Category: Venezuela
Communist Party of Greece: Strongly condemns EU’s sanctions against Venezuela

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Communist Party of Greece: Strongly condemns EU’s sanctions against Venezuela

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/11/communist-party-of-greece-strongly.html
The Press Office of the Central Committee of the KKE issued a statement on the sanctions adopted by the European Union against Venezuela. The statement is as follows:
 
“The KKE denounces the unacceptable decision of the EU Foreign Ministers to impose economic sanctions on Venezuela. This decision is directed against the people of Venezuela and demonstrates once again the antipopular-reactionary character of the European Union, as well as the tactic of interfering in the internal affairs of other states, which has often taken a form of intervention, even with military means.
 
The government of SYRIZA-ANEL has enormous responsibilities regarding this event, because it turns out that this decision of the EU Foreign Ministers was taken unanimously. It seems that the full alignment of the government with the imperialist plans of US-NATO and the EU is taking place at all levels.”
The Communist Party of Canada’s contribution to the 19th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties

CPC contribution to 19th International Meeting of Communist & Workers’ Parties

October 4, 2017

The Communist Party of Canada’s contribution to the 19th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties

We are honoured to bring greetings to this historic gathering on the centenary of the Great October Socialist Revolution.

Great October is the historic marker between all class divided, exploitative and oppressive societies heretofore; and the end of the exploitation of one human being by another achieved with the victory of Soviet power in Russia.  The epoch of the transition from capitalism to socialism was irrevocably opened for the working class to pass through, according to the objective and subjective conditions in each country. 

As Lenin said, the road to socialism is not straight like the Nevsky Prospect.  The loss of the USSR showed that the transition period is intense – a life and death struggle with imperialism, in which socialist states can be overthrown and great setbacks sustained.  But the political struggle of the working class and its allies for socialism cannot be stopped and will prevail, because the working class is the grave-digger of capitalism, as Marx proved.  This is the irreconcilable contradiction of capitalism that foretells its inevitable passing.

Imperialism has seized the moment to drive the world to the brink of world war and environmental devastation, and to unleash the forces of reaction and fascism aimed to destroy socialism, to overthrow socialist and progressive governments, to eliminate the Communist and Workers’ parties.

US imperialism’s threat to “totally destroy” DPRK, to overthrow governments in Venezuela and Syria, and to effect regime change in Cuba, is an invitation to world war and nuclear catastrophe.  US imperialism is sliding towards fascism.  The growth of fascist movements and parties globally, of austerity, xenophobia, racism and misogyny, is imperialism’s response to the changed balance of forces after 1991.

We live in a very dangerous time, facing the stark choice of socialism or barbarism.   We must soberly assess how to roll-back the threat of fascism, reaction and war, and how to advance the struggle for fundamental social transformation which working people increasingly seek, despite growing anti-communist campaigns.

In Canada, nascent fascist movements are also blooming, given new life by developments in the US and Europe.  These include Soldiers of Odin, PEGIDA, and La Meute.  They prey on the insecurity and fear of working people who are victims of the capitalist crises and who are aware that there is no recovery for them, while the biggest corporations rake in super-profits, lay-off workers, drive down wages and pensions, and demand social spending cuts.  Social democratic governments and parties, including in Canada, continue to offer prescriptions to better manage capitalism.

In Canada, the Trudeau government was elected on a platform promising peace, jobs, democracy, equality, and redress for Indigenous Peoples, most of which they have abandoned.  Trudeau has bowed to US demands to increase support for NATO and NORAD, and will increase military spending by 70%.  Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland (grand-daughter of a Ukrainian fascist collaborator) has stick-handled the government’s pro-US positions, including threats to Venezuela, and permanent stationing of Canadian troops in Latvia and Ukraine.   We vigorously oppose these policies, and campaign for peace and disarmament, withdrawal from NATO and NORAD, and cutting current military spending by 75%.  We are working hard to build the peace movement, and in particular the Canadian Peace Congress, affiliate of the World Peace Council.

The climate change crisis, causing major disasters this year, has forced itself onto the global agenda.  The struggle for climate justice must be a priority for our movement.  Socialism will prevail, provided the globe has not been destroyed by war and environmental devastation.

The NAFTA negotiations are collapsing, killed by US protectionism.  A revived Trans Pacific Trade and Investment Partnership is on the horizon.  We have campaigned hard against these deals and capitalist globalization generally, designed to cement corporate control of the world’s resources and markets, eliminating national sovereignty.

We fight for mutually beneficial, multi-lateral trade that includes long-term credits for developing countries.

We have closely followed developments in Catalonia and Kurdistan.  Like other parties, we condemn the use of force by the Spanish government against the Catalan people and their struggle for national self-determination, a right that Lenin invoked as inviolable for Marxist Leninists.

Canada is a multi-national state, created at the point of a gun, after British colonialism defeated France in North America in 1763 and then subdued the French speaking populations in what is now Quebec.  During capitalism’s rise, colonial governments aimed to exterminate or forcibly assimilate Indigenous Peoples.  This unequal and involuntary union of oppressed and oppressor has been maintained by force and violence of the Canadian state ever since.

While the CPC does not support the option of Quebec secession, because it will weaken the struggle of the working class as a whole against capitalism and for socialism, we unequivocally support the right of Quebec and other nations in Canada to self-determination and to secession if they so choose.  This puts the onus on the English speaking nation to offer a new, equal and voluntary partnership as the basis for unity in Canada, one which recognizes the national rights of all, including the right of each to leave, in a new democratic Constitution.  This is the option we favour and campaign for.

In conclusion comrades, we thank the CPRF for hosting this historic meeting in Leningrad, the cradle of the Great October Socialist Revolution.

We express our confidence in the unity and coordinated action of the Communist and Workers’ parties, in our historic struggle for socialism, peace, and a sustainable global environment.

Long live Marxism-Leninism!

Hasta la Victoria Siempre!

Delivered by CPC leader Elizabeth Rowley on behalf of the Central Executive Committee of the Communist Party of Canada to the 19th Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties held in Leningrad, November 2-3rd, 2017.

‘Why Is the US Even There?’ Anti-War Critics Question American Presence in Niger

https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201710201058390465-us-presence-niger-anti-war/

‘Why Is the US Even There?’ Anti-War Critics Question American Presence in Niger

United States Forces Korea (USFK) soldiers line-up during a display of military equipment at Yongsan US military base in Seoul. (File)

‘Why Is the US Even There?’ Anti-War Critics Question American Presence in Niger

© AFP 2017/ CHOI JAE-KU

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After a bloody militant attack in Niger that killed four US soldiers and five Nigerien service members earlier in October, US foreign policy critics have questioned why the US has a troop presence in countries like Niger in the first place.

Brian Becker and Walter Smolarek of Sputnik Radio’s Loud & Clear were joined by anti-war activists Rory Fanning and Cindy Sheehan. Fanning is a former US Army Ranger who fought in Afghanistan before becoming a conscientious objector and public speaker, while Sheehan became a vocal opponent of the US military following the death of her son, US Army Specialist Casey Sheehan, in Iraq in 2004.

“It’s not bad enough that our loved ones were killed in one of the many illegal, immoral wars that the US empire wages, but then we get so mistreated,” Sheehan complained. “After we’re used as political cannon fodder, then we are just pretty much just discarded by the country that supposedly is so grateful for our service.”

On Thursday, Trump allegedly told Myeshia Johnson, the pregnant widow of slain Green Beret La David Johnson, that the soldier “knew what he signed up for,” a comment for which he received enormous flak. The White House denied Trump said any such thing, and accused Representative Frederica Wilson (D-FL) of fabricating the story.

According to Sheehan, the political mistreatment of Gold Star families spans the political spectrum: the family of Humayun Khan, a US soldier killed in Iraq in 2004, was “used by the Democrats” during the 2016 election, as hers has been.

“My grief and the power of the antiwar movement was used by the Democrats,” she said. “The question nobody is answering is: ‘Why are there special forces in Niger anyway?’ Why is the US even militarily involved there?”

The US military claims that its presence in Niger is to train Nigerien troops and deploy surveillance drone missions in the fight against Islamic terrorist groups in neighboring Mali, where US-ally France has been waging a war against Al-Qaeda affiliates since January 2013. Eight hundred US troops are deployed in Niger, with the permission of Niamey.

Niger is far from the only African nation to have a rarely discussed US troop presence. According to Fanning, the United States has been “conducting military operations in 49 of the 54 African countries since 2011 alone. Sixteen years of this, and unfortunately all these incidents only take away focus from the fact that many thousands of American soldiers have died since 2001, plus hundreds of thousands of people around the world, the majority of them innocent civilians.”

Fanning then turned the topic of conversation to his speaking engagements in schools about his time in the Rangers. “I spend a lot of time, when I can get in front of the students here, in the Chicago public schools talking to them about the military. Chicago has 10,000 students signed up to JROTC [Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps, a US military program aimed at high school students] which is more than any other school district. I’m in a county that’s 50 percent black, 45 percent Latino. When you talk to them about the military you’d be surprised by how little they can tell you about the last 16 years.”

“When they do say why they’re all wearing a uniform once a week for these JROTC classes, they say that they’re looking for a little bit of structure, they’re looking for opportunities to pay for college. Eventually they’ll say ‘We want to make sure the world is a safer place, fight for freedom and democracy.’ I go in front of them and tell them about my experience, and the world is a far more dangerous place as a result of the last 16 years. Between 1980 and 2001, there were 381 suicide bombings around the world, only 10 percent aimed at the US or US interests. Since 2001 there’s been as many as 3,000 suicide bombs around the world, with up to 90 percent aimed at the US or US interests.”

“The world is a far more dangerous place, so signing up for the military is not necessarily making the world safer, it’ll make it more dangerous,” said Fanning. “As far as freedom and democracy goes, national sovereignty seems to exist just for the United States. It doesn’t really apply to any other country. The fact that the US is conducting military operations in the vast majority of African countries, let alone other places around the world — that’s not freedom and democracy for those people. It’s about making a small percentage of the population wealthier and controlling various regions of the planet.”

“The conversation we need to be having is: Why are people still being killed?” Sheehan asked. “Why is the US still a military empire with Trump threatening North Korea, Iran and Venezuela militarily? We just have to be more vocal, and it doesn’t matter who’s president. Obama bombed seven countries, he was at war every day of his presidency, he dropped almost 27,000 bombs in his last year. We need to stop being partisan politicos and really start opposing US empire as much as possible.”

President Maduro Says ‘Fascist’ Group’s Plot to Destabilize Venezuela Foiled
| October 3, 2017 | 7:33 pm | Fascist terrorism, Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela | No comments

https://sputniknews.com/latam/201710031057901627-venezuela-maduro-opposition-plot/

An employee of the Venezuelan national electricity company is pictured inside an electric plant in San Fernando de Apure (southern Venezuela) on October 02, 2008

President Maduro Says ‘Fascist’ Group’s Plot to Destabilize Venezuela Foiled

© AFP 2017/ THOMAS COEX
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https://sputniknews.com/latam/201710031057901627-venezuela-maduro-opposition-plot/

Venezuela’s President Maduro has announced that the country’s government has derailed an opposition plot to disrupt core public services, including national energy, water and gasoline supplies, and thus destabilize the situation in the country.

The Venezuelan leader referred to the schemers as a “right-wing fascist group,” which included the “opposition leaders of the highest level.” The plot, which he said was mastermind by the US embassy in Caracas, was supposed to be set in motion on Monday.

Nicolás Maduro had not revealed any names of the suspects but said that the group has been captured “with concrete physical evidence.”

Vice President Tarack el Aissami, Interior Minister Nestor Reverol and Bolivarian Intelligence Service (SEBIN) Director Gustavo González López are set to reveal all the details of the operation on Tuesday, the President said during a meeting with regional leaders in the country’s northern state of Vargas, which was broadcast by the Venezuelan state television channel.Maduro specifically pointed out that the sabotage plan was also aimed at disrupting the country’s regional elections, which are scheduled for October 15, when the country will elect a governor for each of its 23 states.

At the end of September, the Venezuelan leader already urged the country’s military to be on standby and be ready to “defend every inch of its territory.” Venezuela, he said, has been “shamelessly threatened by the most criminal empire that ever existed,” referring to the US in the follow up to the introduction of new US travel restrictions against some senior Venezuelan officials.

No intervention: Venezuela has right to pursue own path, Ecuador president tells RT
| September 25, 2017 | 8:22 pm | Donald Trump, Ecuador, Lenin Moreno, Venezuela | No comments

https://www.rt.com/news/404434-ecuador-lenin-moreno-venezuela-intervention/

No intervention: Venezuela has right to pursue own path, Ecuador president tells RT
Each nation is free to pursue its own path and has the right of self-determination, the leader of Ecuador, Lenin Moreno, told RT Spanish in an interview regarding the turbulent situation in Venezuela. The president believes there should be no meddling in Venezuelan affairs.

“Ecuador has stated there should be no meddling, each country has right to its own path, its own way, the right to self-determination, there should not be even the slightest possibility of other countries’ intervention on its territory,” Moreno told RT’s Eva Golinger on the sidelines of the ongoing General Assembly annual session at the UN headquarters in New York.

The remarks came in response to a question on the US president’s debut speech at the UN, where Donald Trump chided “the socialist dictatorship of Nicolas Maduro,” which “inflicted terrible pain and suffering on the good people of [Venezuela].” Trump called on the Venezuelans to “regain their country and restore their democracy,” warning that the US was “prepared to take further action” should Caracas keep on imposing “authoritarian rule” on its people.

Moreno said that talks over the crisis in Venezuela are being launched in the Dominican Republic. Moreno believes that dialogue is “always the best option to resolve acute problems, such as those that Venezuela is currently going through.”

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro was quick to hit back at Trump’s UN General Assembly speech from Caracas, describing the US leader as “the new Hitler of international politics.”

“Nobody threatens Venezuela and nobody owns Venezuela. Donald Trump today threatened the president of the Bolivarian Republican of Venezuela with death,” Maduro said.

In August, the US leader warned that Washington wouldn’t exclude a military intervention in Venezuela.

“We have many options for Venezuela, including a possible military option if necessary,” he said. The comment came amid Washington’s discontent with the election of a new government body, the Constituent Assembly, which the US decried as “undemocratic.”

Trump’s harsh stance on Venezuela, however, met with criticism from regional leaders, with Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Chile, Argentina and Peru speaking out against Washington’s possible use of force.

READ MORE: US-Venezuela standoff: Latin America haunted by ‘ghost of military interventions’

Why Trump’s Foreign Policy May Result in 25 ‘Chernobyls’ in Asia-Pacific
| September 22, 2017 | 7:25 pm | Cuba, Donald Trump, DPRK, Iran, Venezuela | No comments
Nuclear explosion

Why Trump’s Foreign Policy May Result in 25 ‘Chernobyls’ in Asia-Pacific

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https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201709211057590607-trump-policy-nuclear-disaster-asia-pacific/

The US’ foreign policy may lead to a nuclear nightmare in Asia Pacific, compared to which the Fukushima disaster is a “firecracker,” an expert told Sputnik, adding that in his UN speech Donald Trump had repeatedly contradicted himself by calling upon nations to maintain their sovereignty while at the same time threatening to destroy North Korea.

US President Donald Trump’s threat to “totally destroy” North Korea in case the US is “forced to defend itself or its allies” means a potential atomic Armageddon for the Korean Peninsula, Konstantin Sivkov, a Russian military analyst and president of the Academy for Geopolitical Problems, told Sputnik China.

“We must keep in mind what a strike on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) may result in,” Sivkov said. “If the US decides to begin an all-out war against North Korea it will mean only one thing: 25 nuclear reactors in South Korea will be destroyed by a retaliatory attack from the DPRK. This equates to 25 Chernobyl disasters on the Korean Peninsula.”

It’s easy to guess what the consequences would be, the expert noted: the Korean Peninsula, considerable parts of China and Russia, let alone most of the territory of Japan will turn into a “dead zone.”

“In comparison with this, the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe would look like a firecracker,” Sivkov pointed out. “In fact, Trump is pushing [the peninsula] toward a nuclear collision, and it must be realized that if a nuclear strike is launched against North Korea, it is unlikely that China and Russia will stand idly by.”

In this context the US president’s call for tackling threats to national sovereignty sounds rather hypocritical, the expert said, referring to Trump saying: “We must reject threats to sovereignty from Ukraine to the South China Sea.”However, Trump didn’t specify who exactly poses a threat to the sovereignty of Ukraine and waters of the South China Sea, leaving the question open. In the eyes of Beijing the threat to its sovereign rights in the maritime region comes from the US. Therefore Trump’s comment could be interpreted as a call to protect China’s sovereignty from the US itself, the expert remarked.

According to Sivkov, while delivering his speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, Trump contradicted himself.

The expert drew attention to the fact that Washington doesn’t have a clear position on its foreign policy: On the one hand, Trump proclaims the inviolability of sovereignty, while on the other hand he declares his determination to interfere in the internal affairs of other nations.

Sivkov noted that the US president’s tough stance toward China has only accelerated further Sino-Russian rapprochement and military-strategic cooperation. According to the expert, the decision of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) to focus more on the issues of military-political cooperation and fight against terrorism has come as a response to Washington’s “political games.”The expert stressed that the fight against “hybrid wars” also remains high on the agenda of the SCO and with good reason: “A hybrid war is the US’ main way of conducting operations against other countries.”

The Astana declaration of the Heads of State of the SCO signed on June 9, 2017, calls upon its members to team up in order “to counter common security challenges and threats, deepen dialogue and cooperation to ensure comprehensive security,  primarily  in  fighting  terrorism,  including  cyber-terrorism,  separatism, extremism, cross-border organized crime, illicit drug trafficking.”

According to Sivkov, the adoption of the declaration indicates that SCO member-states have united against potential aggression from the West and the US in particular.

Speaking to Sputnik, Zhou Yongsheng, a research fellow with the Center for International Relations Studies of the Diplomatic Academy of China, shared Sivkov’s stance that Trump’s speech was contradictory from the very beginning until the end.On the one hand, the US president called on the international community to respect the principle of state sovereignty, and on the other he threatened some countries with decisive actions, including total destruction, the Chinese academic noted referring to Trump’s threat to destroy North Korea.

According to Zhou, “Trump’s speech… demonstrates a lack of political culture.”

On Tuesday US President Trump delivered his first ever speech at the United Nations General Assembly issuing threats to a number of countries, including North Korea, Iran, Venezuela and Cuba and called upon UN member states to “confront together those who threat us with chaos, turmoil and terror.”

The delegation from North Korea left the conference room before Trump addressed the meeting and didn’t hear him calling the DPRK leader a “Rocket Man.” However, afterwards DPRK Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho compared the US president’s speech to “dog barking.”

For his part, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Alberto Arreaza stated that Trump is by no means the president of the world, adding that each country has its sovereign right to maintain the system it chooses.

“This is return to the cold world, for a moment, we didn’t know if we were listening to President Reagan in 1982 or to President Trump in 2017,” Arreaza noted.

China stood up for Caracas: Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi signaled to his Venezuelan counterpart that Beijing believes that the Venezuelan government and people will manage to resolve their problems within a legal framework, Reuters reported.

Commenting on Trump’s first speech at the UN General Assembly, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called it “ignorant, absurd and hateful rhetoric.”

“By violating its international commitments, the new US administration only destroys its own credibility and undermines international confidence in negotiating with it or accepting its word or promise,” Rouhani emphasized addressing the UN General Assembly.

Venezuela to Donate $5M to Harvey Victims in Texas

https://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Venezuelas-Citgo-to-Donate-5M-to-Houston-20170830-0015.html

Venezuela to Donate $5M to Harvey Victims in Texas

  • Houston residents trudge through floodwaters.

    Houston residents trudge through floodwaters. | Photo: AFP

Published 30 August 2017

Venezuela has extended its solidarity to the victims of Harvey in Texas and Louisiana.

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza has announced that the South American country will be donating US$5 million to help with recovery efforts in areas devastated by Harvey, particularly Houston and Corpus Christi, Texas.

RELATED:
Venezuelan Constituent Assembly Passes Decree Against US Sanctions

“Let’s not allow war or threats to be imposed, but instead let’s impose solidarity. We will always be with the people of the United States and the peoples of the world in difficult times,” Arreaza said.

He explained that President Nicolas Maduro has approved a special program to help the victims in the states of Louisiana and Texas.

The plan was approved by U.S. authorities and the cities’ mayors, according to Arreaza.

The diplomat indicated that a percentage of the sales of gas from Citgo will be destined for the construction of houses for the people affected. Citgo is a subsidiary of the Venezuelan state oil company, PDVSA, based in Houston.

Arreaza also said that he will be sending a letter Wednesday to the charge d’affaires at the United States embassy to deliver the construction project, adding that Venezuela has offered rescue workers, doctors, and other specialized personnel to help with the situation on the ground.

President of Citgo Nelson Martinez said the company was “going to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of those affected, with its support plan for construction.”

Citgo operations were forced to shut down at its Corpus Christi, Texas facilities, near where Harvey made landfall Friday, but are reportedly on their way to restarting in the next few days.

RELATED:
Experts Say Climate Change Intensified Hurricane Harvey

In an announcement Friday, U.S. President Donald Trump signed a decree imposing new economic sanctions on Venezuela. The latest U.S. sanctions ban trades of Venezuelan debt and prevent PDVSA from selling new bonds to U.S. citizens or financial groups. Trades of existing bonds commissioned by Caracas will also be barred.

Mark Weisbrot, Co-Director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington D.C., said the new round of sanctions is “severe” and is on a level never seen before, making Trump’s cursory threats of military intervention against the Bolivarian state highly plausible.

The government has said that the sanctions target the Venezuelan people, affecting food and medicine supplies, which has led to international condemnation of the U.S. measures.

The new sanctions come weeks after Trump said that a “military option” has not been ruled out against Venezuela.