* Workers Rebellion: (15 min.) a film by Bolivia-Indymedia covering protests to an IMF imposed 12.5% tax on income. On February 12 and 13th 2003 a spontaneous uprising by High School students and the working class of La Paz and El Alto, to date the largest urban insurrection since the National Revolution of 1952. In les than 36 hours, government gunmen killed 33 people and injured 205.
*No Se Vende El Gas: (20 min.) this film covers the uprising and social unrest that took place in Bolivia in October 2003, the whole nation united to protest the governments approval of a controversial plan to build a pipeline linking natural gas fields in Bolivia's south toi a terminal on the Chilean coast for export to California. The country was paralyzed by protests for over a month, security forces responded to the protest wave with repressive violence, leading to at least 80 dead and thousands wounded. Due to popular pressure their presidnet Gonzalo Sanchez de-Lozada was removed from office. This film included interviews with members of the U.S. Embassy, professors, and community leaders of El Alto and La Paz.
*Bolivia in October: (15 min.) a film by Argentia-Indymedia that details the various social movements in Bolivia, including fottage and interviews with people from the four main cities that were affected by the protests: Warista, Chiripi, Oruro, El Alto.
Bolivia is in the midst of the most severe political and economic crisis since the country's return to democracy in 1982. Social movements have mobilized to demand a voice in how Bolivia' strategic resources are administered and to demand a voice in the government, seeking a retraction of privatization policies, a livable wage and employment.
In the case with natural gas and oil they wish for Bolivia to be able to share in the beefits of these resources. It is estimated that Bolivia's oil and gas reserves total more than those of any other South American country, including those of Venezuela. The roots of the situation go back in the historic memory, from the days of Spanish colonialism with uninterrupted looting of the country's resources - silver, tin, oil and now gas - by foreign captialism, combined with the brutal oppression of the miners, peasants, and other working people.
Recent privatization has also been a leading factor in a reduction in the standard of living and the exaggeration in the gap between rich and poor. Approximately two thirds of the population is indigenous and they earn substantially less than non-Indians - poor farmers earn roughly 15 cents a day.
Learn more about the Bolivian situation at this special event which will include videos as well as 3 speakers: Bolivian radiojournalist Jatun Runay; Steev His, videoactivist and recent visitor to Bolivia; and Kim Alphandary, freelance journalist specializing in Latin America.
Sponsored by Sister Schools International and Portland Central America Solidarity Committee