Washington, D.C. — Six days after the fascist coup against Bolivian President Evo Morales, over 50 anti-imperialists gathered in front of the White House Nov. 16 to repudiate the racist ousting of the popular leader and the brutal military repression of Indigenous people and demonstrators.
The demonstration was called by the ANSWER Coalition, Code Pink and others. Activists from the Socialist Unity Party / Partido de Socialismo Unido in Baltimore participated.
Later, a group of Chilean activists accompanied by Salvadoran supporters of FMLN-DC joined the rally. Speakers expressed solidarity with the people of Chile who are rising up against the repressive, U.S.-backed Piñera regime in the face of extreme police brutality.
Many speakers had the chance to take the mic, including a number of independent journalists, representatives from the São Paulo Forum, Indigenous Bolivian immigrants, and activists who protected the Venezuelan Embassy in D.C. when it was mobbed by the U.S. Secret Service and members of the right-wing opposition to President Nicolás Maduro. Maduro is the current leader of Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution and is popularly supported by the majority of the people, just like Evo Morales.
Indigenous Bolivians called for solidarity with Evo and the anti-coup demonstrators in Bolivia. Signs read “Repudio el masacre a los Indigenas” (“Repudiate the massacre of Indigenous people”) and “Fuera el govierno facista” (Fascist government out”). Many decried the lies being spread by corporate news outlets and asked that anti-imperialists everywhere help spread the real truth to the world.
Attendees of the event were surprised when a mob of right-wing, pro-coup demonstrators arrived to counter the anti-imperialist rally. Supporters of the imperialist-controlled Organization of American States and the fascist military coup in Bolivia gathered not far from the anti-coup rally. They waved U.S. flags and held signs saying “USA, thank you for your support” and slandering Morales and Maduro. The right-wing chanted “We are Bolivia, you are not!”
To deceive onlookers, one pro-coup demonstrator held a sign reading “No racism only love,” and several protestors waved the Wiphala flag that represents Indigenous peoples in Bolivia and other parts of Latin America.
Ironically, these fascist coup supporters showed up to counter support for an Indigenous, anti-racist leader and the anti-coup demonstrations in Bolivia which have been led and largely constituted by Indigenous people.
The many Indigenous Bolivians participating in the anti-coup demonstration expressed fear for their safety and that of others. Security was organized so that they could leave the area without being harmed. After all, the imperialist puppet “interim president” of Bolivia, Jeanine Añez, and the fascist military have been massacring and inflicting terror upon Indigenous Bolivians.
It’s no coincidence that the counter-protestors proudly displayed support for the U.S. They represent the capitalist right-wing of Bolivia that profits from violently replacing a progressive, socialist leader and instituting a dictatorship that will work in tandem with the U.S. ruling class to maintain control of Bolivia’s lithium deposits.
Ruling-class counter-demonstrators may do their best to confuse the people, but when Indigenous Bolivians are afraid for their lives, it’s clear that the counter-protestors are on the side of Donald Trump, the imperialists and big business.