Category: Venezuela
Venezuela Crisis: Washington Wants ‘Its’ Country Back
A  woman holds her infant as she casts her vote in front of a mural of the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez at a polling station during the Constituent Assembly election in Caracas, Venezuela, July 30, 2017.

Venezuela Crisis: Washington Wants ‘Its’ Country Back

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John Wight
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https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201708011056064483-venezuela-crisis-washington-subsidiary/

The word for what has been taking place in Venezuela is an attempt at counterrevolution. Washington wants “its” country back, which is why it is providing both overt and covert support to an opposition determined to return the country to its previous status as a wholly owned subsidiary of Washington.

What needs to be emphasized is that in establishing a Constituent Assembly, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is acting in full accordance with the Bolivarian Constitution. To wit:

“Article 348: The initiative for calling a National Constituent Assembly may emanate from the President of the Republic sitting with the Cabinet of Ministers; from the National Assembly, by a two thirds vote of its members; from the Municipal Councils in open session, by a two-thirds vote of their members; and from 15% of the voters registered with the Civil and Electoral Registry.”

As to the opposition’s attempts to derail the establishment of the Constituent Assembly with street protests, rioting and a call for a nationwide boycott of the election of delegates to the new assembly, these have been undertaken in contravention of the Constitution, of which Article 349 stipulates: “The President of the Republic shall not have the power to object to the new Constitution.

“The existing constituted authorities shall not be permitted to obstruct the Constituent Assembly in any way.”

It goes without saying, of course, that people cannot eat a Constitution. With food shortages, a shortage of medicines, and rampant inflation the norm, only the most foolish would attempt to suggest that Mr. Maduro and his government have no questions to answer over a crisis that has turned Venezuelan society upside down.

People stand in line to cast their votes at a polling station during an unofficial plebiscite against Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro's government and his plan to rewrite the constitution, in Caracas, Venezuela July 16, 2017
© REUTERS/ Christian Veron
People stand in line to cast their votes at a polling station during an unofficial plebiscite against Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro’s government and his plan to rewrite the constitution, in Caracas, Venezuela July 16, 2017

But those questions are not the same as the ones being asked amid the welter of anti-government media coverage in the West. In what has been tantamount to a frog’s chorus of condemnation, Maduro and his government have been calumniated with the kind of vituperation reserved only for those which dare embark on a program of wealth redistribution in favor of the poor and working class. For such people socialism is anathema, a mortal threat to their conception of freedom as a mechanism by which, per Thucydides, “the strong (rich) do what they can, and the weak (poor) suffer as they must.”

Here is CNN’s treatment of the election, held on 30 July, to mandate the establishment of the Constituent Assembly. “Critics in Venezuela and abroad argue a Maduro mandate would erode any last signs of democracy in the country. ‘It would give the government the opportunity to turn Venezuela into a one-party state without any of the trappings of democracy,’ says Eric Farnsworth, vice president of the Council of the Americas, a business association.”

Two things stand out in this passage. The first is the claim that the Constituent Assembly is undemocratic. Given the aforementioned articles of the country’s constitution this is entirely false. The second is Mr. Farnsworth’s position as “vice president of the Council of the Americas, a business association.”

The Council of the Americas is an organization based in the United States with offices in Washington DC, New York, and Miami. In its mission statement it describes itself as “the premier international business organization whose members share a common commitment to economic and social development, open markets, the rule of law, and democracy throughout the Western Hemisphere.”

Reading this passage, you will struggle to find a more concise, if cryptic, support for free market capitalism and the rights it confers on the rich to exploit the poor in the name of democracy. As author George Ciccariello-Maher points out, “the opposition’s undemocratic aspirations come draped in the language of democracy.”

Opposition supporters attend a rally to pay tribute to victims of violence during protests against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's government in Caracas, Venezuela, July 24, 2017.
© REUTERS/ Ueslei Marcelino
Opposition supporters attend a rally to pay tribute to victims of violence during protests against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s government in Caracas, Venezuela, July 24, 2017.

Moreover, when we learn that US Vice President, Mike Pence, has been in direct contact with Venezuelan opposition leaders, our collective memory should immediately transport us back in time to Guatemala in 1954, Indonesia in 1965, Chile in 1973, and of course Ukraine in 2014 — previous examples where the US has actively supported coups that have unseated leaders with the temerity to refuse to obey their imperial overlord.

It really isn’t rocket science, especially in the case of a country where a Washington-backed coup was previously attempted and failed in 2002.

Venezuela’s economic problems are predominately down to the collapse in global oil prices that has ensued in recent years. Between 2014 and 2018 the price of crude plummeted from US$96.29 to US$40.68 a barrel, a mammoth drop of over 40 percent. And though the price has recovered in 2017, at US$50.31 a barrel it remains a long way off its peak 2012 price of US$108.45 a barrel.

For a country whose economy is dependent on the price of oil, such a seismic drop can only produce an equally seismic economic shock. Crucially, with oil being Venezuela’s only export commodity of note, the crisis has exposed structural weaknesses in the economy that long predate the arrival on the scene of Hugo Chavez never mind his successor, Nicolas Maduro.

Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro speaks during a meeting with businessmen in Caracas, Venezuela January 9, 2017
© REUTERS/ Miraflores Palace
Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro speaks during a meeting with businessmen in Caracas, Venezuela January 9, 2017

This is not to suggest that President Maduro is without blame for the ongoing crisis. Returning to George Ciccariello-Maher, we learn that a “failing system of currency controls governing the distribution of oil income was never fully dismantled. The result was a destructive feedback loop of black-market currency speculation, the hoarding and smuggling of gasoline and food, and an explosion of already rampant corruption at the intersection of the private and public sectors. Confronted with street protests and food shortages, Maduro responded erratically, supporting grassroots production by communes while simultaneously courting private corporations in a bid to keep food on the shelves.”Events in Venezuela are not taking place in a vacuum. This oil rich country, once a beacon of hope for the continent’s poor, indigenous, and oppressed with the coming of Hugo Chavez to power in 1999, is experiencing the particular challenges involved in trying to create an island of socialism surrounded by a sea of US-dominated capitalism.

Its vulnerability to the volatility of oil prices merely confirms the presence of large reserves of oil can distort rather than enhance a nation’s economic development, particularly in the Global South where economic diversification bumps up against the reality of the domination of global markets by Western financial institutions and corporations.

In the last analysis, it is capitalism not socialism that has failed the people of Venezuela. However socialism is being made to carry the can.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official position of Sputnik.
The Reality About Venezuela: Five myths debunked

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/08/the-reality-about-venezuela-five-myths.html

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

The Reality About Venezuela: Five myths debunked

During the last months, the bourgeois mainstream media- as well as various sources throughout the internet- have circulated numerous lies and inaccuracies about the situation in Venezuela. Within this framework of half truths and counteless inaccurcies, someone can read the most outrageous things about the Latin American country. After all, the imperialist centers and their collaborators in the mass media are experts in how to mislead and manipulate public opinion, by sowing misinformation and distorting reality.

Here, we will refer to five major lies (really blatant ones) about Venezuela and the turbulent political situation in the country and we will try to restore the truth.
MYTH #1: “Venezuela is a socialist country” / “The Maduro government is a socialist one”.
This is the most outrageous of the lies that various anticommunists use when refering to Venezuela. The political and economic system of Venezuela has nothing to do with Socialism (with the marxist-leninist meaning). The means of production are not in the hands of the working class, as it would happen if the country had undergone a socialist revolution. There is a “mixed economy”, which means there are both privately-owned and state-owned businesses.
The private sector controls the overwhelming majority of economic activity. It is characteristic that between 1999 and 2011, the private sector’s share of economic activity increased, from 65% to 71%. Therefore, the economy of Venezuela is a capitalist, not a socialist one.
The coalition government of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), under Nicolas Maduro, is a government of social democratic characteristics. Following the path of the late Hugo Chavez, the current government is based on the theory of the so-called “21stcentury Socialism” which in fact consists a management form of the capitalist economy with “left-wing” characteristics.

ΜΥΤΗ #2:Venezuela is an example of Socialism’s failure”.
Based on the above lie (of the supposed socialist system in Venezuela), the apologists of capitalism use the economic turnoil in Venezuela in order to vilify socialism and communism. The reality is totally different. The crisis is a result of the capitalist way of production.
Indeed, Venezuela is passing a severe economic crisis which has many dimensions (oil crisis, food crisis, shortages crisis, inflation). More specifically, by the first quarter of 2014, the Venezuelan economy was already in recession, even though international oil prices were more than US$100 a barrel. By January 2015, prices had fallen to US$48 a barrel, and are about the same today. This depleted the government’s revenue by a similar percentage, and the government resorted to printing money to cover expenses. The money creation would not necessarily accelerate inflation but in the context of the inflation-depreciation spiral it certainly did. So inflation rose even faster.
The various mismanagements of Venezuela’s government in economy consist the one side of the coin. The other side is the existence of an economic war that the Venezuelan right-wing opposition (with the open support of the U.S.) has unleashed against Maduro’s administration. For example, food importing companies owned by the country’s wealthy right-wing elite are manipulating import figures to raise prices. Following the PSUV’s defeat in the December 2015 parliamentary elections, there were numerous reports on social media that products missing before the election had reappeared on grocery shelves.
On the above we must add the indirect effects that the diplomatic and political warfare of the U.S. (both by Obama and Trump administrations) has caused to Venezuela’s economy. The recent U.S actions have had a significant and highly detrimental impact on Venezuela’s economy at a time when the country is in a desperate need of dollars. Moreover, the diplomatic warfare of the U.S. and OAS against Venezuela has definitely discourages foreign financial institutions, inverstors and bankers from continuing business (swap for gold, loans, other economic agreements, etc) with the Venezuelan state.
Summarizing all the above, we say: Venezuela’s example shows that a pro-people management of capitalism is impossible. Any experiments to “humanize” the savage capitalist system lead to failure and mess.

MYTH #3: “The opposition in Venezuela is comprised by well-intentioned, independent leaders”.
The right-wing, reactionary opposition in Venezuela has been rooted in violence since the beginning of the Bolivarian process that began with the election of Hugo Chavez in 1999, having amped up their violence since Nicolas Maduro beat their candidate in elections in 2013.
From the 2002 coup attempt against Chavez to the oil lockout in 2003, the Venezuelan opposition has done everything to destabilize the country at the expense of the Venezuelan people. The so-called “guarimbas”– the street blockades- are not comprised by “peaceful protesters” as bourgeois mainstream media say. There is a number of well-documented instances where opposition “protesters” have burned black people alive, just because they thought they were “Chavistas”.
But, what about the leaders of the opposition? The truth is that the four prominent members of the right-wing Venezuelan opposition (Henrique Capriles, Leopoldo López, Antonio Ledezma and Maria Corina Machado) are related to a number of U.S. governmental “institutions” which aim in overthrowing the legally elected Venezuelan government. There is solid proof (e.g. leaked telegrams and documents which have never been disputed) that the leadership of the Venezuelan opposition works closely with the U.S. governments. Since at least 2009 the U.S. Department of State has budgeted up to US$49 million in total to support right-wing opposition forces in Venezuela.
Independency” is therefore something that cannot be attributed to Venezuela’s right-wing opposition. Henrique Capriles Radonski, the opposition presidential candidate who lost two electoral battles against Chavez and Maduro, is known for his role in the 2002 failed coup against the Chavez government, while his party (Justice First) was created through USAID funds. Leopoldo López, a dark political figure and leader of the far-right “Popular Will” party, whose historical background includes corruption, promotion of violence and participation in coup attempts.
The political efforts of the right-wing Venezuelan opposition have been actively supported by U.S. institutions such as the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the International Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute.
MYTH #4: “The majority of the Venezuelan people are against the government of Maduro”.
While the bourgeois mainstream media shows images of large crowds demonstrating against the government in Caracas, the vast majority of the Venezuelans seem to disapprove the violent tactics of the right-wing opposition and the “guarimbas”. More specifically, according to a nationwide survey conducted by polling organisation “Hinterlaces” last April, 76% of those surveyed disapprove of a possible international intervention which would overthrow Maduro from the presidency, and 87% rejected any military intervention in the country.
Even if President Maduro and his social democratic government has lost a significant portion of his popularity, Chavismo remains the most popular political platform within the population. It is characteristic that according to a survey conducted by the polling organisation Datanalisis (which has an anti-governmental orientation) last March, Maduro’s popularity was at 24.1%, which is higher compared to other Latin American leaders (e.g. Enrique Peña Nieto of Mexico, Brazil’s Michel Temer or Chile’s Michelle Bachelet).
Furthermore, according to the survey conducted by Hinterlaces, 35% of the people expressed support to political parties allied with Chavismo, 29% to those with the opposition, and 36% declined to support any political force.
Therefore, is there any solid evidence that the majority of the Venezuelan people want a political overthrow? The answer is “No”.

MYTH #5: “The Venezuelan dictatorial government controls the media and brainwashes the people”.
This is a tremendous lie. As a capitalist country, where the private sector is dominant, Venezuela has mostly privately-owned media. Most Venezuelans are getting informed from TV channels, the vast majority of which belong to anti-governmental private business groups. The largest TV network is Venevisión, owned by the Cisneros group, while there are 9 other privately-owned TV channels (5 regional ones) as well as a TV network owned by the Catholic Church. There are 3 state-owned TV channels (Venezolana de Television, Vision Venezuela, Televisora Venezolana Social).
According to the U.S. think-tank COHA (Council of Hemispheric Affairs), 9 in 10 of the largest newspapers in the country belong to the “anti-chavista” camp. Only in Caracas, someone can find 21 newspapers!
Taking the above into account, it becomes obvious who has the “upper hand” in the media sector and that is the Capital and the monopolies.

IN DEFENSE OF COMMUNISM ©

The CIA Was Involved In the Coup Against Venezuela’s Chavez
| July 31, 2017 | 8:57 pm | Hugo Chavez, political struggle, Venezuela | No comments

Editor’s note: Here is some of the historical background to the current situation in Venezuela:

https://venezuelanalysis.com/analysis/800

The CIA Was Involved In the Coup Against Venezuela’s Chavez

By Eva Golinger – VenezuelaFOIA.info, November 22nd 2004

On April 12, 2002, White House spokesperson Ari Fleischer stated:

Let me share with you the administration’s thoughts about what’s taking place in Venezuela. It remains a somewhat fluid situation. But yesterday’s events in Venezuela resulted in a change in the government and the assumption of a transitional authority until new elections can be held.

The details still are unclear. We know that the action encouraged by the Chavez government provoked this crisis. According to the best information available, the Chavez government suppressed peaceful demonstrations. Government supporters, on orders from the Chavez government, fired on unarmed, peaceful protestors, resulting in 10 killed and 100 wounded. The Venezuelan military and the police refused to fire on the peaceful demonstrators and refused to support the government’s role in such human rights violations. The government also tried to prevent independent news media from reporting on these events.

The results of these events are now that President Chavez has resigned the presidency. Before resigning, he dismissed the vice president and the cabinet, and a transitional civilian government has been installed. This government has promised early elections.

The United States will continue to monitor events. That is what took place, and the Venezuelan people expressed their right to peaceful protest. It was a very large protest that turned out. And the protest was met with violence.”[i]

On that same day, U.S. Department of State spokesperson Philip T. Reeker, claimed:

In recent days, we expressed our hopes that all parties in Venezuela, but especially the Chavez administration, would act with restraint and show full respect for the peaceful expression of political opinion. We are saddened at the loss of life. We wish to express our solidarity with the Venezuelan people and look forward to working with all democratic forces in Venezuela to ensure the full exercise of democratic rights. The Venezuelan military commendably refused to fire on peaceful demonstrators, and the media valiantly kept the Venezuelan public informed.

Yesterday’s events in Venezuela resulted in a transitional government until new elections can be held. Though details are still unclear, undemocratic actions committed or encouraged by the Chavez administration provoked yesterday’s crisis in Venezuela. According to the best information available, at this time: Yesterday, hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans gathered peacefully to seek redress of their grievances. The Chavez Government attempted to suppress peaceful demonstrations. Chavez supporters, on orders, fired on unarmed, peaceful protestors, resulting in more than 100 wounded or killed. Venezuelan military and police refused orders to fire on peaceful demonstrators and refused to support the government’s role in such human rights violations. The government prevented five independent television stations from reporting on events. The results of these provocations are: Chavez resigned the presidency. Before resigning, he dismissed the Vice President and the Cabinet. A transition civilian government has promised early elections.

We have every expectation that this situation will be resolved peacefully and democratically by the Venezuelan people in accord with the principles of the Inter-American Democratic Charter. The essential elements of democracy, which have been weakened in recent months, must be restored fully. We will be consulting with our hemispheric partners, within the framework of the Inter-American Democratic Charter, to assist Venezuela.”[ii]

Why re-cite these statements here? These statements from the highest levels of the U.S. Government show the prepared version of the events that took place during the April 11-12 coup d’etat against Venezuelan President Chávez. Moreover, these revealing statements now prove, in light of documents recently obtained from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), that this prepared version of events was knowingly false and made with the intention of deceiving the international community in order to justify a violent overthrow of a democratic government.

The White House and the State Department both claimed that the Chávez government had provoked violence and actions that resulted in the President’s alleged resignation. They also asserted that the Chávez government had fired on unarmed, peaceful protesters and that the Venezuelan military and police had refused orders to “support the government’s role in human rights violations”. The U.S. Government referred to the protests and actions of that day as though they were spontaneous, unplanned events.  The U.S. Government has also continued to deny to this day any involvement whatsoever in the April 2002 coup d’etat.

However, there is a vast amount of evidence that has surfaced since the coup demonstrating that the events on April 11, 2002 were entirely premeditated by a sector of the opposition intent on overthrowing the Chávez government. Furthermore, my own investigations have provided a plethora of evidence proving the U.S. involvement in the coup on various levels. Most revealing on the Venezuelan front was a news program on Saturday morning, April 12, 2002, “24 Horas” with host Napoleon Bravo. On that program, Bravo interviewed Vice-Admiral Carlos Molina Tamayo, a professed coup leader, and Victor Manuel Garcia, Director of the polling company CIFRA who claimed to have represented the “civil society” during the coup. Both Molina Tamayo and Garcia gave a jaw-dropping, detailed account of the events leading up to the coup and those key Venezuelans involved, including crediting the private televisions stations for their complicity and aide. Their testimony, along with Chacao municipal mayor Leopoldo Lopez of the Primero Justicia political party and Napoleon Bravo’s own admissions of complicity in the coup, provided plenty of proof that the overthrow of Chávez was a premeditated event.

Later, an extraordinary and award-winning documentary by filmmaker Angel Palacios, “Puente Llaguno: Claves de un Masacre”, revealed how the Venezuelan private media had manipulated and distorted the events that unfolded on April 11, 2002 in the opposition march, which resulted in widespread violence and death. The documentary also provided sufficient proof that snipers unrelated to the Chávez government had provoked the violence in the opposition march that justified the forced removal of Chávez from office. Furthermore, the documentary succeeded in proving that a well-planned military-civilian coup d’etat had taken place that day and that those involved were connected to the highest levels of the U.S. government.

But the evidence of actual U.S. involvement in the coup itself remained scarce up until recently. On www.venezuelafoia.info, I have posted hundreds of documents that evidence the intricate financing scheme the U.S. government has been carrying out in Venezuela since 2001, that includes financing well over twenty million dollars to opposition sectors. The funding of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a quasi-governmental entity in the U.S. financed entirely by Congress and established by congressional legislation in 1983, has provided more than three million dollars since late 2001 to opposition groups, many of which were key participants in the April 2002 coup. And in June 2002, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), set up an Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) in the U.S. Embassy in Caracas, allegedly for the purposing of helping Venezuela to resolve its political crisis. The OTI in Caracas has counted on more than fifteen million dollars in funding from Congress since June 2002 and has recently requested five million more for 2005, despite the fact that it was only supposed to be a two-year endeavor. All evidence obtained to date shows that the OTI has primarily funded opposition groups and projects in Venezuela, particularly those that were focused on the August 15, 2004 recall referendum against President Chávez.

I have written other articles explaining the intervention model applied through NED and USAID in Venezuela. This method of intervention is very sophisticated and complex, as it penetrates civil society and social organizations in a very subtle way and is often either undetectable or flimsily justified by the concept of “promoting democracy”, which is what the NED claims to do around the world, despite evidence to the contrary. The mere fact in Venezuela that the NED has financed exclusively anti-Chávez groups and those very same organizations that were involved in the April 2002 coup shows that “democracy” is far from the NED’s intention.

But the CIA intervention in Venezuela is of the crudest, simplest kind. Top secret documents recently obtained and posted on www.venezuelafoia.info show that in the weeks prior to the April 2002 coup against President Chávez, the CIA had full knowledge of the events to occur and, in fact, even had the detailed plans in their possession. An April 6, 2002 top secret intelligence brief headlining “Venezuela: Conditions Ripening for Coup Attempt”, states, “Dissident military factions, including some disgruntled senior officers and a group of radical junior officers, are stepping up efforts to organize a coup against President Chávez, possible as early as this month, [CENSORED]. The level of detail in the reported plans – [CENSORED] targets Chávez and 10 other senior officers for arrest…” The document further states, “To provoke military action, the plotters may try to exploit unrest stemming from opposition demonstrations slated for later this month…”[iii]

So the CIA knew that a coup attempt would take place soon after April 6, 2002, and moreover, they knew the plan would include Chávez’s arrest and an exploitation of violence in the opposition march. In other words, they knew the plans before the coup occurred and surely they knew the actors involved, many of whose names are probably in the censored parts of the top-secret documents. One could assume that if the CIA had the detailed plans in their possession in the weeks prior to the coup it was because they were associating and conspiring with the coup plotters. So, when Ari Fleischer and Philip Reeker made those statements on April 12, 2002 on behalf of the U.S. Government, they did so with full knowledge that a coup had taken place, Chávez had been arrested and the violence in the opposition march, which they attributed to Chávez, had actually been a premeditated part of the coup plot. The top secret documents that prove this information show they were sent to the U.S. Statement Department and the National Security Agency, which means frankly, the White House knew what was happening all along.

Furthermore, the CIA documents make no mention of any attempts to have Chávez forcibly resign from office. The CIA warnings indicated as early as March 5, 2002 (which is the date of the earliest document provided) that a coup was on the rise and even hinted that prospects for a successful coup were limited. The CIA rightfully felt the opposition was too disperse and divided to successfully overthrow Chávez. But the concept that Chávez had “resigned” as the White House and State Department “confirmed” on April 12, 2002 was merely a set-up, a false claim made with the intention of deceiving the U.S. public and the international community. Remember that the U.S. stood practically alone in the world in its endorsement of the coup-implemented Carmona Government, which it later weakly condemned but only after the coup came tumbling down and the U.S. realized it needed to save face quickly.

A top secret CIA document from April 14, 2002 shows concern that Latin American governments will view U.S. foreign policy as “hypocritical” because of its sole endorsement of the Carmona coup government. The CIA also seems surprised that the region of Latin America so quickly rejected the coup in Venezuela and that the Carmona government “stunningly collapsed”, which demonstrates a possible out-of-date view of the hemisphere and a failure in intelligence gathering and analysis. In fact, the CIA never imagined the coup would buckle because of support for Chávez – their analysis all along showed possible failure due to lack of opposition unity and hasty actions. This is a very important point, because it demonstrates that although the CIA was involved in the coup plotting and the collaborations with dissident military factions and opposition leaders, it was fairly detached from the reality of Venezuelan society.

The CIA’s intelligence failures in Venezuela were apparently repeated during the oil industry strike later in 2002 and the guarimba destabilization attempt, an old-school CIA tactic applied in Chile and Nicaragua. Both of these harsh actions injured the Venezuelan economy and affected the government’s international image, but failed in their goal to oust President Chávez. The NED’s and USAID’s tens of millions of dollars in financing to build and maintain the opposition movement and finance the recall referendum campaign against President Chávez also failed to achieve their mission. In fact, all of these bungled attempts by the U.S. government and its marionette opposition movement have served to strengthen Chávez’s support within Venezuela and paint him as a strong and solid international leader.

Now that some of the top-secret documents have surfaced that show the CIA’s complicity and involvement in the April 2002 coup, it leaves one to wonder what is next on the agenda. In September 2001, shortly after the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York, President Bush unconditionally authorized former CIA Director George Tenet’s “Worldwide Attack Matrix”, which targets leaders and prominent figures in 80 countries around the world for assassination. The authorization of the Worldwide Attack Matrix provided the CIA with a virtual carte blanche to conduct political assassinations abroad, justified under the “war against terrorism”. The “Attack Matrix”, a top secret CIA document, authorizes an array of covert CIA anti-terror actions that range from “routine propaganda to lethal covert action in preparation for military attacks”.[iv] The plans give the CIA the broadest and most lethal authority in history. Some analysts have indicated that Venezuela is possibly included in the plans.

The recent assassination of Venezuelan Prosecutor Danilo Anderson, conducted in a style reminiscent of CIA operations, could be setting the stage for future political murders. History shows that when the CIA fails to remove a target via non-lethal means, more desperate measures are taken. Despite the fact that the Venezuelan government and its supporters appear to have foiled the CIA numerous times already over the past few years, vigilance, intelligence and increased security measures should become a priority.

[i] http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/04/20020412-1.html

[ii] http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2002/9316.htm

[iii] http://www.venezuelafoia.info/CIA/ SEIB_04-06-02-pre-Coup-conditions_ripen/CIA-04-06-02.htm

[iv] http://www.i2osig.org/cia.html

‘Shameful for US to call Venezuelan elections a sham’
| July 31, 2017 | 7:06 pm | Analysis, Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela | No comments

‘Shameful for US to call Venezuelan elections a sham’

‘Shameful for US to call Venezuelan elections a sham’
Demonstrators run as clashes broke out with security forces while the Constituent Assembly election was being carried out in Caracas, Venezuela, July 30, 2017 © Ueslei Marcelino / Reuters

The US has its election irregularities and sticks its nose into the Venezuelan election as it sees South America as its backyard. Destabilizing the Maduro regime is a primary interest, says Gerald Horne, professor of history at the University of Houston.
About ten people were killed in a weekend of rioting in Venezuela as opposition activists flooded the streets protesting against the election of a new assembly.
People were voting Sunday on a constituent assembly which will be tasked with rewriting the constitution. However, the opposition boycotted the vote, defied a ban on public protests and denounced the election as a power grab by President Maduro.
RT: President Maduro says this election, and the new Constituent Assembly, are vital to restoring stability. Do you think that’s likely to happen judging by what we’ve seen so far?
Gerald Horne: It is possible. But you have to keep in mind that there is a third player besides the Maduro regime and the opposition, I am speaking of Washington. It is no secret that Washington is very upset with the Maduro regime. Just today, US ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley denounced this vote. Washington has promised that it will slap sanctions on Venezuela as a result of the vote. Washington is very upset with Venezuela’s relationship with Cuba, in the first place, but also upset with its relationship with Moscow and Beijing. You should also know that this election and the crisis in Venezuela should be seen in a wider context.
It is no secret that over the last decade Washington had been upset with a turn to the left in South America. But now you see that last year the president of Brazil, Dilma Rousseff was impeached and removed from office. Her predecessor Lula Da Silva who was expected to run for the presidency of Brazil next year was just convicted. And in Argentina, the Peronist leader, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is now under investigation after serving a term in Buenos Aires. Fortunately, Evo Morales in Bolivia is still in power. But Washington sees South America as its backyard. And it sees as a primary interest destabilizing the Caracas-based regime of Mr. Maduro.
RT: The opposition defied a ban on protests ahead of this election. Are they simply making matters worse and is there any chance of them backing down and accepting the result?
GH: It is difficult to see them back down in the short term because as they see it, they have the wind in their sails. They are receiving significant external support not least from Washington but also from allies in Brazil where there has been a sharp turn to the right of late. I would not foresee stopping its protests any time soon.
RT: The US ambassador to the UN has said this election would push Venezuela towards dictatorship. Is that a fair accusation?
GH: That is quite rich coming from a US representative. As it is well-known elections in the US were studded with irregularities; voters oppression, particularly in the black community, it’s par for the course. And it takes a bit of gall and chutzpah for Nikki Haley to stick her nose into Venezuelan elections and charge that they’re sham when she should be attending to the shambolic elections that regularly take place in the US.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.
Election meddling: US sanctions 13 Venezuela officials, warns against electing Constituent Assembly
| July 27, 2017 | 7:54 pm | Venezuela | No comments

https://www.rt.com/usa/397628-venezuela-sanctions-democracy-threats/

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| July 27, 2017 | 7:52 pm | Donald Trump, Nicolas Maduro, Venezuela | No comments

https://www.rt.com/news/397656-maduro-trump-stop-agression/

The KKE responds to the slanderous lies of Carmelo Suárez’s group (Comentario en español)

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The KKE responds to the slanderous lies of Carmelo Suárez’s group (Comentario en español)

https://communismgr.blogspot.com/2017/07/the-kke-responds-to-slanderous-lies-of.html

The International Relations department of the CC of the KKE issued a statement (commentary) replying to the recent slanderous delirium of the opportunist “Carmelo Suárez faction”. Surpassing all limits, the Suárez faction shamelessly involves a third party (Communist Party of Venezuela) in order to vilify the KKE and the Communist Party of Mexico. 

In a recent article under the title “The declaration of Caracas as a necessity of the historical moment in Venezuela”, the group of C. Suárez unleashes a provocative slanderous attack against the Communist Parties of Greece (KKE) and Mexico (PCM) for not being among the signatories of a random declaration of solidarity towards Venezuela.

However, as the KKE statement points out, the group of Suárez hides the continuous and unwavering internationalist solidarity that Greece’s Communist Party has shown towards the CP of Venezuela and the Venezuelan people. The KKE also slams the opportunist view of Carmelo Suárez’s groups about the “revolutionary process” in Venezuela, reminding that the country’s power remains in the hands of the bourgeoisie and the working class experiences intense exploitation by the capitalists. (IDC) 

* * * 


The original full text of the Inter. Relations department of the KKE, published in spanish language, is the following:

El KKE ha expresado de manera específica y responsable  su posición sobre los acontecimientos en el PCPE, la erosión oportunista-trotskista del grupo de Carmelo Suárez y sus enormes responsabilidades por la crisis y la división en el PCPE. 
 
Nuestro Partido ha puesto de manifiesto que el intento de calumniar el KKE y el Partido Comunista de México que llevan muchos años apoyando el PCPE, es infundado, ridículo y se basa en mentiras (si alguien se interesa puede leer las posiciones relativas en la dirección http://inter.kke.gr/es/articles/Posicion-del-KKE-sobre-los-acontecimientos-en-el-Partido-Comunista-de-los-Pueblos-de-Espana-PCPE/http://inter.kke.gr/es/articles/Las-calumnias-no-pasaran/). 
 
Las consideraciones del KKE se confirman día tras día. El delirio que caracteriza las posiciones del grupo de Carmelo Suárez pretende desorientar y retener a los pocos miembros que pueden todavía observar el curso liquidacionista trágico de este grupo. 
 
Puesto que la actitud aventurera de Carmelo Suárez ha superado todos los límites e implica de manera provocadora a un tercer partido con lo que el KKE mantiene relaciones bilaterales desde hace muchos años, relaciones que se han forjado en condiciones muy difíciles, queremos destacar lo siguiente: 
 
Primero: El KKE ha expresado durante todos los años su solidaridad internacionalista, ha ofrecido su ayuda de manera multiforme a los partidos comunistas que la necesitaban y nuestro partido ha recibido solidaridad internacionalista en condiciones difíciles por decenas de partidos comunistas. 
 
El KKE lleva muchos años apoyando la lucha del Partido Comunista de Venezuela y expresando su solidaridad internacionalista. Recientemente, con diversas intervenciones y actos de protesta en la embajada de Venezuela en Atenas  exigió la detención del proceso de ilegalización del partido hermano en Venezuela. 
 
El KKE de cara al 15Congreso del Partido Comunista de Venezuela envió un cálido mensaje de solidaridad internacionalista, condenando cualquier intervención imperialista y a las fuerzas reaccionarias, y este mensaje también fue silenciado por el grupo de Carmelo Suárez y si alguien se interesa lo puede encontrar en la página http://inter.kke.gr/es/articles/Mensaje-de-Solidaridad-Internacionalista-al-XV-congreso-del-PCV/
 
Sr. Carmelo Suárez.

Nuestro partido dejó claro en Caracas que sería preferible utilizar las decenas de mensajes de solidaridad enviados por Partidos Comunistas y Obreros al Congreso del Partido Comunista de Venezuela y no disminuir la solidaridad en un texto con que no podían ponerse de acuerdo todos los partidos comunistas y que sería apoyado por un número de partidos comunistas mucho menor que de los que enviaron un mensaje de saludo. 

 
Segundo: La posición del grupo de Carmelo Suárez sobre “el proceso revolucionario” en Venezuela no tiene nada que ver con la realidad en este país donde el poder está en manos de la burguesía y la clase obrera está experimentando una intensa explotación por parte de los capitalistas, el sistema de explotación y la política de sus administradores. 
 
De hecho (y esto es muy peligroso) esta actitud incrimina el concepto de la revolución y atribuye los problemas del capitalismo y de la crisis capitalista a un “proceso revolucionario” inexistente y por esta razón es de gran importancia dejar claro que los problemas de la clase obrera en Venezuela, así como en otros países de América Latina, no se provocan por la “Revolución” y el “Socialismo” sino por el capitalismo que genera el desempleo y la pobreza. 
 
En caso diferente, se fomentarán ilusiones peligrosas y se socavará la lucha por el socialismo, por la abolición de la explotación del hombre por el hombre. 
 
A estas ilusiones contribuyen las posiciones del grupo de Carmelo Suárez que analiza los acontecimientos con sus lentes trotskistas.
 
18.07.2017.