfortunately, it’s not in the crapper yet, much less getting the royal flush.
Evo was forced to resign (and call new elections, which is crucial here) by a military putsch against him. He was popularly re-elected, and there was no reason for this putsch, except the fact that he was more popular than his opponent by a wide margin. And no reason for his stepping down, either, except that he did it to avoid any more violence than has already occurred.
However, it wasn’t the military that was the real (or the only) power-hungry player at work here. Remember the old Media Luna-tics, the same bunch who tried to get Evo killed (with US backing, financing and blessing) ten years ago? Yup, they’re behind all this.
Mexico has offered Evo asylum, and sent a plane to fly him there:
A plane carrying the former president of Bolivia, Evo Morales, took off early Tuesday morning headed for Mexico, after landing in Asunción, Paraguay, to refuel. At this time, the Mexican Air Force plane is flying over Brazil.
Hours earlier, the government of Mexico, under president Andrés Manuel López Obrador, offered political asylum to Morales, following several instances of violence committed against him and his family by opposition groups, which made it evident that his life was in danger in Bolivia. Morales thanked the Latin American country for the gesture, adding that, although he hated to abandon his country, he would soon return “with more strength and energy”.
“The Mexican foreign minister has decided to grant political asylum to Mr. Evo Morales for humanitarian reasons and by virtue of the emergency situation in Bolivia, inf which his life and well-being are at risk,” said Mexican exterior ministry secretary Marcelo Ebrard in a press conference on Monday.
“I thank everyone for giving me security. They never abandoned me and we will never abandon them. Many thanks, comrades!” said Morales in an audio message broadcast on television. “I will return soon with more energy to continue to work for our beloved country,” the deposed Bolivian president added.
Meanwhile, the Bolivian minister of defence, Javier Zavaleta, tendered his resignation on Monday, stating that as commander-in-chief of the armed forces, his will was always to “preserve institutionality” on the part of the forces in service to the people. “Mr. Carlos Mesa, Mr. Fernando Camacho, a political matter cannot be resolved by increasing repression,” said Zavaleta in his resignation message. “Bullets are not the response nor the solution to a problem. Politics consists of ideas against ideas, not the firing of bullets.”
Bolivia has been in a severe political crisis since the general elections of October 20. Even though the results showed Morales as the winner, in what was to have been his fourth consecutive term in office, the opposition claimed electoral fraud, and the government has agreed to call new elections.
However, the chief of the Armed Forces and the commander-in-chief of the Bolivian police have called on the president to resign, under the pretext of seeking to stabilize the nation.
On November 10, Morales presented his resignation in response to the army’s petition, denouncing the coup d’état which was taking place. As he explained with his resignation, he wanted to prevent the opposition, commanded by former presidential candidate Carlos Mesa and the head of the Civic Committee of Santa Cruz, Luis Fernando Camacho, from persecuting union leaders, torching the homes of public functionaries, and “kidnapping and mistreating” the families of indigenous leaders.
Thousands of indigenous people and supporters of the deposed president turned out to protest on Monday against the coup, clashing with security forces. “Yes, civil war now!” cried some of them, in images which circulated via social media networks.
The commandant of the armed forces of Bolivia, Williams Kaliman Romero, announced that the army would conduct joint operations with the police “to avoid bloodshed and grief for Bolivian families”. Evo Morales called on Bolivians to “keep the peace and don’t give in to violence.”
So, there’s the situation as currently stands. I’ll blog more later, as more facts become known.
Meanwhile, here’s a picture of Evo en route to asylum, with a Mexican flag:
Fuerza Evo, el pueblo está contigo. ¡Te amamos!