Category Archives: Press Monitoring

Brazil Border Piece Gives Bolivia a Bum Rap

The recent Washington Post article, “Brazil tries to fight cocaine trafficking at huge, porous borders,” misrepresents Bolivia’s active collaboration with Brazil on drug control.  Juan Forero reports that, along with Peru, Bolivia’s “coca production increased dramatically in recent years.”  In fact, Bolivia’s coca crop is shrinking–13 % in 2011, according the US, while coca production in both Peru and Colombia far […]

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Wall Street Journal Warps Impact of American’s Arrest in Bolivia

The Wall Street Journal’s recent article from August 1st, “Jailed American’s Drug Case Stokes Tension With Bolivia,” fails to acknowledge the many discrepancies in the Ostreicher case, dramatically exaggerates the effect the case has had on Bolivian-US relations, and contrives false connections between Ostreicher’s case and other drug-related cases.  Prolonged pretrial detention and harsh conditions take a dramatic toll on […]

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COHA “Spotlight” on Bolivian Coca Out of Focus

The Council on Hemispheric Affairs’ (COHA) April 25 “Spotlight on Bolivia: The “Coca Diplomacy” of Evo Morales,” generalizes and speculates about Bolivian drug policy and relations with the United States. While the general conclusion that U.S. policymakers should do more to cooperate with Bolivia’s vision of coca is valid, inaccuracies presented weaken its arguments. The following clarifications on coca and […]

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Insight Crime Misrepresents Bolivian Dilemma by Projecting “Prison Gang” Dangers

Insight Crime’s “Massive Overcrowding Allows Bolivia’s Prison Gangs to Flourish” accurately highlights some of the endemic problems faced by Bolivia’s prisons. Yet, the crisis is not new; it began soon after the passage of drug control Law 1008, when the prison population swelled with prisoners detained on low-level drug charges. At the peak of the drug war, over 90 percent […]

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McDonald’s Left Bolivia in 2002; Fast Food Still Abundant on City Streets

According to the blogosphere, the biggest news out of Bolivia in the end of 2011 is that Bolivians have rejected McDonald’s. Headlines such as “McDonald’s goes belly up in Bolivia”[i] and “Fast Food fails to deliver in Bolivia”[ii] have topped Google alerts for weeks. Most all of the articles on the subject offer the same quote from news-site Hispanically Speaking […]

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Response to the Bolivian Ex-President’s Defense Team’s Press Release

On August 30, immediately following the “Black October” verdict, convicting five military officials and two ex-ministers for 68 killings in October 2003, the defense team of ex-president Sánchez de Lozada, disseminated a press release claiming the  trial was politicized and the verdict invalid.  Sánchez de Lozada, along with three former ministers who are also defendants in the case, have avoided […]

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Bolivian Quinoa Questions: Production and Food Security

In January and March 2011, several English-language press outlets ran stories on quinoa production in Bolivia. National Public Radio and the Associated Press reported on quinoa as a development project, hailing its benefits to farmers in the altiplano region of Bolivia.  The New York Times article focused on quinoa’s rising popularity abroad making it less affordable for low income Bolivians. […]

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Is Bolivia Ready to Export Lithium?

On October 11, Bolivia’s Mining Minister Jose Pimentel stated that Bolivia plans to start production of lithium carbonate and potassium chloride for export this month, and expects a finalized product by January or February.[i] However, it is unlikely that Bolivia’s lithium carbonate will be available on the international market in the near future. At an isolated pilot plant, Bolivian and […]

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Bolivia: Marcela Sanchez Misses the Mark on Morales

Marcela Sanchez’ article, “Ambition’s Costs — The Ongoing Evolution of Bolivia’s Evo Morales,” published in the Latin American Herald Tribune comments on U.S. decertification of Bolivian drug control efforts, the draft anti-racism law, and ex-president’s Jorge Quiroga’s defamation sentence.  Sanchez tries to connect these disparate issues with loose analysis and apparently little research. In less than 800 words, Sanchez manages […]

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Schipani Dramatizes Bolivian Drug Control Efforts and MAS Official’s Role

Andres Schipani’s article, “Jessica Anne Jordan Burton: beauty queen defies cartel beasts in Bolivia’s war on cocaine,” presents an inaccurate, hyperbolic, and sexist account, which projects narrow-minded generalizations and grossly distorts the current reality of Bolivian drug policy.  Unfortunately, this erroneous portrayal has been widely reprinted and quoted in the English-speaking press. Inaccurate or incomplete information appears in almost every […]

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