Today, more than half of Bolivia shut down in a strike that aimed to protest the governments latest actions. Six of the nine departments in Bolivia participated in this… Chuquisaca (Sucre), Cochabamba, Santa Cruz, Tarija, Beni and Pando. The government and their main followers, farmers and coca leaf growers, have become much more daring and bold over the past week or so. Yesterday, farmers cut off the entrance to the government’s opposition party in the Senate by creating a human fence around the Senate building. They only allowed the MAS (Movement Towards Socialism) party to enter. During their meeting they passed several bills that had been stuck for quite awhile in congress and also voted and approved unanimously to move the Constituent Assembly (The writing of the new Constitution) out of Sucre. These departments were also protesting the actions of the government over the weekend leading to confrontation with the people of Sucre that resulted in 3 civilian deaths, as well as attacks from the police on reporters in Sucre, and by peasants on several TV and radio stations in La Paz.
Many ask me what they think will happen in Bolivia, and while I’m not totally sure, there a few things that are certain. President Evo Morales and his people are decided to complete their agenda, whether that is done peacefully and legally, or by force and illegally. We have believed that this would be the case before the past week, but now he has proved to the world that he is not going to stop until he gets what he wants. Also I realize that at least half of Bolivia is totally against what this government is doing, and is willing to fight. It’s not something that I’d like to think about, but even the Vice-President has mentioned the possibility of civil war. Sadly, he wasn’t asking for peace, instead he was throwing out a battle-cry, warning the nation of the next step that would have to take place if the opposition did not back down. This happened a day before the events that unfolded here in Sucre over the past weekend…
We, as a church (not personally), have not taken sides on this issue. I’ve always felt that God loves people, whatever their political position is. I realize that God isn’t a Republican or a Democrat or a Socialist or a Communist. Democracy was never pushed in the Bible, so I can’t just get up and say… “this is what God wants”. That’s ridiculous. I also understand that many times when things get tough in a country, that is when people start recognizing their need for God. When all is well, people don’t feel the need, but when big problems come, people open up. But at the same time, it is hard to hold a neutral position in all of this. Sometimes I feel like getting out there and fighting too! I know better though… for those of you who wonder. What do you think? Comment on your ideas here!
We’re living in interesting times here in Bolivia, and especially in Sucre. Remember us in your prayers, please! We thank God because we know that he knows what he’s doing. That’s for sure.
I also wanted to let you know that I did put another photo album up with some pictures that I took on Monday, showing some of the destruction that was done to several of the police stations and headquarters after the police force withdrew from Sucre on Sunday. You can see all the photo album’s here… Photo Gallery Home, and you can go directly do the new album here… Sucre Aftermath Album. Blessings!