Yesterday John McDonnell MP explained why US imperialism is so concerned about developments in Bolivia and Venezuela: “What the US is terrified of is the prospect that socialism will catch light all across the Americas, so of course it has to go on the attack. But it is exactly for this moment that solidarity campaigns exist.” He explained that, “what is happening is not a personal attack on Morales or Chavez but an attack on the seeds of socialism that they are spreading.”
The Bolivarian Revolution is an answer to the failures of the neo-liberal Washington Concensus (failures we’re seeing in the meltdown of the financial markets). Is it any wonder that the MS press here in the US, and it’s running dog compatriots in the Government and financial sectors are running scared? And isn’t it a wonder that the best the ‘capitalists’ can come up with is a violent reaction to the Revolution?
The occasion was a solidarity meeting held at the office of the National Union of Journalists in London, which followed a very successful picket outside the US Embassy earlier in the afternoon. In fact, yesterday, hundreds of Latin American solidarity activists and supporters participated in the two activities that were organized by Hands Off Venezuela and other Latin American solidarity groups to express their solidarity with the people of Bolivia and Venezuela.
Sad to say that here in the US, Chavez is treated as a dictator, as is Morales. It’s also sad to say that we don’t see the Revolution being compared to the takeover of the financial markets by the Fed and the government. Perhaps doing so would give us something to compare our failing economic system to.
The afternoon picket outside the U.S. Embassy saw the participation of up to 100 activists. For the workers and students in Britain, the revolutions in Venezuela and Bolivia are a massive inspiration. All the more worrying it is then when these revolutions are under threat from plotting generals and fascist gangs. Many speakers throughout the day, expressed the sentiment that an injury to one is an injury to all – a defeat of the Bolivian or Venezuelan revolution would be a blow also to the workers of the world.
Which, of course, is why the US and it’s economic lackey allies are opposed to the Revolution. Much the same was done against the workers’ movement in Germany right after the Russian Revolution. Know that any move toward betterment of the lives of the general populace do not fit in the plans of our Capitalist overlords. Their mantra of ‘Profits over People’ shall continue to be the ruling ideology until we confront and defeat the parasites.
Many organizations were present at the picket. Jeremy Dear, General Secretary of the National Union of Journalists addressed the gathering, pointing out the fact that it was ironic that here he was protesting outside the US embassy when the Bush administration had actually nationalised more sectors of its economy in just a few days than Hugo Chavez had in the whole of the last decade! He stressed the fact that, “The US is standing up for privilege, for the interest of the few against the interest of the many and will go to any length to achieve it.” He warned that US imperialism would “drown the revolution in blood if it gets the opportunity,” a reference to the coup against Allende in 1973, but then added, “But there is one big difference – we are prepared, we have learned the lessons and we are already organised.” In response to this rousing speech the crowd started chanting “No More Coups” as they waved their banners in front to the Embassy.
Note: My emphasis.
Socialized protection for the monied overlords, nothing for the society in general. You know this is the plan, and it will be carried out with the almost full complicity of the Democratic Congress. The struggle in South America is the struggle we’re going through in the US. We should be shouting from the rooftops “Hands Off Venezuela and Bolivia!”
Meeting at the NUJ
The evening meeting was packed with over 100 people in attendance. The first to speak was John McDonnell MP, as we have reported above. He recalled the experience of Chile in 1973, and stated that solidarity had to be expressed now. “As soon as I return to Parliament I will raise this issue on the floor of the Commons”, said John. He was followed by Beatriz Souviron, Bolivian ambassador, who gave an update on the recent massacre by fascist gangs in Bolivia. Felix Plasencia from the Venezuelan embassy also spoke, expressing his gratitude to the assembled meeting and the organizers for the support they had shown for the peoples of their countries.
People are being killed by the oligarchy in Bolivia. Do we want to stand behind the oligarchy, or do we stand with the overwhelming majority of the Bolivian people? The choice is ours!
Alan Woods, founder of Hands Off Venezuela, was next to speak. He argued that the people had to be armed in order to defend the revolution from the coups and also cited the example of Chile 35 years ago. “The example of Chile and now of Bolivia shows that a revolutionary government can’t trust the army to defend itself”, stated Alan. He went on to attack the oligarchy, the capitalists, landlords, who were the “main enemy to the Revolution”. He added that, “Only their overthrow would advance the cause.” Alan concluded by saying that if Hugo Chavez was here, he would say that the best way to help the Bolivian and Bolivarian revolutions is to fight for socialism in our own countries.
Until the capitalist parasites are confronted and defeated, this will continue throughout South America. We’re seeing the rise of a fascist state here in the US as well, and our economic and military catastrophes can only make the hand on the trigger of that fascist state apparatus tremble. The struggles of the Bolivarian Revolution and of the left in Central and South America are our struggles as well.
Amancay Colque from the Bolivia Solidarity Campaign explained the details of the Bolivian massacre and how non-violence in the face of armed fascist gangs becomes absurd. She explained how in Pando state, the reactionary governor had hired mercenaries to machine-gun rural workers who support Morales. She also stated that the oligarchy is backed by companies in the US and European countries. “Our enemy is also imperialism”, she said.
I would argue it’s a matter of when, not if, the same is true here in the US. I would argue this is part of the militarization of our police. We saw a sample of what’s coming in St. Paul.
Finally, the meeting resolved to maintain the solidarity activities and remain vigilant of any future developments in Latin America. Wednesday’s successful activities were a big step forward for the solidarity efforts in Britain. In the future we must be prepared to step this solidarity activity.
It’s time we in the US get off our backsides and begin to support the people of Bolivia and Venezuela. It’s time to support the Bolivarian Revolution and the pink wave running throughout Central and South America. It’s time we join with the “Hands off Venezuela Campaign” in saying:
Long live the revolutions in Venezuela and Bolivia!
Down with U.S. imperialism!