June 21, 2004

La Nacion Camba?

MABB is a registered TM.

nacion camba "Aspiramos a crear nuestro propio Estado sobre la base de nuestra cultura y nuestra historia. Nosotros, la Nación Camba, y su instrumento de lucha, el Movimiento Nación Camba de liberación, vamos a ser lo que NOSOTROS QUEREMOS SER, y no lo que OTROS QUIEREN QUE SEAMOS."

"We aim to create our own State, based on our own culture and our own history. We, the Camba Nation, and our instrument for struggle, the Movement for the Liberation of the Camba Nation, will be what WE WANT TO BE, and not what OTHERS WANT US TO BE."

I guess I always knew there was a strong feeling of regionalism in Bolivia. After all, the rivalries between the cambas, the collas, the chapacos, the cochabambinos, etc., were just another aspect making up the multidimensional cultural angles of Bolivian society. Such feelings were best represented in a soccer match between Bolivar of La Paz against Blooming of Santa Cruz, or a match between The Strongest of La Paz against Wilsterman of Cochabamba. To me these were just regionalist feelings, which would fade as soon as Bolivia was up against Brazil for a world cup qualifying match or when Tahuichi Aguilera would win the U-18 world cup. To say the truth, I never thought about the possibility of the disintegration of the Bolivian republic.

However, these are times of deep social problems in Bolivian society, and as a result, the worst tends to surface.

The rise of groups like the Camba Nation have clear implications for Bolivia. The clearest is the disintegration of the nation as it is. What the Camba Nation seems to be looking for, according to what they say, is: Autonomy and Self Determination. Even though, they do not specifically mention their intention to secede, they do not say the contrary either. The principal goal is self rule. But, this self rule or auto-determination is a step towards independence.

They further make their case by expressing openly, and in hostile words, their disapproval of the concentration of power in La Paz. They also feel exploited and colonized by the central government.

How is this going to play in the national context?

One immediate result would be that of other regions in Bolivia, like the chapacos, or the cochabambinos or the orurenos (can be anyone) making the same claims and starting similar movements, that is if they haven't already done so.

A second result would be to provide with some legitimacy other similar movements like the Movement without Land (MST) or the Aymara or Quetchua nation....

A third result would be to increase social instability within the territory.

One last result would lead to the erosion of power and control of the central government over the national territory. This is accompanied by the weakening of the rule of law.

Bolivians, are embarking in turbulent and unknown waters, which may lead them into the destruction of what all Bolivians have fought since 1825. There are already alarmed voices in the world pointing to signs in these turbulent times.

What is Bolivia, as a country, gearing towards to?