Plan Bolívar 2000
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|Missions of the Bolivarian Revolution of Venezuela|
|Food, Housing & Medicine|
|Indigenous Rights, Land & Environment|
Plan Bolívar 2000 (launched February 27, 1999) was the first of the Bolivarian Missions enacted under administration of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez. According to the United States Department of State, Chávez wanted to "send the message that the military was not a force of popular repression, but rather a force for development and security". The State Department also commented that this happened "only 23 days after his inauguration" and that he wanted to show his closest supporters "that he had not forgotten them". The plan involved around 40,000 Venezuelan soldiers engaged in door-to-door anti-poverty activities, including mass vaccinations, food distribution in slum areas, and education. The program also transported thousands of poor and ill Venezuelans at cost by military cargo planes and helicopters to seek employment and medical care.
Implementation of Plan Bolívar
The Plan Bolívar 2000 was Chavez' own idea. He wanted it to be implemented in three stages:
- Pro-País, which would involve the armed forces working in the capacity of social service.
- Pro-Patria, which would have the military helping local communities help themselves.
- Pro-Nación, which would help the country to a more self-sufficient economy that can sustain itself.
Chavez’s social policies are where his contribution weighs in the most because of the amount of money being redirected to the people.
In an October 2002 interview, President Chávez stated that:
- "My order was: "Go house to house combing the terrain. The enemy. Who is the enemy? Hunger." And we started it on February 27, 1999, ten years after the Caracazo, as a way of vindicating the military. I even used the contrast and I said: "Ten years ago we came out to massacre the people, now we are going to fill them with love. Go and comb the terrain, look for misery. The enemy is death. We are going to fill them with bursts of life instead of gun shots of death." And, in truth, the answer was really beautiful. While we, the politicians, were engaged in the political struggle, 40,000 soldiers were on a campaign to attend to the health of the people; opening roads with military engineering equipment; flying passengers in military planes to the most poor areas, charging them at cost."
- "VENEZUELAN SOLDIERS LEAVE THEIR BARRACKS . . . TO IMPLEMENT CHAVEZ'S CIVIL-MILITARY PUBLIC WORKS PROGRAM" (PDF). United States Department of State. Retrieved 23 April 2014.
- Wilpert, Gregory. "Venezuela's Mission to Fight Poverty". venezuelanalysis.com. Retrieved 20 June 2013.
- Opinión y análisis - ¿Sabe el Ejército de Corrupción? Archived 2012-03-06 at the Wayback Machine.
- The Military and the Revolution: Harnecker interviews Chávez — Includes descriptions by Hugo Chávez of his creation and perceptions on Plan Bolívar 2000.
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