In this great future…

you can’t forget your past.

I may fuss about some things in Peru, but at the end of the day I’m very optimistic about the future. What keeps surprising me is how the young population (median age is 26) appears indifferent at times to the recent history of Peru.

Take the post office here in Cuzco, for example. Looks ok from the outside…

Cuzco post office

Cuzco post office

Now inside: “…built by the revolutionary government of the armed forces of Peru. June 1973.”

Gobierno revolucionario de la fuerza armada

Gobierno revolucionario de la fuerza armada

The military government of Velasco Alvarado was later overthrown in another military coup, and in the 1980s followed by the disastrous first term of Alan Garcia, hyperinflation and the terrorism of Sendero Luminoso.

History intrigues me, a lot can be learned from it, but we often don’t. Just in way of one current example, here in Peru those who are considering to allow ex-militants of Sendero Luminoso back into politics should consider the simple wisdom of the late great Bob Marley:

“in this great future, you can’t forget your past…”

They weren’t idle words for Bob Marley… songwriter’s credit (and royalties) for the song “No woman no cry” is given to Vincent Ford, a man who ran a soup kitchen in the ghetto where Marley grew up. It is believed Marley wrote the song to console Mr. Ford’s widow at his death.

Here’s to hoping Peru won’t forget it’s past and the future will be bright.

3 thoughts on “In this great future…

  1. Fascinating tour of what would seem to be a boring building from the outside. The Velasco revolution did turn Peru upside-down and some of the changes lasted to this day (Agrarian Reform) and others didn’t. Agrarian Reform wasn’t totally successful, but I think that eliminating the hacienda system was needed to bring Peru into the 20th century. The gov’t needs to fulfill its promise to the people by providing economic support and training to rural areas.

  2. I agree that land reforms were needed, but as you say the promise for people in the rural areas of Peru didn’t materialize, with millions consequently moving to Lima.

    The suits in Lima really need to place as much emphasis on quality of life in the rural areas as they do on macro-economic numbers.

  3. Pingback: In this great future – part 2 « Life in Peru

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