Strategy of Chaos in Bolivia
by Maurice Lemoine
On the tenth of September, one day before the 35th anniversary of the death of Chilean President Salvador Allende, Evo Morales, the Bolivian head of state, declared US Ambassador Philip Goldberg "persona non grata." This is not a contrived symbolic decision. It came after the sabotage of a gas pipeline in the Department of Tarija by opposition extremists in Bolivia with whom the diplomat maintained close contacts.
In Cobija (in the Department of Pando), on the eleventh of September, eight people were killed and over thirty injured during a confrontation -- the first instance where firearms were used -- between government supporters and "autonomist" groups.
the firm support of the governments of Argentina, Brazil, and Venezuela, Mr. Morales denounced an attempted "civil coup d'état."
Read "Périlleux bras de fer en Bolivie" (Dangerous Arm Wrestling in Bolivia) in the September 2008 issue of Le Monde diplomatique.
The original article in French was published in the "valise diplomatique" section of Le Monde diplomatique on 12 September 2008. Translation by Yoshie Furuhashi.