Argentina

Argentina: Taste of our Power

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Can workers take control in Argentina? Chris Harman examines the evidence.

Mass demonstrations dispose of two presidents in as many weeks. A star performer for the IMF-World Bank Washington consensus circus, Cavallo, is forced to flee the economics ministry. A leader of the largest political party warns of the danger of civil war. Such has been the picture in Argentina since the end of December. Yet much of the western media give the impression that these events are of marginal interest. They are happening a long way away, we are told, in a 'developing country' or an 'emerging economy', very different to western Europe, North America or Japan.

Argentina: The Masses Rise, a Government Collapses

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Protests, strikes and demonstrations by Argentina's workers against cuts and austerity forced the appointment of the fifth president in two weeks, Eduardo Duhalde, at the start of January.

Duhalde replaced Aldolfo Rodriguez Saá who took over at the end of December. Saá was unable to stop the country descending into further crisis. First he announced the government would cease payments on its £106 billion of public debt. This was the largest debt default by any country in history. He maintained a near total freeze on bank withdrawals to prevent a run on the banks by depositors. He also announced the creation of a 'third currency' - the argentino - that would float alongside the pesos and US dollars already in circulation.

Argentina: Sparking off a Chain Reaction

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Javier Carles reports from the streets of Argentina.

Tuesday, 18 December
IMF and US rejects financial help to Argentinia's government. Lootings of shops and supermarkets begin in provinces such as Rosario, and quickly spread. The reaction of the De La Rua government is to deny that there is any crisis and that the situation is under control but the looting continues.

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