South America Discarding its colonial heritage Land of cultural, physical, and ecological diversity
Simon Bolivar “The Liberator” July 24, 1783 - December 17, 1830 President of Colombia (1821-30) and Peru (1823-29), Bolívar lead the revolutions against Spanish rule in New Grenada.
El Libertador Although called El Libertador, Simon Bolivar’s authoritative political thinking provoked further civil wars and revolts against his rule, forcing him to flee to his estate near Santa Marta where he shortly died of tuberculosis.
Colombia was one of the three countries that emerged from the collapse of Gran Colombia in 1830
Lake Maracaibo in western Venezuela is the largest lake in South America. It is joined to the Caribbean sea by a narrow body of water, and the waters are partly salty. In 1922, a huge oilfield was discovered near the lake .
The Llanos The Llanos is an extensive system of grasslands, seasonally-flooded plains, and forests shared by Venezuela and Colombia. It is located to the north and west of the Río Orinoco and borders the Amazonia wilderness along its entire southern edge.
Angel Falls The highest waterfall in the world, at 807 metres, is Angel Falls in Canaima National Park in southwest Venezuela. It is named after an American pilot and explorer, Jimmy Angel, who spotted the falls from an airplane in 1935 and later crash-landed nearby.
Coro ... "wind" in Arawak indian dialect ... is also the driest place in Venezuela and the winds have formed immense shifting dunes, some exceeding 25 meters. Los Medanos de Coro
Suriname The coat of arms of Suriname consists of two Indians holding a shield. Below the Indians and the shield is the motto Justitia Pietas Fides (Justice Faith Loyalty) The sailing boat at the left part of the shield symbolizes the history of Suriname when slaves were taken to Suriname from Africa. The palm at the right part of the shield stands for the present as well for justice. The diamond in the middle symbolises a heart.
Guyana is the only English-speaking country in South America. Sandwiched between Venezuela and Suriname, the majority of its racially diverse population resides on the low lying coastal zone that faces the Atlantic ocean.
The bodies of 914 people, including 276 children, were found in Guyana Nov. 18, 1978. Most of the dead - members of the People's Temple Christian Church - had consumed a soft drink laced with cyanide and sedatives. The body of the People's Temple charismatic leader, Jim Jones, was said to have a bullet wound in the right temple, believed to be self-inflicted.
French Guiana French Guiana is the only French-speaking territory in the continent. And also, as a French territory, it is the only non-independent portion of the South American continent. This territory's main economic activity is the space exploration. The Ariane series of rockets was one of the first joint rocket projects among European countries. The Ariane 4, pictured here, first flew in 1988. It is used to launch satellites.
Brazil At 3.27 million miles, Brazil is the largest territory in Latin America, just slightly smaller than the U.S. BRAZIL
Cabral colonizes for Portugal On April 22, 1500, the 13-ship fleet under Pedro Álvares Cabral anchored off the mouth of the Rio Buranhém on the Bahian coast. The chronicler of the discovery, wrote that immediately they saw men walking on the beach, and by the time a longboat reached the shore twenty or so had assembled. Entirely naked and dark skinned, they laid down their bows and arrows as a sign of peace, while responding to offers of Portuguese hats by giving over a parrot-feathered headdress and a long string of white seed pearls. Thus did the cultural exchange begin that would evolve over the next five centuries into the distinctive Brazilian culture.
Portugese colonization The Garcia D´Ávila Castle was built in the XVI century with medieval characteristics and has been used as residence of Portuguese nobles and soldiers. Its ruins have been recently refurbished and archeological research has been done the area.
Rio De Janeiro Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (L) gestures to a samba dancer at the during a visit to the Mangueira Samba School's headquarters in Rio de Janeiro, 2004. Chavez was in Brazil to attend the 18th annual Rio Group summit. World Photos - Reuters News Photos Prev. | Start | Next Fri Nov 5, 8:02 PM ET Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez (L) gestures to a samba dancer at the Mangueira Samba School during a visit to the school's headquarters in Rio de Janeiro, November 5, 2004. Chavez is in Brazil to attend the 18th annual Rio Group summit. REUTERS/Bruno Domingos
North Brazil The Amazon drains an area equivalent to more than two thirds of the continental United States. It pours into the Atlantic Ocean about one-fifth of the freshwater that flows into all the world's oceans, a volume so gigantic that it alters ocean salt levels 200 miles from its mouth.
Amazon River The second-longest river in the world, the Amazon is 3,900 miles long flowing across North Brazil before entering the Atlantic Ocean near Belem. It carries more water than any other river in the world. The source is the Andes Mountains. A school of sharp-teethed piranha can devour a cow in minutes
Rain forest Tropical rain forests are mainly the product of climatic interactions, particularly temperature and rainfall. In general, tropical rain forests occur where a mean monthly temperature of between 20 and 28 degrees C is combined with an annual rainfall of between 1.5 and 10m, evenly distributed throughout the year. This last proviso is very important because it is only to those tropical forests which experience little seasonal variation in terms of rainfall that the term rain forest can legitimately be applied.
“ Rainforests are the finest celebration of nature ever known on the planet.” The author of this statement would most likely be opposed to which of these projects: A. A plan to reforest 200,000 acres of Brazil. B. A plan by the government of Brazil to allow the clearing of 300,000 acres for commercial farming. C. The development of a tourist resort on the coast of Chile. D. The building of a hydroelectric dam in southern Argentina.
“ I strongly am proposing a plan to protect the rain forest and the indigenous people of Brazil because there is a direct connection between the rain forest and the local cultures who inhabit it.” The author of this statement is most likely a A. World Bank representative B. Brazilian government official C. Oil company executive D. Environmental activist
Peru Ancient Peru was the seat of several prominent Andean civilizations, most notably that of the Incas whose empire was captured by the Spanish conquistadores in 1533. Peruvian independence was declared in 1821, and remaining Spanish forces defeated in 1824. After a dozen years of military rule, Peru returned to democratic leadership in 1980, but experienced economic problems and the growth of a violent insurgency.
Bolivia Bolivia, named after independence fighter Simon Bolivar, broke away from Spanish rule in 1825; much of its subsequent history has consisted of a series of nearly 200 coups and counter-coups. Comparatively democratic civilian rule was established in 1982, but leaders have faced difficult problems of deep- seated poverty, social unrest, and illegal drug production.
Bolivia Current goals include attracting foreign investment, strengthening the educational system, resolving disputes with coca growers over Bolivia's counterdrug efforts, and waging an anticorruption campaign. Altiplano
Paraguay is South America's 'empty quarter', a country little known even to its neighbors. It has taken steps to overcome its political, economic and geographic isolation and now welcomes visitors. The country has a relaxed riverside capital, impressive Jesuit missions, several national parks and the vast, arid Chaco - one of South America's great wilderness areas. World Cup soccer stadium
Paraguay’s economy depends heavily on agriculture, hydroelectricity generation, and trade with its neighboring countries. In 2004, the country’s real GDP is expected to grow 2.9%, but much of the growth will depend on continued regional economic stability in Brazil and Argentina and continued strong agricultural output. Asuncion, Paraguay Gauchos Paraguay Capital: Asuncion
The Itaipu hydroelectric power plant on the Parana River is a joint development project with Brazil and Paraguay. With 18 units of 700 megawatts each, it is the largest hydroelectric plant currently in operation in the world
Uruguay German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee reaches Montevideo after her battle with British ships, the HMS Ajax and Achilles during the Battle of the River Plate in Dec., 1939. The German pocket battleship was later scuttled. A violent Marxist urban guerrilla movement, the Tupamaros, launched in the late 1960s, led Uruguay's president to agree to military control of his administration in 1973. By yearend, the rebels had been crushed, but the military continued to expand its hold throughout the government. Civilian rule was not restored until 1985. Uruguay's political and labor conditions are among the freest on the continent.
Chile Chile is a 2500 long ribbon of land on South America's Pacific coast. Its northern border is in the tropics while its southern tip reaches the Antarctic Circle.
Pampas Mostly in Argentina, the Pampas are a grassland biome . They are flat, fertile plains that cover an area of 300,000 sq. miles from the Atlantic Ocean to the Andes Mountains.
Argentina possesses some of the world's tallest mountains, expansive deserts, and impressive waterfalls. Iguassu Falls
Tango Tango developed around 1850 and 1880 on both shores of Rio de La Plata. In the city of Buenos Aires, specifically in a neighborhood called Monserrat, crowds would gather at night for the practice of dances such as Tango , Candombe and Fandango, all of which had a bad reputation among the higher classes ruling Argentinean society at the time.
Following independence from Spain in 1816, Argentina experienced periods of internal political conflict between conservatives and liberals and between civilian and military factions.
Dictatorship After World War II, a long period of Peronist authoritarian rule and interference in subsequent governments was followed by a military junta that took power in 1976. Democracy returned in 1983, and numerous elections since then have underscored Argentina's progress in democratic consolidation. Juan Peron was a dictator who ruled Argentina in the 1940s and 1950s and again briefly before his death in 1973.
Tierra del F uego The Land of Fire is actually an archipelago including the Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego and numerous smaller islands.
Falkland Islands The Falkland Islands are a group of islands in the south Atlantic. The two main islands, East Falkland and West Falkland, lie 300 miles east of the Argentina coast. About 200 smaller islands form a total land area of approximately 4,700 square miles. The capital and only town is (Port) Stanley.
The government of the Falkland Islands administers the British dependent territories of South Georgia, the South Sandwich Islands, and the Shag and Clerke rocks, lying from 700 to 2,000 miles to the east and southeast of the Falklands. The total population of the islands in 1991 was estimated at 2100.
War in The Falklands The Falklands War started after Argentina invaded and took control of the islands in April 1982. During the war, the British captured about 10,000 Argentine prisoners, all of whom were released afterwards. Argentina sustained 655 men killed, while Britain lost 236.
Argentina's ignominious defeat severely discredited the military government and led to the restoration of civilian rule in Argentina in 1983. Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri Castelli (1926 - 2003) was an Argentinian general and dictator. He was de facto President of Argentina from 22 December 1981 to 18 June 1982.
Falklands War . Depicted by painter Fritz Wagner is the British submarine which sank the Argentine light cruiser, General Belgrano which had once been the USS Phoenix