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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Flag Day


Yesterday was flag day in Bolivia, an important national celebration of the country's tri-color flag and the independent republic that it stands for. Interestingly, one result of the approval by voters of a new Constitution in January, Bolivia now has two flags, the original one and the 'whipala,' which represents the indigenous lands and cultures of the Andes.
The whipala is square and is rainbow-colored, and the government of Evo Morales has now mandated that it be flown side by side with the Bolivian national flag at all public events. This is just one of the new requirements that are found in the new magna carta. The government is now facing a gargantuan and complex task of implementing those mandates. Parallel justice systems, parallel municipal governments, 36 "official" languages, indigenous ownership of all natural resources, etc. And you thought the Bolivian political system was confusing before...
(photo: Los Tiempos de Cochabamba)

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