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Aug 19, 2003
wasnt sure where to put this. maybe there is an appropriate thread?

Official wants coca fed to school children

Mon Feb 13, 9:20 AM ET

Bolivia's foreign minister says coca leaves, the raw material for cocaine, are so nutritious they should be included on school breakfast menus.

"Coca has more calcium than milk. It should be part of the school breakfast," Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca was quoted as saying in Friday's edition of La Razon.

The new leftist government of Evo Morales, Bolivia's first indigenous president, has vowed to promote the legal uses of coca, the plant used to make cocaine, which is revered in Andean culture and is commonly chewed or made into tea.

Morales, himself a former coca farmer, has pledged to fight the drugs trade but at the same time protect the cultivation of coca in Bolivia -- the world's third-biggest cocaine producer after Colombia and Peru.

A coca leaf weighing 100 grams contains 18.9 calories of protein, 45.8 mg of iron, 1540 mg of calcium and vitamins A, B1, B2, E and C, which is more than most nuts, according to a 1975 study by a group of Harvard University professors.


edit to change title. x 2
The tea's OK, a bit like Chinese green tea, but chewing the leaves is like chewing a teabag. Also do you really want a breakfast that numbs your gums?
Morales priest arrested on cocaine charge
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/wor ... 06430.html


Sat, Jul 31, 2010

AN AYMARA priest who presided over a ceremony to inaugurate Evo Morales in 2006 as Bolivia’s first indigenous leader since the Spanish conquest has been arrested for possession of 240kg of cocaine.

Valentín Mejillones Akharapi was held with his son and a Colombian couple after a raid by anti-drugs police on his home in the slum-city of El Alto, on the high Andean plain above the capital, La Paz. Investigators say they found a cocaine laboratory as well as drugs valued at €184,000.

Mr Mejillones denied drug trafficking, and claimed he had been tricked by the Colombian couple.

An Aymara amauta , or spiritual guide, Mr Mejillones presided over the January 2006 ceremony at the ruins of the pre-Inca civilisation of Tiwanaku at which Mr Morales was installed as Appu Mallku – supreme leader – of Bolivia’s indigenous peoples, a day before being sworn in as president.

Álvaro García Linera, Bolivia’s vice-president, said Mr Mejillones would have to “answer for his actions before the courts” and that no one in government “could answer for his behaviour” since the ceremony at Tiwanaku.

Mr Morales won a landslide victory in the December 2005 presidential election on a promise to hand more power to Bolivia’s indigenous majority. He first rose to prominence as a leader of the country’s main coca-growers’ union, fighting US-backed attempts to curtail the cultivation of the main ingredient in cocaine.

Coca is favoured by many Bolivian peasants as a cash crop, as drug traffickers are ready buyers in remote regions where poor infrastructure means farmers face huge difficulties in getting other produce to markets.

In a 1991 interview, Mr Morales told an Argentine newspaper: “We produce our coca, we bring it to the main markets, we sell it and that’s where our responsibility ends.” Since becoming president he has expelled the US Drug Enforcement Agency from the country, and a recent UN report said coca production had doubled in Bolivia in the last decade, making it the world’s third biggest producer of cocaine.

Mr Morales has acknowledged Bolivia’s drug trafficking problem. Launching a UN-backed voluntary eradication scheme this week, he noted drug traffickers have “more technology than the national police; more modern equipment than the armed forces”.
Bolivia slams US over 'irrefutable evidence' of meddling

Bolivia has “concrete evidence” that the US is plotting to destabilize the Latin American nation, Minister Juan Ramon Quintana said. Proof of US “harassment” of the Bolivian government will be handed over to President Obama, he added.

The Bolivian government is “scrupulously following” US activity in Bolivia, Minister for the Bolivian Presidency Quintana said in a press conference
“There is so much evidence to hand over to the President of the USA to say to him: Stop harassing the Bolivian government, stop politically cornering and ambushing us!” Quintana stressed. He added that investigations into drug-trafficking and human rights abuses would reveal a “permanent battle” waged by the US to impede progress in Bolivia.

“In the offensive against the government there are no visible subjects… What we’re seeing are the political machinations of the US Embassy,” which seeks to damage the image of the Bolivian government, Quintana said.

The country's US ambassador was ejected in 2008 after being accused of plotting against the Bolivian government by President Evo Morales. The US quickly followed suit, removing its Bolivian ambassador.

A charge d’affaires now heads the American Embassy in La Paz; both nations signed a deal in 2011 that would pave the way for the reinstatement of the ambassadors. However, diplomatic relations between the two countries have yet to be normalized.

Larry Mermmot, the US diplomatic representative in La Paz, said that he was confident that 2013 would see the ambassadors restored in both countries.
A significant bone of contention in these tensions is drug-trafficking in Bolivia. A damning report released by the American government last year ranking Bolivia, along with Venezuela and Burma, as “failing demonstrably during the previous 12 months to adhere to their obligations under international counternarcotics agreements."

President Morales denied the findings, accusing the US of hypocrisy and calling the illicit drugs trade with Latin America the US’ “best business.”
A thorn in the US’ side

Bolivia has been a thorn in the US’ side because of its anti-neoliberal and anti-imperialist policies, pioneered by President Evo Morales; the US also could not permit challenges to its policies in the heart of Latin America, Minister Quintana said in an interview with state radio station El Pueblo.
“What we have been fighting since 2006 and what we will continue to fight is a war against Bolivian progress,” he said, adding that the political objective of the US was to dismantle the “process of rebellion” by any means necessary.

Bolivia is currently led by Evo Morales, the country’s first indigenous leader, who is a close ally of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa. The three leaders are known for their anti-American rhetoric, and have often been critical of what they criticize as the US overstepping its authority in Latin America.

Ecuadorian President Correa spoke out over the weekend, voicing concerns of a possible CIA plot to remove him in the run-up to governmental elections in February. He cited a report written by a Chilean journalist, which described an alleged US plot to destabilize the region.
Bolivia achieves coca-chewing victory at United Nations

Bolivian President Evo Morales has campaigned vigorously for the legalisation of coca

Bolivia has achieved a victory in its campaign to decriminalise the chewing of coca leaves.

It has been re-admitted to the UN Convention on Narcotic Drugs with a special dispensation recognising the practice as legal in Bolivia.

Bolivia withdrew from the convention last year in protest at its classification of the coca leaf as an illegal drug.

The chewing of coca leaves is a centuries-old tradition in Bolivia.

Coca, the raw ingredient for cocaine, has been used in the Andes for thousands of years as a mild stimulant and sacred herbal medicine.

'Great achievement'

Fifteen countries objected to Bolivia's special dispensation, far short of the 62 it would have taken to block the country from re-joining.

UN spokeswoman Arancha Hinojal said objections had been received from the United States, Mexico, Japan, Russia, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Portugal, Israel and Ireland.

A US official said the administration continued "to believe it [the legalisation of coca leaves] will lead to a greater supply of cocaine and increased cocaine trafficking and related crime".

Bolivian President Evo Morales, who is also the head of Bolivia's coca growing union, had campaigned hard to get the UN to reverse what he called a "historic wrong" and lift its longstanding ban on the chewing of coca leaves.

Last year, he flew to a UN anti-drugs meeting in Vienna to lobby for its legalisation, saying coca was part of his country's heritage.

Coca leaves were declared an illegal substance under the 1961 UN convention.

It stipulated that coca-chewing should be eliminated within 25 years of the convention coming into effect in 1964.

President Morales said a celebration would be held on Monday with coca farmers to mark what Bolivian coca growers called "a great achievement"
Bolivia congress clock altered to turn anti-clockwise

The hands on the clock of the legislative palace are moving left on the legislative building in La Paz, Bolivia, Tuesday on 24 June, 2014

The ornate clock's Roman numerals were painted over with Arabic numbers running anti-clockwise

The clock on the facade of the building housing the Bolivian congress in La Paz has been reversed.

Its hands turn left and the numbers have been inverted to go from one to 12 anti-clockwise.

Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca dubbed it the "clock of the south".

He said the change had been made to get Bolivians to treasure their heritage and show them that they could question established norms and think creatively.

Creative approach
"Who says that the clock always has to turn one way? Why do we always have to obey? Why can't we be creative?", he asked at a news conference on Tuesday.

Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca speaks during a news conference after a session at the Organization of American States (OAS) General Assembly in Luque on 4 June, 2014.
Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca says he has been wearing a "clock of the south" wristwatch for a while
"We don't have to complicate matters, we just have to be conscious that we live in the south, not in the north," Mr Choquehuanca added.

He also told reporters that Bolivia had presented foreign delegations attending the recent G77 summit in the Bolivian city of Santa Cruz with left-turning desk clocks.

The clock given to the delegations is shaped like the map of Bolivia and includes a disputed territory which is currently located in Chile but which Bolivia claims as its own. ...

ramonmercado said:
He said the change had been made to get Bolivians to treasure their heritage and show them that they could question established norms and think creatively.

"Who says that the clock always has to turn one way? Why do we always have to obey? Why can't we be creative?", he asked at a news conference on Tuesday.

Establishing a New Dominant. Very fortean!
PeteByrdie said:
ramonmercado said:
He said the change had been made to get Bolivians to treasure their heritage and show them that they could question established norms and think creatively.

"Who says that the clock always has to turn one way? Why do we always have to obey? Why can't we be creative?", he asked at a news conference on Tuesday.

Establishing a New Dominant. Very fortean!

Paraguay will no doubt initiate a new paradigm.
Bolivian President Evo Morales has attended a colourful swearing-in ceremony dressed as an Inca emperor.

Mr Morales, who officially assumes power on Thursday, wore an embroidered gown engraved with the Inca sun god during the Andean ritual.

He will become the country's longest serving leader when he begins his term.

Wednesday's ceremony took place at Tiwanaku, the site of an ancient pre-Incan centre of power in the west of present day Bolivia.

Mr Morales is the country's first indigenous president and has been in office since 2006. ...