Published on 6 March 2015 by www.venezuelanalysis.com

Venezuelans take to the streets to mark the death of Hugo ChavezThousands of Venezuelans gathered in the Plaza Bolívar in the center of Caracas yesterday to commemorate the second anniversary of the death of late president Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías with an 'Anti-Imperialist Peoples' Court.'

Although the occasion was solemn, the mood was joyous, as innumerable red-clothed bodies celebrated with smiles, laughter, and boisterous chants the life and legacy of the leader they call the 'Eternal Comandante.'

"The legacy of Comandante Hugo Chávez is life, it's life for those families, those people who were always excluded from the services of healthcare, education, [etc.]. The legacy of Hugo Chávez is the guarantee of living well, of being able to study, to have free healthcare, and everything else,"

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Grey's Monument, NewcastleActivists from the Revolutionary Communist Group, Britain, held a street meeting on 7 March in Newcastle upon Tyne as part of an International week of solidarity with Venezuela called by Los Pueblos con Venezuela

Capitalism is in crisis - cuts for the poor, bailouts for the rich, squeezing out profits as governments impose privatisation and austerity across Europe whilst intensifying exploitation war and occupation of underdeveloped countries in a scramble for resources. Humanity is at a cross roads, the choice is stark – build socialism or face never-ending austerity, racism and war. The Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela demonstrates what can be achieved when people take a stand against austerity and imperialism!

During the 15 years of the Bolivarian Revolution, Venezuela alongside Socialist Cuba has been at the forefront of regional integration, contributing to healthcare, education and mutual development projects across Latin America, opposing neo-liberalism and private profit. This defiance has brought Venezuela into the cross hairs, today the inspiring achievements of the Venezuelan revolution are threatened by a violent, right-wing opposition backed and directly funded by US and European interests to the tune of $90 million.

Venezuela, alongside socialist Cuba is spearheading a movement for socialism across Latin America, challenging imperialism and neo-liberal exploitation, demanding dignity and human development over profit and private interests. Venezuela remains a beacon of hope and inspiration for movements across the globe.
Hands off Venezuela! their fight is our fight- Break the media blockade!

Published on 12 February 2014 by TeleSUR English

Visit TeleSUR's special webpage for full details'The War on Venezuela's democracy'

Coup plotters planned on assassinating the Venezuelan president and installing a de facto government.

A coup plot against the Venezuelan government has been foiled, with both civilians and members of the military detained, President Nicolas Maduro revealed Thursday in a televised address.

Those involved were being paid in U.S. dollars, and one of the suspects had been granted a visa to enter the United States should the plot fail, Maduro said.

Venezuela’s president stated that the coup plotters already had a “transitional” government and program lined up once the plan, which included bombings on the Miraflores Palace and the teleSUR offices in Caracas, as well as assassinations of members of the opposition, Maduro and others, was carried out.

Maduro explained that a video of masked military officials speaking out against the government had been recorded, which was set to be released after the planned assassination was carried out.

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Published on 7 February 2015 by TeleSUR English

New houses in the 'Hugo Chavez' Socialist cityVenezuelan president Nicolas Maduro handed over 3,456 homes to families in the Carabobo state Friday, as part of the Great Housing Mission Venezuela (GMVV).

Maduro said that Hugo Chavez Socialist City urbanization, where the new homes are located, has schools, sports fields, a subsidized food market and numerous green spaces for residents. The homes are also fully equipped with appliances including refrigerators, ovens and washing machines.

The president added that each housing complex in the urbanization must develop socio-productive projects to help the community to meet their immediate needs.

“This is Chavez's dream, it is the people's dream, the dream of the territorial socialism, all our children and all our people can enjoy the dream of the Bolivarian Revolution,” Maduro said.

Former President Hugo Chavez created the GMVV in 2011 in order to ensure quality homes to Venezuelans, given that hundreds of thousands live in improvised housing due to lack of investment from governments prior to the Bolivarian revolution.

The program is especially geared to families affected by the heavy rains in 2010 and 2011. So far, 677,400 homes have been delivered across the country, with Maduro saying that as many as 400,000 will be constructed and turned over to families in 2015.

By Eva Golinger. Published on 2 February 2015 by counterpunch

Same old dirty tacticsThere is a coup underway in Venezuela. The pieces are all falling into place like a bad CIA movie. At every turn a new traitor is revealed, a betrayal is born, full of promises to reveal the smoking gun that will justify the unjustifiable. Infiltrations are rampant, rumors spread like wildfire, and the panic mentality threatens to overcome logic. Headlines scream danger, crisis and imminent demise, while the usual suspects declare covert war on a people whose only crime is being gatekeeper to the largest pot of black gold in the world.

This week, as the New York Times showcased an editorial degrading and ridiculing Venezuelan President Maduro, labeling him “erratic and despotic” (“Mr. Maduro in his Labyrinth”, NYT January 26, 2015), another newspaper across the Atlantic headlined a hack piece accusing the President of Venezuela’s National Assembly, Diosdado Cabello, and the most powerful political figure in the country after Maduro, of being a narcotics kingpin (“The head of security of the number two Chavista defects to the U.S. and accuses him of drug trafficking”, ABC, January 27, 2015). The accusations stem from a former Venezuelan presidential guard officer, Leasmy Salazar, who served under President Chavez and was recruited by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), now becoming the new “golden child” in Washington’s war on Venezuela.

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Published on 24 January by www.venezuelanalysis.com

23 of Januarys March of the undefeatedOn Friday, thousands took to the streets of the Venezuelan capital to commemorate the 57th anniversary of the toppling of the Pérez Jiménez dictatorship as well as to voice their support for the government of President Nicolás Maduro in the face of economic war and political destabilization.

Setting out in the morning from Plaza Fabricio Ojeda in the historic 23 de Enero neighborhood, a combative barrio itself named after the date of Pérez Jiménez’s ousting, the march concluded in the Plaza O’Leary in El Calvario, where the President spoke and led a spirited rally, amidst a sea of red banners.

 Shortages and the “Economic War”

Friday’s march comes in the midst of severe inflation and widespread shortages of basic goods, which President Maduro has termed an “economic war” that is reportedly being waged against the Bolivarian government by elements of the opposition. The President accused distributors of hoarding everyday products and presented them with an ultimatum to cooperate or face “tough measures.”

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Published on 24 December 2014 by Steve Ellner - New Left Project

Chavez Lives! the struggle continues!Nearly two years after the death of Hugo Chávez, the key question that many on the left are debating, in Venezuela and elsewhere, is whether his successors have been true to his legacy, or whether the ‘revolutionary process’ initiated more than a decade ago has now stalled or even been thrown into reverse. The recent emergence of a number of pressing problems has convinced some Chavistas that the revolution has either been betrayed or, at best, that President Nicolás Maduro is severely lacking in Chávez’s political acumen. High on the list of difficulties are the chronic shortages of numerous consumer goods and products, including basic ones, as well as an annual inflation rate of over 60 percent. Both of these, Maduro claims, are part of an ‘economic war’ being waged by powerful interests to destabilize Venezuela. The government’s difficulties include the universally recognized problem of corruption.

Of course, these scourges were also prevalent under Chávez, but with less intensity, and in any case he faced them head on. His response to the shortages of basic commodities – which became particularly severe in 2007, influencing the outcome of the referendum on proposed constitutional reform – was to decree widespread expropriations. In 2009 he faced the problem of corruption that led to a major financial crisis by jailing at least 16 bankers, including the brother of a trusted cabinet minister, and ordering the arrest of over 40 others who fled the country, while at the same time nationalizing 13 banks.

Radical Chavistas point out that Maduro is lacking in audacity of this type. They criticize, for instance, the decision to replace the Chavista slogan ‘Chávez Lives, the Struggle Continues!’ with ‘Chávez Lives, the Homeland Continues!’ as indicative of political retreat and a lessening of the leadership’s revolutionary fervour. One Chavista radical concluded that, given this type of rhetorical modification, ‘Chávez is facing a second death.’ [1] The radicals also questioned the rationale behind the proposed ‘peace dialogue’ with opposition leaders and the business sector, designed to control the violent protests that shook Venezuela in early 2014. They were convinced that underlying these conversations were concessions to the historical enemies of the Bolivarian revolution. Antonio Aponte and Toby Valderrama, an ex-guerrilla of the 1960s whom Maduro has attacked personally, wrote ‘It’s time for self-criticism: we wanted to avoid sacrifices and so we extended our hand to the bourgeoisie, the enemies of peace… we wanted to control the capitalist monster that is uncontrollable.’ [2] 

These critiques raise the question of how to evaluate a government committed to taking the gradual democratic road to far-reaching change in the context of extreme polarization and conflict. Is a period of lull in the deepening of change, including compromises with adversaries, necessarily a sign that all has been lost, as those who invoke the term ‘permanent revolution’ often argue? Certainly, history is replete with examples of governments committed to structural transformation that, after initial advances, begin to backslide and end up completely abandoning the struggle. On the other hand, Lenin’s slogan of ‘one step backwards to take two steps forward’ (in reference to the New Economic Policy) may be applicable to Venezuela under Maduro, as some Chavista moderates suggest. Finally, what are the issues we should be looking at in evaluating the Maduro government’s claim to have inherited Chávez’s revolutionary mantle? And what are the issues that are not particularly germane to this discussion but that some on the left are raising in a misguided attempt to define the ideological orientation of the Maduro government?

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Published on 31 December 2014  by venezuelanalysis.com

Significant changes planned for Venezuela's currency system in 2015The Venezuelan government has published previously withheld data revealing that the economy entered a recession in the second quarter of this year. However President Nicolas Maduro said significant changes to Venezuela’s economic model were being planned and that an economic “recovery plan” would be implemented in early 2015.

State of the economy

A report released by the Venezuelan Central Bank (BCV) on 30 December showed that the economy contracted this year by -4.8% in the first quarter, -4.9% in Q2, and -2.3% in Q3.

The slowdown occurred in the context of a series of economic problems facing the South American OPEC nation, which include an increasingly overvalued fixed-rate currency, shortages of many basic products including some food and medicines, and Bolivarian-era record annual inflation of 63.6% as of November.

These problems have been compounded by a fall in the oil price from US $99 per barrel in June to $48 yesterday, effectively reducing the government’s foreign export revenue by 50%. Oil sales account for almost all of the country’s foreign earnings.

The inflation statistics were published after a three month absence. According to newspaper El Universal’s report on the data, inflation in food prices is far higher than overall inflation, at 92.8% annually.

The BCV also reported that despite these negative trends, Venezuela registered a trade surplus in the first three quarters of 2014 of $6.811 billion, reflecting a positive balance of payments. International reserves are $20,890 billion.

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Published on 19 December 2014 collated from  www.venezuelanalysis.com

Thousands of Venezuelans March to Celebrate their Constitution and Condemn US InterferenceIn the same week as re-establishing diplomatic relations with Cuba, U.S. president Barack Obama has just signed in legislation to impose sanctions on Venezuelan government officials. After the United States congress approved sanctions on Venezuela last week, President Barack Obama signed them on Thursday, thereby punishing Venezuelan government officials.

The U.S claims the sanctions are in retaliation for the so called repressive or violent role of government officials earlier this year. Some opposition supporters participated in blockades, burning of over a hundred public buses, stations, and buildings, sharp shooter targeting of Chavista marchers, and physical and verbal attacks on people trying to get to school or hospitals in February, March, and April this year. Forty-three people were killed, the majority being civilians and members of the pro-government national guard.

Pro-revolution Venezuelans responded to the sanctions in mass demonstrations on Monday, flooding the streets and social media platforms with ant-imperialist messages.

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