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Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:14 pm
by admin
I am going to call the U.S. embassy this afternoon and register a complaint with them regarding the effectiveness of the Chilean authorities. Perhaps if others do the same we can help build pressure to bridge the roadblocks.
Yea, you just need to search the forum a bit to find out what waist of time that will be (embassy, "sir we will need a valid credit card before we can take your call", sir "we don't care that you are being shot at, we need a valid credit card" ). The situation is sufficiently screwed up already, and the U.S. embassy in Chile has a real reputation for doing nothing ( the best case ) to screwing things up worse in emergencies ( e.g. getting in our way of locating people after the earthquake including Americans ).

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:19 pm
by Trapped tourist
We emailed the British embassy early this morning but we have heard nothing......clearly they have their fingers on the pulse too.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 4:20 pm
by PenquistaDeCorazon

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 6:43 pm
by Flapjack
All of a sudden there is a lot of commercial activity in natales. Many (perhaps most) shops and restaurants are open. There's a marked changed from the early afternoon, lots of hustle and bustle. Any explanations here?

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 7:29 pm
by Flapjack
Hypothetically, if two Americans were to make the walk to the border at Rio Turbio starting at dawn tomorrow, would they :? be able to cross the border on the road with an american passport? Or would they be forced to illegally immigrate a few miles down the border? Also, is there any reason to think such a group could not walk through the roadblocks without incident?

If anyone has insight into making the border crossing by foot, please tell.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:01 pm
by Dutchguy
We plan to walk to the Argentine border from Puerto Natales tomorrow as well, but we heard rumours about the border being closed and that you canĀ“t get into Argentina walking. Is there anybody who has some information on the situation at the Rio Turbio border crossing to Agentina, or knows about perple who have tried it. Can we expect problem at the road blocks, or should we try to walk around them? Or is the walking to the border a recipy for disaster in the first place?

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 11:46 pm
by Flapjack
Can someone please confirm the route to get to the frontier station at dorotea. I believe it is as simple as rt. 9 east then rt. 250 north through to the border. We depart at dawn tomorrow so any information before then would be much appreciated.

Thanks very much for all the kind help.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 1:34 am
by admin
Yea waiting for the evening news to try and sort out the mess with the ministers and also see if there is any new footage.

The media seems to still be on vacation. Kind of light coverage on the national news, considering the level.

I did see a clip tonight of a bunch of foreign tourist joining the protesters in a chant.

Guess that is one way to make the most of a vacation that was going nowhere anyway. protest tours. chile has found a new international tourism nitch.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 8:54 am
by Trapped tourist
The strike has made the Dutch news.

Do we think that the change in ministers is a way for the PM to back down without losing face?

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:28 am
by admin
No I think it is a way for pinera to knock the crisis off the top of the news hour (taking the teeth out of the protesters), fix his poll ratings (hit hard from the firing of the gov contractors and strikes last month), and do it all while most of the country is on vacation. It perhaps makes the strikers very point in that much of Chile really does not care what is going on down in the Patagonia. They don't go there, even for vacations.

The change of ministers is only marginally more interesting and important to the rest of Chile. Most Chileans are at the beach, standing over an asado right now, or just generally doing summer things. They are not really watching the news. On the flip side, but inserting the super popular mining minister to take over energy, it makes it real hard for the protesters to gain any sympathy in negotiations from the rest of the country. Whatever he does, they will have a hard time making him out to be the bad guy in the media. He will likely throw them a bone, the protesters will be the ones that get to save face, and the strikes will be able to come to an end.

Pinera is not a politician first, he is a business man. He does understand PR.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:32 am
by admin
PX, as soon as you get more details, we should pm and / or email the people that have checked in on this thread that are down there. People sometimes register, but do not subscribe to the thread. with a pm or email we might be able to get them the news.

Re: Civil Strife Southern Patagonia Jnuary 2011

Posted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:51 am
by JHyre
Comment from Carolina, my much better half:

1) She is surprised that Pinera is not acting more forcefully, and thinks it a mistake.

2) She does think that people would get pissed over "just the gas" and that there is not necessarily more to it. In her view, it would be like cutting welfare in the US, this is not a small dollar item for these people. Given that the houses are "Piece o you-know-what", cuts would hit harder than most Americans might imagine.

3) She is surprised that Pinera didn't offer some help in insulating houses, etc

John Hyre