The Revolutionary Communist Group completely opposes the illegal attempts by the United States to foment a coup against the socialist government in Venezuela and its democratically elected president Nicolas Maduro. This is the culmination of a process of destabilisation and violence to undermine a progressive government that has won 23 elections in 20 years and ploughed oil wealth into housing, health care and education. Following the condemnation of US National Security adviser John Bolton of Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua as a ‘troika of tyranny’, this is the latest offensive in the war on socialism in Latin America.
On 23 January, the opposition leader and head of the National Assembly, Juan Guaido, unilaterally swore himself in as interim president. This follows an internationally coordinated campaign to reject last May’s presidential elections and Nicolas Maduro’s recent inauguration. The US, Britain, Canada and a host of imperialist lackeys in Latin America have now recognised Guaido as the ‘legitimate’ leader of the country, pledging support and financing for a parallel government, calling for military rebellion. They back the forces of extreme reaction, who want to return Venezuela to a petro state at the service of imperialism. Fascist thugs have already taken to the streets, torching cultural centres, public institutions and libraries. A youth has been killed in the clashes, a government support who was shot and burned to death.
British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s declaration of support for Guaido is despicable. He regurgitates lies about Venezuela’s internationally-observed electoral process, using the distortions of the bourgeois media as spurious justification: ‘anyone in the UK who thinks that Venezuela is an example, who thinks that we should be adopting the policies supported by the discredited Maduro regime, they need to look at their TV screens and think again.’
The British media has played a poisonous role in this process, absolutely in line with imperialist interests and hostile to any progressive government. Have they forgotten Chile? The so-called 'liberal' Guardian and BBC deliberately publish lies and distortions, softening up public opinion for imperialist intervention. There is no coverage of the tens of thousands of poor and working class Venezuelans flooding the streets around the Miraflores presidential palace to defend Maduro and the Venezuelan constitution. Instead, Tom Phillips of The Guardian has ramped up the rhetoric, attacking every aspect of the Bolivarian revolution, remaining silent on the role of foreign intervention and crippling sanctions designed to make the economy scream. With pre-meditated timing, the BBC pushed a story deploring conditions in a Venezuelan prison, priming public opinion for intervention. They bear direct responsibility for any bloodbath that ensues from this outrageous violation of Venezuela’s national sovereignty.
We stand with the Venezuelan working class against the counter-revolutionary and violent manoeuvres of the opposition. The attack on the struggle to build socialism in Venezuela is an attack on the fight against capitalism everywhere. We oppose any attempts to interfere in sovereign states and call on all progressive forces to do the same. Hands off Venezuela! No coup! No intervention! End sanctions now!
PROTEST OUTSIDE DOWNING STREET IN LONDON
MONDAY 28 JANUARY, 4.30-6.30PM
Co-organised by Hands off Venezuela and the Revolutionary Communist Group