John Pilger: Forcing down Evo Morales’s plane was an act of air piracy

Denying the Bolivian president air space was a metaphor for the gangsterism that now rules the world

Bolivian President Evo Morales arrives at El Alto airport in La Paz

President Morales arrives back in La Paz, Bolivia. ‘Imagine the response from Paris if the French president’s plane was forced down in Latin America.’ Photograph: Zuma/Rex Features

Imagine the aircraft of the president of France being forced down in Latin America on “suspicion” that it was carrying a political refugee to safety – and not just any refugee but someone who has provided the people of the world with proof of criminal activity on an epic scale.

Imagine the response from Paris, let alone the “international community”, as the governments of the west call themselves. To a chorus of baying indignation from Whitehall to Washington, Brussels to Madrid, heroic special forces would be dispatched to rescue their leader and, as sport, smash up the source of such flagrant international gangsterism. Editorials would cheer them on, perhaps reminding readers that this kind of piracy was exhibited by the German Reich in the 1930s.

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