Bolivian President Evo Morales inaugurated a new anti-imperialist military academy yesterday (17th) calling it is to counter the former School of the Americas, a US program that provided training to Latin American military regimes.
Morales said the new academy was needed to confront the empire’s cultural, ideological, political and economic domination and capitalist structure.
Morales’ relations with the United States is not amicable and he expelled the US ambassador in 2008 He told the inaugural class of 100 cadets that their mission would be to defend the people, not the empire.
The head of the armed forces, General Gonzalo Duran, said the new school, located in the eastern town of Warnes, would teach about de-colonization, gender equality, intercultural understanding and social inclusion.
The program will be mandatory for soldiers seeking to be promoted to captain.
Bolivia returned to democracy in 1982, after a series of coups. Its Cold War-era military regimes received money and training from a United States alarmed over the emergence of militant leftist movements in the region.
The idea of an “anti-imperialist” military academy was initially proposed by late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, who wanted it to train officers from leftist countries around Latin America.