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Fri May 24, 2019, 04:16 PM

Oppose Trump's coup attempt in Venezuela (Commentary)

Today 12:40 PM

By Ursula Rozum and Dr. Marianna Kaufman

Many Americans are aware of a humanitarian crisis in Venezuela -- to this end, media outlets have dutifully reported the suffering of the Venezuelan people. Unfortunately, the impact of U.S. sanctions has received less coverage. A recent analysis from the Center for Economic Policy Research revealed that from 2017 to 2018, 40,000 people in Venezuela have died from the U.S. sanctions. Sanctions exacerbate the humanitarian crisis by preventing basic necessities from entering the country, including food, medicine and medical supplies. Yet, instead of lifting the sanctions killing tens of thousands of Venezuelans, President Donald Trump has recognized Juan Guaidó as president, due to his alleged concern for the Venezuelan people.

In fact, the Trump administration has sought and orchestrated the current situation in Venezuela since the beginning of his term in office. In a July 2017 private briefing with intelligence officials, Trump declared that “Venezuela is who we should be at war with. They have all the oil and they are right there.” That summer, Trump tightened sanctions put into place by President Barack Obama in 2015. And in January 2018, the U.S. imposed even heavier sanctions, this time on the national run oil and gas company PDVSA. Capitalizing on the suffering of the Venezuelan people in much the same fashion as we have seen in other wars with oil-rich nations such as Iraq, we have seen politicians toeing suspiciously similar talking points regarding the need to intervene in a humanitarian crisis and depose a dictator. And the means to that end? To support Guaidó and overthrow the elected government of Nicolás Maduro, in what is also an attempt to discredit the socialist government’s social programs.

Launched in 1999 by President Hugo Chávez, the Bolivarian Revolution aimed to reduce social disparities using funds from oil revenues. These programs of social uplift included investment in public schools, public health and dental care, supporting training to poor and marginalized communities, and the construction of public housing. While the Bolivarian Revolution brought much-needed change to social structures in Venezuela, and while Maduro has been a champion of the indigenous, poor and working class reportedly building 2.5 million public houses for the poor in public works programs, the government has been fraught with corruption. For years, activists have criticized the Maduro government for civil rights and human rights abuses; in addition, the opposition to Maduro has also come under scrutiny for corruption and abuses. None of this gives the U.S. a right to interfere in the internal affairs of Venezuela -- a thinly veiled guise to secure the privatization of oil resources.

The U.S. has a long history of inciting coups in countries that reject U.S. hegemony, and the current aggression against Venezuela is part of a disturbing historical pattern. Since the 1823 Monroe Doctrine, the United States has used its military might to overthrow and assassinate heads of state. On Sept. 11,1973, the CIA-backed coup in Chile overthrew the elected government of Salvador Allende and installed dictator Augusto Pinochet, who is believed to have been responsible for the murder and disappearance of between 10,000 to 30,000 political opponents. And the U.S.-backed coup of democratically elected Honduran President Manuel Zelaya in 2009 is at the root of the current violence in that country which is now driving migration to the U.S. The United States has intervened to overthrow governments and suppress popular movements in Latin America no less than 41 times during the last 100 years.


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Reply Oppose Trump's coup attempt in Venezuela (Commentary) (Original post)
Judi Lynn May 24 OP
FiveGoodMen May 24 #1

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Fri May 24, 2019, 04:56 PM

1. Wish we'd have opposed it here!

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