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Bolivia

[illustration]

SYLLABICATION: Bo·liv·i·a
PRONUNCIATION: b-lv-, b-  
  A landlocked country of western South America. Once a part of the Incan Empire, the area was conquered by Spain in the 16th century. The country was named after Simón Bolívar, who helped win its independence from Spain in 1825. Sucre is the legal capital and the seat of the judiciary. La Paz is the administrative center and the largest city. Population: 7,237,000.
OTHER FORMS: Bo·livi·anADJECTIVE & NOUN
 
Bolivia  (bōlĭv´ēsymbol, Span. bōlē´vyä) , officially Republic of Bolivia, republic (1995 est. pop. 7,896,000), 424,162 sq mi (1,098,581 sq km), W South America. One of the two inland countries of South America, Bolivia is shut in from the Pacific in the W by Chile and Peru; in the E and N it borders on Brazil, in the SE on Paraguay, and in the S on Argentina. Sucre is the constitutional capital and seat of the judiciary, but La Paz is the largest city, political and commercial focus of the nation, and the administrative capital and seat of government.

Land and People

Bolivia presents a sharp contrast between high, bleak mountains and plateaus in the west and lush, tropical rain forests in the east. In the southeast it merges into the semiarid plains of the Gran Chaco. The Andes mountain system reaches its greatest width in Bolivia. Two cordilleras, the western one tracing the border with Chile and the eastern running north and south across the center of the country, are divided by a high plateau (altiplano), most of it 12,000 ft (3,660 m) above sea level–barren, windswept, and segmented by mountain spurs.

Despite the harsh conditions the altiplano is the population center of Bolivia. Many sections for want of drainage have brackish lakes and salt beds, notably the extensive Salar de Uyuni in the south. In the north are Lake Titicaca, which Bolivia shares with Peru, and Lake Poopó. This region, world famous for its breathtaking scenery, was the home of one of the great pre-Columbian civilizations. Well known are the ruins of Tiahuanaco.

The eastern mountains, consisting of three major ranges, rise to the cold, forbidding heights of the Puna plateau (as high as 16,000 ft/4,880 m) and in the north to the snowcapped peaks of Illimani (21,184 ft/6,457 m) and Illampú (21,276 ft/6,485 m). In these mountains lies the source of the exploited wealth of Bolivia–its minerals. Tin is by far the most important product, but silver was once the chief metal, and tungsten, copper, wolframite, bismuth, antimony, zinc, lead, iron, and gold are also mined. The names of some mining towns, notably Potosí and Oruro, are world famous.

From the mountains, headstreams cut eastward, carving deep gorges and fingerlike valleys. In these valleys are some of Bolivia's garden spots–Sucre, Cochabamba, and Tarija. Santa Cruz de la Sierra and La Paz are the two main cities of tropical Bolivia. In the eastern foothills headstreams gather to form the Beni, the Guaiporé, and the Mamoré (tributaries of the Madeira, in Brazil), which flow through the torrid, humid yungas, covered with dense rain forests, and inhabited mainly by indigenous South Americans. The region is the most fertile in the country, yielding cacao, coffee, and tropical fruits, and in the early 20th cent. was a major source of wild rubber and quinine. Some of the more accessible valleys, with luxuriant scenery and a pleasantly warm climate, have become popular Bolivian resort areas.

More than half the population is indigenous, although the citizens of European descent (some 5% to 15% of the people) or mixed European and native ancestry (about 25% to 30% of the population) maintain economic, political, and social hegemony. The predominant native languages are Quechua and Aymara; they and Spanish are Bolivia's official languages. A few indigenous groups have remained isolated from European culture. Most of the population is Roman Catholic, although many people of indigenous descent retain the substance of their pre-Christian beliefs. A small but extremely active Protestant minority also exists. There are eight universities in the country.

Economy

Despite the importance of its mines and its large reserves of natural gas and crude oil, Bolivia is one of the poorest nations in Latin America and still lives by a subsistence economy. A large part of the population makes its living from the illegal growing of coca, the source of cocaine; a government eradication begun in the late 1990s has depressed the economy in those areas where coca-growing was important. Coffee, cotton, soybeans, corn, sugarcane, rice, potatoes, and wheat are the other major crops; timber is also important. Industry is limited to processing (largely smelting and petroleum refining) and small-scale manufacturing. Although Bolivia has much hydroelectric potential, it is underutilized.

Bolivia's mineral wealth furnishes the bulk of its exports, although natural gas, soybeans, and jewelry are also important. Chemicals, petroleum, and consumer goods are imported. The tin industry, which is a major component of the economy, has received increasing competition from SE Asia, and as a result several tin mines have closed. The United States, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Brazil are the chief trading partners. Bolivia became an associate member of the Southern Cone Common Market in 1996.

Government

Bolivia has had more than 190 revolutions and coups since it became independent in 1825. The latest constitution was adopted in 1967. It provides for a president elected for a four-year term and a bicameral legislature consisting of an upper chamber of senators and a lower chamber of deputies. Administratively, Bolivia is divided into nine departments.

History

Early History

The altiplano was a center of native life even before the days of the Inca; the region was the home of the great Tihuanaco empire. The Aymara had been absorbed into the Inca empire long before Gonzalo Pizarro and Hernando Pizarro began the Spanish conquest of the Inca in 1532. In 1538 the indigenous inhabitants in Bolivia were defeated.

Uninviting though the high, cold country was, it attracted the Spanish because of its rich silver mines, discovered as early as 1545. Exploiters poured in, bent on quick wealth. Forcing the natives to work the mines and the obrajes [textile mills] under duress, they remained indifferent to all development other than the construction of transportation facilities to remove the unearthed riches. Native laborers were also used on great landholdings. Thus began the system of plunder economy and social inequality that persisted in Bolivia until recent years. Economic development was further retarded by the rugged terrain, and conditions did not change when the region was made (1559) into the audiencia of Charcas, which was attached until 1776 to the viceroyalty of Peru and later to the viceroyalty of La Plata.

Independence and the Nineteenth Century

The revolution against Spanish control came early, with an uprising in Chuquisaca in 1809, but Bolivia remained Spanish until the campaigns of José de San Martín and Simón Bolívar. Independence was won with the victory (1824) at Ayacucho of Antonio José de Sucre. After the formal proclamation of independence in 1825, Bolívar drew up (1826) a constitution for the new republic. The nation was named Bolivia, and Chuquisaca was renamed Sucre, after the revolutionary hero.

Bolivia inherited ambitions and extensive territorial claims that proved disastrous, leading to warfare and defeat. At the time of independence it had a seacoast, a portion of the Amazon basin, and claims to most of the Chaco; in little more than a century all these were lost. The strife-ridden internal history of Bolivia began when the first president, Sucre, was forced to resign in 1828. A steady stream of egocentric caudillos plagued Bolivia thereafter. Andrés Santa Cruz, desiring to reunite Bolivia and Peru, invaded Peru in 1836 and established a confederation, which three years later was destroyed on the battlefield of Yungay.

Although a few presidents, notably José Ballivián, made efforts to reform the administration and improve the economy, the temptation to wholesale corruption was always strong, and honest reform was hard to achieve. The nitrate deposits of Atacama proved valuable, but the mining concessions were given to Chileans. Trouble over them led (1879), during the administration of Hilarión Daza, to the War of the Pacific (see Pacific, War of the). As a result Bolivia lost Atacama to Chile. The next serious loss was the little-known region of the Acre River, which had become valuable because of its wild rubber. After a bitter conflict, Bolivia, under President José Manuel Pando, yielded the area to Brazil in 1903 for an indemnity.

Twentieth-Century Bolivia

Attempts at reorganization and reform, especially by Ismael Montes, were overshadowed in the 20th cent. by military coups, rule of dictators, and bankruptcy. This repeated sequence led to an increase in foreign influence, through loans and interests in mines and oil fields. Attempts to raise Bolivia from its status as an underdeveloped country met with little success, although great personal fortunes were amassed from tin mining by tycoons such as Simón I. Patiño.

Conflicting claims to the Chaco, which was thought to be oil-rich, brought on yet another disastrous territorial war, this time with Paraguay (1932—35). The fighting ended in 1935 with both nations exhausted and Bolivia defeated and stripped of most of its claims in that area. Programs for curing the ills of the nation were hampered by military coups and countercoups. World War II proved a boon to the Bolivian economy by increasing demands for tin and wolframite. International pressure over pro-German elements in the government eventually forced Bolivia to break relations with the Axis and declare war (1943).

Rising prices aggravated the restiveness of the miners over miserable working conditions; strikes were brutally suppressed. The crisis reached a peak in Dec., 1943, when the nationalistic, pro-miner National Revolutionary Movement (MNR) engineered a successful revolt. The regime, however, was not recognized by other American nations (except Argentina) until 1944, when pro-Axis elements in the MNR were officially removed. In 1946 the leader of the MNR-backed government, Major Gualberto Villaroel, was lynched. The conservative government installed in 1947 was soon threatened by opposition from the MNR and the extreme left.

In the 1951 presidential elections Victor Paz Estenssoro, the MNR candidate, won a majority of the votes, but was prevented from taking office by a military junta. The MNR, with the aid of the national police (the carabineros) and of a militia recruited from miners and peasants, rebelled and took power. The revolutionary government proceeded to expropriate and nationalize the tin holdings of the huge Patiño, Hochschild, and Aramayo interests and inaugurated a program of agrarian reform. Civil rights and suffrage were extended to the indigenous people. Education, health, and construction projects were begun.

In 1956 the MNR candidate, Hernán Siles Zuazo won the presidential election, and in 1960 the MNR further consolidated its power with the reelection of Victor Paz Estenssoro. The United States, in spite of losses incurred by American investors, stepped up its program of technical and financial assistance, and Siles Zuazo temporarily succeeded in stemming inflation. But economic and political factors weakened the government, and the eruption of dissident splinter groups, some fostering acts of political terror, brought all attempts at further reform to a virtual halt.

In 1964 the government was overthrown by the military. A junta dominated by Gen. René Barrientos Ortuño assumed power. The regime used troops to occupy the mines but did not rescind the important reforms of the MNR. Barrientos was elected president in 1966. A radical guerrilla movement, led by the Cuban Ernesto "Che" Guevara, was set back seriously when government troops killed Guevara in 1967. Barrientos died in 1969; his successor, Luis Adolfo Siles Salinas, was overthrown by Gen. Alfredo Ovando Candia. Ovando nationalized the Gulf Oil Company facilities in Bolivia.

A rightist military junta overthrew Ovando in 1970 but lasted only one day, succumbing to a leftist coup led by Gen. Juan José Torres. Under Torres relations with the Soviet Union, which had been established by Ovando, became closer, to the detriment of ties with the United States. Torres was overthrown in 1971 by Col. Hugo Banzer Suárez, who was supported by both the MNR and its traditional rightist opponent, the Bolivian Socialist Falange. Banzer closed the universities, arrested opposition politicians, and returned Bolivia to a pro-U.S. foreign policy. In 1974 an all-military cabinet was installed. Banzer was forced to resign in 1978 by the military, which soon gained control of the government and imposed martial law.

Civilian rule and democratic government were restored in 1982, when Siles Zuazo again became president. He served from 1982 to 1985, when he was succeeded by Victor Paz Estenssoro. During the 1980s, hyperinflation and labor unrest led to internal disturbances, which were intensified by government austerity programs. The government, however, made progress in its efforts to suppress the drug trade. Jaime Paz Zamora succeeded Paz Estenssoro as president in 1989. In the early 1990s the government offered tax incentives to attract foreign investment in the mining industry.

Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada, a mining entrepreneur and former planning minister, was elected president in 1993. He pursued a policy of privatization and continued the free-market reforms begun in the late 1980s. He also launched a social security program and granted greater autonomy and more resources to poor urban and indigenous communities. In 1997, Hugo Banzer Suárez once again came to power, this time through democratic elections. He continued his predecessor's reform programs and pursued an aggressive coca-eradication and alternative-crop program. The government's antidrug programs led to economic difficulties in some regions in Bolivia, which resulted in protests and clashes and the temporary declaration of a state of emergency in Apr., 2000. Protests again in September—October paralyzed the economy, forcing Banzer's government to grant economic concessions to indigenous groups, although it refused to alter its plans to end illegal coca production.

In Aug., 2000, illness led Banzer to resign the presidency; the vice president, Jorge Fernando Quiroga Ramírez succeeded him. After a close election in June, 2002, in which no presidential candidate won 50% of the vote, the congress elected former president Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada, who had won a plurality. The country's economic difficulties and anti-coca campaign has led to increasing political assertiveness by persons of indigenous descent; roughly 60% of Bolivians lived in poverty at the beginning of 2003. Proposed tax increases, which were designed to reduce government deficits to the level demanded by the International Monetary Fund, sparked protests in La Paz (Feb., 2003) that turned violent and forced the president to flee the presidential palace.

Bibliography

See H. Osborne, Bolivia: A Land Divided (3d ed. 1964); W. E. Carter, Bolivia: A Profile (1971); J. V. Fifer, Bolivia: Land, Location, and Politics Since 1825 (1972); D. B. Heat, Historical Dictionary of Bolivia (1972); H. S. Klein, Bolivia: The Evolution of a Multi-Ethnic Society (1982); J. Dunkerley, Rebellion in the Veins: Political Struggle in Bolivia, 1952—82 (1984).

 

 

The Mars Base Bolivia Page.

POSTING

We are sorry but at this time we are not accepting outside members. to the division of Bolivia. This is in part due to a slight feud between Christy and Stephanie. We here at Chromacity might split the group into separate sections of mars  Both Stephanie & Christy wish to run the Bolivia Section, but in the past Stephanie who is in charge has express little to no interest in performing he duties as acting leader.  We will make corrections sometime in the near future to resolve this and we hope the decision will be the best one for everyone

 We here at Mars Bolivia are a apart of Chromacity.  We are the ones that like to party the most.  Of course that is to say we rather stay out of trouble if that was at all possible.  For now we are thinking up new ideas for our web pages and are looking in the near future to make things happen here.  Christy here is the one who runs things and gets things done.  She deserves all the credit for making things happen when we all get together.  She is the wild child of the bunch but we wouldn't trade her for anyone else. 

Mars Bolivia was a apart of Immaculate and Jaka converted into Chronicity, using the country Bolivia is an inside joke of sorts.  None of the members are of or from Bolivia, but it was part of a class assignment and someone wrote Bolivia in fancy lettering on the front of a folder that was turn in.  Afterwards the folder was reused to hold club papers in. Otherwise no connection to Bolivia the country exists.

To Add other things to this site write to Mars@Chromacity.org, or if Stephanie or Christy decides they need an Attitude adjustment, maybe they might try to upload something someday. Of course no one is getting paid here.

Times are Looking better for Bolivian members... T-shirts have been made and can be found at Christy R's house.  Bumper stickers were sent out at Christmas and if you didn't get one, Oh well!

Ok well I know that Stephanie O. is Captain of this section but I personally have no idea what it is that she is supposed to do.  Her input in this collection is non-existent. I need others in the club to lower her rank and let me be Captain.  I have more input to this site and to the club than her, please one of you CA's change this. (CHRISTY E. R.)  

Coming soon our own Pluto pages (Links) not the stuff they have! LOL>


[illustration] New Page for Christy

 

 

Most Bolivia Members have a lot in common with this movie... LOL 

It may take a few minutes to load

  <--------Stephanie M.

A help Button!!! Yeah right


About Bolivia the Country


Mars base Mugs are available at Robotech.com the Uss Robotech Ncc 33795 Mugs are available at garzadesigns.com  


Chromacity got its start as Chronicity, a combination of a lot of different ideas and friends.  I have always had lot of fascination with the red planet Mars. We are to blame for the idea connected to the planets, using their names as sections. In Robotech third series the good guys were of the 21 Mars division. Opps! the Mars logo looks a lot like the one in Robotech. 

The Ranking system is based on Star Trek and The US Navy.  In Short the navy only has 5 admirals. We had more people who wanted high ranks, and made it up as we went along. Oh and sometimes its just fun to be different...

  Mars Base division started as Jaka, AKA Jakan Army or United Democratic Alliance of Jaka. The club converted to United Republic of Chronicity (URC) and part of its members splintered off branch called El Grupo De Chronicity (EGDC). EGDC's motto "Live life to the fullest and don't take any of this seriously." 

  The definition of Chronicity is "A chronic incurable habit." URC & EGDC still kind of exist but now its back together as Chromacity: "the saturation of colors".

To Add other things to this site write to Mars@Chromacity.org we will try to upload it as fast as possible. Of course no one is getting paid here.

 


               

                       

Another all Girl Page.

[illustration]Land of Bolivia

Updated 04/01/12

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