Sunday, April 30, 2006

Free Latin America

In a speech before 25,000 Cubans in Havana's Revolution Square yesterday, Bolivian President Evo Morales urged Latin Americans to put Latin American liberation before national or sector interests. Morales praised fair trade agreements, specifically the People's Trade Treaty (PTT), because they put the interests of indigenous people over corporate profits. The PTT increases gas and oil exports to Bolivia from the petroleum rich Venezuela. Morales, Chavez and Castro also signed the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) in an effort to counteract the U.S.-sponsored Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). Chavez said, "ALBA is moving forward, and facing the aggression of the imperial projects of the free trade agreement, all we can do is attack."

The one worry many on the left have when it comes to Chavez and Morales is their alliance with Castro. Despite some of the economic gains made under the Castro regime, he is still a authoritarian leader who has little tolerance for freedom of speech.