Book Presentation in Havana Recounts Evo Morales’ Year in Exile

By Laura V. Mor on April 23, 2022 from Havana

photo: Syara Salado Massip

Evo Operation Rescue: A Geopolitical Plot of 365 days is a chronicle in which author Alfredo Serrano Mancilla tells us what happened in the year that elapsed from the forced resignation of Evo Morales to the Presidency of the Republic in November 2019 when the coup d’état of Jeanine Añez was unleashed until the return Bolivia in November 2020.

The “geopolitics of generosity” is how the author defined the rescue operation of Evo Morales during the presentation this Saturday afternoon at Casa de las Americas as part of the 30th International Book Fair.

Serrano Mancilla, who is also Executive Director of the Latin American Strategic Center for Geopolitics – CELAG, was a first hand witness of the complex political-diplomatic plot that was set in motion to save the life of Evo and his then Vice President Alvaro Garcia Linera, enabling him to reveal the behind the scenes of a complicated and convulsive period of Bolivian and Latin American history, and the most dangerous year in the life of a popular leader like Morales.

“Operation Rescue…” details the web of relationships and political actors that were deployed at the international level to ensure that the former president arrived safe and sound, first to Mexico, where López Obrador offered him political asylum, and then to Argentina, from where a year later he would return to his native country.

With a prologue by the current president of Argentina Alberto Fernández, it is Evo Morales himself who reveals the details of the 2019 coup d’état against his government, the clandestine rescue; the response of then President Mauricio Macri to the request for humanitarian support, the role of the governments of Paraguay, Peru and Ecuador, the OAS and the Puebla Group; his days in asylum in Mexico; his stay in Argentina; the electoral campaign and the return to Bolivia after the electoral victory of Luis Arce with the Movement Towards Socialism (MAS).

Serrano explained that his narration, supported by documentation of each event, goes in the opposite direction of what he calls “houseofcardismo” (alluding to the well-known US series about the conspiratorial political network of a character like Frank Underwood), a phenomenon very present among analysts of the regional reality who tend to “spectacularize politics” and judge the processes from that point of view.

“For every bad thing that happened, I am left with the number of people who took care of it”, he explained, emphasizing during the story the solidarity of different actors (some known and others unknown, but no less important for that reason) that allowed saving Evo Morales’ life, a symbolism that implied “saving democracy in Bolivia and in Latin America”.

Evo Morales, after listening attentively to Serrano Mancilla’s description, highlighted two elements that allowed him to save his life in the face of a coup d’état meticulously planned by the Bolivian oligarchy itself with the fundamental support of the United States and which left 35 dead and 800 wounded; which were the international community and the popular mobilization.

For their part Evo once again thanked the support and predisposition received by Presidents Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Alberto Fernández. He also emphasized the great importance of the mobilizations that took place in Bolivia and in other Latin American countries that defended him and what had been constitutionally conquered making visible what was happening, that in so many occasions had been manipulated by the big media.

A “historic document for the region” is how the President of Casa de las Américas Abel Prieto defined the book published by Editorial Sudamericana, which will soon be published in Cuba by the Cuban Book Institute thanks to the assignment of the author’s rights.

Source: Cuba en Resumen