Category: Nicolas Maduro
As Protests Rage in Venezuela, US Media Silent on Pro-Government Movements

As Protests Rage in Venezuela, US Media Silent on Pro-Government Movements

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As clashes between the Maduro government in Venezuela and the opposition are getting more and more fierce, the US media is openly calling for an economic war against the Bolivarian Revolution government, blaming it for casualties on both sides of the conflict.

Speaking to Radio Sputnik’s Brian Becker, author, journalist and lecturer Arnold August noted that the US media has a very clear stance: that Maduro and his Bolivarian Revolution government are responsible for everything bad that is happening in the country. Those who do not blame Maduro directly nonetheless report on the issue in such a way as to create the impression that Maduro is responsible, August said.

​For example, an April 24 opinion piece by the Washington Times is entitled “Venezuela’s coming civil war: Maduro is arming his thugs to crush the democratic hopes of his desperate people.”

Reuters took a more subtle approach, reporting casualties among civilians without naming who fired the shots, on April 25.

“A 42-year-old man who worked for local government in the Andean state of Merida died from a gunshot in the neck at a rally in favor of president Nicolas Maduro’s government, the state ombudsman and prosecutor’s office said,” the report reads.

“Another 54-year-old man was shot dead in the chest during a protest in the western agricultural state of Barinas, the state prosecutor’s office added without specifying the circumstances,” it continues.

Major media, such as the Miami Herald and CNN, reported in the last few days that the US will have to consider imposing “serious sanctions” on Venezuela, should Maduro fail to host “free and fair” elections, allowing opposition leaders to campaign, August recalled. The US media also purposefully omits reports of demonstrations by the Chavistas — the supporters of the acting government.

The Green Left news website, on the other hand, reported “tens of thousands” of pro-government activists. Deutsche Welle carefully refrained from separating the sides, giving an overall estimate of 6 million people protesting on April 19.  August claimed there were 3 million pro-government protesters across the whole country. All agree that these demonstrations have been the largest in the history of the nation.

August mentioned an opinion piece written for CNN by Jose Miguel Vivanco and Tamara Taraciuk Broner, “high-ranking members” of Human Rights Watch, August explained. Human Rights Watch is heavily financed by George Soros, who is known to be a big proponent of regime change around the world.

Vivanco and Taraciuk’s piece promotes the narrative that all of the deaths and violence in the country are “rightfully” blamed on Maduro, and that international pressure is needed to restore “human rights and democracy in Venezuela.”

“This is one big lie, if I may be quite frank,” August commented.

The US may be up to more than just harsh words in the media, August noted. On April 24, the Maduro government seized a General Motors factory in Venezuela, forcing the company to flee the country, leaving 2,700 people without jobs.

Officially, GM did not pay its taxes and refused to conform to “basic economic and financial rules,” August explains.

But he speculates that GM could have been involved in a darker scheme, similar to what happened in Chile in the 1973 coup d’état against Salvador Allende government.

“Main enterprises in Venezuela — General Motors, but there are others as well — were specifically organizing to hoard goods, to keep it away from the people, in order to create problems, to create a situation where people are starving, etc.,” August told Becker, adding that US companies also cut flights to Venezuela in an attempt to harm its income from tourism.

“It is undeniable that there are internal problems and weaknesses in the economy under the Bolivarian Revolution, but the main feature of the problem at this time is what has been induced and still being induced by the US and its allies,” he said.

Venezuela’s Opposition Openly Calls for Economic War

Venezuela’s Opposition Openly Calls for Economic War

  • Julio Borges, President of the National Assembly, participates in a rally against Venezuela

    Julio Borges, President of the National Assembly, participates in a rally against Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas. | Photo: Reuters

Published 23 April 2017 (6 hours 36 minutes ago)

The opposition leader’s plan is to prevent the government from receiving loans from international banks, which could affect the whole country.

The head of Venezuela’s National Assembly, Julio Borges, has sent more than a dozen letters to major banks asking them not to carry out transactions with the Venezuelan government in order to block the administration of President Nicolas Maduro from receiving financing, the Associated Press reported.

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Borges sent letters warning international banks that they should be worried about their reputation if they support Maduro with financing in his bid to revitalize the economy.

Among the letters, the head of the assembly sent a document to John Cryan, director of Deutsche Bank on Thursday, warning him of the consequences of carrying out financial transactions with Venezuela.

“The national government, through the Central Bank, will try to exchange gold from the national reserve for dollars in order to remain in power unconstitutionally,” Borges wrote.

Borges, one of the founders of the opposition Justice First party, told Cryan “that by supporting this gold exchange, you would be acting in favor of a government recognized as dictatorial by the international community.” International mainstream media regularly echoes the opposition claim that the democratically-elected Maduro government is a dictatorship.

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The lawmaker said this strategy was part of a reform approved by the rogue National Assembly — controlled by the right-wing opposition but declared in contempt by the top court — to cancel any debt by the government that is not explicitly approved by the legislative branch.

Amid a wave of opposition protests in recent weeks, Maduro has repeatedly accused Borges of being a mastermind behind a coup attempt in the country and warned that justice will be served to those responsible for fomenting violence.

Meanwhile, opposition leaders have announced that they will continue to protest, as they have done for the past three weeks in demonstrations on the streets of Caracas that have often turned violent and led to the deaths of at least 22 people.

Maduro said authorities had arrested more than 30 protesters engaged in violence, including an alleged leader of a group of rioters who was caught with explosives.

Venezuelan authorities have called on the Organization of American Staes to condemn the violence perpetrated by the opposition.

Chavistas Flood Caracas in Mega Anti-Imperialist March

Chavistas Flood Caracas in Mega Anti-Imperialist March

  • A sea of red on the streets of Caracas.

    A sea of red on the streets of Caracas. | Photo: Reagan Des Vignes/Telesur

Published 19 April 2017

Tens of thousands demanded that their nation’s sovereignty be respected.

It was a deeply emotional day for Venezuela’s Chavistas, who emerged from their homes in the tens of thousands, celebrating the country’s independence and, at the same time, denouncing continued attempts by the right-wing opposition and by hostile international entities encouraging imperialist intervention.

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There were symbolic cries by those who attended — cries of peace, humility and those of an overwhelming desire to survive interventionist attacks.

President Nicolas Maduro called it “an incredible day of victory” — according to state media, VTV — as he addressed the beaming faces, teary eyes and attentive stares. He said that “peace has triumphed again over the right-wing attempts to sow terrorism in the country.”

“When the Bolivarian people are in the street, there is peace,” he added, “Today they tried to take power again and we have defeated them again the coup plotters, the corrupt right-wing and the interventionists.”

This is the sixth time this month alone that Chavistas have shown their support for the Maduro government against the MUD coalition’s protest actions, which re-energized itself after the April 1 Supreme Court decision to rescind on assuming temporary control of the national assembly’s powers.

A group of supporters hold individual elements of a sign that, when translated, reads, “A people of peace.” | Photo: Reagan Des Vignes/Telesur

Maduro also described Primero Justicia party member, and national assembly head Julio Borges as a hypocrite, a coward, and a clown. Borges has taken a lead in the organization of sustained opposition marches, all of which have turned violent.

The president’s ire over the recent violence has been strongly echoed by Chavistas across Venezuela, many of whom carried signs with anti-imperialist, freedom and peace symbols.

Chavistas hold signs expressing unity, love and anti-terrorism. | Photo: Reagan Des Vignes/Telesur

Chavistas get emotional during the singing of the national anthem, just before President Nicolas Maduro takes the stage. | Photo: Reagan Des Vignes/Telesur

Caracas resident Argeny Valencinio was all smiles at the march. He said Venezuela has come a long way in the battle for peace and prosperity. He laments, however, that there is still a long way to go before it can be won.

“There is a lot that we could accomplish, if only we could put our differences aside and work as a unit. However, I am proud to be here, defending my people! My patria.”

Two teenagers huddle together to write a note to hand to the president’s partner, Cilia Flores, as she passes through the crowd. | Photo: Reagan Des Vignes/Telesur

PSUV President, Diosdado Cabello, also spoke to the tens of thousand, saying that Venezuela’s right-wing opposition has declared itself subordinate to the demands of the United States, which he said has openly called for international intervention.

“We warn all those traitors, who go abroad to ask for the invasion of Venezuela. They will be treated as enemies of this country. Today the people went out into the streets, to send a message of peace, but very firmly to tell imperialism and its lackeys that they are ready to fight. We are in the street ready to defeat them.”

More marches are planned in the coming weeks as the MUD opposition coalition continues to demand that Supreme Court judges be ousted and that an elections timeline be announced.

US Has Given Green Light for Coup in Venezuela: Maduro

  • Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro

    Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro | Photo: Reuters

Published 18 April 2017

According to the Bolivarian leader, the U.S. government wrote up a coup scenario for opposition leader Julio Borges.

A day before opposition leaders convened more protests in Caracas calling for the ouster of Venezuela’s government, the country’s leader has accused the United States of working with right-wing leaders towards a coup.

Venezuela: Maduro Accuses Right-Wing of Buying Protest Violence

“The U.S. government, the State Department has given the green light, the approval for a coup process to intervene in Venezuela,” President Nicolas Maduro said, speaking from the Miraflores Palace.

Maduro said that security forces had arrested an “armed commando group sent by the opposition in order to attack the mobilization called by the right-wing for Wednesday to generate violence and deaths in the country.” An investigation has been opened to determine who is behind the plan.

According to the Venezuelan leader, who also pointed to a U.S. State Department statement issued Tuesday evening warning of an “international response” should “peaceful protests” face repression, the U.S. government wrote up a coup scenario for opposition leader Julio Borges.

The “scenario” Maduro referred to consists in generating violence and deaths before blaming the Venezuelan government for allegedly violently attacking political opponents. Then the plot leaders would demand immediate elections, ahead of Maduro’s official end of term in 2019.

“No more coups in Venezuela, no more plots,” said Maduro, adding that he activated a public security plan to maintain order.

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The Venezuelan leader also called on government supporters to take the streets in the defense of the 18-year Bolivarian Revolution, which has seen an unprecedented internal and external attack in recent months.

The demonstrations come after weeks of opposition-led anti-government demonstrations calling for the ouster of the country’s Supreme Court judges as well as President Nicolas Maduro. According to reports, among those killed in the ensuing violence include a 13-year-old boy who was shot Wednesday when opposition protesters entered a social housing complex and an 83-year-old woman who was not able to receive medical attention due to opposition roadblocks.

Opposition protesters have vandalized various areas in Caracas in recent days causing economic damage estimated at around 50 billion bolivars, President Maduro announced Sunday. A high school, a community health center, various subsidized food markets and several government ministries have also reportedly been severely affected.

The opposition MUD alliance has called for a “Mega March” protest in Caracas on Wednesday and estimate a large turnout with promotions flooding social media.

Officials fear that there could be violence should they attempt to redirect marches to areas where pro-government demonstrators will be gathered.