Batalla de Carabobo – Battle of Carabobo
188 years ago, in the plains of Carabobo, the patriot troops led by The Liberator Simón Bolívar faced the royalist troops under the command of General Miguel de la Torre in the most important battle for the independence of the Great Colombia (a country composed by Venezuela, Colombia, Panamá and Ecuador which broke apart in 1830). After several hours of bloody battle the Spanish army was crushed and the independence of Venezuela was secured. It took two more years of fighting for the patriots to take control of of all the territory that would become the Republic of Venezuela.
188 years later Venezuelans still commemorate this day and remember those who died for our independence. The 24th of June is the Day of the Battle of Carabobo, a celebration of the battle that gave us independence, but it is also the Day of the Armed Forces, a commemoration of the important and honourable role that the military played throughout the bloody years of the Independence War. Today, the country Bolívar liberated is anything but a free land. An oppressive regime, the presence of foreign troops on our soil, and the continual attempt to rewrite our history have all contributed in making XXIst century Venezuela not a symbol of freedom but of tyranny. However, those of us who know our history know the true foundations of our Republic, a republic built on the ideals of liberty and freedom that led patriot troops to victory in the plains of Carabobo in 1821.