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The US Role in Bolivia’s Coup and What It Means for Latin America
A discussion with Mark Weisbrot

With elections scheduled in Bolivia for Oct. 18, we will look at how the Organization of American States (OAS) and U.S. government helped the Bolivian right to overturn the results of last year's election and install a right wing government.  Independent observers from various countries – outside of the OAS – will have to do their best in October to publicize any voter suppression or other illegal actions by which the unelected, de facto government could steal the election.

What is the U.S. doing / has done to roll back the unprecedented popular gains of Latin America in the first decade of the 21st century, through regime change and other means? We will look at Ecuador– an outrageous case that the media hasn’t even touched — Brazil, the sanctions in Venezuela, and other interventions. What difference might the U.S. elections make to Latin America?

We’ll also look at how the U.S. could easily stop blocking the IMF from issuing Special Drawing Rights (SDRs) enabling countries of the Global South to pay for COVID-19 relief.

Despite its many military interventions, the U.S. arguably does even more damage and kills more people through non-military means like the Bolivian coup. It’s important for the peace movement to make this clear, because there is a strong current now among liberals which argues that we need to switch to “diplomacy” and non-military intervention, and “soft power”, while not changing regime change and interventionist goals. For just one example, the US enforcement of drug patents, e.g. through the rules of the WTO, has possibly killed as many people as their wars, since the WTO was formed in 1995, as Weisbrot explains.

Mark Weisbrot is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) in Washington, DC. He received his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Michigan. He is author of the book Failed: What the “Experts” Got Wrong About the Global Economy (Oxford University Press, 2015).

Oct 1, 2020 07:00 PM in Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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