venezuela under siege






BREAK THE BRITISH MEDIA BLOCKADE: Throughout April the RCG - Revolutionary Communist Group and supporters of the newspaper Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! (FRFI) will be hosting a series of public meetings with the Venezuelan revolutionary Rafael Ramos – a representative of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela’s youth wing (JPSUV) extensively interviewed in our documentary 'Viva Venezuela: Fighting for socialism' to discuss their struggle in the face of imperialism.

Rafael Ramos JPSUV15 years of the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela has brought free healthcare and education for all, developed thousands of social projects and built hundreds-of-thousands of new homes. Poverty levels have been slashed and a real working class democracy is being built. The movement for socialism which has swept Latin America is demonstrating to the world that there is an alternative to poverty, racism and war. 

Todays these inspiring achievements are under threat from imperialist-backed opposition groups whose violence has claimed many lives in recent months. Throughout the years the right-wing opposition have shown they will stop at nothing in their attempts to topple the Bolivarian revolution-from coups and assassinations to economic sabotage and calls for direct US military intervention.

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By Raúl Capote/Chavez Vive Magazine

Raul Capote

In a recent interview in Havana, a former CIA collaborator, Cuban Raúl Capote, revealed the strategy of the CIA in Venezuelan universities to create the kind of destabilizing opposition student movement the country is currently facing. He also discusses media manipulation, and alleges that one of the U.S. diplomats that President Maduro expelled from Venezuela last September was in fact a CIA agent. The following translation and notes were made by Sabina C. Becker. Original interview in Spanish here.

Raúl Capote is a Cuban. But not just any Cuban. In his youth, he was caught up by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). They offered him an infinite amount of money to conspire in Cuba. But then something unexpected for the US happened. Capote, in reality, was working for Cuban national security. From then on, he served as a double agent. Learn his story, by way of an exclusive interview with the Chávez Vive magazine, which he gave in Havana:

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Unasur mediate peace talks

Representatives of the Venezuelan government and opposition sat down to talk on 10 April for the first time since protests and violence began in early February.

The session was broadcast live from Miraflores presidential palace, where President Nicolas Maduro and eight government officials spoke with eleven representatives from the Democratic Unity (MUD) coalition. A papal representative and the foreign ministers of Brazil, Colombia and Ecuador were also present.

However, hard-line leaders of the opposition, Antonio Ledezma and Maria Corina Machado, did not attend the meeting.  

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child rescued from nursery set on fire by rightwing terrorists Gloria La Riva

While the U.S. government and media support the Venezuelan opposition to the Bolivarian Revolution and portray it as a peaceful movement, the violence of this movement is exposing the rightwing’s true nature.

There have been dozens of violent actions by fascist organizations, intent on carrying out terrorist plots in several urban areas of Venezuela. While the attacks are not widespread through the country, they are nevertheless causing serious destruction where they hit.

Almost 40 people have died, with at least half of those killed through outright assassination by fascist gangs. Theses gangs have ambushed pro-government supporters and National Guard members.

In the past few days the government of President Nicolás Maduro has launched an offensive to take back control of the barricaded neighborhoods and to arrest the leaders of the “guarimbas,” the name given to the violence.

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The Fundación Jorge Rodríguez Padre through its 4F school TV Channel, has created this video piece with a message from the true Bolivarian youth that want to work, who believe in education and in the opportunities offered by the Bolivarian Revolution and XXI Century Socialism. | | | | | | | |

Weapons confiscated from opposition groups over recent weeks

Whilst the capitalist media displays viral images of Venezuelan youths in 'occupy' masks, circulating falsified images of protesters clashing with security forces in Chile and Egypt, and even using photos of a man with down's syndrome beaten by Miami police last year, the intended message is clear, here are brave young protestors standing up for freedom against state totalitarianism. This video 'What is really going on in Venezuela' confronts that narrative, watch and share to break the media blockade against Venezuela.


Communal Councils organising with the Housing Mission in Falcon StateClodovaldo Hérnandez, Venezuelan writer and politician, talks about the criminalization of grassroots organizing, the right-wing strategy behind it, and goes on to explain why “the fate of the revolution rests in the communal councils” in an interview with newspaper Ciudad CCS, from March 10th, 2014.

Translated by Zoë Clara Dutka for

Ciudad CCS: Recently there has been a criminalization of popular organizing. Just like in 2002 with the Bolivarian Circles, today there’s an effort to attribute recent violence to the “colectivos,” referring to them as armed paramilitary groups. Will this become part of public opinion, as it did back then?

Clodovaldo Hérnandez: It has already become widespread. We are seeing it in the isolated but intense demonstrations of hate that have sprung up in certain municipalities of the country. This is part of a political culture belonging to a sector of the Venezuelan opposition. I maintain the belief, perhaps out of innocence, that it represents a minority. I know many people who are not chavistas and still they do not think this way, but there is a nucleus within the opposition that is truly and literally fascist. 

But, will this label of violence affect the revolution’s supporters?

In some cases the social base of chavismo has been vulnerable to that rhetoric. In fact, I’m convinced that in April of 2002 the mass opposition marches that we saw were possible because the fear factor was manipulated very skillfully. The idea was planted in many that you must fear chavismo, for it is fundamentally violent and criminal. That psychological threat has followed us, and we haven’t been able to defeat it entirely. I believe we’ll have to contend with it until the people’s will for peace prevails.

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Green Left Weekly

Chavistas mobilise to demand peace

Below, Australia Venezuela Solidarity Network activist Federico Fuentes, provides answers to common questions about recent events in Venezuela.

Is recent unrest in Venezuela due to government repression against peaceful protests?

No. This version of events, widely disseminated by the media, ignores the fact that security forces only acted after groups within the protests initiated violent actions. In the case of the first of the current round of protests that gained media attention, in Tachira on February 6, police only moved in after small groups of protesters attacked local governorship offices and home of the local governor.

When protests took place in Merida the next day, security forces intervened only after armed protesters had carried out actions such as hijacking trucks carrying food and medicine.

During protests in Caracas on February 12, which gained international media attention due to deaths on the day, there is clear evidence security forces only moved into action after a small group of protesters had them, destroyed the attorney-general’s office and burned five police trucks.

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Mark Weisbrot The Guardian

Opposition protests have been characterised by violence

The current protests in Venezuela are reminiscent of another historical moment when street protests were used by right-wing politicians as part of an attempt to overthrow the elected government. From December of 2002 through February 2003, there was strike of mostly white-collar workers at the national oil industry, along with some business owners. The US media made it look like most of the country was on strike against the government, when, in fact, it was less than one percent of the labor force.

The spread of cell phone videos and social media in the past decade has made it more difficult to misrepresent things that can be easily captured on camera. But Venezuela is still grossly distorted in the major media. The New York Times had to run a correction last week for an article that began with a statement about "The only television station that regularly broadcast voices critical of the government …" As it turns out,all of the private TV stations "regularly broadcast voices critical of the government". And private media has more than 90% of the TV-viewing audience in Venezuela. A study by the Carter Center of the presidential election campaign period last April showed a 57 to 34% advantage in TV coverage for President Maduro over challenger Henrique Capriles in the April election, but that advantage is greatly reduced or eliminated whenaudience shares are taken into account.

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