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Chile's turn with the power of people

A good example for the Latin America and Europe

globinfo freexchange

The good news come from a South-American country that became the first lab-rat of neoliberalism, four decades ago. (http://failedevolution.blogspot.gr/2013/09/september-11-1973-start-of-global.html) Chile shows the road for change and hope through the power of its people.

From Foreign Policy in Focus:

In 2011, students in Chile made headlines when they launched a nationwide strike lasting almost eight months. The trigger was high tuition costs that drove students and their families into debt. There were coordinated marches in all major cities. At some universities students took over buildings. The marches took on almost a carnival atmosphere with students engaging in 'kiss-ins' and pillow fights. Before long, the marches became multifaceted. Opponents of the massive HidroAysén dam project in Patagonia joined in. Students and trade unions joined forces when workers staged strikes and marched in Santiago and other major cities. Tasha Fairfield, an assistant professor for the London School of Economics’ Department of International Development, said the strikes were pivotal. 'The student movement played a critical role in creating political space,' Fairfield said. It 'dramatically changed the political context in Chile and helped to place the issues of Chile’s extreme inequalities centrally on the national agenda.'”

More than two thirds of the population supported the student movement and its demands for education reform. The students consistently rejected the government’s attempts to appease the protesters as grossly insufficient. Their goal was free university tuition. President Sebastian Piñera, the first conservative president since the 1988 plebiscite that ended General Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship, saw his ratings plummet to the lowest of any leader in the post-authoritarian era. Ordinary Chileans had made clear that they wanted to see changes in their society. This set the stage for Michelle Bachelet to run for election in 2013.”

Isabel Allende (from the Socialist Party), daughter of Salvador Allende, became the first woman president of the senate. Several student leaders, including Camila Vallejo (of the Communist Party) and Gabriel Boric (an Independent), launched political careers by winning their bids to join the Chamber of Deputies. The left was swept into power by a wave of public support and gained strong majorities in both houses of the National Congress. [...] The government put together a package that would raise corporate income taxes from 20 percent to at least 25 percent and close tax loopholes for companies and wealthy business owners. The changes promised to bring in an estimated $8.3 billion each year. The government pledged to put half of these funds toward providing free education for all Chileans by the year 2020 and to roll back the for-profit schools that emerged during Pinochet’s dictatorship. The remainder would be used to improve the health care system and other social programs.”

Although many of the protests of 2011 — the year of Occupy Wall Street — have faded, Chilean students and workers managed to win many of their demands. This experience offers important lessons for popular movements struggling for similar goals around the world.”


It is characteristic that the struggle has started from the student community and the youth, and this shows why the systemic establishment in Greece tries to suppress the student community: http://failedevolution.blogspot.gr/2014/11/official-ultimate-goal-fascistization.html

The battle in South America is hard as the Western neoliberal bloc tries to take under control most of the countries in the region, against the new "threat" of the Sino-Russian bloc. Although Argentina shows signs of resistance - trying to escape from the international banking cartels that pushed the country one more time to default - by approaching Russia, Venezuela recently fell into the trap of the cartels after the recent oil war. (http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-12-02/how-goldman-sachs-became-broke-venezuelas-loan-shark)

Nicolás Maduro is certainly not as charismatic as Chávez was, but should had take better advantage of Venezuela's position inside OPEC, being also one of the first members of the organization. Russia should also approach Venezuela, especially after the latest decision by - the manipulated by the US oil industry and the Saudi monarchs - OPEC (http://failedevolution.blogspot.gr/2014/11/the-oil-war-on-russia.html), which harms the interests of both countries.

Venezuela must also take advantage of Brazil's position inside BRICS and form with, as many as possible, Latin American countries a strong coalition against brutal Western corporate and financial monopolies.

In any case, beyond the battles and games in the geopolitical arena, Chile's example shows that people are a key factor for significant, or even radical, changes in every country. European countries should take advantage of this example, as eurozone became the new laboratory of the most cruel form of neoliberalism, while change in the European political scene appears to be substantial and fast. (http://failedevolution.blogspot.gr/2014/11/european-leftist-domino-already-started.html) If not now, when?

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Comments

  1. ..september 11th, 1973....Alliende'...there were 6 hours of video, 2 years after ("Bloody September")...summarily "disappeared", along with Pinochet's others...let's also recall Milton Friedman's, "Chicago Boys", sent to deal the military dictatorship replacing democratically elected Alliende' his end-game...neocons' favorite Randite...

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