Denouncing anti-democratic tactics in Ecuador, Bolivia, and across Latin America

This article originally appeared on the website of the DSA International Committee.


DSA denounces anti-democratic tactics and the persecution of left opposition in Ecuador and Bolivia, and U.S. interference across Latin America.

The political campaign in Ecuador against democratic socialist Rafael Correa and his political movement has been scandalous. The former President recently received an eight-year prison sentence on the basis of having allegedly borrowed—and then returned—$6,000 from the presidential fund. In parallel, a close ally to the neoliberal Lenín Moreno government moved to decertify Correa’s electoral front and block it from participating in the 2021 election. While this latter decision has been overturned, other similar legal maneuvers are promised. Meanwhile, according to available polling, Correa remains the country’s most popular politician, and his new coalition, Unión por la Esperanza (Unity for Hope)—which incorporated the leaders and supporters of his Citizens’ Revolution, together with other left forces opposed to the Moreno regime—seems poised to win the upcoming election if allowed to participate.

Meanwhile in early August in Bolivia, coup-installed de facto President Jeanine Áñez, facing a near-certain defeat, suspended Bolivia’s election for the third time. The country’s chief trade union federation, the Central Obrera Boliviana, responded with a general strike and road blockades across Bolivia, demanding to vote in an election that it appears Evo Morales’ Movimiento al Socialismo would also be poised to win. All this, despite overwhelming evidence that not only were the October 2019 elections won legitimately by Morales, but that the Organization of American States (OAS) played a leading role in discrediting these elections for cynical political reasons and without actual evidence.

These are but two pressing examples of anti-democratic tactics being used to suppress popular political movements that seek to put the interests of working people before those of capital. However, from violence against indigenous peoples in Honduras to coercive debt negotiations in Argentina, the right to self-governance in Latin America once again finds itself under attack from violent reactionary forces determined to enforce a status quo that enriches a few at the expense of the many.

As usual, the United States is far from innocent. In its ongoing silence regarding the anti-democratic tactics taking place in Ecuador; in its recognition of an illegitimate coup government in Bolivia; in its ongoing support for an OAS that shuns democracy whenever the most pro-market candidate fails to win; in the manifestly biased coverage of its leading media sources: In all of this the United States continues to execute the strategy of a nearly 200-year-old Monroe Doctrine that treats Latin America as its backyard and trampling ground, destroying any political project that is not adequately subservient to U.S. capitalism and military hegemony in the region.

We stand opposed to historic and contemporary U.S. interference in Latin America. We condemn the anti-democratic tactics of the government of Ecuador and de facto authorities in Bolivia and demand that the U.S. government and its politicians be equally unequivocal in their condemnation of this blatant anti-democratic interference.

We likewise offer solidarity and support to left movements in Ecuador, Bolivia, and elsewhere on the continent as they continue to try to develop independent politics to serve the working people of their respective countries and the planet that we all share.

The Democratic Socialists of America urges our more than 70,000 members to learn more about what is happening in Latin America, and to stand in solidarity with our AMERICAN sisters and brothers across the hemisphere fighting for liberation from U.S. interference and the construction of left-wing political and economic alternatives. We demand of our elected officials that they do the same, using their pedestal to help expose and fight against the United States’ centuries-old pattern of interfering and undermining people’s movements for justice and liberation. ¡Hasta la victoria siempre!

Articles express the views of the authors and don't necessarily represent the position of Lexington DSA.