By Kevin Zeese
Members of a Peace Delegation organized by the US Peace Council and hosted by COSI the (International Solidarity Committee) just returned from a week-long visit to Venezuela.
When we talked with Venezuelans, they told us how pleased they were people from the United States were in Venezuela and could see what was really happening in their country. They wanted us to return to the United States and tell the truth about Venezuela — that is exactly what we are doing.
There is more false information in the US mass media and coming from politicians of both corporate-controlled parties than there is the truth. The people of the United States are being misled in order to create support for Trump’s intervention in Venezuela which includes an ongoing economic war, an attack on the electrical system, an attempted regime change coup and threats of war and militarism.
The US was claiming there was widespread civil unrest when in fact there was calm. The US claimed there were people starving and homeless, we saw healthy people, food distribution programs, urban food gardens and millions of social housing units built in the midst of an economic war. There were no starving Venezuelans. There was no humanitarian crisis. The US economic war has caused hardships, particularly the manipulation of currency to create inflation.
While the US pushed the farce Juan Guaido as a coup president, the reality was Guaido’s self-appointment violated the Constitution of Venezuela. Guaido is the butt of jokes in Venezuela with very little support among the population while Maduro is seen as working for the necessities of people and fighting against US imperialism.
We spent time in the barrios, shantytowns, on the streets, urban farms and at rallies and talked to many Venezuelans.
The delegation also had a 90-minute private meeting with President Maduro, as well as meetings with the National Electoral Council, the Foreign Ministry, the Ministry of Urban Farming, the Ministry of Peace and the Health Ministry.
Join The March 30 Mobilization Against The US Coup In Venezuela
And The No To NATO Protests In Washington, DC.
You can learn more about what we learned in Venezuela in the video and podcast below.
The panel includes:
Margaret Flowers, co-director of Popular Resistance
Kevin Zeese, co-director of Popular Resistance
Joe Lombardo, national organizer of the United National Antiwar Coalition
And, you can listen to the NJ Revolution Radio podcast here.
For more information see the following articles written by members of the delegation:
Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers
“Venezuela: US Imperialism Is Based On Lies and Threats“
“What Our Peace Delegation Learned In Venezuela“
“Live From Venezuela“
Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers
“Venezuela: What Activists Need To Know About The US-Led Coup“
Kevin Zeese wrote:
I also oppose U.S. intervention, economic sanctions, regime change efforts (from the U.S.), and threats of militarism. Free trade and open discussions are the answer, not war.
Kevin Zeese wrote:
This is where you go off the rails. There was massive voter suppression, blackmail, bribery, silencing of the opposition, violence, etc. This is all well documented. For a particularly egregious example, one need only look at the published accounts of humanitarian Cuban doctors, who were directed to only distribute medicine to loyal Muduro supporters and to withhold many medicines until days before the election.
It is shocking that Zeese would try to claim with a straight face that there is no mass starvation in Venezuela. It’s unclear whether he is just ignorant or was bought off by the state. It reminds me of the Seth Rogan movie about North Korea where they were led around and shown full grocery shelves and happy people only to find out later they were cardboard replicas.
I get that socialists are married to their horrific ideas which don’t work in theory or practice. But it continues to amaze me when they make excuses for genocide through starvation which directly flow from those policies — from Mao to Muduro. As a libertarian I am proudly anti-genocide.
why did the Corrupt Government stop trucks that were bringing aid/ food for the hungry people? Rise Up People…..
For too many this is unfortunately true.
It seems reasonable to posit that there are both internal and external reasons for the problems in Venezuela. It’s not the only country at odds with the US nor the only one which adheres to a large degree of socialism within a mixed economy. Nor is it the only country which has a great deal of corruption and infighting within its government. All of these elements are at play there, and all likely have a lot to do with the economic situation.
No, there is no confusion. Venezuela is the whipping boy for the spectre of an Ocasio-Cortez imposed democratic socialism. of course, these same people are generally not all that bothered by the spectre of imposed communism(East german border security, ceausescu’s abortion prohibition regime) from the Republicans.
“far right” liberal is an oxymoron. Perhaps there is a universe where “far right” refers to open free markets, live and let live tolerance and individual self-ownership, but not in this one.
It’s still hard for me to believe that, with all that oil money, it wouldn’t take a lot more than US sanctions to screw up Venezuela’s economy THAT bad. So bad they had to draft people to work in the fields and produce food? They pay soldiers with toilet paper? Absurd.
It seems to me the “socialists” practiced massive patronage to supporters, under the guise of social welfare. As far as alleged kleptocracy by alleged socialists, the amount stolen probably will never be known. And those two factors are at least a majority percentage of the road Venezuela traveled to the ruin of failed production, scarcity and starvation.
Kevin – let me know if you guys want to work with our LP team on ballot access for both our parties in states which allow that. I’m headed to Arkansas in a week if you all want to get in on that while we are there.
Thanks, Krzysztof. I will be supporting the Green Party candidate this year. I am helping to build a team to support Howie Hawkins who will be excellent if he decides to run. I have more than a full-time job as co-director of Popular Resistance, see http://www.PopularResistance.org. I appreciate the comment. KZ
I’m being totally non-ironic here, maybe it would be a good idea for Kevin Zeese to seek the Green Party’s 2020 presidential nomination. From what I remember after hearing about him during his 2006 candidacy for U.S. Senate, he seems like he’d be a good anti-war, pro civil-liberties candidate.
People confuse respect for the sovereignty of an independent nation with support for their government. I have disagreements with the Maduro government but oppose US intervention, economic war, regime change efforts and threats of militarism.
Those who have commented that Maduro is a dictator are factually wrong. He was legitimately elected less than a year ago. More than 150 international election observers reached a unanimous conclusion that the election was legitimate.
There is a lot of misinformation in some of these comments. This is not surprising since US interventions are often based on lies. For people who want to understand Venezuela better I urge broader sources of information.
For more see:
Venezuela: US Imperialism Is Based On Lies And Threats
International Observers To Venezuela’s Election Pen Letter To The EU, https://popularresistance.org/international-observers-to-venezuelas-election-pen-letter-to-the-eu/
Venezuela: What Activists Need to Know About this US Coup
@Fred they’re not far-left… they’re center-left liberals. The Democrats are center to center-right moderates, most individuals in the Republican Party are center-right authoritarians, and the Libertarians are “far”-right liberals… the “far”-left would be the Communist Party.
Left v Right only has to do with economics… Most nationalist parties are not “far-right” as some people say, they are center-right authoritarians. Center-right people actually favor a certain amount of economic control, regulation, and protectionism… if you think about it, if the Republicans were so capitalist, why didn’t they abolish the federal minimum wage when they had their trifecta, or do nearly anything else an actual free-market person would favor… because they’re not capitalists.They favor a mixed-economy just like the Democrats do.
Yeah, the figure I quoted doesn’t include the last couple of years when the sanctions hit. The sanctions have spiked the exodus.
I’m not. I just have a problem with Americans ignoring the boulder in their own eye while pointing at the speck of Venezuela. War causes a refugee exodus, whether the country be capitalist or socialist. And economic sanctions are an act of war.
The Nordic model (and then some) might be their ideal, but it seems today’s militant watermelon wing of the GP prefers any form of socialism over American capitalism.
According to a United Nation Report it is estimated that 3 million people have left since 2015. Why is the far left in love with this Dictator? This place is no Sweden.
According to a United Nation Report it is estimated that 3 million people have left since 2015. Why are the Greens in love with this Dictator? This place is no Sweden.
Well, it’s been a million over 10 years. My question is that if Venezuela is such an ineradicable failure, why does the United States have to resort to economic warfare to crush it? What would any country look like it had denial of credit operations and economic sanctions externally imposed by an imperialist power?
No, that would be the GOP.
If this was so good place , why are millions of people leaving this paradise? I guess the Greens also support the regimes of Cuba and North Korea.
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