Bolivia on Fire, Figuratively as Well as Literally
Bolivia was immersed in turmoil throughout late 2019 and remains highly unstable, a product of a change of power from a dictatorial, left-wing government to a novice, right-wing government struggling to pacify the country. Little has occurred in the way of climate change protest in Bolivia, despite the fact that a large part of the country’s Amazon rainforest burned down in 2019, killing countless animals and causing large numbers of indigenous people to flee their homes and the habitats that have provided them with sustenance for many centuries. Unfortunately, both the political Left and the Right appear to be much more interested in controlling the lucrative traffic in cocaine destined for First World markets and raising cattle to sell beef to the Chinese, than they are in preserving our natural habitat. Bolivian strongmen resemble gangsters in their economic dealings. The Left-wing Evo Morales – in power for 13 years until pushed out by the military in October 2019 – declared himself to be an environmentalist, but in reality he was much more international mafia propped up by the Russians and Chinese. The especially important nature reserve called TIPNIS has been at the forefront of what controversy exists in Bolivia concerning the environment, with plans to put a highway through the center of the country, on land long considered to be a nature reserve and long recognized as the home of a variety of indigenous peoples.