[Marxism] Bolivia: COB replaces leadership

dwalters at marxists.org dwalters at marxists.org
Sat Jul 8 12:06:27 MDT 2006

[Cobbled together from various sources--DW]

On June 29th the Bolivian COB completed it's 14th National Congress. Jaime
Solares was replaced by FTSMB (miners federation) leader Pedro Montes. Solares
was known for his acidic attacks on MAS leader and President Evo Morales. New
COB president Pedro Montes, while maintaining and fighting for the COBs
indepenence and revolutionary demands of last summers mobilizations, has taken
a more united front approach to the new govvernment and dropped, what was
considered by most COB members, Solares ultra-left approach.

Montes election signaled a move away from the sterile approach of Solares to the
COB's political activities. He was elected, in large part, by splitting the MAS
supporters in the COB, many of whom wanted to place the COB under the political
direction of the MAS. Montes pledged to maintain the COB's independence from the
both the government and the parties and to maintain the organizational unity of
the COB as the first organization of the Bolivian working class. The previous
leadership was accused of formenting splits inside the COB.

It should be noted that the Santa Cruz section of the COB has aligned itself
with the Oligarchy and supported a "YES" vote in last weeks Constituent
Assembly elections and referendum for "autonomy" (this is not true of militant
peasant organizations in the area, many of whom received land under the Morales
gov't plans for Land Reform).

The COB pledged to fight to maintain the political integrity of the Bolivian
national and against any form of autonomy that would weaken the right for
nationalization and the struggle for socialism. IT pledged to defend all the
decrees from the gov't that established the nationalization of hydrocarbons and
land reform.

It also appears that the COB is moving to forming an actual political party.

David Walters

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