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Along with dozens of other cities in the US, Indianapolis staged a rally on November 16 in solidarity with Bolivia as the people there continue to resist a US-backed fascist coup currently underway. The protest expressed outrage at this U.S.-orchestrated attack on Evo Morales, a progressive leader who has stood up for Bolivia’s Indigenous majority and became an international symbol of resistance to U.S. domination.
The afternoon rally at Lugar Plaza was organized by the Indianapolis branch of the Party for Socialism and Liberation and ANSWER Indiana.
Timi Lehin, a member of the Party for Socialism and Liberation said she helped organize the protest “to stand in solidarity with the people of Bolivia. I think it’s very important that we object very firmly to US intervention. I hope that the coup ends quickly so no more lives are lost and that it ends in favor of the Bolivian people. I hope that they don’t end up with a dangerously racist president and that the lives already lost aren’t for nothing.”
Lehin was referring to the dozens of anti-coup Bolivian protesters who have been slaughtered by the military over the last few days.
A range of other organizers and activists attended the action.
Michael Richardson, Chair of the Circle City Greens, highlighted the blatancy of the coup. “I just think that this situation is really flagrant. There’s been a lot of coups in the past, but it’s revealing how flagrant they’re being about this,” he told ANSWER Indiana. “I hope that the powers that be can see that people don’t approve of it. Too often we are just silent. Getting our voices out there is important,” he continued.
Chris Steele, an activist with Indiana Department of Corrections (IDOC) Watch, said he “came out because anti-imperialism needs to be the number one priority for any leftist, especially in the US today. What’s happening in Cuba, Bolivia, and Venezuela is sickening. It’s a US coup that follows all the classic patterns: a handily won election followed by accusations of electoral fraud and then military and police force to overthrow the government. It’s a total diversion of their workers’ democracy.”
Lugar Plaza is just across from the main bus station downtown, which primarily serves poor and working-class people, especially from oppressed communities.
The protest drew significant interest and solidarity from workers in the nearby area. While protesters stood with signs on the corner, others canvassed the bus stop and sidewalks with literature. Many were unaware of the situation, and immediately expressed their support of the action and condemned the US-backed fascist coup.