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Nicholas Maduro

Venezuela — After The Elections: What Is To Be Done?

The recent election results make it clear that although Nicolás Maduro won by a wide margin on May 20, there exists a significant majority made up of those who voted for the opposition and those who did not vote in these elections. The snapshot of the correlation of forces that the elections present us cannot be ignored. Interpreting this data in the most objective manner possible is fundamental. There is no doubt that there are conflicting interests between different sections of the Venezuelan capitalist class. The opposition is not a homogenous bloc. It contains within it enormous internal contradictions. There is a section of the opposition that, rather than worrying about resolving the problems of the country, is focused on overthrowing the government through any means at its disposal, in particular, economic strangulation.

Venezuela’s Election Matters—It Was Under Siege by U.S., Canadian & the EU

On May 20, half the people of Venezuela went to vote. They delivered a mandate to Nicolás Maduro, the 55-year-old successor to Hugo Chávez and the leader of the Chavista movement. Maduro won 68 percent of the vote. His closest challenger, Henri Falcón, who had been a Chavista until 2010, took 21 percent of the vote. It was clear for months that Maduro would win the election. This had nothing to do with “irregularities” in the voting process, as the European Union put it. The residue of loyalty to the Chavista movement is clear. It is also clear that the opposition to Maduro and to the Chavista movement represents the oligarchy. These are not the sentinels of democracy. They are merely using the word “democracy” to return to the old ways. This is clear among Venezuela’s poor, who stick with the Chávez movement despite the privations of the current period. The United States and their fellow oligarchs in Latin America have put the Venezuelan economy under siege. The pain from this “economic war” has certainly disoriented and demoralized the Venezuelan people. At which point, still unsure about their ability to win an election, they have sought to reduce the legitimacy of the Chavista government. Hence, the opposition—backed by the oligarchs and the United States—boycotted the election. This is why only half the population voted.

A Decisive Election For Venezuela: Will The Bolivarian Revolution Continue?

The Venezuelan people will go to the polling stations across the country on Sunday, May 20th. This is the fifth presidential election since Hugo Chavez won the vote in 1998. It is the second since the death of Chavez in 2013. The Bolivarian Revolution, which is the name given to the process inaugurated in the first term of Chavez’s presidency, faces a decisive test. The election will take place in a context saturated by overwhelming pressure from the United States. The administration of US President Donald Trump has increased the pressure from the US against the Venezuelan people through policies of economic destabilization and jingoistic rhetoric. Trump’s threats of an armed attack and the economic warfare have given the right- wing opposition fuel for their fire. The US government, by its actions, has created a campaign to hinder, frustrate and delegitimize these forthcoming presidential elections.  They haven't done so not only to alter the outcome to favor the right-wing but more importantly to ensure that doubt is maintained when the Bolivarian forces win the election of May 20.

People Are Radicalizing The Bolivarian Revolution

By Farooque Chowdhury and Fred Magdoff for Monthly Review. Amidst imperialist interference, the people in Venezuela are carrying on the task of reorganizing their society. Real-life picture in Venezuela is far different from new-reports the mainstream media continuously circulates. The following interview of Christina Schiavoni, a researcher and food sovereignty activist, provides a different view of the life of the Venezuelan people than we normally get from the media. The interview covers food and health situations as well as on-going politics and people’s participation in the politics. The interview was conducted by Farooque Chowdhury and Fred Magdoff, in August 2017.

Latin America Rejects Trump’s Military Threat Against Venezuela

By Brian Ellsworth and Mitra Taj for Reuters. After months of attacking Venezuela's unpopular President Nicolas Maduro, Latin America came out strongly against U.S. threats of military action against the crisis-hit nation. U.S. President Donald Trump's surprise comments on Friday may bring the beleaguered Maduro some respite in the region, just as Venezuela was on verge of becoming a pariah over its recent installation of a legislative superbody, widely condemned as a power grab by the ruling Socialists. Following Trump's assertion that military intervention in Venezuela was an option, Maduro's critics are caught between backing the idea of a foreign invasion of Venezuela or supporting a president they call a dictator. The sudden escalation of Washington's response to Venezuela's crisis preceded U.S. Vice President Mike Pence's trip to the region beginning Sunday. He is set to visit Colombia, Argentina, Chile, and Panama. Venezuela's Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino on Friday disparaged Trump's warning as "craziness" and Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza said on Saturday Venezuela rejected "hostile" threats, calling on Latin America to unite against Washington.

Latest Venezuelan Coup Attempt Against Maduro Linked to DEA, CIA

By Whitney Webb for MintPress News. Ernesto Villegas, Venezuela’s Communications and Information Minister, stated that the attack was intended to be part of an attempted coup led by extremist groups within the opposition, with full U.S. government support said to be behind them. Villegas’ assertion that the U.S. was involved in this attack is not based on mere speculation. Pérez has been known to work for Miguel Rodríguez Torres, a former general and former minister of Venezuela’s Department of Interior Relations, Justice and Peace who is currently being investigated for his ties to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the CIA. The charges first surfaced when the Venezuelan news agencyÚltimas Noticias obtained an official DEA document that described Rodríguez Torres as a “key information provider” for the agency and recommended that he be secured as a protected source for the DEA and U.S. government. It also noted that 40 percent of his assets and wealth are held in the U.S. under his wife’s name.

Standoff In Venezuela

By Staff of LINKS - There is no better indication of the deceptiveness of the mainstream media’s narrative than the spatial nature of the anti-government protests in early 2014 known as the “guarimba” and again this year. The protests are centred in the middle and upper class areas whose mayors belong to the opposition. The strategy behind the protests is for the mass civil disobedience, confrontation with security forces and widespread destruction of public property to spread to the poorer areas. Certainly, the popular sectors have a long tradition of street protests, particularly over deficient public services. But the popular sectors have remained largely passive, although with more exceptions now than in 2014. Obviously the opposition is banking on greater active popular support than in 2014. Along similar lines, the Chavista United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) has been more damaged by electoral abstention among disenchanted Chavistas than those who end up voting for the opposition. Such electoral behaviour is what explains the Chavista defeat in the December 2014 elections for the National Assembly. But the Chavista leaders still have an impressive degree of mobilisation capacity, as was demonstrated in two recent marches, one on Venezuelan Independence Day on April 19, and the other on May 1.

Mass Protests In Venezuela, On Both Sides

By Lucas Koerner for Venezueal Analysis. Hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans took to the streets of the capital Wednesday in massive pro and anti-government rallies marking the country’s independence day. Thousands of red-clad supporters of President Nicolas Maduro mobilized in four separate marches that culminated in a mass rally along Bolivar Avenue in downtown Caracas. “I am here to support the Revolution… because I love my country, I’m a Chavista in the flesh and I support Chavez and Maduro, and I want that to be heard in the US, Europe and the rest of the world so they can’t say this is a show, that we don’t have numbers, that we’re paid to be here. No, this is real,” one marcher told Venezuelanalysis.

Renewed Attempts At Regime Change In Venezuela?

By Carlos Ron. The arrival of a new government in Washington, opened the way for taking a harder line on Venezuelan policy. On January 26, members of the opposition that had been present at the dialogue roundtables decided to abandon the process and follow the lead of Voluntad Popular, an opposition political party that spearheaded the violent protests in 2014, resulting in 43 dead and hundreds wounded. On February 8, 34 members of Congress, including some that are known for their traditional anti-Venezuela stance, asked President Trump in a letter to “take immediate action” against Venezuela. On February 13, Vice President Tarek El Aissami, was accused by the Treasury Department of drug-trafficking and soon after, on February 15, President Trump met with key opposition figure, Lilian Tintori, from Voluntad Popular.

US Spent $4.2M in 2015 to Destabilize Venezuelan Government

By Staff for Telesur. In 2015, the United States government earmarked at least US$4.26 million for Venezuela through the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, with much of this going to organizations undertaking anti-government work. Almost US$2 million of these funds were funneled through the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), an organization created in 1982 purportedly "dedicated to the growth and strengthening of democratic institutions around the world." Of these funds, US$849,223 were allocated for "civic" or electoral purposes including the creation of an "interactive online platform connecting citizens to National Assembly candidates," along with US$160,813 for the promotion of "free market" reforms. Some US$505,796 were disbursed for media purposes including funds to "radio programs", "alternative channels to generate and disseminate news and information","local independent journalists and alternative media outlets in defending freedom of expression and democracy" as well as for training "journalists on investigative journalism and the use of social media in disseminating news."

Venezuela’s Maduro: US Imperialsim To Blame For Latin American Unrest

By Staff for Telesur. President Maduro said the recent events in Bolivia and Brazil are part of a new plan to destabilize progressive governments in the region. Following the murder of the Bolivian vice minister by miners and as the impeachment process against President Dilma Rousseff reaches its final stage, Venezuela's President Nicolas Maduro warned Saturday of "imperialist" attacks on the region's left and compared the situation to a new Plan Condor. "It's an imperialist attack against all," said Maduro. "From Venezuela we will fight the coup of the oligarchy." Plan Condor was a U.S.-backed military and intelligence operation in the 1970s that saw Washington tacitly support state-sponsored terror to eliminate subversive, left-wing sectors of society and control the perceived threat of communism.

Venezuelan Opposition Mayor Arrested In Blue Coup Plot

Longtime rightwing politician, Antonio Ledezma, has been arrested by the country’s intelligence services, SEBIN, for his alleged role in plotting to stage a coup against the democratically elected government of Nicolas Maduro. The planned coup was uncovered last week by security forces, just hours before several US backed Air Force officials had planned to partake in a bombing spree of strategic targets in the capital. They had hoped this would lead to the assassination of the country’s president and bring about regime change in the South American country. “Antonio Ledezma who, today, by order of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, was captured and is going to be prosecuted by the Venezuelan justice system, to make him answer to all of the crimes committed against the peace and security of the country and the Constitution… We’ve had enough of conspiracies, we want to work in peace!” announced Venezuelan President, Nicolas Maduro, amidst a chorus of cheers from onlookers.
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