Civil order is breaking down in Argentina. With a debt of over 130 billion USD to foreign banks, the country no longer has the ability to meet its repayments. Pensions have been slashed and salaries unpaid. The country is technically bankrupt.
The latest wave of civil unrest came after a night of confrontation between rioters and the police. A crowd had gathered at 10.30 on Friday night to protest at the high levels of corruption in the government (the rule and not the exception for many countries in Latin America) and the prohibition to withdraw money from bank accounts.
The demonstrations brought down the government of Fernando de la Rua, forcing the resignation of the cabinet. The first to resign was the unpopular Minister of the Economy, Domingo Cavallo, who had imposed the prohibition to withdraw money from bank accounts on 3rd December.
Contacts in Buenos Aires informed Pravda.Ru that the demonstration on Saturday was sparked off by the caretaker President, Adolfo Rodriguez Saa, appointing Carlos Grosso to the Council of Ministers, despite his shady past. This reinforces the suspicion that the previous government may have fallen, but corruption reigns on.
When Carlos Grosso was Prefect of Buenos Aires under the Government of Carlos Menem (1989 – 1999), he was involved in financial scandals and was accused of corruption. When elevated to the Council of Ministers by Saa, he declared that this was due to his intelligence, not his record.
Senator Eduardo Duhalde has warned of the possibility of a civil war in Argentina. “I have been saying for a long time that the last phase after depression and recession is anarchy and chaos. We have very violent acts, a sort of civil war in Argentina”, he said.
Marcia MIRANDA PRAVDA.Ru BRAZIL
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