Paraguayan soldiers manning a Vickers machine gun.

The Chaco War of South America

Bolivia and Paraguay are both landlocked neighbors in South America. Neither have had the luxury of strong economies. Between 1932 and 1935, the two countries fought the bloodiest conflict on the continent in the 20th century. At dispute, was a region known as “Gran Chaco” which was incorrectly believed to contain substantial oil deposits. Control…

Paraguay’s President Impeached

Fernando Lugo was elected president of Paraguay in 2008. His election was particularly notable, as it marked the first time in the history of Paraguay that any ruling party had peacefully transferred their power to an opposing candidate. The “Colorado Party” had been in power for 61 years before Fernando’s election. As Paraguay’s second leftist…

Caracas Divides Mercosur

Mercosur is a full customs union encompassing Argentina, Brasil, Paraguay y Uruguay. Additionally, Venezuela, Ecuador, Chile, Bolivia, Colombia and Perú are associate members of the union, and as such, participate in the economic union, but not the unified customs system. While Venezuela signed into the union in 2006, their membership has been blocked ever since by…

The Persistence of Paraguayan Guaraní

Like many South American countries, Paraguayans have held onto their indigenous language despite modernization in areas such as television, telecommunications, or the internet. An estimated half of the rural population is monolingual, and the majority of the population in Paraguay speaks Guaraní (it is also spoken in parts of Bolivia, Argentina, and Brazil). The tenacious hold of the language in what is…