February 25 – Day of Liberation and Innovation in Suriname

Posted on February 25, 2017

Actually, today is not the anniversary of liberation OR innovation, in Suriname. Instead, it is the anniversary of a same-old-same-old story of military might grabbing power and a dictatorship forming:

On this date in 1980, an army sergeant named Desi Bouterse led military forces to overthrow a corrupt government. Bouterse ruled as a military dictator. Later he was moved out of government but kept as leader of the Surinamese military; in 2010 he was put back in charge of the government by being elected president. And yet he is viewed worldwide as a criminal and dictator who allegedly not only ordered opponents killed, but even personally pulled the trigger in a couple of the murders!!

So...that's a big, giant "bad" about Suriname. What is good about this smallest of the South American nations?

It is really diverse - the half-a-million inhabitants include a variety of indigenous peoples, including Arawak and Akurio groups, plus some people with Dutch ancestry (the Netherlands was the country that colonized this small section of South America, which was largely ruled by Portugal or Spain).

However, the largest ethnic group in Suriname is East Indians, people whose ancestors were workers from India. Maroons, people descended from enslaved people who escaped to freedom, have African ancestry, and Creoles, people descended from African and Dutch ancestors, form another large group. Javanese people have ancestors who came from what is now Indonesia (which was also colonized by the Netherlands). Other groups of people living in Suriname include people with Chinese, Lebanese, Filipino, and Brazilian ancestry.

Both Maroon and Amerindian groups are creating authentic tourist experiences for quite low costs. Since these tours are co-op style businesses with local tour guides, they are good for adventurous travelers and good for local economies.

Of course there are amazing plants and animals in this nation, like the flora and fauna of other parts of the Amazon rain forest. This nation is more unspoiled than most, and if it can rid itself of its dreadful leader, it is likely to become a relatively new destination for travelers and scientists.

Also on this date:

Plan ahead:

Check out my Pinterest boards for:
And here are my Pinterest boards for:

No comments:

Post a Comment