Featured

Leaked Wikileaks Doc Reveals US Military Use of IMF, World Bank As “Unconventional” Weapons – Collective Evolution — MCViewPoint

Though the unconventional warfare manual is notable for stating so openly that “independent” financial institutions like the World Bank and the IMF are essentially extensions of U.S. government power, analysts have noted for decades that these institutions have consistently pushed U.S. geopolitical goals abroad. Ecuador – whose current president has sought to bring the country […]

via Leaked Wikileaks Doc Reveals US Military Use of IMF, World Bank As “Unconventional” Weapons – Collective Evolution — MCViewPoint

Advertisements
Featured

An Urgent Appeal for Unity against the Growing Danger of War – Canadian Peace Congress

To all those who share our sense of urgency about the worsening international situation, and the grave danger that war poses for the world today, we issue this Appeal for a united and powerful response.

At this critical moment, ending militarism, aggression and war, averting climate catastrophe, and tackling poverty, social disparity and related global problems should be humanity’s top priorities. Instead, political elites, especially in the countries of the NATO alliance including Canada, are pushing the world in the opposite direction.

We are witnessing the emergence of a ‘new cold war’ and the deliberate cultivation of Russophobia and Sino-phobia, along with other forms of fear-mongering and demonization. In North America, rearmament, bullying tactics and glorification of militarism seem the order of the day. While US President Donald Trump has been particularly shrill in his attacks against peace, his Democratic Party rivals frequently attempt to out-flank him with their hawkish rhetoric. The principles of international law – respect for the full equality and sovereignty of all countries, non-interference, and the resolution of disputes through peaceful negotiation, not threats and aggression – are being increasingly violated. Important agreements such as the Iran Nuclear deal (JCPOA) and the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces/INF treaty are being unilaterally cancelled.

The arms race is accelerating, and weapons systems relentlessly “modernized”. Globally, military spending is now over a trillion dollars a year, with the expanding US military budget leading the way. Foreign military bases are spreading like a metastasizing cancer, and the world’s armed forces are now the largest single global source of carbon emissions from fossil fuel consumption.

As regional and international flashpoints sharpen, the danger of global war – involving the main nuclear powers – looms ever larger. The NATO encirclement of the Russian Federation is tightening, and economic and military pressures, as well as propaganda attacks against the People’s Republic of China are growing. Backed by Washington, Israel’s rulers are escalating their repressive, apartheid policies against the Palestinian people in besieged Gaza and the Occupied West Bank. Imperialist “regime change” campaigns are targeting Venezuela, Nicaragua and other countries around the world. The US occupation of Afghanistan is now entering its 18th year, with no end in sight. Canada’s arms sales are helping the Saudi regime conduct a vicious war against the people of Yemen. Even the hopeful signs of progress on the Korean peninsula towards a peaceful resolution of that longstanding conflict are being undermined by hawkish forces inside the US Administration and the military-industrial complex.

The widespread advance of racist, national chauvinist, and neo-fascist movements is adding to global instability. The deepening economic crisis of capitalism is fuelling increased rivalries, trade and tariff wars, even predictions of another global economic meltdown. The crisis of climate change is already bringing destructive weather systems, droughts, rising ocean levels, and other dire consequences.

Canada’s Role

In the face of this rapidly deteriorating situation, Canada should and must be a voice of reason and restraint, and a principled advocate for peace and disarmament. Instead, however, Ottawa has become one of the most bellicose voices marching to the ‘drums of war’. The current Liberal government of Justin Trudeau and Chrystia Freeland has tilted Canadian foreign and defence policies in a far-right, militarist and interventionist direction, and its bloated war budget squanders valuable resources which would be better spent on socially useful purposes. Any hope that this government would slash carbon emissions, or prioritize the needs of workers, Indigenous peoples, the poor and marginalized, seniors and youth, has vanished. Instead, Canadian military spending is skyrocketing, from the current levels of $20 billion, to a projected $36 billion by the middle of the next decade.

Across Canada, a number of useful and important peace & solidarity initiatives are taking place. But we must face the reality that overall, the peace movement in Canada and internationally today is not sufficient to address these many dangerous and interrelated threats. Unlike earlier periods – the 1980s with its huge mobilizations against the danger of nuclear war, or the early 2000s when millions protested the invasion of Iraq – the anti-war movement today is far smaller. The doctrine of “responsibility to protect”, which the imperialist powers use as a pretext for their geopolitical agenda, has disoriented and neutralized popular resistance.

Today it is more urgent than ever to foster greater cooperation, and unity of action among all of the forces for peace, solidarity and social justice. In the view of the Canadian Peace Congress, the absolutely imperative task of our times is to build powerful mass mobilizations for a decisive shift in Canadian and global politics, away from confrontation and militarism, and towards peace and disarmament. Only such a change can give the human race a realistic chance to save the planet from war and environmental disaster, and to improve the lives of billions of people.

But success requires far more than well-meaning phrases. Common action to transform Canadian foreign and defence polices toward peace and disarmament is needed now! We call upon all the diverse forces in our movement to set aside differences, unite around our shared concerns, and build campaigns to push back the threat of war and militarism, before it is too late!

The Canadian Peace Congress stands committed to this urgent and decisive goal and welcomes dialogue and joint action with any and all peace and solidarity groups and other concerned organizations and movements to help work for its realization.

Issued by the Executive Committee, Canadian Peace Congress

March 2019

____

We invite you to share this Unity Appeal with other activists and concerned organizations, and we would welcome your thoughts and suggestions. You can reach us atinfo@canadianpeacecongress.ca, or through the post at Box 73593, Wychwood PO, Toronto, ON  M6C 4A7

________________________________________________________________________________

Featured

‘R Is for Reparations:’ Kids write book about black history – CBC Kids News

Drawings, dances and words from kids are all part of book written in a day

Abena Atwell-Rodney has grown up knowing that black people in Canada “weren’t treated right.”

Now, she’s hoping that a book she created with a group of about 30 other kids from Nova Scotia will help change that.

The book is called R Is for Reparations, and was written in one day in February 2018.

Kids from the black community helped write the words and create the illustrations.

One year later, during Black History Month, the book was released to the public.

Abena Atwell-Rodney is a 10-year-old from Halifax who helped write R Is for Reparations. (CBC)

“I was part of something that’s really amazing. And really fun to do,” said Abena.

It’s an alphabet book, with every letter from A to Z having a different message about African-Canadian history.

Reparations is an international movement which seeks to repair and compensate black communities for the historic injustices of anti-black racism.

It’s a word kids like 12-year-old Chika Tie are now very familiar with.

“It’s when you give back to black people for the slavery and stuff,” said Chika.

Her 10-year-old sister, Amara, has a similar perspective.

“It wasn’t fair that black people had to go through that,” she said. “We should learn more about [black people] and how they survived through all those hard times.”

Amara and Chika Tie have learned the importance of reparations for the black community in Nova Scotia and around the world. (CBC)

Topsy Olatunj, 10, said she is happy to have participated in the writing of the book, and to be sharing it with other kids.

“I usually read books made by other people. And so having … to read a book that I contributed to … is really special and really exciting,” she said.

Topsy Olatunj said she learned about the good things that African people have done in Canada while writing the book. (CBC)

The creation of R Is for Reparations was led by the Nova Scotia chapter of the Global Afrikan Congress.

Its chair, Lynn Jones, said it’s important for Nova Scotia to be part of the movement.

“People in Nova Scotia are the original African people in the whole country, having arrived here in 1604,” she said. “What better place than here to begin that reparations quest in the country?”

A book cover that says R Is for Reparations

Featured

A CALL  FOR  CAMPAIGNS  OF  MASS  ACTIVISM  IN  THE  CAPITALS  OF  EUROPE AGAINST  THE UNLAWFUL “BLACKLISTING” OF  CARIBBEAN  NATIONS  BY  THE EUROPEAN UNION

Image result for pic blacklist

On 12th March 2019 , the Council of the powerful 28-nation European Union (EU) placed 15 small developing countries on a so-called “BLACKLIST” of what it calls “non-cooperative jurisdictions” as a prelude to imposing crippling punitive measures and sanctions against these nations and their International Business industries. These countries include Barbados, Belize, Dominica, and Trinidad and Tobago.

 

What the European Union Council considers these territories to be “non-cooperative” about reveals the raw exercise of power by the strong over the weak! In this case, the unlawful intention of the EU is to impose its tax policies upon other sovereign independent non-European nations through oppressive strong-arm tactics– to the disadvantage of those sovereign, independent non-European nations.

So far as the European Union (EU) is concerned, the targeted countries must either surrender to the EU’s demands to raise their taxes or face dire consequences. The EU Council has specifically directed that all EU member states must “take the revised EU list of non-cooperative jurisdictions into account” in relation to all matters of aid, trade, and financing pertaining to the countries on the so-called “blacklist”. In other words, those nations that do not surrender to EU tax demands are to be punished !

According to the EU Council, the lower levels of tax rates applied by these countries to both international companies and to their own indigenous companies harm the EU’s tax revenues. The theory behind this unproven contention is that EU countries are losing tax revenues because of the lower tax levels of other countries. Yet, the EU Council has never conducted or published any research to prove its claim. Indeed, the EU has operated as if it is simply enough for its Council and Commission to make this assertion for it to be true!

This claim of ‘harmful tax competition’ goes back to the late 1990s when the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, (OECD) – the club of the world’s richest countries – “blacklisted” many Third World nations because they had low tax regimes.

Eventually, the OECD– pressured from within its own councils and sensitive then to the outcry from small countries– created the so-called  “Global Forum” in an effort to paint a better picture of its self-assumed  authority for setting international tax rules.

The Global Forum is still  dominated by OECD members, but at least it includes a number of small countries whose views have to be taken into account, albeit only within the narrow and self-serving framework set by the OECD. And the Global Forum has set rules that the Caribbean nations have largely complied with– leading, in the current era, to a relatively healthy and mutually respectful relationship between the OECD and the member states of our Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

But not so the European Union! Even that limited area of manoeuvre accorded by the OECD to the small states of this World appears to be unacceptable to the high and mighty EU ! Hence, the advent of the EU’s own effort to impose its will on developing countries!

Take the case of Barbados for example. The EU complained that Barbados’ practice of applying a “lower” tax rate to International Companies domiciled in Barbados and a separate “higher” tax rate to indigenous Barbadian Companies constituted an illicit “harmful tax practice”, and demanded that Barbados amend its tax regime. In response, the Government of Barbados carried out a “convergence” of the two tax rates– bringing down the tax rate applied to local companies and bringing up the tax rate applied to international companies and establishing one tax rate for all companies domiciled in Barbados. But the European Union complained that  even this was not good enough for them! They  charged that the single tax rate that Barbados was applying was ‘too low” , and demanded that the Government of Barbados give a “political commitment” to raise the country’s Corporate Tax rate. And when the Barbados Government– in exercise of its sovereign right — refused to give any such “political commitment”, the EU placed Barbados on its so-called “Blacklist”!

As with all such power plays in international politics, the EU has targeted the weakest and most vulnerable countries first. And, no doubt, if they succeed in bending a large number of small countries to their will, in the fullness of time they will confront more economically resilient countries.

It needs to be understood therefore that the four CARICOM countries that are currently on the list — Barbados, Belize Dominica and Trinidad and Tobago—constitute only the beginning of the targeting of the Caribbean. Indeed, other Caribbean countries would already have been included were it not for the fact that their governments have promised the EU that, by the end of 2019, they will “amend or abolish” those aspects of their tax regimes that the EU has unilaterally deemed to be “harmful”. Among the Caribbean governments that have made this promise, described as a “commitment” by the EU, are: Antigua and Barbuda, St Kitts-Nevis and St Lucia.

Ominously for Antigua and Barbuda, St Kitts-Nevis and St Lucia, it is the EU that has set the criteria for determining “economic substance” and it is therefore the EU and the EU alone that will decide whether any commitment has been met !

The sadness of all this for small countries is that this steady erosion of their rights could have been nipped in the bud. In the late 1990s, a strong alliance of small states, crying out at the advantage that was being taken of them contrary to International Law, caused the OECD ( and the EU within it) to pause. Had these developing countries remained resolute in their resistance, the picture would have been very different today.

But, the OECD and the EU reset their strategy. They picked-off governments of small countries one by one through different forms of “persuasion”. The tragi-comedy of representatives of our governments rushing to Paris and Brussels to sign away their state’s rights played out on an international stage of the absurd. Ministers succumbed to the coercion and raved to their people that, by agreeing to surrender revenues and jobs, they had shown that their countries were not “tax havens” and that they were “fully compliant with international standards”, although it was the OECD and the EU, not any international body, that was setting the “standards”.

The problem with ceding rights is that it never stops. As Richard Hay of the London-based legal firm, Stikeman Elliot, points out: “Those countries that have accepted EU dictation on design of their domestic laws to avoid being blacklisted now have a foot on the escalator – the EU will be back for more next year and in the years following.”

Back in the early years of this century many Caribbean states chose to surrender to the OECD and the EU, casting it as “cooperation” in an effort to salvage their international financial services sectors. But that “cooperation” has been one-sided and disadvantageous to the small states of the Caribbean. It is now time for our Caribbean states to stop giving in to unlawful EU demands and to fight back !

Our Caribbean nations must assert their sovereign right—as independent nations—to set their own taxation rates as they deem fit, and in accordance with their own independent assessment of their needs! And this is not merely an academic exercise in asserting and defending national sovereignty. Rather, this matter has grave implications for whether our Caribbean nations will ultimately be denied the right to possess International Business and Finance Industries, and to garner the critical revenues that these industries deliver– revenues that are needed to build and operate schools, hospitals, subsidised housing estates, public service departments, and the list goes on.

The fundamental point to be made and understood is that the EU does not possess any legal right to determine for independent Caribbean nations what their tax systems and rates should be. And for the EU to respond to Caribbean tax regimes that they do not like by unilaterally imposing economic sanctions is to breach the fundamental principles of International Law and to commit an unlawful act of Economic Warfare!

The sad reality is that the European Union is determined to destroy our International Business industries and to reserve all of this type of economic activity for the nations of the white Western World! This is a selfish, irresponsible, and illegal ambition on their part, and we must not let them succeed !

It is now, therefore, the duty of all patriotic citizens of the Caribbean who reside in countries of the European Union (EU) to organize themselves and launch campaigns of mass activism in the various capitals of the EU against these unlawful and egregious attacks on the sovereignty and welfare of the nations and people of the Caribbean!

THE  TIME  FOR  ACTION  IS  NOW ! 

 

 

Featured

Testimony  of OLAUDAH EQUIANO

Image result for olaudah equiano pictures
(Equiano was born in the territory that is today known as Nigeria in the year 1745. At the age of 11 years he was kidnapped and sold into slavery. He was put on a slave ship and transported across the “Middle Passage” to Barbados. Many years later– in 1790– he wrote and published the most famous slavery narrative of them all– “The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano)
“At last we came in sight of the island of Barbados, at which the whites on board gave a great shout, and made many signs of joy to us………..and we soon anchored….at Bridge Town. Many merchants and planters now came on board. They put us in separate parcels, and examined us attentively. They also made us jump, and pointed to the land, signifying we were to go there. We thought by this we should be eaten by these ugly men, as they appeared to us; and, when soon after we were all put down under the deck again, there was much dread and trembling among us, and nothing but bitter cries to be heard all the night from these apprehensions, insomuch that at last the white people got some old slaves from the land to pacify us….
 
After we were landed, there came to us Africans of all languages. We were conducted immediately to the merchant’s yard, where we were pent up altogether like so many sheep in a fold, without regard to sex or age…..
 
We were not many days in the merchant’s custody before we were sold after their usual manner, which is this :– On a signal given, (as the beat of a drum) the buyers rush at once into the yard where the slaves are confined, and make a choice of that parcel they like best………In this manner, without scruple, are relations and friends separated, most of them never to see each other again.
 
I remember in the vessel in which I was brought over, in the men’s apartment, there were several brothers, who, in the sale, were sold in different lots; and it was very moving on this occasion to see and hear their cries at parting. O, ye nominal Christians! Might not an African ask you, learned you this from your God, who says unto you, Do unto all men as you would men should do unto you?
 
Is it not enough that we are torn from our country and friends to toil for your luxury and lust of gain? Must every tender feeling be likewise sacrificed to your avarice? Are the dearest friends and relations, now rendered more dear by their separation from their kindred still to be parted from each other, and thus prevented from cheering the gloom of slavery with the small comfort of being together and mingling their sufferings and sorrows? 
 
Why are parents to lose their children, brothers their sisters, or husbands their wives? “
Contributed by David Comissiong
Featured

LENIN – by Langston Hughes

Image result for pic of Lenin and Langston HughesImage result for pic of Lenin and Langston Hughes

Lenin walks around the world.

Frontiers cannot bar him.

Neither barracks nor barricades impede.

Nor does barbed wire scar him.

Lenin walks around the world.

Black, brown, and white receive him.

Language is no barrier.

The strangest tongues believe him.

Lenin walks around the world.

The sun sets like a scar.

Between the darkness and the dawn

There rises a red star.

(Langston Hughes)

Langston Hughes wrote poetry, plays, and works of fiction, and in 1938 when he was 31, traveled to the Soviet Union to help make a movie about the Black struggle against segregation in the U.S. Though the movie never got made, the experience influenced his views and inspired a poem of the experience:

The poem uses the figure of Vladimir Lenin as a stand-in for the march of social equality across the world, the hope of racial and economic harmony in the world.

Though Hughes didn’t identify as a communist and claimed to have never read Marxist texts at his congressional trial led by the infamous “Red Scare” Senator Joseph McCarthy, his poem describes an awakening in the world among oppressed people of the world for justice.

Contributed by David Comissiong

_______________________________

Note from New YOrk Times

In June 1932, the poet Langston Hughes arrived in Moscow as a part of group of 22 African-Americans who had been hired to act in a Soviet film about race relations and labor disputes in the American South. The cast had been assembled by Louise Thompson, an African-American activist who helped found the Harlem branch of the Friends of the Soviet Union, an initiative of the Communist International. Thompson saw in the film (which had the remarkably literal title “Black and White”) an opportunity to counter the distorted and stereotypical depictions of the African-American experience that plagued Hollywood films.

Hughes echoed Thompson’s frustrations with American cinema, explaining to a friend that he was putting his faith in the Soviets because “the American Negro stands very little chance of achieving true representation” in Hollywood. The 1929 Soviet production of “China Express,” a movie about a working-class revolt on a train traveling to Suchow from Nanking, inspired confidence in Hughes and Patterson that the Soviets could make quality pictures about people of color that didn’t reduce them to minstrels.

Featured

THE  DECLARATION OF MANAGUA

Adopted at the 8th Summit of the Association of Caribbean States on 29th March 2019. The people’s of Latin America and the Caribbean are counting on them to honour this declaration regardless of the pressure and inducements from Imperialism.
 
The Declaration of Managua was unanimously  adopted by the Member States of the Association of Caribbean States, including the following Member States of the Lima Group of states — Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama, and Honduras.
 
One of the central components of the Declaration of Managua is a commitment to the principles of the United Nations Charter and to the objective of maintaining the Greater Caribbean as a ZONE  OF  PEACE.
These nations therefore expressed themselves as follows in Paragraph 21 of the Declaration of Managua:-
“Reiterates our commitment and unconditional respect for the goals and principles of the United Nations Charter and the principles of International Law, to maintain international peace and security, the promotion of friendly relations between states, international cooperation in solving problems, the sovereign equality of States, the peaceful resolution of disputes, the prohibition of the use or threat of use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State and the non-interference in their domestic affairs, essential requirements for preserving the Greater Caribbean as a Zone of Peace and cooperation, in accordance with the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace.
The ACS member States– inclusive of the said Lima Group states of Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Panama, and Honduras– also expressed themselves in Paragraph 22 of the Declaration as follows:-
“Rejects the application of coercive unilateral measures that are contrary to International Law, and that harm the peace and prosperity of the Greater Caribbean.”
These , therefore, are commitments that all Member States of the ACS — including the afore-mentioned  member states of the Lima Group– should be expected ( and be called upon) to uphold at the Organization of American States and in other international fora.

_________________________________

The people’s of Latin America and the Caribbean are counting on them to honour this declaration regardless of the pressure and inducements from Imperialism.

Featured

THE  CARIBBEAN  INTELLECTUAL  CLASS  NEEDS  TO  COME  TO  THE  WICKET ! – David Comissiong

On the night of Friday 5th April 2019, United States Vice President Mike Pence, delivered a speech at Rice University’s “Baker Institute for Public Policy”, and declared that the governmental leaders of our sister Caribbean nation of Cuba are “the real imperialists” of the Western Hemisphere; that “the time has come to liberate Venezuela from Cuba”; and that the USA would be taking additional measures to prevent oil revenues from reaching the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, including sanctions on Venezuela’s finance and oil sectors.
And immediately following Pence’s speech, the US Treasury announced the imposition of sanctions on 34 vessels owned or operated by Venezuela’s state-run oil company, PDVSA, that carry Venezuelan oil to customers outside the region. The US Treasury also sanctioned two shipping operators and a vessel that delivered oil to Cuba in the months of February and March 2019!
It has therefore now become absolutely clear that a great danger is being posed to the system of International Law that is so vital to the wellbeing and existence of small developing states like ours; to the very concept of National Sovereignty and the notion of the sovereign equality of states; to our concept of ourselves as a regional “family’ or “community” of nations and peoples; and to our long settled conception of our hemispheric history and of the destiny bequeathed to us by that history.
We are all aware that the Governments of our Caribbean Community (CARICOM) have been making heroic efforts — some more heroic than others– to stand in the breach, to uphold the value of PEACE, and to defend the  fundamental interests of our Caribbean Civilization and the system of International Law on which it is based.
Indeed, our Governments have made principled Statements emphasizing fundamental precepts of International Law; have traveled to the United Nations to meet with the Secretary General and to address the Security Council; have advanced the notion of the Caribbean being a Zone of Peace; and have launched a diplomacy of dialogue centred around their self-engineered “Montevideo Mechanism‘  based on the four principles of dialogue, negotiation, commitment and implementation.
BUT  WHAT  OF  THE  INTELLECTUAL  CLASS  OF  THE  CARIBBEAN  COMMUNITY ?  WHAT  CONTRIBUTION  HAVE  THEY  BEEN  MAKING  TO  THIS HISTORIC  STRUGGLE  TO PRESERVE  PEACE  IN  OUR  REGION, AND TO PROTECT  OUR  CARIBBEAN  CIVILIZATION  AND  THE  SYSTEM  OF  INTERNATIONAL  LAW  THAT  IT  DERIVES  SO  MUCH  OF  ITS  STRENGTH  FROM ?
I am sending out a CALL  TO  ACTION to all of the scholars, educators, academics, and intellectuals of our Caribbean Community.
With a few notable and highly appreciated exceptions, the members of the Caribbean intellectual class, including the members of our University community, have been missing in action, as this critical struggle has unfolded.
This is not good enough. We, the Caribbean people, need to hear from our academics and intellectuals ! Our political leaders need the support of your scholarship and knowledge.
History will not absolve you if you do not dutifully and courageously stride out of the Pavilion and take your rightful place at the Wicket!
 
I make this CALL on behalf of no institution or Government, but solely in my capacity as a humble Citizen of our Caribbean Civilization.
 
DAVID  COMISSIONG
Citizen of the Caribbean
Featured

Friendship Association Saint Vincent and the Grenadines-Cuba strongly condemns recent sanctions imposed by the United States against Cuba

The St Vincent and the Grenadines/Cuba Friendship Society views with alarm the deteriorating climate in international relations which threatens world peace and propels it closer to the darkest days of the Cold War and global military confrontation.

In particular, we note and condemn strongly the latest actions of the Trump administration in imposing further sanctions against Cuba and Venezuela. US Vice President Mike Pence last week announced sanctions on 34 ships, owned and operated by the state-run oil firm Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), as well as two additional companies which transport crude oil from Venezuela to Cuba.

These sanctions, which also apply to two firms, based in Greece and Liberia, are part of stepped-up efforts to undermine the economies of both Cuba and Venezuela. Worryingly, these actions not only relate to differences between the USA and these two countries but also aim to pressure independent countries not to trade with countries with which the US does not agree. It is a blatant attempt to substitute might for right in international relations.

We believe that might cannot and must not be the substitute for right in international relations. The USA is free to trade with whomever it chooses, and that must also be the right of all independent nations, irrespective of size or wealth. No one country has the right to seize the assets of another, nor to deny third countries the right to enter into relations with whichever countries they might choose.

The SVG/Cuba Friendship Society also condemns the announcement by the Trump administration that it is cancelling an agreement between the Major League Baseball association of the USA and the Cuban Baseball Federation which would allow Cuban baseball players, considered some of the best in the world, to play professional baseball in the USA without having to defect from their country of birth.

It is a retrograde step which not only further contaminates US-Cuba relations but hurts the players, their families and baseball fans in the USA.

Featured

Cuban collaboration: Principles and truths from Venezuela

President Díaz-Canel visits Venezuelan patients being treated by Cuban doctors. Photo: Estudio Revolución

The history of Cuban international collaboration is marked by adherence to ethical precepts established in our state’s conduct and positions. Our government does not interfere in the internal affairs of any country and respects national sovereignty and international law. The hundreds of thousands of compatriots who provide their services on five continents believe in, and abide by, these principles. Thus, strengthened by these beliefs, we work in the homeland of Bolívar and Chávez.

The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has welcomed the second largest number of internationalist Cubans, since January 1, 1959, surpassed only by the sister nation of Angola, which lived, worked, fought, and died with a great number of our sons and daughters. Venezuela is also the country in which Cuban collaborators participate in the widest range of sectors, including sports, culture, education, communications, agriculture, the food industry, science, energy, and transportation, among others.

With the popular victory and the arrival of Comandante Hugo Chávez Frías to the Presidency, the Bolivarian Revolution put human beings at the center of its work. For the first time, many marginalized and poor Venezuelans were treated like valued citizens, with access to social programs that the government implemented, backed by 73% of the GDP investment to benefit the majority.

Thus the social missions emerged, created and driven forward by Chávez as “the soul of the Revolution,” given their inclusive, popular, participative, democratic, human, solidary, and genuinely socialist nature.

Within this context, into the heart of the people and their revolution, came Cuban collaborators. Fidel delineated the fundamental principles of the cooperation: First of all: serve the Venezuelan people well, prepare those who will follow us, and care for our brigades. These premises have been, are, and will be what guides the Cuban presence in this sister country.

Misión Barrio Adentro Salud (Into the Neighborhood Health Mission) has had the greatest impact. Our collaborators are distributed in 24 states and 335 municipalities of the country. They live in all parishes and offer services in more than 1,500 facilities. They can be found on the steep hillsides, with the poor, and just as easily on the rolling hills where the rich and middle class bourgeois population lives.

HEARTS IN VENEZUELA

Everyone knows the reality in Venezuela; assistance is based on medical ethics.No one is asked about political affiliation or payment. They are people, patients, human beings … and that is enough to sensitize doctors trained in the values ​​of the Revolution, which speak for themselves, no inoculation is needed.

Examples abound in the daily work and at exceptional moments, such as those during the opposition thug violence (guarimbas) of 2017, or January 22-23 this year, and even more recently, on February 23, when those who suffered gunshots, blows, and even burns, both Chavistas and supporters of the opposition, were treated by Cubans at Comprehensive Diagnostic Centers, all with the same disposition and quality attention.

At these centers, after a clinical examination, the most direct, effective method of identifying an ailment, patients without distinction may undergo tests, receive treatment with medication, rehabilitation, or surgery, and, if necessary, specialized assistance in Cuba.

Supervision? Yes, it exists, but differs significantly in focus as compared to what the enemies of Cuba and Venezuela propose. As in any other part of the world, statistics are gathered, not in the mercantilist sense, but to evaluate the impact of treatment and preventative work on health and quality of life.

In the 18 years since Misión Barrio Adentro Salud was launched, 1.552 billion medical consultations have been provided, 1,473,317 lives saved, and 3,391,967 surgeries performed.

Among the 10,388 services offered are assistance to the disabled, orthodontics, ophthalmological treatments, and ongoing support for patients with chronic diseases like diabetes. In only ten years, 209,607 patients suffering from diabetic foot ulcers have been treated with HebertProt-P, a high-impact product of Cuban science, which has contributed to lowering amputations to 3% among those treated, while Venezuelan statistics show that 40 to 60% of patients who do not receive the Cuban product require amputation.

Something that distinguishes the work of the health system developed by the Bolivarian Revolution through the Barrio Adentro mission – first with Cuban doctors and now with the new generation of Venezuelan community doctors in the 13,617 popular clinics – is field work, door to door, with integrated teams and the participation of other community actors, not to seek votes or apply political pressure, but to practice social medicine, that which, from the soul, cures disease.

NO CUBAN AGENTS OR SOLDIERS

Grateful Cubans remain in Venezuela, voluntarily and with a high sense of courage and revolutionary integrity. Those who fulfill a solidary duty remain united with Venezuelans in the face of aggression and threats from imperialism and its lackeys. Only those who came looking for the good life have abandoned the cause. There are no Cuban agents or soldiers on Bolivarian soil, only collaborators who value peace, love, and life, who teach and learn every day.
As in Cuba and through Mission Robinson – a name taken from the pseudonym of Simón Bolívar’s teacher – 3,095,546 Venezuelans have learned to read and write, using in this lofty cause Cuba’s “Yes, I can” method.
We can affirm with certainty that the Venezuelan people are now more cultured and freer; thinking, reasoning, and deciding their own future, thanks to the social missions of Venezuela and Cuba.

Constitutional President Nicolás Maduro Moros has strengthened the Hugo Chávez Frías Missions and Great Socialist Missions System, reaffirming that they constitute a source of social, economic, and political power. Shoulder to shoulder, for peace and love, Cubans will always accompany you.

In context:
– No Cuban doctor denies service to a patient and much less risks the life of one to achieve political ends.
– Cuban international medical collaboration has existed for over 55 years and has a presence in 124 countries, with more than 400,000 health workers providing services.
– Since Cuban medical collaboration began in Venezuela, more than 140,000 health workers have participated, offering millions of medical consultations, while more than 24,000 Venezuelan community doctors have been trained.
– The Barrio Adentro I and II missions have brought health to the people, altruistically, as characterizes our professionals.
– Only those who support the coup from abroad would attempt to sully their honor.
– Cuban collaboration in Venezuela is an expression of the solidarity defended by Fidel and Chávez.
– More than 220,000 Cuban specialists from different sectors have served on Bolivarian soil over the years. This is the real Cuban army, not the one that coup leaders concoct.

Source: http://en.granma.cu/mundo/2019-03-28/cuban-collaboration-principles-and-truths-from-venezuela

 

http://en.granma.cu/mundo/2019-03-28/cuban-collaboration-principles-and-truths-from-venezuela

Featured

The Quintet of Evil, The Quest for Oil and A Pack of Lies

See the source imageSee the source image

Photo 1: John Bolton, Mike Pompeo, Pres. Donald Trump and Mike Pence

Photo 2: Elliot Abrams

Officials of the US Government, the Quintet of Evil, Donald Trump, Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, Mike Spence and the devil’s twin Elliot Abrams have been at pains to convince the world that the government of Venezuela must be overthrown because the people are suffering. However, the United Nations Human Development Index (HDI) tells a different story.
 
The Human Development Index measures the average achievement of countries on key dimensions of human development: life expectancy, health, education and standard of living. On this index, Venezuela ranks Number 78, falling in the category of High Human Development, above the following LIMA Group members: Brazil (79), Peru (89), Columbia (90), Paraguay (110), Guatemala (127) and Honduras 133. Jamaica ranks 97, also below Venezuela. (See http://hdr.undp.org/en/content/human-development-index-hdi andhttp://hdr.undp.org/en/composite/HDI for details.)  Venezuela has been able to achieve this ranking despite the impact of decades of political and economic destabilization by the US government, stepped up with a barrage of crippling sanctions, seizure of CITGO revenue, and forfeiture of other Venezuelan assets under Presidents Obama and Trump.
 

It would behoove Jamaica and the Lima Group countries to take lessons from Venezuela which has significantly improved the lives of citizens through the wealth which was accrued from nationalizing its oil resources and using the revenue to: improve housing,  building over 500,000 houses since 2011; provide free education from daycare to university;  provide free healthcare;  eliminate illiteracy; reduce poverty from 70% in 1996 to 21% and extreme poverty from 40% to 7%; reduce the infant mortality rate from 25 per 1000 to 13 per 1000; and through a collaborative agreement with Cuba, restore the eyesight of 1.5 million citizens who prior to the Chavez government could not afford expensive eye surgery. According to the latest WHO data published in 2018, life expectancy in Venezuela is: Male 69.5, female 79.0, and total life expectancy is 74.1. This gives Venezuela a World Life Expectancy ranking of 88.These are just some of the achievements of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela under the leadership of Hugo Chavez and Nicholas Maduro. It is the US sanctions against Venezuela that have been eroding some of the gains of the country by making it difficult for them to obtain medicines and some essential goods.

Not only did the Bolivarian Republic uplift its people, it sought to uplift the people of the entire region of Latin America and the Caribbean through the Petro Caribe Agreement, allowing our countries  to purchase oil, paying 60 percent within 90 days, and the remaining 40 percent over a period of 25 years at 1 percent interest. Venezuela also provided oil at a low cost to poor people in the United States to save them from freezing  to death for want of expensive sources of heat during sub-zero winters.

 
It has been reported that a group of American officials recently met secretly in Washington DC with  representatives of Juan Guaido and some military advisers to discuss a military attack on Venezuela. Members of the  Quintet of Evil have made no secret that the real motivation behind their sinister offensive against Venezuela is their quest for oil and they have repeatedly stated that “all options are on the table” if the legitimate, democratically elected, president Nicolas Maduro does not step down. To create the pretext for grabbing Venezuela’s oil, they are telling a pack of lies to throw dust into the eyes of the people of the world. That is the company with which our government and the governments of the LIMA group have chosen to align themselves. They are cooperating with the liars and warmongers, especially in the manipulation of the Organisation of American States. They have breached the rules of the OAS Charter by admitting to the OAS, a representative of Juan Guaido who has no legitimate claim to presidency of Venezuela because he did not contest, let alone win, the presidential elections. There is a fear in some quarters that this representative of Juan Guaido will be used to call on the OAS to launch a military attack on Venezuela. 
 
The Jamaican government, the governments of the Lima Group and some of our other Caribbean governments are, by their complicity against Venezuela, inviting war into our region, which in 2014 was affirmed as a Zone of Peace.  History will hold them accountable. Unless they make an about turn from the course they are on, history is going to judge them harshly for opening the door for the re-enslavement of our peoples by the descendants of our slave masters. They are causing the valiant heroes of all our nations to turn in their graves.

One thing they must remember is the famous quote from Henry Kissinger: “The United States does not have permanent friends, but permanent interests.” Even though Guatemala and Honduras are cooperating with the US in the Lima group, President Trump recently slapped harsh sanctions on them in his war against the Latin American people who are fleeing poverty and danger in their countries. 
Featured

Open Letter re Dutch State and Dutch media gestapo tactics – violation of human rights and freedom of free press – James Finies

 

 

(Photo of James Finies)

 

Bonaire,  March 15, 2019

To: Mr Edison Rijna, governor of Bonaire

Plaza Wilhelmina 1

Bonaire

 

 

 

Honorable governor Rijna,

With this letter we denounce conspiracy and extortion by the Dutch State’s interference to undermine the Bonerian press and media fundamental right to freedom of free press.  Recently on March 6th,, the major leading daily newspaper of Bonaire, the Extra, on page 31, through an editorial article denounced that they were approached by the Dutch media, based on a “general media pact and agreement”, to conspire to boycott and silence Mr. James Finies, president of the civil society organization : foundation Nos Ke Boneiru Bek (We Want Bonaire Back).

 

Governor Rijna, a non-democratic appointed governor-institution, representing the King and Kingdom, maintaining powers above/and to over-rule the elected government,  whose main duty is the legal protection of the rule of international law and as such to respect, to protect and to comply with our peoples rights. Above described gestapo tactics by the Dutch State and Dutch media conspiracy and intimidation of the local media could lead to a totalitarian or dictatorship rule if the people are not informed by free press.  Mr Rijna should take note of the fact as the people if they are not informed freely, cannot make up their minds and cannot have an opinion. They will be deprived not only of the capacity to act but also of the capacity to think and to judge. With such a people you can then do what you please.

 

As Mr Rijna is aware that our foundation NKBB has positioned itself towards the upcoming elections advising the people of Bonaire to protest and boycott this election, to vote blank or no vote. Contrary to Mr Rijna’s press-conference urging the people to use their sacred rights to go vote in an illegal system, rejected by the people and where the power is held by the Dutch parliament in the Hague, a blank vote or no vote is internationally recognized as same, exercise of this sacred right.  This “protest-vote”  is to demonstrate the people’s dissatisfaction with political alienation by the imposed current political system of public entity and as rejection of the Dutch democratic trap to legitimize the 1st chamber, the Dutch senate, with the ultimate aim of legalizing the current illegal status and all imposed laws against the Bonerian peoples.  Our “protest-vote” is also in solidarity with the peoples of our sister island Sint Eustatius. Statians cannot vote and are deprived from their “sacred-democratic-rights” because the Dutch government deposed the legitimate elected government in February 2018 through undemocratic abusive legislative, military and police actions and stopped the scheduled free election.

 

Our main request to Mr Rijna as governor is to condemn the above revelation of the Dutch state and media conspiracy and blackmail against the Bonaire free press as a serious threat and commence an investigation. Secondly, please rectify your last public statement of misinformation and tell the people of Bonaire the truth that a blank vote or no vote is also a legal exercise of their “sacred”democratic right as a “protest vote” .  And finally, as Mr Rijna, inspiring initiative of promoting, voting, by writing 685 personal letters towards the first-time-youth-voters on Bonaire to go vote. It would be morally correct, a heroic act of compassion and brotherhood towards our alienated brothers of Saint Eustatius that are deprived of democracy and cannot vote to do same. You should also write 150 letters to all Dutch 2nd chamber parliament members and another 75 letters more to all members of the Dutch Senate requesting them to restore democracy back on Sint Eustatius so the peoples of Sint Eustatius can also make use of their sacred democratic right as civilized peoples in the Kingdom.

 

James Finies, president Foundation We Want Bonaire Back

 

 

Na: Sr Edison Rijna , gezaghebber di Bonaire                                              Bonaire, 14 Mart 2019

         

Topiko: Estado Hulandes I media Hulandes taktikanan di gestapo- violashon di derecho humano di prensa liber

 

Honorabel Sr Gezaghebber Rijna,

Pa medio di es karta aki nos ta denunsia konspirashon I ekstorshon dor di Estado Hulandes I media Hulandes su interferensia pa mina prensa I media liber Boneriano su derecho fundamental di libertad di prensa liber. Resientemente riba 6 Mart , e korant prinsipal diario di Bonaire, korant Extra, riba pagina 31, pa medio di un artikulo editorial, a denunsia ku nan a wordu aserka pa media Hulandes, basa riba un “pakto I akuerdo general di tur media”, pa konspira I boykot I silensia Sr James Finies, presidente di e organisashon siviko sivil , fundashon Nos Kier Boneiru Bek.

Gezaghebber Rijna, un gobernado-instituto apunta i no-denokratiko, representando Rei I Reino, manteniendo podernan ariba I ku por over-rule e gobierno elegi, su deber prinsipal ta e protekshon di estado di derecho di akuerdo ku ley internashonal, kual ta ensera pa respeta, pa protega I pa kumpli ku derechonan di nos pueblo.  E taktikanan di gestapo di estado I media Hulandes ariba deskribi, konspirashon I intimidashon di e prensa lokal, por kondusi na un estado totalitario o diktatorial si e pueblo no ta wordu informa pa prensa liber. Sr Rijna mester tuma nota di e echo ku e pueblo si nan no ta wordu informa liber, nan no por desidi I no por tin un opinion, I lo wordu depriva no solamente di nan kapasidat pa aktua pero tambe di nan kapasidat di pensa I husga. Ku un pueblo asina bo por hasi kune kiko ku bo lo kier.

Sr Rijna ta na altura ku NKBB a posishona su mes pa e elekshonan benidero konsehando e pueblo di Bonaire pa protesta I boykot e elekshon dor di vota blanku o no vota. Kontrario na Sr Rijna su deklarashonan den e konferensia prensa kaminda Sr Rijna a urgi e pueblo pa bai vota I hasi uso di nan derecho sagrado, no vota o vota blanku internashonalmente tambe ta wordu rekonose komo meskos, mesun uso di bo derecho sagrado. Un “voto-di-protesta” ta pa demonstra I protesta ku e pueblo no ta satisfecho, no ta kontentu ku e alienashon politiko dor di e aktual systema politiko impone di entidat publiko. Tambe pa rechasa e trampa demokratiko Hulandes pa legitimisa 1ste kamer Hulandes, ku e meta final pa legalisa e aktual status illegal I tambe legalisa tur leynan impone kontra e pueblo Boneriano. Ademas e “voto-di-protesta” ta mustra nos solidaridat ku e pueblo di Sint Eustatius ku no por vota motibu di e akshonan no-demokratiko , pa medio di poder leglisativo , militar I polisial abusivo Hulandes ku a deroka e gobierno legitimo demokratikamente elegi di Sint Eustatius na february 2018 I a apunta un gobernado no-elegi I a depriva e suidadonan di Sint Eustatius di nan derechonan demokratiko dor di blokia e elekshonan liber ku tabata di skedjel.

Nos petishon prinsipal na Sr Rijna komo gezaghebber ta, pa kondena e revelashon ariba di estado I media Hulandes di konspirashon I ekstorshon kontra di prensa liber Boneriano komo un menasa serio I enkamina un investigashon. Na segundo lugar pa por fabor rektifika e ultimo statement publiko di malinformashon na e pueblo Boneriano ku berdat  ta ku vota blanku o no vota tambe ta uso di bo derecho demokratiko komo un “voto-di-protesta”. I finalmente manera Sr Rijna su inisiativo inspirativo pa skirbi 685 kartanan personal na e “hobenan-ku-ta-vota-pa-prome-biaha” na Bonaire pa bai vota. Lo ta moralmente korekto, I un akshon heroiko di kompashon I fraternidat na nos rumanan aliena I isola di Sint Eustatius ku ta depriva di demokrasia I no por vota, pa hasi meskos, I skirbi 150 karta na tur e miembronan di 2de kamer I 75 karta mas na tur e miebronan di 1ste kamer pidiendo, rogando nan pa restora demokrasia bek na Sint Eustatius asina ku e pueblo di Sint Eustatius tambe por hasi uso di nan derecho sagrado manera hendenan sivilisa den Reino Hulandes.

 

Sinseramente,

 

James Finies, Nos Kier Boneiru Bek

 

 

Featured

Remembering Maurice Bishop and Grenada’s Revolution – Telesur

One often overlooked imperialist adventure was the 1983 U.S. invasion of the small Caribbean nation of Grenada.

Daniel Ortega, Maurice Bishop and Fidel Castro

The objective of the invasion was the consolidation of a pro-U.S. regime after the assassination of the charismatic Prime Minister Maurice Bishop.

Bishop came to power on Mar. 13, 1979, as the head of the New Jewel Movement, which staged a bloodless coup against the U.S.-friendly regime of Eric Gairy.

Bishop’s ability to connect with the Grenadian people has been favorably compared with Fidel Castro’s bond with the Cuban people or Hugo Chavez’s closeness to the Venezuelan masses.

Much like the modern day revolutionary processes in Latin America and the Caribbean, the revolutionary government in Grenada sought to build a society that favored the great majority of people.

The government built schools, led a massive literacy campaign, sought to develop the countryside and provided employment to the people. According to a 2013 article by Bill Bigelow, thanks to the efforts of the revolutionary government, in four years the unemployment rate dropped from 49 percent to 14 percent.

Don Rojas, press secretary for Prime Minister Bishop, explained the orientation of the revolutionary government in a 2004 interview with Democracy Now! in the following way:

“Maurice Bishop was attempting to empower the Grenadian people, a people who had a long history of slavery, followed by British colonialism, followed by independence in 1974. … Maurice Bishop’s vision for Grenada was of a small country standing tall and proud in the Caribbean region and in the world community. He was able to bring his message very successfully of a new way for Grenada and the Caribbean to the world, to the United Nations, to the non-aligned movement, et cetera, and received tremendous acclaim around the world at a time.”

Bishop was a firm internationalist and Grenada was perceived as a threat precisely because then U.S. President Ronald Reagan feared that other Caribbean countries would follow the country’s example.

“I think Washington fears that we could set an example for the rest of the region if our revolution succeeds. In the Caribbean region you’re talking about small countries with small populations and limited resources, countries that over the years have been classic examples of neo-capitalist dependencies. Now you have these new governments like Nicaragua and Grenada that are attempting a different experiment,” Bishop told the New Internationalist magazine in 1980.

As part of its internationalist and integrationist vision, the Bishop government also sought close ties with Fidel Castro’s revolutionary government in Cuba.

Bishop was a great admirer of Fidel Castro and held high praise for the Cuban revolution as an example for the region.

“Your revolution, comrades, has also provided the region and the world with a living legend in your great and indomitable leader, Fidel Castro. Fidel has taught us not only how to fight, but also how to work, how to build socialism, and how to lead our country in a spirit of humility, sincerity, commitment and firm revolutionary leadership,” said Bishop during a speech in Havana, Cuba in 1980.

The Cuban government sent hundreds of advisers and, as part of an effort to end Grenada’s isolation, helped build an airport on the island.

The U.S government jumped on this development project, with Reagan claiming it was actually an effort by the Soviet government to establish another foothold in the hemisphere, saying it formed part of an effort at “Soviet-Cuban militarization” and that the airport would serve as a “military bastion to export terror.”

This kind of demagoguery would later serve to help justify the U.S. invasion.

In October 1983, internal divisions within the New Jewel Movement led to a dramatic split and the detention and subsequent assassination of Bishop.

This internal chaos provided the pretext for the U.S. to order the invasion by approximately 7,600 soldiers, an overwhelming amount of troops for the tiny country.

The U.S. government intended to oust Bishop all along — they had in fact conducted a military exercise in August 1981 in Vieques, Puerto Rico, which was effectively a mock invasion of Grenada.

The disproportionately large invasion was deliberate, an effort to dissuade other revolutionary movements in the region from daring to attempt what Grenada had attempted. But to this day, Grenada’s short-lived revolutionary process is still remembered and honored.

Featured

US Regime Change Blueprint Proposed Venezuelan Electricity Blackouts as ‘Watershed Event’ for ‘Galvanizing Public Unrest’

Source: Max Blumenthal, http://grayzoneproject.com

guaido pence duque

The US-funded CANVAS organization that trained Juan Guaido and his allies produced a 2010 memo on exploiting electricity outages and urged the opposition “to take advantage of the situation…towards their needs”

By Max Blumenthal

A September 2010 memo by a US-funded soft power organization that helped train Venezuelan coup leader Juan Guaido and his allies identifies the potential collapse of the country’s electrical sector as “a watershed event” that “would likely have the impact of galvanizing public unrest in a way that no opposition group could ever hope to generate.”

The memo has special relevance today as Guaido moves to exploit nationwide blackouts caused by a major failure at the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant at Guri dam – a crisis that Venezuela’s government blames on US sabotage.

It was authored by Srdja Popovic of the Center for Applied Non-Violent Action and Strategies (CANVAS), a Belgrade-based “democracy promotion” organization funded by the US government that has trained thousands of US-aligned youth activists in countries where the West seeks regime change.

This group reportedly hosted Guaido and the key leaders of his Popular Will party for a series of training sessions, fashioning them into a “Generation 2007” determined to foment resistance to then-President Hugo Chavez and sabotage his plans to implement “21st century socialism” in Venezuela.

(Photo: CANVAS)

In the 2010 memo, CANVAS’s Popovic declared, “A key to Chavez’s current weakness is the decline in the electricity sector.” Popovic explicitly identified the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant as a friction point, emphasizing that “water levels at the Guri dam are dropping, and Chavez has been unable to reduce consumption sufficiently to compensate for the deteriorating industry.”

Speculating on a “grave possibility that some 70 percent of the country’s electricity grid could go dark as soon as April 2010,” the CANVAS leader stated that “an opposition group would be best served to take advantage of the situation and spin it against Chavez and towards their needs.”

Flash forward to March 2019, and the scenario outlined by Popovic is playing out almost exactly as he had imagined.

On March 7, just days after Guaido’s return from Colombia, where he participated in the failed and demonstrably violent February 23 attempt to ram a shipment of US aid across the Venezuelan border, the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant experienced a major and still unexplained collapse.

Days later, electricity remains sporadic across the country. Meanwhile, Guaido has done everything he can “to take advantage of the situation and spin it” against President Nicolas Maduro – just as his allies were urged to do over eight years before by CANVAS.

Rubio vows “a period of suffering” for Venezuela hours before the blackout

The Venezuelan government has placed the blame squarely on Washington, accusing it of sabotage through a cyber-attack on its electrical infrastructure. Key players in the US-directed coup attempt have done little to dispel the accusation.

In a tweet on March 8, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo framed the electricity outage as a pivotal stage in US plans for regime change:

At noon on March 7, during a hearing on Venezuela at the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee, Sen. Marco Rubio explicitly called for the US to stir “widespread unrest,” declaring that it “needs to happen” in order to achieve regime change.

“Venezuela is going to enter a period of suffering no nation in our hemisphere has confronted in modern history,” Rubio proclaimed.

Around 5 PM, the Simon Bolivar Hydroelectric Plant experienced a total and still unexplained collapse. Residents of Caracas and throughout Venezuela were immediately plunged into darkness.

At 5:18 PM, a clearly excited Rubio took to Twitter to announce the blackout and claim that “backup generators have failed.” It was unclear how Rubio had obtained such specific information so soon after the outage occurred. According to Jorge Rodriguez, the communications minister of Venezuela, local authorities did not know if backup generators had failed at the time of Rubio’s tweet.

Back in Caracas, Guaido immediately set out to exploit the situation, just as his CANVAS trainers had advised over eight years before. Taking to Twitter just over an hour after Rubio, Guaido declared, “the light will return when the usurpation [of Maduro] ends.” Like Pompeo, the self-declared president framed the blackouts as part of a regime change strategy, not an accident or error.

Two days later, Guaido was at the center of opposition rally he convened in affluent eastern Caracas, bellowing into a megaphone: “Article 187 when the time comes. We need to be in the streets, mobilized. It depends on us, not on anybody else.”

Article 187 establishes the right of the National Assembly “to authorize the use of Venezuelan military missions abroad or foreign in the country.”

Upon his mention of the constitutional article, Guaido’s supporters responded, “Intervention! Intervention!”

Exploiting crisis to “get back into a position of power”

As Dan Cohen and I reported here at the Grayzone, Guaido’s rise to prominence – and the coup plot that he has been appointed to oversee – is the product of a decade-long project overseen by the Belgrade-based CANVAS outfit.

CANVAS is a spinoff of Otpor, a Serbian protest group founded by Srdja Popovic in 1998 at the University of Belgrade. Otpor, which means “resistance” in Serbian, was the student group that worked alongside US soft power organizations to mobilize the protests that eventually toppled the late Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic.

CANVAS has been funded largely through the National Endowment for Democracy, a CIA cut-out that functions as the US government’s main arm of promoting regime change.  According to leaked internal emails from Stratfor, an intelligence firm known as the “shadow CIA,” CANVAS “may have also received CIA funding and training during the 1999/2000 anti-Milosevic struggle.”

A leaked email from a Stratfor staffer noted that after they ousted Milosevic, “the kids who ran OTPOR grew up, got suits and designed CANVAS… or in other words a ‘export-a-revolution’ group that sowed the seeds for a NUMBER of color revolutions. They are still hooked into U.S. funding and basically go around the world trying to topple dictators and autocratic governments (ones that U.S. does not like ;).”

Stratfor subsequently revealed that CANVAS “turned its attention to Venezuela” in 2005, after training opposition movements that led pro-NATO regime change operations across Eastern Europe.

In September 2010, as Venezuela headed for a parliamentary election, CANVAS produced a series of memos outlining the plans they had hatched with “non-formal actors” like Guaido and his cadre of student activists to bring down Chavez. “This is the first opportunity for the opposition to get back into a position of power,” Popovic wrote at the time.

In his memo on electricity outages, Popovic highlighted the importance of the Venezuelan military in achieving regime change. “Alliances with the military could be critical because in such a situation of massive public unrest and rejection of the presidency,” the CANVAS founder wrote, “malcontent sectors of the military will likely decide to intervene, but only if they believe they have sufficient support.”

While the scenario Popovic envisioned failed to materialize in 2010, it perfectly describes the situation gripping Venezuela today as an opposition leader cultivated by CANVAS seeks to spin the crisis against Maduro while calling on the military to break ranks.

Since the Grayzone exposed the deep ties between CANVAS and Guaido’s Popular Will party, Popovic has attempted to publicly distance himself from his record of training Venezuela’s opposition.

Today, however, Popovic’s 2010 memo on exploiting electricity outages reads like a blueprint for the strategy that Guaido and his patrons in Washington have actively implemented. Whether or not the blackout is the result of external sabotage, it represents the “watershed event” that CANVAS has prepared its Venezuelan cadres for.

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, including best-selling Republican GomorrahGoliath, The Fifty One Day War, and The Management of Savagery. He has produced print articles for an array of publications, many video reports, and several documentaries, including Killing Gaza. Blumenthal founded The Grayzone in 2015 to shine a journalistic light on America’s state of perpetual war and its dangerous domestic repercussions.

Featured

CUBA CONDEMNS THE TERRORIST SABOTAGE AGAINST THE POWER SUPPLY SYSTEM IN VENEZUELA

Statement by the Government of Cuba

 

The Revolutionary Government strongly condemns the sabotage perpetrated against the power supply system in Venezuela, which is a terrorist action intended to harm the defenseless population of an entire nation and turn it into a hostage of the non-conventional war launched by the government of the United States against the legitimate government headed by comrade Nicolás Maduro Moros and the civic and military union of the Bolivarian and Chavista people.

Several US  politicians have rushed to celebrate an action that deprives the population from an essential basic service; leaves hospitals without the power they require to work; disrupts other basic services which are indispensable  in the everyday-life of people, such as food, water supply, transportation, communications, public safety, trade, bank transactions and payments using credit cards. Such an action affects work in general and the proper functioning of schools and universities. 

The sequence and modality of these actions remind us of the sabotage perpetrated against the oil industry back in 2002 by a US company that owned and operated the automated system that controlled the production, refining, transportation and distribution of hydrocarbons.

This adds to the ruthless economic and financial warfare imposed on Venezuela with the clear intention to subjugate, through shortages and deprivations, the political and sovereign will of a people that has not been brought to its knees.

This is an escalation of a non-conventional war led by the US government against that sister nation, which is taking place after the failed provocation  orchestrated on February 23 with the intention of carrying by force an alleged humanitarian aid into Venezuela, thus challenging the legitimate authorities of that country and violating International Law and the principles and norms of the United Nations Charter, with the purpose of causing widespread death and violence as a pretext for a “humanitarian intervention.”

The experience of Cuba’s own history and the history of other countries in the region show that these actions are a prelude of violent acts of a larger scope, as was the case of the armed invasion through Bay of Pigs in 1961.  The international community has accumulated sufficient evidence to be on the alert.

The usurper and self-proclaimed “president” made in the US has publicly said that, when the time comes, he would invoke Article 187 of the Constitution to authorize the use of foreign military missions in the country; and has repeated exactly the same phrase used by his American mentors: “All options are on the table.”

He just needs to receive an order from Washington, since it is known that, during his tour around South America, he already asked certain governments to support a military intervention in his country.

The offensive launched against Venezuela has been accompanied by a ferocious campaign of McCarthyist propaganda and lies coordinated by the National Security Advisor of that country, John Bolton, as a pretext to apply by force the Monroe Doctrine, for which he has counted on the active participation of the anti-Cuban Senator Marco Rubio, who has frantically resorted to social networks, thus evidencing his interest and personal and conspiratorial involvement in the maneuvers perpetrated against Venezuela.

One of the most relentless and shameless statements made has been the slanderous assertion that Cuba has “between 20 and 25 thousand troops in Venezuela” which “exercise control” on that sister and sovereign nation and  “keep” the members of the glorious and combative National Bolivarian Armed Forces “under threat”.  Cuba categorically rejects that lie and equally strongly refutes any insinuation that there is some level of political subordination by Venezuela to Cuba or by Cuba to Venezuela.

John Bolton is a well-known liar, whose trajectory goes back a long way. He was the US government official who, back in 2002, accused Cuba of having a program to develop biological weapons, a fallacy that was publicly denied by former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who was his superior  back then; and by ex President James Carter. This falsehood also forced Bolton to undergo a US Congress investigation.

Back in 2003, Bolton was also among those who disseminated the lie that the government of Iraq had weapons of mass destruction and a program to develop them.  Such a lie, after being repeated at every level of the US government and magnified by the big media, served as a pretext for the aggression and military occupation of that Middle East country by the United States at a cost of almost one million deadly casualties and millions of displaced Iraqis, plus thousands of US soldiers killed and wounded during a military campaign whose goal was also oil.

As has been publicly announced and is known by the honest and well-informed persons, the bilateral relations between Cuba and Venezuela are based on mutual respect, true solidarity; a shared commitment, based on the ideas of Bolivar, Marti, Fidel and Chavez , with the integration of an independent and sovereign “Our America”; the willingness to practice complementary cooperation among all the peoples of the South and the common effort to implement and defend the Proclamation of Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace.

The projects contained in the Comprehensive Cooperation Agreement that was signed between both countries involve the participation of a little more than 20 000 Cubans, most of them women.  Ninety six per cent of them are devoted to the provision of health services to the population. Others work in other sectors such as education, culture, sports and agro-food production.

Just to mention some figures, the historical impact of that cooperation in Venezuela has been reflected in the 1 473 117 human lives that have been saved; the 717 029 310 medical diagnoses made; the medical assistance received by 62 031 309 persons suffering from eye problems; the 12 915 648 vaccines against measles and tuberculosis administered to people; and the 3 095 564 persons who have been taught to read and write.

It is absolutely not true that Cuba is taking part in operations carried out by the National Bolivarian Armed Forces or the security services.  This is a slanderous rumor deliberately disseminated by the government of the United States.  When Bolton as well as other politicians and officials of the US government rely on such rumors, they are deliberately lying to pursue aggressive political purposes.  They have sufficient data and information and know the truth.

Cuba does not interfere in the internal affairs of Venezuela, just as Venezuela does not interfere in Cuba’s internal affairs.

Unlike the United States, which has about 80 military bases in Latin America and the Caribbean, including the one that is usurping the Cuban territory in Guantánamo; and around 800 in the entire planet, with more than 250 000 quartered troops, Cuba does not have any base in any country; or specialists in torture and police repression; or secret prisons; or naval or air forces prowling around the coasts or the immediate air space of sovereign States; or satellites watching every single detail.

It was through the use of lies that imperialism promoted the bloody coup d’état of Augusto Pinochet in Chile and many other coups and repressive dictatorships in the region.  It was through the use of lies that more than 10 000 defenseless citizens were assassinated during the military invasion against Panama in December of 1989.   It was through the use of lies that the military aggression and destabilization of Libya was perpetrated.

It was with lies that the United States and other powers fully supported, all the way until the very last minute, the opprobrious apartheid regime in South Africa.

The Revolutionary Government warns and denounces that the tendency of the government of the United States to lie without any limit or restraint whatsoever has already had dangerous consequences in the past that could replicate in the present.

Havana, March  11, 2019.

Fuente

Featured

Jamaicans support Today’s World Twitter Campaign in Solidarity with the People and Government of Venezuela #EnergiaSolidariaConVenezuela

On behalf of peace-loving Jamaicans at home and abroad, the Jamaica Peace Council expresses our full solidarity with the people and government of Venezuela. We condemn all options that are being exercised and considered to effect regime change in Venezuela by external forces. The attempt at global dictatorship using sanctions, destabilisation, freezing of assets, starving of nations, corporate media propaganda and fake humanitarian aid must be resisted and condemned.

While Fake Humanitarian AID is assembled at the border between Venezuela and Columbia:

  • Venezuelans who fled to Columbia to escape the harsh conditions created by the US sanctions are homeless and begging on the streets;
  • people in Cuttack, which was flooded by recent heavy rains, are in dire need of  food and other genuine humanitarian assistance;
  • and communities in Guajira, where children have been dying from malnurishment, are bawling out for assistance.

According to reports from journalists covering the Fake Humanitarian Aid at the border, these people are asking why they are not being provided with some of this “aid”. It seems that they don’t understand the concept of Trojan Horse Fake Humanitarian Regime Change Aid.

Ironically the government of Columbia turned down an offer from Venezuela to share some of the legitimate humanitarian aid which it is receiving through the proper international channels. Incidentally, Columbia is below Venezuela on the UN Human Development Index.

What about Haiti, a country which experienced US intervention? People are still living in tent cities after the 2010 earthquake, and poverty and hunger are rife. Haitians recently took to the streets to demand answers to the apparent misappropriation of assistance provided to the country via Venezuela’s Petro Caribe Agreement. Why aren’t the pretenders sending genuine aid to Haiti, Columbia and other countries across the world who are suffering from the consequences of  imposed regime change, Climate Change and the uneven development fostered by the Western system, especially at its imperialist stage?

Venezuela does not need to be FORCE fed with Fake Humanitarian AID. They were doing a good job of using petro-dollars to rescue the people from decades of impoverishment, illiteracy, joblessness, lack of health care and lack of housing, much to the chagrin of the local oligarchs and the multi-national corporations.

Here is what must be done and what we must demand. Remove the sanctions which have been crippling the Venezuelan economy. Free up Venezuela’s billions of dollars of frozen (stolen) assets in the US and UK. Stop all acts of aggression against the country and stop interfering in their internal affairs. The people have the right to determine their own destiny and choose their own leader through the democratic process, whether the US, and its LIMA and EU partners like it or not

 

 

Featured

Jorge Arreaza’s tweets about the Expulsion of US Diplomats

 

 

Photo: sabcnews

Take a look at Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza’s tweets about the expulsion of US diplomatics remaining in Venezuela

Via: @jaarreaza

Yesterday, on March 11 in the afternoon, James Story the US diplomatic representative, was called to the Foreign Ministry to be informed of the sovereign decision by the Bolivarian Government NOT to extend the presence of US diplomatic personnel in Venezuela
https://twitter.com/jaarreaza/status/1105454380248154114?s=21

The published official statement clearly explains the risk that the permanence of the US personnel in Venezuela entails for national peace. This information was communicated yesterday to the diplomatic representative
https://twitter.com/jaarreaza/status/1105454383251292160?s=21

The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela ratifies it’s unalterable willingness to maintan channels of communication and dialogue with the US Government as long as this process is carried out within the frame of a relationship based upon equality and mutual respect
https://twitter.com/jaarreaza/status/1105454385621016576?s=21

Jumping ahead of the news and making others believe that Washington is withdrawing its personnel is nothing but an arrogant & defeatist reaction indicating frustration. As we noted yesterday, the decision by President @NicolasMaduro must be fulfilled within the next 72 hours.
https://twitter.com/jaarreaza/status/1105470427739156480?s=21

Featured

The attack on Venezuela is against World Peace – Cuba

Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez in line with his wife, Lis Cuesta, and local residents before voting in national and provincial elections in Santa Clara, Cuba, last month.CreditCreditPool photo by Alejandro Ernesto
As it is stated in the Declaration of the Revolutionary Government of Cuba on the last February 13th, “the escalation of the U.S. Government´s pressures and actions to set the stage for a military adventure disguised as a humanitarian intervention” is not just a real threat against the Venezuelan people, but also against world peace.
Washington should not underestimate the costs of an aggression against Venezuela. The possibility of a disastrous regionalization of the armed conflict would affect our peoples and all social, economic and political sectors.
We are in the face of a typical threat of imperialist aggression -regardless the disguise used- whose main objective is the appropriation by the United States of the biggest certified reserves of oil in the planet. It is evident, once again, Washington´s contempt for the dozens of thousands of civilian casualties that could be brought about by such a conflagration.
It would be an attack not only against the Bolivarian Revolution. In the logic of the hawks that control Trump Administration´s policy towards Latin America, this action is seen as a final thrust against the Left and the progressive forces in the continent. Today it is Venezuela; tomorrow it will be Nicaragua, Bolivia or Cuba.
Therefore, the defence of the Bolivarian Revolution becomes the first trench in the struggle for the sovereignty of Our America, for the ideal of social justice, peace with dignity and Latin American unity that the founders of our noble nations bequeath to us.
We reaffirm at this time the thesis of our Government when it reminds that “what it is at stake today in Venezuela is the sovereignty and dignity of Latin America and the Caribbean and of the peoples of the South. It is also at stake the survival of the norms of international law and the U.N. Charter. It is at stake whether the legitimacy of a government comes from the sovereignly expressed will of its people or from the recognition by foreign powers”.
We call for a united march to show the Yankee Empire that the peoples of the world do have a sense of sovereignty. This is the time for the forces of the Sao Paulo Forum to show the immense political potential that they represent in the struggle against war and in the defence of peace. Our peoples demand it.
The political and social sectors of the democratic and patriotic movements of the Left now have the possibility of demonstrating that doing is better than saying, as José Martí emphasized at his time.
From Cuba, we urge you to win this war by preventing it from being unleashed. Let’s guarantee peace for all. Let us honor the historic decision of Spanish antifascists: They will not prevail!
(Communist Party of Cuba)
Featured

‘A Victory for Latin America’: Cuban President Diaz-Canel Votes on New Constitution…….and more from Telesur

President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel makes a statement Sunday as he arrives to a school to cast his vote on the new Cuban constitution, Havana (Cuba)

President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel makes a statement Sunday as he arrives to a school to cast his vote on the new Cuban constitution, Havana (Cuba) | Photo: EFE

The new constitution “dignifies and exalts the legacy of Fidel, Marti and Raul” and deepens the rights of Cubans, while teaching citizens a greater civic culture.”

President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel, exercised his vote a little after 8:40 a.m. local time this Sunday morning on the day when his country goes to vote on ratifying their new Cuban Constitution.

RELATED

Cuba Vote on New Constitution Begins

In the place, The president gave a statement at the polling area saying this electoral process and the new document represent a victory for Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as for Venezuela, a country in which the “dignity and independence of the region” is currently being discussed.

The new constitution “dignifies and exalts the legacy of Fidel, Marti and Raul” and deepens the rights of Cubans, while teaching citizens a greater civic culture, said the head of state.

Diaz-Canel highlighted the participation of young people during both the constituent assemblies and in their roles as poll overseers this Sunday, congratulating them on doing their civic duty. There are 200,000 children and young students who will be in charge of the polls this Feb 24.

View image on Twitter

Minutes before, Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez also exercised his right, announcing on his Twitter account that he voted for the continuity of the Cuban Revolution. “I defended a Constitution that is the result of a collective project with a ‘Yes,’ which reaffirms the will of the majority, and which protects the future of my family and of the heroic people ratifying the independence and sovereignty of socialist Cuba.

Similarly, Vice President of Cuba Salvador Valdes Mesa also became part of the constitutional process early Sunday.

The Cuba-Venezuelan Brotherhood

The Cuban president also denounced the acts of violence and staged false flag attacks carried out by the opposition Saturday on the Colombian-Venezuelan border with the objective of holding the same to the Government of Nicolás Maduro and justify a coup in that nation , sister of Cuba.

In addition, he criticized the meeting between the leaders of Colombia and Chile, along with the U.S. Senator from Florida who is of Cuban origin, Marco Rubio; and the self-proclaimed president of the National Assembly of Venezuela in contempt Juan Guaidó, whom he accused of having a “lack of dignity.”

24/02/2019

LATIN AMERICA 

President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel makes a statement Sunday as he arrives to a school to cast his vote on the new Cuban constitution, Havana (Cuba)‘A Victory for Latin America’: Cuban President Diaz-Canel Votes on New Constitution
Cubans voting for their new constitution. Cuba Vote on New Constitution Begins
Thousands of supporters of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro came out Saturday in Caracas (Venezuela). Peoples’ Assembly in Caracas to Begin Sunday

WORLD

Malnourished Fatima Ibrahim Hadi, 12, who weighs just 10 kg lies on a bed at a clinic Aslam of the northwestern province of Hajjah, Yemen.Yemen: Houthi Forces Agree to Withdraw From 2 Ports
French anti-riot police form a line ahead of "yellow vests" protesters in Paris, France, February 23, 2019. France: Arrests, Tear Gas and Water Cannons Deployed on Week 15 of Yellow Vest Protests
A man prays near the village of Baghouz, Deir Al Zor province, Syria February 22, 2019. Bomb Blast in Western Syria Kills at Least 24 Civilians

SPORTS 

Nike effected the store owner’s boycott when the company put out a 30th anniversary “Just Do It” Kaepernick advertisement.Store Forced to Close Down After Kaepernick Protest Backfires
World pays tribute to Argentine footballer Emiliano Sala.Argentine Footballer Emiliano Sala’s Body Found, World Mourns
A fire truck outside the training center football club Flamengo after the deadly blaze.Brazil: Fire in Flamengo Training Center Leaves 10 Dead

CULTURE 

Mixture is an important part of the Mexican cuisine.Chef Highlights ‘Mestizo’ Roots Of Mexican Cuisine
Aside from the pyramids, the site also has a chandelier, a coat of arms and various other decorations made from every bone in the human body.Boney Towers Come Down as Czech Ossuary Monestary Gets Makeover
Director and screenwriter Wagner Moura and cast members remember LGBTQ activist Marielle Franco at the screening of the movie "Marighella."Murdered Activist Franco Honored at Berlin Film Festival

OPINION

A T-shirt showing support for former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez in Caracas, Jan 4, 2013.John Pilger: The War on Venezuela Is Built on Lies
U.S. Senator Marco Rubio poses for a photo as he awaits the arrival of U.S. President Trump to speak about Venezuela at Florida International University in Miami.Facts Don’t Interfere With Propaganda Blitz Against Venezuela’s Elected President
A child wearing U.S. flag runs under a Venezuelan flag where humanitarian aid for Venezuela is being stored in Cucuta, Colombia Feb. 10, 2019.Controlling The Message, Controlling The World: From Vietnam to Venezuela
TeleSUR La Nueva Televisión del Sur C.A. (TVSUR) RIF: G-20004500-0
Featured

Vandana Shiva: We Must Fight Back Against the 1 Percent to Stop the Sixth Mass Extinction

JPEG - 12.1 kbWidespread poverty and malnutrition, an alarming refugee crisis, social unrest, economic polarisation… have become our lived reality as the top 1% of the world’s seven-billion-plus population pushes the planet—and all its people—to the social and ecological brink. In Oneness vs. the 1%, Vandana Shiva takes on the Billionaires Club of Gates, Buffett, Zuckerberg and other modern Mughals, whose blindness to the rights of people, and to the destructive impact of their construct of linear progress, have wrought havoc across the world. Their single-minded pursuit of profit has undemocratically enforced uniformity and monocultures, division and separation, monopolies and external control—over finance, food, energy, information, healthcare, and even relationships.

Basing her analysis on explosive little-known facts, Shiva exposes the 1%’s model of philanthrocapitalism, which is about deploying unaccountable money to bypass democratic structures, derail diversity, and impose totalitarian ideas, based on One Science, One Agriculture and One History. She calls for the “resurgence of real knowledge, real intelligence, real wealth, real work, real well-being”, so that people can reclaim their right to: Live Free. Think Free. Breathe Free. Eat Free.

Vandana Shiva is a world-renowned environmental thinker and activist, a leader in the International Forum on Globalisation, and of the Slow Food Movement. Director of Navdanya and of the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology, and a tireless crusader for farmers’, peasants’ and women’s rights, she is the author and editor of several influential books, including Making Peace with the EarthSoil Not OilSeed Sovereignty, Food Security: Women in the Vanguard; and Who Really Feeds the World?
Vandana Shiva is the recipient of over 20 international awards, among them the Medal of the Presidency of the Italian Republic (1998); the Horizon 3000 Award (Austria, 2001); the John Lennon-Yoko Ono Grant for Peace (2008); the Sydney Peace Prize (2010); the Calgary Peace Prize (2011); and the Thomas Merton Award (2011). She was the Fukuoka Grand Prize Laureate in 2012.

Kartikey Shiva is a shatterer of illusions, grower of freedom, and agent of light.

Author(s) : Vandana Shiva ; Kartikey Shiva
Publishing countries : Australia, India, United Kingdom
Language(s) : English
Price : 350 INR (4 €); .95

A co-publishing of the English-network of the Alliance: Women Unlimited (India), Spinifex (Australie) and New Internationalist (UK).
ISBN (Women Unlimited, India): 978-93-85606-18-2 
ISBN (Spinifex Press, Australia): 978-19-25581-79-9

Oneness vs. the 1% , Australian cover:

Featured

Jamaican Government must defend the UN Charter and Denounce the US Invasion of Venezuela – Say No to Fake Humanitarian Aid!

Photo: Kamina Johnson-Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jamaica

 

The Jamaica Peace Council denounces the Trump Administration’s recent sanctions, freezing of assets, acts of provocation and military aggression against the people of Venezuela. These actions are in alarming violation of international law and the fundamental principles of human rights and national sovereignty.

Sanctions, coup attempts, politicised humanitarian aid, military threats and imperial posturing must stop, now! The US and the Venezuelan elite must end their war against the Venezuelan people and engage in honest dialogue with the democratically-elected President Nicolas Maduro. We stand with the Venezuelan people and defend their right to non-intervention. We call on the government of Jamaica to stand with the coalition of peace-loving nations in the UN who are defending the principles enshrined in the UN Charter and reject US intervention and hegemony in Latin America and the Caribbean. Jamaica has a history of defending the sovereignty of nations of the world and not being licky-licky by sucking up to imperialism for small change. For the last 20 years of the Bolivarian process the Bolivarian people have charted a new path in Latin America and the Caribbean. This model of cooperation between nations based on shared histories, mutual reciprocity and regional integration, must be defended.

The 23rd of February marks one month since Juan Guaido shamefully self-appointed as “interim president” of Venezuela and the world turned to the oil-rich and majority Black and Indigenous nation to denounce Guaido’s undemocratic move as a threat to peace and justice. The JPC calls on all people to recognise these threats as dangerous, even when they are cloaked in the words of humanitarian interest. They must “Move and Go Away” with their fake humanitarian aid and give the people of Venezuela back their approximately 30 billion dollar of CITGO revenue and $2.5 billion of gold deposited with the Bank of England. The multinational corporations who put profit over people do not care about any humanitarian situation. The US and its allies, who are made up of the right-wing governments in our region that are surging and are hated by millions, are acting on the behalf of corporate interests and pressure.

In the Caribbean, we are familiar with the violence of European colonialism, economic and political destabilisation US invasions and military bases. These, too, have been called humanitarian campaigns. We do not need to think back very far, we can look to Guyana in 1953, Cuba in 1961, in our own island in the 1970’s, Grenada in 1983, Panama in 1989, Haiti in 1991 and 2004, and Honduras in 2009 – just to name a few. We are acutely aware of the ways in which militarised and corporate-backed governments falsely employ the rhetoric of: “restoring democracy” and “bringing humanitarian aid”. The Jamaica Peace Council calls for the end of sanctions and intervention as the real path to peace for our region.

The blockade against Venezuela has cost the country billions of dollars, and for those of us who have been recipients of favourable agricultural initiatives, educational exchanges, loans, aid and cooperation through ALBA Peoples’ Trade Treaty and PetroCaribe, we will also suffer. The working class people of Venezuela have made an immense contribution to building a more healthy and just society under the banner of the Bolivarian Process. They have taken control over the oil wealth and built 2.5 million homes for the most in need. They have built hospitals and clinics where there were none and have universalised healthcare. Free education is ensured through university and the nation has witnessed literacy campaigns rivalled only by Cuba’s. These gains are what threatens the US corporate model, and these gains are being jeopardized by Trump and his cronies.

For the past 20 years, we in the Caribbean have witnessed a real alternative to free trade agreements, structural adjustment and colonialism. Across the Caribbean eyesight has been restored through Mission Milagro, Venezuela’s aid contributed to Dominica’s reconstruction after another climate disaster that we did not cause, but bear the brunt of, CELAC (Community of Latin American States)  has provided political power and a space for dialogue and exchange between our small island states without the threat of US meddling, and PetroCaribe has provided the opportunity for energy sovereignty, alternative energy projects and tens of billions of dollars for infrastructure and development. These initiatives, by and for us, have provided a concrete and meaningful alternative to neoliberalism, colonialism and war in Latin America and the Caribbean. These threaten the powerful and the elite and they are what is at stake.

We add our voice to the majority of Venezuelans across the political spectrum, who have rejected sanctions, coup attempts and threats of military intervention. We join the world in standing up for the rights of all nations to sovereignty and of all peoples to self-determination. The majority of well-thinking Jamaicans stand with the Bolivarian revolution.

On this International Day of Solidarity with Venezuela, we are joining the coordinated efforts across the world www.NoWarOnVenezuela.org. The Jamaica Peace Council denounces the sanctions, coup attempts and the politicisation of humanitarian aid by Trump’s administration. We stand in solidarity with the majority of Venezuelan people who reject US interventionism and we give them thanks for the courage to believe and work for a better world!

Featured

The Making of Juan Guaidó: US Regime-Change Laboratory Created Venezuela’s Coup Leader, by Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal — STRAIGHT LINE LOGIC/ article and video

Juan Guaidó is right out of CIA central casting. From Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal at consortiumnews.com: The Washington favorite has spent years at the forefront of a violent campaign of destabilization, write Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal of Grayzone. Before the fateful date of Jan. 22, fewer than 1-in-5 Venezuelans had heard of Juan Guaidó. Only […]

Before the fateful date of Jan. 22, fewer than 1-in-5 Venezuelans had heard of Juan Guaidó. Only a few months ago, the 35-year-old was an obscure character in a politically marginal far-right group closely associated with gruesome acts of street violence. Even in his own party, Guaidó had been a mid-level figure in the opposition-dominated National Assembly, which is now held under contempt according to Venezuela’s constitution.

But after a single phone call from U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, Guaidó proclaimed himself as president of Venezuela. Anointed as the leader of his country by Washington, a previously unknown political bottom dweller was vaulted onto the international stage as the U.S.-selected leader of the nation with the world’s largest oil reserves.

Echoing the Washington consensus, The New York Times editorial board hailed Guaidó as a “credible rival” to President Nicolás Maduro with a “refreshing style and vision of taking the country forward.” The Bloomberg News editorial board applauded him for seeking “restoration of democracy” and The Wall Street Journal declared him “a new democratic leader.” Meanwhile, Canada, numerous European nations, Israel, and the bloc of right-wing Latin American governments known as the Lima Group recognized Guaidó as the legitimate leader of Venezuela.

While Guaidó seemed to have materialized out of nowhere, he was, in fact, the product of more than a decade of assiduous grooming by the U.S. government’s elite regime change factories. Alongside a cadre of right-wing student activists, Guaidó was cultivated to undermine Venezuela’s socialist-oriented government, destabilize the country and one day seize power. Though he has been a minor figure in Venezuelan politics, he had spent years quietly demonstrating his worthiness in Washington’s halls of power.

“Juan Guaidó is a character that has been created for this circumstance,” Marco Teruggi, an Argentinian sociologist and leading chronicler of Venezuelan politics, told the Grayzone. “It’s the logic of a laboratory – Guaidó is like a mixture of several elements that create a character who, in all honesty, oscillates between laughable and worrying.”

Diego Sequera, a Venezuelan journalist and writer for the investigative outlet, Mision Verdad, agreed: “Guaidó is more popular outside Venezuela than inside, especially in the elite Ivy League and Washington circles,” Sequera remarked to the Grayzone. “He’s a known character there, is predictably right-wing, and is considered loyal to the program.”

While Guaidó is today sold as the face of democratic restoration, he spent his career in the most violent faction of Venezuela’s most radical opposition party, positioning himself at the forefront of one destabilization campaign after another. His party has been widely discredited inside Venezuela, and is held partly responsible for fragmenting a badly weakened opposition.

“‘These radical leaders have no more than 20 percent in opinion polls,” wrote Luis Vicente León, Venezuela’s leading pollster. According to Leon, Guaidó’s party remains isolated because the majority of the population does not want war. “What they want is a solution.’”

But this is precisely why Guaidó was selected by Washington: he is not expected to lead Venezuela towards democracy, but to collapse a country that for the past two decades has been a bulwark of resistance to U.S. hegemony. His unlikely rise signals the culmination of a two decades-long project to destroy a robust socialist experiment.

Targeting ‘Troika of Tyranny’

Since the 1998 election of Hugo Chavez, the United States has fought to restore control over Venezuela and its vast oil reserves. Chavez’s socialist programs may have redistributed the country’s wealth and helped lift millions out of poverty, but they also earned him a target on his back. In 2002, Venezuela’s right-wing opposition briefly ousted him with U.S. support and recognition, before the military restored his presidency following a mass popular mobilization. Throughout the administrations of U.S. Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Chavez survived numerous assassination plots before succumbing to cancer in 2013. His successor, Nicolás Maduro, has survived three attempts on his life.

Maduro is shown as a puppet of Fidel Castro in anti-government protest in March 2014. (Wikimedia)

The Trump administration immediately elevated Venezuela to the top of Washington’s regime change target list, branding it the leader of a “troika of tyranny.” Last year, Trump’s national security team attempted to recruit members of the military brass to mount a military junta, but that effort failed. According to the Venezuelan government, the U.S. was also involved in a plot codenamed Operation Constitution to capture Maduro at the Miraflores presidential palace, and another called Operation Armageddon to assassinate him at a military parade in July 2017. Just over a year later, exiled opposition leaders tried and failed to kill Maduro with drone bombs during a military parade in Caracas.

More than a decade before these intrigues, a group of right-wing opposition students were hand selected and groomed by an elite, U.S.-funded regime change training academy to topple Venezuela’s government and restore the neoliberal order.

Training for Insurrection 

On Oct. 5, 2005, with Chavez’s popularity at its peak and his government planning sweeping socialist programs, five Venezuelan “student leaders” arrived in Belgrade, Serbia to begin training for an insurrection.

The students had arrived from Venezuela courtesy of the Center for Applied Non-Violent Action and Strategies, or CANVAS. This group is funded largely through the National Endowment for Democracy, a CIA cut-out that functions as the U.S. government’s main arm of promoting regime change; and offshoots like the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs. According to leaked internal emails from Stratfor, an intelligence firm known as the “shadow CIA,” “[CANVAS] may have also received CIA funding and training during the 1999/2000 anti-Milosevic struggle.”

CANVAS is a spinoff of Otpor, a Serbian protest group founded by Srdja Popovic in 1998 at the University of Belgrade. Otpor, which means “resistance” in Serbian, was the student group that gained international fame – and Hollywood-level promotion – by mobilizing the protests that eventually toppled Slobodan Milosevic. This small cell of regime change specialists was operating according to the theories of the late Gene Sharp, the “Clausewitz of non-violent struggle.” Sharp had worked with a former Defense Intelligence Agency analyst, Col. Robert Helvey, to conceive a strategic blueprint that weaponized protest as a form of hybrid warfare, aiming it at states that resisted Washington’s unipolar domination.

Otpor at the 1998 MTV Europe Music Awards. (Brian Rasic)

Otpor was supported by the National Endowment for Democracy, USAID and Sharp’s Albert Einstein Institute. Sinisa Sikman, one of Otpor’s main trainers, once said the group even received direct CIA funding. According to a leaked email from a Stratfor staffer, after running Milosevic out of power, “the kids who ran OTPOR grew up, got suits and designed CANVAS… or in other words an ‘export-a-revolution’ group that sowed the seeds for a NUMBER of color revolutions. They are still hooked into U.S. funding and basically go around the world trying to topple dictators and autocratic governments (ones that U.S. does not like).”

Stratfor revealed that CANVAS “turned its attention to Venezuela” in 2005 after training opposition movements that led pro-NATO regime change operations across Eastern Europe.

While monitoring the CANVAS training program, Stratfor outlined its insurrectionist agenda in strikingly blunt language: “Success is by no means guaranteed, and student movements are only at the beginning of what could be a years-long effort to trigger a revolution in Venezuela, but the trainers themselves are the people who cut their teeth on the ‘Butcher of the Balkans.’ They’ve got mad skills. When you see students at five Venezuelan universities hold simultaneous demonstrations, you will know that the training is over and the real work has begun.”

Generation 2007

The “real work” began two years later, in 2007, when Guaidó graduated from Andrés Bello Catholic University of Caracas. He moved to Washington, D.C., to enroll in the governance and political management program at George Washington University under the tutelage of Venezuelan economist Luis Enrique Berrizbeitia, one of the top Latin American neoliberal economists. Berrizbeitia is a former executive director of the International Monetary Fund who spent more than a decade working in the Venezuelan energy sector under the oligarchic old regime that was ousted by Chavez.

That year, Guaidó helped lead anti-government rallies after the Venezuelan government declined to renew the license of Radio Caracas Televisión (RCTV). This privately-owned station played a leading role in the 2002 coup against Hugo Chavez. RCTV helped mobilize anti-government demonstrators, falsified information blaming government supporters for acts of violence carried out by opposition members, and banned pro-government reporting amid the coup. The role of RCTV and other oligarch-owned stations in driving the failed coup attempt was chronicled in the acclaimed documentary, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.”

That same year, the students claimed credit for stymying Chavez’s constitutional referendum for a “21st century socialism” that promised “to set the legal framework for the political and social reorganization of the country, giving direct power to organized communities as a prerequisite for the development of a new economic system.”

From the protests around RCTV and the referendum, a specialized cadre of U.S.-backed class of regime change activists was born. They called themselves “Generation 2007.”

The Stratfor and CANVAS trainers of this cell identified Guaidó’s ally – a street organizer named Yon Goicoechea – as a “key factor” in defeating the constitutional referendum. The following year, Goicochea was rewarded for his efforts with the Cato Institute’s Milton Friedman Prize for Advancing Liberty, along with a $500,000 prize, which he promptly invested into building his own Liberty First (Primero Justicia) political network.

Friedman, of course, was the godfather of the notorious neoliberal Chicago Boys who were imported into Chile by dictatorial junta leader Augusto Pinochet to implement policies of radical “shock doctrine”-style fiscal austerity. And the Cato Institute is the libertarian Washington, D.C.-based think tank founded by the Koch brothers, two top Republican Party donors who have become aggressive supporters of the right-wing across Latin America.

WikiLeaks published a 2007 email that American ambassador to Venezuela William Brownfield sent to the State Department, National Security Council and Department of Defense Southern Command praising “Generation of ’07” for having “forced the Venezuelan president, accustomed to setting the political agenda, to (over)react.” Among the “emerging leaders” Brownfield identified were Freddy Guevara and Yon Goicoechea. He applauded the latter figure as “one of the students’ most articulate defenders of civil liberties.”

Flush with cash from libertarian oligarchs and U.S. government soft power outfits, the radical Venezuelan cadre took their Otpor tactics to the streets, along with a version of the group’s logo, as seen below:

Spinning Anti-Chavez Unrest 

In 2009, the Generation 2007 youth activists staged their most provocative demonstration yet, dropping their pants on public roads and aping the outrageous guerrilla theater tactics outlined by Gene Sharp in his regime change manuals. The protesters had mobilized against the arrest of an ally from another newfangled youth group called JAVU. This far-right group “gathered funds from a variety of U.S. government sources, which allowed it to gain notoriety quickly as the hardline wing of opposition street movements,” according to academic George Ciccariello-Maher’s book, “Building the Commune.”

While video of the protest is not available, many Venezuelans have identified Guaidó as one of its key participants. While the allegation is unconfirmed, it is certainly plausible; the bare-buttocks protesters were members of the Generation 2007 inner core that Guaidó belonged to, and were clad in their trademark Resistencia! Venezuela t-shirts, as seen below:

That year, Guaidó exposed himself to the public in another way, founding a political party to capture the anti-Chavez energy his Generation 2007 had cultivated. Called Popular Will, it was led by Leopoldo López, a Princeton-educated right-wing firebrand heavily involved in National Endowment for Democracy programs and elected as the mayor of a district in Caracas that was one of the wealthiest in the country. Lopez was a portrait of Venezuelan aristocracy, directly descended from his country’s first president. He was also the first cousin of Thor Halvorssen, founder of the U.S.-based Human Rights Foundation that functions as a de facto publicity shop for U.S.-backed anti-government activists in countries targeted by Washington for regime change.

Though Lopez’s interests aligned neatly with Washington’s, U.S. diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks highlighted the fanatical tendencies that would ultimately lead to Popular Will’s marginalization. One cable identified Lopez as “a divisive figure within the opposition… often described as arrogant, vindictive, and power-hungry.” Others highlighted his obsession with street confrontations and his “uncompromising approach” as a source of tension with other opposition leaders who prioritized unity and participation in the country’s democratic institutions.

Popular Will founder Leopoldo Lopez cruising with his wife, Lilian Tintori

By 2010, Popular Will and its foreign backers moved to exploit the worst drought to hit Venezuela in decades. Massive electricity shortages had struck the country due the dearth of water, which was needed to power hydroelectric plants. A global economic recession and declining oil prices compounded the crisis, driving public discontentment.

Stratfor and CANVAS – key advisors of Guaidó and his anti-government cadre – devised a shockingly cynical plan to drive a dagger through the heart of the Bolivarian revolution. The scheme hinged on a 70 percent collapse of the country’s electrical system by as early as April 2010.

“This could be the watershed event, as there is little that Chavez can do to protect the poor from the failure of that system,” the Stratfor internal memo declared. “This would likely have the impact of galvanizing public unrest in a way that no opposition group could ever hope to generate. At that point in time, an opposition group would be best served to take advantage of the situation and spin it against Chavez and towards their needs.”

By this point, the Venezuelan opposition was receiving a staggering $40-50 million a year from U.S. government organizations like USAID and the National Endowment for Democracy, according to a report by the Spanish think tank, the FRIDE Institute. It also had massive wealth to draw on from its own accounts, which were mostly outside the country.

While the scenario envisioned by Statfor did not come to fruition, the Popular Will party activists and their allies cast aside any pretense of non-violence and joined a radical plan to destabilize the country.

Violent Destabilization

In November 2010, according to emails obtained by Venezuelan security services and presented by former Justice Minister Miguel Rodríguez Torres, Guaidó, Goicoechea, and several other student activists attended a secret five-day training at the Fiesta Mexicana hotel in Mexico City. The sessions were run by Otpor, the Belgrade-based regime change trainers backed by the U.S. government. The meeting had reportedly received the blessing of Otto Reich, a fanatically anti-Castro Cuban exile working in George W. Bush’s Department of State, and the right-wing former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe.

At the Fiesta Mexicana hotel, the emails stated, Guaidó and his fellow activists hatched a plan to overthrow President Hugo Chavez by generating chaos through protracted spasms of street violence.

Three petroleum industry figureheads – Gustavo Torrar, Eligio Cedeño and Pedro Burelli – allegedly covered the $52,000 tab to hold the meeting. Torrar is a self-described “human rights activist” and “intellectual” whose younger brother Reynaldo Tovar Arroyo is the representative in Venezuela of the private Mexican oil and gas company Petroquimica del Golfo, which holds a contract with the Venezuelan state.

Cedeño, for his part, is a fugitive Venezuelan businessman who claimed asylum in the United States, and Pedro Burelli a former JP Morgan executive and the former director of Venezuela’s national oil company, Petroleum of Venezuela (PDVSA). He left PDVSA in 1998 as Hugo Chavez took power and is on the advisory committee of Georgetown University’s Latin America leadership program.

Burelli insisted that the emails detailing his participation had been fabricated and even hired a private investigator to prove it. The investigator declared that Google’s records showed the emails alleged to be his were never transmitted.

Yet today Burelli makes no secret of his desire to see Venezuela’s current president, Nicolás Maduro, deposed – and even dragged through the streets and sodomized with a bayonet, as Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi was by NATO-backed militiamen.

The alleged Fiesta Mexicana plot flowed into another destabilization plan revealed in a series of documents produced by the Venezuelan government. In May 2014, Caracas released documents detailing an assassination plot against President Nicolás Maduro. The leaks identified the Miami-based Maria Corina Machado as a leader of the scheme. A hardliner with a penchant for extreme rhetoric, Machado has functioned as an international liaison for the opposition, visiting President George W. Bush in 2005.

Machado and George W. Bush, 2005.

“I think it is time to gather efforts; make the necessary calls, and obtain financing to annihilate Maduro and the rest will fall apart,” Machado wrote in an email to former Venezuelan diplomat Diego Arria in 2014.

In another email, Machado claimed that the violent plot had the blessing of U.S. Ambassador to Colombia, Kevin Whitaker. “I have already made up my mind and this fight will continue until this regime is overthrown and we deliver to our friends in the world. If I went to San Cristobal and exposed myself before the OAS, I fear nothing. Kevin Whitaker has already reconfirmed his support and he pointed out the new steps. We have a checkbook stronger than the regime’s to break the international security ring.”

Guaidó Heads to Barricades

That February, student demonstrators acting as shock troops for the exiled oligarchy erected violent barricades across the country, turning opposition-controlled quarters into violent fortresses known as guarimbas. While international media portrayed the upheaval as a spontaneous protest against Maduro’s iron-fisted rule, there was ample evidence that Popular Will was orchestrating the show.

“None of the protesters at the universities wore their university t-shirts, they all wore Popular Will or Justice First t-shirts,” a guarimba participant said at the time. “They might have been student groups, but the student councils are affiliated to the political opposition parties and they are accountable to them.”

Asked who the ringleaders were, the guarimba participant said, “Well if I am totally honest, those guys are legislators now.”

Around 43 were killed during the 2014 guarimbas. Three years later, they erupted again, causing mass destruction of public infrastructure, the murder of government supporters, and the deaths of 126 people, many of whom were Chavistas. In several cases, supporters of the government were burned alive by armed gangs.

Guaidó was directly involved in the 2014 guarimbas. In fact, he tweeted video showing himself clad in a helmet and gas mask, surrounded by masked and armed elements that had shut down a highway that were engaging in a violent clash with the police. Alluding to his participation in Generation 2007, he proclaimed, “I remember in 2007, we proclaimed, ‘Students!’ Now, we shout, ‘Resistance! Resistance!’”

Guaidó has deleted the tweet, demonstrating apparent concern for his image as a champion of democracy.

On Feb. 12, 2014, during the height of that year’s guarimbas, Guaidó joined Lopez on stage at a rally of Popular Will and Justice First. During a lengthy diatribe against the government, Lopez urged the crowd to march to the office of Attorney General Luisa Ortega Diaz. Soon after, Diaz’s office came under attack by armed gangs who attempted to burn it to the ground. She denounced what she called “planned and premeditated violence.”

Guaidó alongside Lopez at the fateful Feb. 12, 2014 rally.

In a televised appearance in 2016, Guaidó dismissed deaths resulting from guayas – a guarimba tactic involving stretching steel wire across a roadway in order to injure or kill motorcyclists – as a “myth.” His comments whitewashed a deadly tactic that had killed unarmed civilians like Santiago Pedroza and decapitated a man named Elvis Durán, among many others.

This callous disregard for human life would define his Popular Will party in the eyes of much of the public, including many opponents of Maduro.

Cracking Down on Popular Will 

As violence and political polarization escalated across the country, the government began to act against the Popular Will leaders who helped stoke it.

Freddy Guevara, the National Assembly vice-president and second in command of Popular Will, was a principal leader in the 2017 street riots. Facing a trial for his role in the violence, Guevara took shelter in the Chilean embassy, where he remains.

Lester Toledo, a Popular Will legislator from the state of Zulia, was wanted by the Venezuelan government in September 2016 on charges of financing terrorism and plotting assassinations. The plans were said to be made with former Colombian President Álavaro Uribe. Toledo escaped Venezuela and went on several speaking tours with Human Rights Watch, the U.S. government-backed Freedom House, the Spanish Congress and European Parliament.

Carlos Graffe, another Otpor-trained Generation 2007 member who led Popular Will, was arrested in July 2017. According to police, he was in possession of a bag filled with nails, C4 explosives and a detonator. He was released on Dec. 27, 2017.

Leopoldo Lopez, the longtime Popular Will leader, is today under house arrest, accused of a key role in the deaths of 13 people during the guarimbas in 2014. Amnesty International lauded Lopez as a “prisoner of conscience” and slammed his transfer from prison to house as “not good enough.” Meanwhile, family members of guarimba victims introduced a petition for more charges against Lopez.

Goicoechea, the Koch Brothers’ poster boy and U.S.-backed founder of Justice First, was arrested in 2016 by security forces who claimed they found found a kilo of explosives in his vehicle. In a New York Times op-ed, Goicoechea protested the charges as “trumped-up” and claimed he had been imprisoned simply for his “dream of a democratic society, free of Communism.” He was freed in November 2017.

David Smolansky, also a member of the original Otpor-trained Generation 2007, became Venezuela’s youngest-ever mayor when he was elected in 2013 in the affluent suburb of El Hatillo. But he was stripped of his position and sentenced to 15 months in prison by the Supreme Court after it found him culpable of stirring the violent guarimbas.

Facing arrest, Smolansky shaved his beard, donned sunglasses and slipped into Brazil disguised as a priest with a Bible in hand and rosary around his neck. He now lives in Washington, D.C., where he was hand picked by Secretary of the Organization of American States Luis Almagro to lead the working group on the Venezuelan migrant and refugee crisis.

This July 26, Smolansky held what he called a “cordial reunion” with Elliot Abrams, the convicted Iran-Contra felon installed by Trump as special U.S. envoy to Venezuela. Abrams is notorious for overseeing the U.S. covert policy of arming right-wing death squads during the 1980s in Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala. His lead role in the Venezuelan coup has stoked fears that another blood-drenched proxy war might be on the way.

Four days earlier, Machado rumbled another violent threat against Maduro, declaring that if he “wants to save his life, he should understand that his time is up.”

Pawn in Their Game

The collapse of Popular Will under the weight of the violent campaign of destabilization it ran alienated large sectors of the public and wound much of its leadership up in exile or in custody. Guaidó had remained a relatively minor figure, having spent most of his nine-year career in the National Assembly as an alternate deputy. Hailing from one of Venezuela’s least populous states, Guaidó came in second place during the 2015 parliamentary elections, winning just 26 percent of votes cast in order to secure his place in the National Assembly. Indeed, his bottom may have been better known than his face.

Guaidó is known as the president of the opposition-dominated National Assembly, but he was never elected to the position. The four opposition parties that comprised the Assembly’s Democratic Unity Table had decided to establish a rotating presidency. Popular Will’s turn was on the way, but its founder, Lopez, was under house arrest. Meanwhile, his second-in-charge, Guevara, had taken refuge in the Chilean embassy. A figure named Juan Andrés Mejía would have been next in line but for reasons that are only now clear, Juan Guaido was selected.

“There is a class reasoning that explains Guaidó’s rise,” Sequera, the Venezuelan analyst, observed. “Mejía is high class, studied at one of the most expensive private universities in Venezuela, and could not be easily marketed to the public the way Guaidó could. For one, Guaidó has common mestizo features like most Venezuelans do, and seems  more like a man of the people. Also, he had not been overexposed in the media, so he could be built up into pretty much anything.”

In December 2018, Guaidó sneaked across the border and junketed to Washington, Colombia and Brazil to coordinate the plan to hold mass demonstrations during the inauguration of President Maduro. The night before Maduro’s swearing-in ceremony, both Vice President Mike Pence and Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland called Guaidó to affirm their support.

A week later, Sen. Marco Rubio, Sen. Rick Scott and Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart – all lawmakers from the Florida base of the right-wing Cuban exile lobby – joined President Trump and Vice President Pence at the White House. At their request, Trump agreed that if Guaidó declared himself president, he would back him.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met personally with Guaidó on Jan. 10, according to The Wall Street Journal. However, Pompeo could not pronounce Guaidó’s name when he mentioned him in a press briefing on Jan. 25, referring to him as “Juan Guido.”

By Jan. 11, Guaidó’s Wikipedia page had been edited 37 times, highlighting the struggle to shape the image of a previously anonymous figure who was now a tableau for Washington’s regime change ambitions. In the end, editorial oversight of his page was handed over to Wikipedia’s elite council of “librarians,” who pronounced him the “contested” president of Venezuela.

Guaidó might have been an obscure figure, but his combination of radicalism and opportunism satisfied Washington’s needs. “That internal piece was missing,” a Trump administration official said of Guaidó. “He was the piece we needed for our strategy to be coherent and complete.”

“For the first time,” Brownfield, the former American ambassador to Venezuela, gushed to The New York Times, “you have an opposition leader who is clearly signaling to the armed forces and to law enforcement that he wants to keep them on the side of the angels and with the good guys.”

But Guaidó’s Popular Will party formed the shock troops of the guarimbas that caused the deaths of police officers and common citizens alike. He had even boasted of his own participation in street riots. And now, to win the hearts and minds of the military and police, Guaido had to erase this blood-soaked history.

On Jan.  21, a day before the coup began in earnest, Guaidó’s wife delivered a video address calling on the military to rise up against Maduro. Her performance was wooden and uninspiring, underscoring her husband’s limited political prospects.

At a press conference before supporters four days later, Guaidó announced his solution to the crisis: “Authorize a humanitarian intervention!”

While he waits on direct assistance, Guaidó remains what he has always been – a pet project of cynical outside forces. “It doesn’t matter if he crashes and burns after all these misadventures,” Sequera said of the coup figurehead. “To the Americans, he is expendable.”

Max Blumenthal is an award-winning journalist and the author of several books, including best-selling “Republican Gomorrah,” “Goliath,” “The Fifty One Day War“, and “The Management of Savagery.” He has produced print articles for an array of publications, many video reports, and several documentaries, including “Killing Gaza.” Blumenthal founded The Grayzone in 2015 to shine a journalistic light on America’s state of perpetual war and its dangerous domestic repercussions.

Dan Cohen is a journalist and filmmaker. He has produced widely distributed video reports and print dispatches from across Israel-Palestine. Dan is a correspondent at RT America and tweets at @DanCohen3000. See his website for more information. 

image_pdf

via The Making of Juan Guaidó: US Regime-Change Laboratory Created Venezuela’s Coup Leader, by Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal — STRAIGHT LINE LOGIC

Featured

Venezuela Crisis: Former UN Rapporteur Says US Sanctions Are Killing Citizens — THE ONENESS of HUMANITY

Originally posted on Alfred de Zayas’ Human Rights Corner: Link to original article: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/venezuela-us-sanctions-united-nations-oil-pdvsa-a8748201.html The first UN rapporteur to visit Venezuela for 21 years has told The Independent the US sanctions on the country are illegal and could amount to “crimes against humanity” under international law. Former special rapporteur Alfred de Zayas, who finished his term at the UN in March,…

via Venezuela Crisis: Former UN Rapporteur Says US Sanctions Are Killing Citizens — THE ONENESS of HUMANITY

Featured

Latin America and the Caribbean: Take Sleep and Mark Death with the Venezuela Situation

 

The Jamaica Peace Council (JPC) joins all peace-loving people in rejecting the orchestration of a coup d’état in Venezuela by the United States and its allies on 23rd of January, 2019. They opted to endorse the self-appointment of Juan Guaido as president while demanding that Nicolas Maduro step down or face the possibility of a military intervention.

When asked by the media if the US may invade Venezuela, President Trump gave the sinister response that “all options are on the table”. This can only be viewed as a declaration of war against a sovereign nation whose citizens have exercised their democratic right to elect a leader that is not favored by the Donald Trump government.

In 2014, the nations of Latin America and the Caribbean came together and established a treaty declaring the region a Zone of Peace, meaning that dialogue, not war, will be used to resolve issues within and between states. This declaration of war against Venezuela is not only in breach of international law, it is disruptive to the culture of PEACE that we are creating in our region. Wars destroy the fabric of nations and create a psyche of violence which manifests itself in spiraling violent crimes across the world and right here at home. Mass murders are now a frequent occurrence in the United States. We must reject the warmongering dictatorial posture of the United States towards Venezuela.

Let us get the facts straight about what is unfolding. On the 10th of January, 2019, Nicolas Maduro was inaugurated as the legitimate president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, having been elected by over 6 million people on the 20th of May, 2018. In that election over 9 million people exercised their right to vote for three candidates despite the right-wing guarimba violence aimed at preventing them from going to the polls. The right-wing opposition party had chosen to boycott the polls. The election was held in accordance with the Venezuelan constitution of 1999. According to the conclusions of the “extensive international technical electoral accompaniment mission” which oversaw the process, the Venezuela electoral system was perfectly free, fair and transparent. This is contrary to the claim that the elections were fraudulent and that ballot boxes were stuffed. Venezuela has a sophisticated electronic process that does not use ballot boxes. The self-declared “interim presidency” of Juan Guaido on January 23 is false and undemocratic. It does not accord with any of the provisions of the constitution. He is being imposed on the people of Venezuela by the United States although he was not a candidate in the elections last year. US officials identified Guaido as President before he swore himself in. This is not surprising because the United States has a history of setting up puppet regimes in Latin America to give their multi-national corporations unbridled access to the rich resources of the countries.

This matter must be taken seriously by the citizens of Latin America and the Caribbean as it contravenes our right to elect governments of our choice. It has implications for all our nations. Picture some relatively unknown individual declaring himself Prime Minister of Jamaica and receiving the backing of the United States who then tells Prime Minister Holness to step aside because he is not obeying their dictates. That is the scenario in Venezuela. We had better take sleep and mark death with this Venezuela situation.

We denounce this coup attempt which has only received support from a small number of US allies, including the Lima group, and is condemned by rest of the world. We denounce the attempt to instigate civil war in Venezuela by calling on right-wing supporters to take to the streets. We condemn the United States for imposing sanctions against Venezuela with the obvious aim of destroying the economy in order to turn the people against Maduro. We condemn the US Government for lobbying the Bank of England to block Venezuela from withdrawing $1.2 billion worth of gold from its assets placed in their trust. We condemn their latest cruel action of freezing the revenue from CITGO stations in the US.

As imperialism bears its fangs, it calls to mind Henry Kissinger’s plot to make Chile’s economy scream prior to the overthrow of  Salvador Allende in 1973. The US officials claim to be concerned about the Venezuelan people. How do these actions benefit the Venezuelan people?  No, they don’t care about the people.  They only care about corporate greed. They are making the people suffer as part of their planned strategy to overthrow a government that puts the interest of the people first. This is the same cruelty that was displayed during the government shutdown in Washington. The Trump administration cared nothing about the plight of the federal employees, most of whom live from pay cheque to pay cheque and found themselves unable to pay rent, mortgage, car note and medical expenses. Some could not even buy food and medication.

We applaud the nations which stood up at the meeting of the UN Security Council on January 26 and obstructed the attempt of the US to obtain endorsement for intervention in Venezuela. We are proud of the representatives of Caribbean and Latin American nations that courageously refuse to support the call for intervention in Venezuela. We applaud the over one hundred and eighty nations which recognize Nicholas Maduro as the legitimate president of Venezuela based on the results of the May 2018 election.

As an organisation dedicated to peace, justice and freedom from interventionism, war and violence, we call on the Trump administration to stop their regime change destabilisation tactics in our region. We call on the Trump administration to withdraw all military bases from the region and to realign its foreign policy to the spirit of the CELAC (Community of Latin America and Caribbean States) Declaration of the region  as a Zone of Peace. The US has no history of promoting democratic governance in the Caribbean. Cuba in 1961, Grenada in 1983 and Honduras in 2009 are examples of their imperialist intervention and paramilitary violence. We say: “No more interference and no more coups!”

We stand with the people of Venezuela in their leadership through the Bolivarian Revolution. They have promoted freedom, dignity and peaceful cooperation in our region and around the world.

Instead of fomenting coups and wars, we recommend that the US government turn its attention to the following issues at home:

  • Approximately 553,742 homeless people, including war veterans, many of whom rummage through garbage for food on a daily basis;
  • The estimated 100 million people living in poverty;
  • The rising number of homeless deaths in the streets;
  • The fact that a vast number of US citizens have to work 2 or 3 jobs just to survive;
  • The super-exploitation and financial insecurity of American workers through short-term contracts with no benefits;
  • The resurgence of overt racial discrimination and ascendancy of White Nationalism;
  • The wanton killing of blacks which gave rise to the Black Lives Matter movement;
  • The vast community of people still living in tents and make-shift abodes under bridges more than ten years after Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans;
  • The harsh conditions still being faced by Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria which claimed the lives of an estimated 4600 persons;
  • The poisoning of the rivers and streams by mining companies which sparked The Dakota Access Pipeline protests;
  • The increasing number of mass shootings as the interest of gun lobbyists is placed above the safety of the citizens.

These are just a few of the issues that the US administration should address at home if it really cares about people. In clear Jamaican parlance we say: clean up your own yard and stop “fassin” in other countries’ business.

 

This article was also published in the Jamaica Observerhttp://www.jamaicaobserver.com/opinion/tek-sleep-and-mark-death-with-the-venezuela-situation_155949?

Featured

Pablo speaks: Seizing Venezuela’s shares in Petrojam is politics and aggressive economic war

The Foreign Affairs and Trade Ministry of Jamaica started an aggressive economic war against Venezuela’s 49% shares in Petrojam on the eve of President Madura”s inauguration. The Jamaican people rightly recognize the action as politics and the Government denied this saying the action was purely economic on behalf of the welfare of the people of Jamaica. The following day the same Ministry backs the OAS resolution, siding with 18 others not to recognize Venezuela President with purely aggressive political action.
One of their main reasons was that the Venezuela election of May 2018 lacks political parties’ participation, although more than one political parties participated. This same party that forms our government won the elections in 1983 in Jamaica with no opposition parties participating at all. Isn’t that a contradiction?
Jah never make one person knowing everything, therefore Judas may know something that I don’t know but I certainly know something that Judas doesn’t know. All the woes of Venezuela are caused by economical, political, diplomatic and social sanctions created by the USA and Allies to justify regime change.
Jamaica should stop meddling in the internal Affairs and Trade of other states because it leaves our “ass out a door”. We continue to work for a non-war Caribbean and Latin American zone with no imperial military base.
Pablo
Featured

Letter: Get out of Venezuela’s Internal Affairs

Sir/Madam,
I humbly write for this letter to be published.
Education is key. Therefore it should be noted that Venezuela’s woes are caused by the unilateral, illegal sanctions by the USA and its Allies.
There are diplomatic, political, economic, social and even medical sanctions that are being illegally imposed on the people and country of Venezuela by the USA, Europe and their puppets to justify regime change. Most big writers and scholars when writing to the editors do not mention sanctions which meddle in the internal politics and sovereignty of Venezuela.
Judas the one who betrays others for personal gain is at it again although Christ has already died for us all. Mr Holness and his Foreign Affairs Minister who are speaking for themselves and not the majority of Jamaican will have the backing of USA for another bloody election like 1980 in Jamaica, as USA will certainly want this type of governance to continue.
Please come again Mr. Prime Minister, Venezuela who have more democratic elections than Jamaica has less murder than Jamaica especially at election time so please get out of Venezuela’s internal Affairs.
We the non war people of Jamaica want peace and no military base.
Yours Truly,
Pablo
new hov logo
Featured

Yet Another U.S. Coup Attempt to Eradicate the Bolivarian Revolution By Stansfield Smith — The New Dark Age

For over two years we have been told Putin’s Russia has interfered with the 2016 U.S. presidential elections. We now find the U.S. government has decided it can unilaterally invalidate the actual presidential elections in Venezuela and recognize a person of its choosing as president. This is one more U.S.-backed coup attempt against progressive Latin American governments including Venezuela (2002), Haiti (2004, and every following election), Bolivia (2008), Honduras (2009), Ecuador (2010, 2015), Paraguay (2012), and Nicaragua (2018), just to name a few of the recent ones.

Trump issued this statement January 23:

President Donald Trump

Today, I am officially recognizing the President of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, as the Interim President of Venezuela.  In its role as the only legitimate branch of government duly elected by the Venezuelan people, the National Assembly invoked the country’s constitution to declare Nicolas Maduro illegitimate, and the office of the presidency therefore vacant.  The people of Venezuela have courageously spoken out against Maduro and his regime and demanded freedom and the rule of law.

I will continue to use the full weight of United States economic and diplomatic power to press for the restoration of Venezuelan democracy…. We continue to hold the illegitimate Maduro regime directly responsible for any threats it may pose to the safety of the Venezuelan people.

Vice President Mike Pence

In response to Vice President Mike Pence’s provocation the day before, President Maduro stated, “What the U.S. government has done is to give the order to carry out a fascist coup d’état…Never before has a high-level official said that the opposition should overthrow the government…this has no historic comparison in the 200 years of U.S.-Venezuela relations.”

In fact, we may have to go back to Theodore Roosevelt’s creation of the nation of Panamaout of Colombia in 1903 to find an appropriate comparison.

The U.S. has sought to destroy the Bolivarian movement since its origin twenty years ago. Obama, in a statement more out of touch with reality than Trump’s, declared Venezuela an “extraordinary threat to the national security” to the United States, and ever since, the U.S. has imposed more and more sanctions, even blocking sales of food and medicine to Venezuela.  These sanctions cut Venezuela off from refinancing foreign debt, and greatly interfere with its international trade. These brutal economic sanctions are inhuman and illegal under the Organization of American States (OAS) and the United Nations charters.

Nicolas Maduro was re-elected President of Venezuela on May 20, 2018 with 67% of the vote. Before the election, during the late spring and summer of 2017, anti-government protesters waged a violent street campaign and the opposition called for immediate presidential elections to terminate the Bolivarian revolution.

This attempted coup came to naught with the turnout in the July vote for the Constituent National Assembly. Then in the fall of 2017 the Maduro administration and the opposition began meeting for mediation talks, facilitated by former Prime Minister of Spain Luis Zapatero, in the Dominican Republic. It was eventually agreed to call for early presidential elections, but in the meantime the opposition decisively lost gubernatorial elections and municipal elections.

Both the government and opposition were to sign an accord, but the U.S. then intervened in the mediation talks and pressured the opposition into abandoning the talks.

The U.S.-backed hardliners in the opposition then called for a boycott of the May 2018 presidential election in an attempt to delegitimize the electoral process, but this again failed.

Having repeatedly failed to unseat Maduro, the U.S. sought to block his re-inauguration. It began instructing OAS General Secretary Almagro back in Spring 2017 to declare Venezuela in a “humanitarian crisis” requiring foreign intervention. This repeatedly failed, as Almagro could never muster an OAS majority. The U.S. then set up the Lima Group, made up of 13 of the more rightwing Latin American governments to depose the Maduro government.

On August 4, 2018 the U.S.-backed opposition turned to assassination, but failed in a drone attack attempt on Maduro and the military general staff.

On January 4, 2019 the U.S. allied Lima Group, with the notable dissent of Mexico, said that it would not recognize Maduro as the president when he was to be inaugurated January 10.

On January 22, the Venezuelan National Assembly adopted a statement accusing Maduro of “usurping” power and declaring all his decisions void. Maduro replied he would hold the National Assembly accountable for ridiculing the country’s constitution. This National Assembly was held in contempt by the Supreme Court in 2016 after it defied the National Electoral Council and seated legislators whose elections were nullified on the basis of allegations of vote buying. Until the contempt of court determination is resolved, all decisions made by the National Assembly are unconstitutional, null and void.

Juan Guaidó

With Trump’s January 23 statement (above) the U.S. has recognized Juan Guaidó, the unelected president of the National Assembly, as Venezuela’s leader just minutes after Guaidó self-appointed himself president of Venezuela.  Canada, France, Britain, Chile, Colombia, Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Peru and  Ecuador followed suit.

This interference into the internal affairs of Venezuela is a clear violation of the sovereignty of Venezuela and international laws such as the charters of both the United Nations and the Organization of American States.

Russia, Bolivia, Turkey, Iran, China, El Salvador, Cuba, Mexico, Uruguay, and Nicaragua have all made statements in support of Nicolas Maduro as the legitimate president of Venezuela.

The Venezuelan military announced it will defend the constitution and national sovereignty, and elected President Maduro. The only way the coup can succeed, as it lacks the support of the Venezuelan military, is with military help from a foreign power, the obvious candidates being the U.S., Brazil and Colombia.

In his January 23 speech (pictures) Maduro gave the U.S. Embassy 72 hours to get out and broke relations with the U.S. over this latest coup attempt. The U.S. puppet “president” Guaidó declared Maduro illegitimate and declared the U.S. Embassy can stay.

Secretary of State Michael Pompeo

Secretary of State Pompeo stated that Maduro does not “have the legal authority to break diplomatic relations with the United States or to declare our diplomats persona non grata” and vowed to “protect” them. Senator Marco Rubio called on the U.S. to expel Venezuelan diplomatic staff and accept a new set of diplomats appointed by Guaidó.

The Guardian quoted Eric Farnsworth, a former U.S. diplomat and vice-president of the Council of the Americas, who said “[Maduro might] turn sharpshooters on crowds and try to scare everybody back home.”

This ploy of using sharpshooters to kill demonstrators has become a standard technique the U.S. uses to instigate a coup. We saw it in Venezuela itself in 2002, in Iran 2008, in Syria in 2011, and the Ukraine in 2014. The corporate media would then begin a campaign about the cost of “world” inaction as Maduro allegedly massacres his own people, and the “world” (meaning the U.S.) would be “forced” to intervene.

Elliot Abrams

On January 24 the U.S. took to the OAS a declaration to recognize Guaidó as the president of Venezuela, but this was again defeated, with 18 voting against and 16 voting for.

So far the Maduro government has not arrested Guaidó, who is apparently ensconced in the Colombian Embassy. The Chavista governments have periodically displayed indecisiveness during key points in their process, going back to Chavez not jailing the leaders of the failed U.S. coup in 2002. But the oligarchy’s opposition likewise consistently botch their own plans and discredit themselves even in the eyes of their own supporters.

While the military play a decisive role inside Venezuela, the mobilization of people on the streets represents a key determinant of the outcome of this attempted coup. Even though the country has been battered by a severe economic crisis, precipitated by a major fall in the price of oil and exacerbated by the hoarding of private businesses (which still dominate the economy), not to mention the punitive U.S. and European Union sanctions, widespread corruption, and the ineffective responses of the Maduro government, the Chavistas can still mobilize significant numbers on the streets. Further, the opposition itself is plagued by severe divisions between moderates, who prefer to work within the system, and the radicals, backed by the U.S., who seek to destroy it.

The strength of the anti-imperialist feeling amongst the Venezuelan masses should not be underestimated either. Moreover, the military is at least 235,000 strong and the grassroots has about 1.6 million in militias.

Washington has already floated the idea of embargoing Venezuelan oil (one-third of U.S. imports), and could even seize CITGO, the Venezuelan owned company.

Meanwhile the Democrats and the anti-Trump Resistance, who proclaim Trump a pawn of Russia (which is an ally of Venezuela), have mostly gone mute concerning Trump’s choosing a U.S. puppet as the new “elected” president of Venezuela.

Representative Tulsa Gabbard did make a clear statement of opposition to U.S. interference:

The United States needs to stay out of Venezuela. Let the Venezuelan people determine their future. We don’t want other countries to choose our leaders–so we have to stop trying to choose theirs.

Representative Ilham Omar wrote:

A U.S. backed coup in Venezuela is not a solution to the dire issues they face. Trump’s efforts to install a far right opposition will only incite violence and further destabilize the region. We must support Mexico, Uruguay & the Vatican’s efforts to facilitate a peaceful dialogue.

Ro Khanna and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have also raised some objection. Bernie Sanders issued a more ambivalent statement, as if trying to please everyone.

Nicolas Maduro was first elected president in 2013, and the record since then shows the U.S. has repeatedly tried to unseat him and eradicate the Bolivarian revolution, always meeting with failure. The record also shows the U.S. and European Union have continually imposed harsher and harsher sanctions on Venezuela, increasing the suffering of the Venezuelan people in the name of “democracy” and “freedom.” Further coup attempts and sanctions are in the works, and the peace movement in the U.S. needs to more actively defend Venezuela against U.S. aggressions.

Stansfield Smith

[Stansfield Smith is a member of Chicago ALBA Solidarity, formerly called the Chicago Committee to Free the Cuban 5.  He is a long time anti-war activist, and activist to oppose US interference over the years in El Salvador, Nicaragua, Cuba, Colombia and Venezuela. He has written for Counterpunch, Dissident Voice, Council on Hemispheric Affairs and other websites. Stan’s website is ChicagoALBASolidarity.wordpress.com.]

 

via Yet Another U.S. Coup Attempt to Eradicate the Bolivarian Revolution By Stansfield Smith — The New Dark Age

Featured

Cuban Communist Party says, ‘Venezuela is not alone’ —

January 25, 2019 The following article appeared in the Jan. 25 English edition of Granma, the official voice of the Communist Party of Cuba Central Committee. Go to tinyurl.com/y7crzn9y/. The Venezuelan people are mobilized, following the call of their legitimate President Nicolás Maduro, to defend their sovereignty, peace and constitutionality. The Bolivarian nation also has […]

via Cuban Communist Party says, ‘Venezuela is not alone’ —

Featured

Tell Your Elected Officials, “Hands Off Venezuela!” — HumanityRenewed

The Alliance for Global Justice has created an online petition and letter writing campaign that allows you to easily tell your elected representatives that you oppose the current U.S. coup attempt in Venezuela. You can sign the petition here as well as call or send a letter to your members of Congress. Regardless of one’s opinion […]

via Tell Your Elected Officials, “Hands Off Venezuela!” — HumanityRenewed

Featured

HANDS OFF VENEZUELA, GRINGOS! — SAUTI YA UJAMAA

We, the TANZANIA SOCIALIST FORUM, with the mandate from all popular movements, devoted to the cause of protecting, preserving and promoting humanity, hereby issue a statement of condemnation to the interventionism by the imperialist forces, of the USA and her allies, into the internal affairs and sovereignty of the BOLIVARIAN REPUBLIC OF VENEZUELA. We adopt […]

via HANDS OFF VENEZUELA, GRINGOS! — SAUTI YA UJAMAA

Featured

Hands Off Venezuela: Divided UN Security Council: Fierce Opposition to Violation of Venezuela’s Sovereignty — peoples trust toronto

https://ift.tt/eA8V8J This morning Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza presented a brilliant defense of President Maduro’s government, against the attempted coup d’etat engineered by the United States and its proxies in Europe and newly right-wing Latin American countries Peru, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia … The post Hands Off Venezuela: Divided UN Security Council: Fierce Opposition to Violation of […]

via Hands Off Venezuela: Divided UN Security Council: Fierce Opposition to Violation of Venezuela’s Sovereignty — peoples trust toronto

Featured

Election Interference Before Military Intervention? Hands Off Venezuela — Russia News Now

Drawing by Nathaniel St. Clair When it comes to interfering in other countries’ election, no nation is better at it than the United States. No nation interferes more and no nation does so more blatantly. The recent machinations in Venezuela that recognized Juan Guiado as the President of that country are just the latest proof. […]

via Election Interference Before Military Intervention? Hands Off Venezuela — Russia News Now

Featured

#Putin Warns US: Hands Off #Venezuela — Indiĝenaj Inteligenteco

Rick Sanchez reports on the latest developments in Venezuela’s intensifying political crisis. Then RT America’s Dan Cohen reports on the increasingly shrill back-and-forth between Washington and Caracas as well as Russian voices joining the mix, with President Putin denouncing the present US interference in Venezuela as “a gross violation of the fundamental norms of international […]

via #Putin Warns US: Hands Off #Venezuela — Indiĝenaj Inteligenteco

Featured

U.S. hands  off  Venezuela! — Socialist Action

Once again, the Wall Street-captured, war-promoting, servants of the one percent—who administer the U.S. government at the pleasure of, and solely in the interest of, corporate America—have deigned to command a sovereign nation as to how to handle its internal affairs. In a further escalation of the U.S. government’s long-running campaign against the elected Venezuelan […]

In a further escalation of the U.S. government’s long-running campaign against the elected Venezuelan government, Vice President Mike Pence pledged on Tuesday, Jan. 22, his “unwavering support” for opposition moves aimed at unseating the elected president Nicolás Maduro. The following day, in violation of international law and the right of self-determination, President Trump formally recognized U.S. puppet politician Juan Guaidó as the legitimate Venezuelan leader. On Jan. 24, The New York Times joined the war chorus, proclaiming, “The Trump administration is right to support Mr. Guaidó.”

To the chagrin of U.S. robber barons, Maduro was elected in 2013 in a process the Carter Center previously called the “best in the world.” Maduro was then re-elected in 2018. Fearing another electoral defeat and seeking to deny Maduro legitimacy, the rightist opposition boycotted that election, with the strong encouragement of its U.S. sponsors.

This latest act of U.S. imperial aggression is not the first of its kind directed against Venezuela or other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean that refuse to march in lock step with U.S. corporate interests. Other hostile actions include:

  • The illegal, decades long economic blockade of Cuba.
  • The invasion of Guatemala in 1954.
  • The Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba in 1961.
  • The invasion of the Dominican Republic in 1965.
  • The U.S. supported coup in Chile in 1973.
  • The Contra war against Nicaragua from 1981-1990.
  • CIA-backed  Haiti coups, 1991 and 2004  & U.S. occupations.
  • The invasion of Grenada in 1983.
  • The invasion of Panama in 1989.
  • CIA backed coups in Haiti in 1991 and 2004, including years of occupations.
  • The U.S. supported coup in Honduras in 2009.
  • Material aid to Nicaraguan opposition groups from at least 2016 to the present.
  • Support for Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil.
  • The U.S.-supported coup against Hugo Chavez in Venezuela in 2002.
  • Economic sanctions against Venezuela from 2006 to the present.
  • A special $5 million fund for Venezuelan opposition groups established by Barak Obama in 2011.
  • Coup attempts against Venezuela’s Maduro in 2015 and 2018.

The same corporate behemoths that push for cutbacks, layoffs, offshoring, and austerity here at home—all to maximize corporate profits—are behind the latest threats against Venezuela. Working people in the U.S. only lose if the one percent succeeds in imposing their will on the Venezuelan people or anyone else.

Many have justifiably criticized the capitalist Chavez and Maduro government policies from the left. But in the current context, under the threat of U.S. intervention, this is not the overriding consideration. Any changes or improvement in the Venezuelan government are for the Venezuelan people alone to make.

The U.S. imperial machine has no progressive role to play in Venezuela or elsewhere! The last thing U.S. corporate leaders want is a truly mobilized, active, and empowered Venezuelan working class. In the U.S., antiwar and working-class activists must take to the streets to demand, “U.S. Out Now!”

Hands Off Venezuela! No to the U.S.-Sponsored Coup Efforts! No to U.S. Sanctions and Military, Economic and Political Efforts to Bring Down the Venezuelan Government! Not One Dollar for the U.S. War Machine! End All U.S. Government Covert Operations! Fund Jobs, Education, and Healthcare, not the Pentagon!

— Statement of the Political Committee of Socialist Action socialistaction@lmi.net

via U.S. hands  off  Venezuela! — Socialist Action

Featured

Hands off Venezuela! The Red Nation denounces US coup attempts in Venezuela —

There is no positive role for the United States to play in the Global South. The expansion of the racist doctrine of Manifest Destiny through the policies of the Monroe Doctrine asserted the supremacy of the United States in the Western Hemisphere and greatly expanded the project and aims of settler colonialism. From the coup […]

via Hands off Venezuela! The Red Nation denounces US coup attempts in Venezuela —

Featured

Chapter 23: HANDS OFF VENEZUELA. — BLACKPOLITIK

Most importantly, I write this in solidarity with the people of Venezuela. I applaud their resistance to the Empire, and I call on all who are reading to do the same. We may not be old enough to remember the occupations of our homelands, but we should be brave enough to let our voices be heard on this issue. NO MORE COLONIALISM. NO MORE EMPIRE.

via Chapter 23: HANDS OFF VENEZUELA. — BLACKPOLITIK

Featured

US group BACP “Holds Hands Off Venezuela” Vigil in the snow

 

Featured

Venezuela, Many Nations, Reject US-Led Interventionism at UNSC Session

Venezuelan Foreign Affairs Minister Jorge Arreaza defended the legitimacy and constitutionallity case of the Bolivarian government of Venezuela.

On Saturday the United Nations (U.N.) Security Council was summoned by the United States to meet Saturday to discuss the internal situation of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Venezuelan Foreign Affairs Minister Jorge Arreaza delivered a speech defending Venezuela against the U.S. interventionism and was backed by several countries from across the world.

China, Equatorial Guinea, South Africa, Russia, Nicaragua, Cuba, Bolivia, Saint Vicent, the Grenadines, Barbados, and Suriname, were among the countries that expressed their recognition of the legitimate and constitutional Venezuelan government, led by President Nicolas Maduro.

“The United States is the one that should be evaluated (and not Venezuela) for its permanent disrespect and interference in external political affairs,” Foreign Minister Arreaza said in his statement before the Security Council. 

“How is it possible that the president of the United States, Donald Trump, who militarily threatened Venezuela, has not been questioned by the world?”

Arreaza also talked about the situation of the illegally and unconstitutionally self-proclaimed “interim president” Juan Guaido, asking, “how can it be possible for a lawmaker to proclaim himself president and for international governments to recognize him?”  Stating and warning that in Venezuela “force is being imposed on the law. That is dangerous and we must stop it here from the United Nations.”

Russia, for its part, a delegation led by ambassador Vasili Nebenzia, condemned the United States policy of favoring regime changes in other countries. “The regime change is the favorite political game of the United States,” Nebenzia state. According to the diplomat, “We (Russia) support the rules of international law and we oppose foreign intervention.”

Jerry Matjila, permanent ambassador of South Africa at the United Nations, called for dialogue in Venezuela. “South Africa is against any attempt of unconstitutional change of the government of Venezuela,” the diplomat said at the meeting.

The ambassador for Nicaragua stated that the actions led by the U.S. and backed by other countries “do not help a political and peaceful solution that only belongs to the Venezuelan people. Venezuela is the one who must exercise its rights and autonomy within its internal jurisdiction.”

The Cuban representation in the Security Council stated that the Caribbean nation “reiterate(s) our absolute respect for the Bolivarian and Chavez revolution, for the union of the Venezuelan people and for their legitimate and democratic government.”

Those several statements of support came as a response to incoherent and inconsistent attacks on Venezuela’s President Maduro by the United States and its right-wing allies as well as several European Countries.

During his speech, the British envoy claimed that President Maduro won the May 2018 elections by “stuffing ballot boxes,” an allegation that the Russian envoy rebuffed by reminding his counterpart that in Venezuela such a fraudulent practice would not be possible because Venezuela has a highly-reliable electronic voting system that does not involve ballots.

 

Source: https://www.telesurenglish.net/news/Venezuela-Many-Nations-Reject-US-Led-Interventionism-at-UNSC-Session-20190126-0012.htmlT

 

Featured

Peter Tosh’s “Vampire”: Fitting description of the Imperialist Warmongers Set to Turn Back Progress in Venezuela and the rest of Latin America

Unnu old vampire

You don’t like to see youths prosper

Only like to see youths suffer

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu old vampire

Only trod upon creation

With your bloody meditation

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu fight against upfullness

Unnu fight against creation

Unnu fight against

Everything good for the younger generation

Unnu old vampire

Do unnu wickedness at midnight

And unnu humble when it’s daylight

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu old vampire

Only like to see blood running

But true you know it’s fire bunnin’

Unnu set of vampire

Now unnu fight against upfullness

Fight against creation

Fight against everything good for the younger generation

Unnu old vampire

Only trod upon creation

Sucking the blood of the nation

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu old vampire

Unnu drink up the old wine

Have no place for the new mind

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu fight against morality

You fight against integrity

Fight against everything good for the younger generation

Unnu old vampire

Only trod upon creation

With your bloody meditation

Unnu set of vampire

Unnu old vampire

Do unnu wickedness at midnight

And unnu humble when it’s daylight

Unnu set of vampire

Featured

Open Letter by Over 70 Scholars and Experts Condemns US-Backed Coup Attempt in Venezuela

 

“For the sake of the Venezuelan people, the region, and for the principle of national sovereignty, these international actors should instead support negotiations between the Venezuelan government and its opponents.”

As many American lawmakers, pundits, and advocacy groups remain conspicuously silent in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to formally recognizeVenezuela’s opposition leader as the “interim president”—a move that was denounced as open support for an attempted coup d’état—renowned linguist Noam Chomsky, filmmaker Boots Riley, and over 70 other academics and experts issued an open letteron Thursday calling on the Trump administration to “cease interfering in Venezuela’s internal politics.”

“The U.S. and its allies must cease encouraging violence by pushing for violent, extralegal regime change.”
—Open Letter

“Actions by the Trump administration and its allies in the hemisphere are almost certain to make the situation in Venezuela worse, leading to unnecessary human suffering, violence, and instability,” the letter reads. “The U.S. and its allies must cease encouraging violence by pushing for violent, extralegal regime change. If the Trump administration and its allies continue to pursue their reckless course in Venezuela, the most likely result will be bloodshed, chaos, and instability.”

Highlighting the harm American sanctions have inflicted upon the Venezuelan economy and people, the letter goes on to denounce the White House’s “aggressive” actions and rhetoric against Venezuela’s government, arguing that peaceful talks are the only way forward.

“In such situations, the only solution is a negotiated settlement, as has happened in the past in Latin American countries when politically polarized societies were unable to resolve their differences through elections,” the letter reads. “For the sake of the Venezuelan people, the region, and for the principle of national sovereignty, these international actors should instead support negotiations between the Venezuelan government and its opponents that will allow the country to finally emerge from its political and economic crisis.”

Read the full letter below:

The United States government must cease interfering in Venezuela’s internal politics, especially for the purpose of overthrowing the country’s government. Actions by the Trump administration and its allies in the hemisphere are almost certain to make the situation in Venezuela worse, leading to unnecessary human suffering, violence, and instability.

Venezuela’s political polarization is not new; the country has long been divided along racial and socioeconomic lines. But the polarization has deepened in recent years. This is partly due to US support for an opposition strategy aimed at removing the government of Nicolás Maduro through extra-electoral means. While the opposition has been divided on this strategy, US support has backed hardline opposition sectors in their goal of ousting the Maduro government through often violent protests, a military coup d’etat, or other avenues that sidestep the ballot box.

Under the Trump administration, aggressive rhetoric against the Venezuelan government has ratcheted up to a more extreme and threatening level, with Trump administration officials talking of “military action” and condemning Venezuela, along with Cuba and Nicaragua, as part of a “troika of tyranny.” Problems resulting from Venezuelan government policy have been worsenedby US economic sanctions, illegal under the Organization of American States and the United Nations ― as well as US law and other international treaties and conventions. These sanctions have cut off the means by which the Venezuelan government could escape from its economic recession, while causing a dramatic falloff in oil production and worsening the economic crisis, and causing many people to die because they can’t get access to life-saving medicines. Meanwhile, the US and other governments continue to blame the Venezuelan government ― solely ― for the economic damage, even that caused by the US sanctions.

Now the US and its allies, including OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro and Brazil’s far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro, have pushed Venezuela to the precipice. By recognizing National Assembly President Juan Guaido as the new president of Venezuela ― something illegal under the OAS Charter ― the Trump administration has sharply accelerated Venezuela’s political crisis in the hopes of dividing the Venezuelan military and further polarizing the populace, forcing them to choose sides. The obvious, and sometimes stated goal, is to force Maduro out via a coup d’etat.

The reality is that despite hyperinflation, shortages, and a deep depression, Venezuela remains a politically polarized country. The US and its allies must cease encouraging violence by pushing for violent, extralegal regime change. If the Trump administration and its allies continue to pursue their reckless course in Venezuela, the most likely result will be bloodshed, chaos, and instability. The US should have learned something from its regime change ventures in Iraq, Syria, Libya, and its long, violent history of sponsoring regime change in Latin America.

Neither side in Venezuela can simply vanquish the other. The military, for example, has at least 235,000 frontline members, and there are at least 1.6 million in militias. Many of these people will fight, not only on the basis of a belief in national sovereignty that is widely held in Latin America ― in the face of what increasingly appears to be a US-led intervention ― but also to protect themselves from likely repression if the opposition topples the government by force.

In such situations, the only solution is a negotiated settlement, as has happened in the past in Latin American countries when politically polarized societies were unable to resolve their differences through elections. There have been efforts, such as those led by the Vatican in the fall of 2016, that had potential, but they received no support from Washington and its allies who favored regime change. This strategy must change if there is to be any viable solution to the ongoing crisis in Venezuela.

For the sake of the Venezuelan people, the region, and for the principle of national sovereignty, these international actors should instead support negotiations between the Venezuelan government and its opponents that will allow the country to finally emerge from its political and economic crisis.

Signed:

Noam Chomsky, Professor Emeritus, MIT and Laureate Professor, University of Arizona

Laura Carlsen, Director, Americas Program, Center for International Policy

Greg Grandin, Professor of History, New York University

Miguel Tinker Salas, Professor of Latin American History and Chicano/a Latino/a Studies at Pomona College

Sujatha Fernandes, Professor of Political Economy and Sociology, University of Sydney

Steve Ellner, Associate Managing Editor of Latin American Perspectives

Alfred de Zayas, former UN Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order and only UN rapporteur to have visited Venezuela in 21 years

Boots Riley, Writer/Director of Sorry to Bother You, Musician

John Pilger, Journalist & Film-Maker

Mark Weisbrot, Co-Director, Center for Economic and Policy Research

Jared Abbott, PhD Candidate, Department of Government, Harvard University

Dr. Tim Anderson, Director, Centre for Counter Hegemonic Studies

Elisabeth Armstrong, Professor of the Study of Women and Gender, Smith College

Alexander Aviña, PhD, Associate Professor of History, Arizona State University

Marc Becker, Professor of History, Truman State University

Medea Benjamin, Cofounder, CODEPINK

Phyllis Bennis, Program Director, New Internationalism, Institute for Policy Studies

Dr. Robert E. Birt, Professor of Philosophy, Bowie State University

Aviva Chomsky, Professor of History, Salem State University

James Cohen, University of Paris 3 Sorbonne Nouvelle

Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera, Associate Professor, George Mason University

Benjamin Dangl, PhD, Editor of Toward Freedom

Dr. Francisco Dominguez, Faculty of Professional and Social Sciences, Middlesex University, UK

Alex Dupuy, John E. Andrus Professor of Sociology Emeritus, Wesleyan University

Jodie Evans, Cofounder, CODEPINK

Vanessa Freije, Assistant Professor of International Studies, University of Washington

Gavin Fridell, Canada Research Chair and Associate Professor in International Development Studies, St. Mary’s University

Evelyn Gonzalez, Counselor, Montgomery College

Jeffrey L. Gould, Rudy Professor of History, Indiana University

Bret Gustafson, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Washington University in St. Louis

Peter Hallward, Professor of Philosophy, Kingston University

John L. Hammond, Professor of Sociology, CUNY

Mark Healey, Associate Professor of History, University of Connecticut

Gabriel Hetland, Assistant Professor of Latin American, Caribbean and U.S. Latino Studies, University of Albany

Forrest Hylton, Associate Professor of History, Universidad Nacional de Colombia-Medellín

Daniel James, Bernardo Mendel Chair of Latin American History

Chuck Kaufman, National Co-Coordinator, Alliance for Global Justice

Daniel Kovalik, Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Pittsburgh

Winnie Lem, Professor, International Development Studies, Trent University

Dr. Gilberto López y Rivas, Professor-Researcher, National University of Anthropology and History, Morelos, Mexico

Mary Ann Mahony, Professor of History, Central Connecticut State University

Jorge Mancini, Vice President, Foundation for Latin American Integration (FILA)

Luís Martin-Cabrera, Associate Professor of Literature and Latin American Studies, University of California San Diego

Teresa A. Meade, Florence B. Sherwood Professor of History and Culture, Union College

Frederick Mills, Professor of Philosophy, Bowie State University

Stephen Morris, Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Middle Tennessee State University

Liisa L. North, Professor Emeritus, York University

Paul Ortiz, Associate Professor of History, University of Florida

Christian Parenti, Associate Professor, Department of Economics, John Jay College CUNY

Nicole Phillips, Law Professor at the Université de la Foundation Dr. Aristide Faculté des Sciences Juridiques et Politiques and Adjunct Law Professor at the University of California Hastings College of the Law

Beatrice Pita, Lecturer, Department of Literature, University of California San Diego

Margaret Power, Professor of History, Illinois Institute of Technology

Vijay Prashad, Editor, The TriContinental

Eleanora Quijada Cervoni FHEA, Staff Education Facilitator & EFS Mentor, Centre for Higher Education, Learning & Teaching at The Australian National University

Walter Riley, Attorney and Activist

William I. Robinson, Professor of Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara

Mary Roldan, Dorothy Epstein Professor of Latin American History, Hunter College/ CUNY Graduate Center

Karin Rosemblatt, Professor of History, University of Maryland

Emir Sader, Professor of Sociology, University of the State of Rio de Janeiro

Rosaura Sanchez, Professor of Latin American Literature and Chicano Literature, University of California, San Diego

T.M. Scruggs Jr., Professor Emeritus, University of Iowa

Victor Silverman, Professor of History, Pomona College

Brad Simpson, Associate Professor of History, University of Connecticut

Jeb Sprague, Lecturer, University of Virginia

Christy Thornton, Assistant Professor of History, Johns Hopkins University

Sinclair S. Thomson, Associate Professor of History, New York University

Steven Topik, Professor of History, University of California, Irvine

Stephen Volk, Professor of History Emeritus, Oberlin College

Kirsten Weld, John. L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences, Department of History, Harvard University

Kevin Young, Assistant Professor of History, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Patricio Zamorano, Academic of Latin American Studies; Executive Director, InfoAmericas

Source: https://www.commondreams.org/news/

Featured

The Imperialist Strategy Against Nicholas Maduro: repeat the lie a thousand times in order to turn it into truth

By Pasqualina Curcio  

Have those who claim that Nicolas Maduro is a dictator, a usurper and that the 2019-2025 period lacks legitimacy asked themselves this question? Or do they just repeat what they hear?

It was the 12 countries gathered in Lima that began to position this opinion matrix. Their communiqué reads: “…the electoral process carried out in Venezuela on May 20, 2018 lacks legitimacy because it did not include the participation of all Venezuelan political actors, nor the presence of independent international observers, nor the necessary international guarantees and standards for a free, fair and transparent process.”

The leaders of the Venezuelan opposition, we refer to the non-democratic one, tirelessly repeat, and of course without arguments, that Maduro is a usurper.

In an act of desperation, the Vice President of the United States himself, Mike Pence, when forced to personally call out the opposition march for January 23, due to the incompetence of the opposition leadership, insisted and repeated that President Nicolas Maduro is a usurper and illegitimate dictator.

The strategy is clear: to repeat the lie a thousand times in order to turn it into truth.

Let us dismantle the lie:

1. There were presidential elections. They were held on May 20, 2018, that is, before January 10, 2019, when, according to articles 230 and 231 of the Constitution, the presidential term 2013-2019 expires. It would have been a violation of the Constitution if the elections had been held after January 10, 2019, or worse still if they had not been held.

2. It was the Venezuelan opposition that asked for the elections to be brought forward. They were held in May and not in December, as was traditionally the case, because it was the opposition that requested it, within the framework of the dialogue in the Dominican Republic, that took place in the first trimester of 2018.

3. In Venezuela, voting is a right, not a duty. Those who freely decided, although influenced by some non-democratic political organizations that called for abstention, not to go to the polls, are in their full right, but in no way does this make the electoral process illegitimate, even less so when that would imply ignoring and disrespecting the 9,389,056 who decided to vote and democratically exercised their right to suffrage.

4. Sixteen political parties participated in the electoral contest: PSUV, MSV, Tupamaro, UPV, Podemos, PPT, ORA, MPAC, MEP, PCV, AP, MAS, Copei, Esperanza por el Cambio, UPP89. In Venezuela, it is not mandatory for all political parties to participate in electoral processes. They have the full right to decide whether or not to participate. Precisely because our system is democratic. The fact that three parties (AD, VP and PJ) freely decided not to participate does not make the electoral process illegitimate.

5. Six candidates contended for the presidency: Nicolás Maduro, Henri Falcón, Javier Bertucci, Reinaldo Quijada, Francisco Visconti Osorio and Luis Alejandro Ratti (the last two decided to withdraw).

6. Maduro won by a wide margin, obtaining 6,248,864 votes, 67.84%; followed by Henri Falcón with 1,927,958, 20.93%; Javier Bertucci with 1,015,895, 10.82% and Reinaldo Quijada who obtained 36,246 votes, 0.39% of the total. The difference between Maduro and Falcón was 46.91 percentage points.

7. Around 150 people accompanied the electoral process, including 14 electoral commissions from 8 countries; 2 technical electoral missions; 18 journalists from different parts of the world; 1 MEP and 1 technical-electoral delegation from the Russian Electoral Centre.

8. The elections were held using the same electoral system used in the December 2015 parliamentary elections, in which the Venezuelan opposition won. This system is automated and audited before, during and after the elections. This system guarantees the principles of “one elector, one vote” because only with a fingerprint is the voting machine unlocked; it also guarantees the “secrecy of the vote”.

9. Eighteen audits of the automated system were carried out. The representatives of the candidate Henri Falcón participated in all 18 and signed the acts in which they express their conformity with the electoral system. The audits are public and televised live on the channel of the National Electoral Council. Once the audits have been carried out, the system is blocked and the only way to access it again is with the simultaneous introduction of the secret codes that each political organization holds.

10. None of the candidates who participated in the electoral process contested the results. There is no evidence of fraud, they did not present any evidence or concrete denunciation of fraud.

The presidential elections of May 20, 2018 were free, transparent, reliable, secure and in accordance with the Constitution and the laws despite the anti-democratic call for abstention on the part of one sector of the opposition.

It is others who seek to usurp the office of President of the Republic with the argument of a supposed power vacuum, a figure that is not contemplated in our Constitution and the establishment of a “transitional government”, a figure also not contemplated in the Magna Carta. And as if that were not enough, they intend to exercise power outside our borders in violation of Article 18 of the Constitution, which establishes that Caracas is the seat of public power.

Things being as they are, the usurpers, those who are illegitimate and anti-democratic, are others. It is illegitimate and constitutes an attempted usurpation that some sectors of the opposition are trying to sustain themselves with the support of foreign actors coming from imperialist governments to exercise an authority that neither the people nor the Constitution gives them.

Let us repeat these truths a thousand times.

23/01/2019

(Translated for ALAI by Jordan Bishop)

Source: https://www.alainet.org/en/articulo/197765

Shared by Arnold August  http://www.CubaUSRelations.com

Featured

Interviews on US television station Democracy Now reveal motives behind the current US-backed coup against the duly elected President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro

We challenge the regional media in Latin America and the Caribbean to stop hiding information from our people by limiting their sources of information to CNN, Voice of America and others controlled by multinational corporations. It is easy for them to find information from diverse sources so there is no reason for keeping us uninformed. We would hate to think that our journalists and media personnel are too lazy to do independent research. Neither would we like to think that they are willing tools of imperialism. Below are videos that Jamaican media TVJ, CVM, Jamaica Gleaner, Jamaica Observer and the plethora of talk show hosts and radio and television stations could easily draw upon for their prime news stories and special features. The people of the region must demand that our media houses broaden their sources or lose listenership, readership, viewership, following, clicks, likes and shares. They need us for the statistics they rely on to earn their advertising dollars.