[Marxism] James Petras on Evo Morales

Juan Fajardo fajardos at ix.netcom.com
Wed Jan 4 20:45:43 MST 2006

In Peru Toledo is not widely considered an Indian, although no one 
questions his Indigenous ancestry, because "Indian" is not viewed as 
solely or even primarily a phenotypic or genetic category, as much as it 
is a cultural one.   Thus, it is possible in Peru for dark-complected 
native-featured individuals to not be "Indian" and for white-skinned, 
blue-eyed ones to be so  (although the latter is, of course, a very 
limited phenomenon).

Even so, Toledo's victory is not an insignificant event, but neither is 
it unique even in Peru.  After Liberation there was a confederation 
established in 1836, which included Peru and Bolivia (then called Upper 
Peru or Alto Peru) headed by Marshall Andres de Santa Cruz, whose mother 
was a Bolivian Indian of Huarina descent.

A century later, Col. Luis Sanchez Cerro seized power in a coup and 
later was elected president in 1932.  Phenotypically, at least, he was 
as Indian an Toledo.

These facts, of course, while eliminating the notion of Toledo's 
uniqueness, do however --in the span of years, if nothing else-- 
emphasize his rarity.

- Juan Fajardo

>     Comrades
>   As a historical aside, those of us in Mexico do like 
 >  to point out that actually Benito Juarez, a Zapotec
 >  indian, was elected President in 1861.
>   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benito_Juarez
>   por el socialismo,
>   Erik Toren
>>Counterpunch, January 4, 2006
>>The Bankers Can Rest Easy
>>Evo Morales: All Growl, No Claws?
>>by the mass media and his publicists as the first Indian president of the 
>>Americas, which was technically correct. However, it should be noted that 
>>President Chavez of Venezuela is part Indian, a former Vice president of 
>>Bolivia was a (neo-liberal) Indian, Peruvian President Toledo claimed 
> I>ndian origins and wore a poncho during his campaigns, and Indians in 
>>Ecuador occupied key ministerial posts during the regime of the ousted 
>>President Gutierrez in Ecuador (including Agriculture and Foreign Affairs). 

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