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Michael Luftmensch MLuftmensch at
Thu Apr 25 19:08:00 MDT 1996

re-peru's national interest
Date: 25 Apr 1996 17:08:53 GMT
Message-Id: <3515871067.97767804 at>
Organization: InfoTec-CapCollege

re-peru's national interest

The question of what constitutes national interest in Peru
is worth raising. Peru was one of the last colonies to be
freed from Spanish rule. Independence was actually imposed on Peru by its
neighbours in order to drive Spain from the continent. The military has
played a central role in the consolidation of the Peruvian state from its
inception up to the present day. But
popular support never seems to have been achieved, part. in the Andes.

The last (aborted) effort in this direction was the national reform program
of the military government that took power in the late sixties. These were
stopgap measures to pacify rural unrest, US-sanctioned nationalizations.

Eg. PetroPeru -

"Partial nationalization of foreign-owned oil fields serves
further to 'steal the thunder' of left-wing and nationalist
political forces. The damage done to one foreign company,
Standard Oil of New Jersey, is more than offset by the benefits offered to it
and other US corporations in the form of new oil-exploration concessions and
investment grants and tax exemptions in other sectors of the economy, which
in turn
become ever more dominated by foreign capital" (James
Cockcroft, Last Rites for the Reformist Model, 1971).

Twenty five years later, even these meager reforms are
being undone. The electric company and PetroPeru are
being sold off. The large sugar co-ops - which were the
heart of Velasco's agrarian reforms - are being broken up.  Unemployment and
underemployment are rising and the
"informal sector" is mushrooming as the public sector

(This appears to apply as well to the Peruvian army -
which is being privatized and taken over by the coca cartels.)

Michael Luftmensch

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