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Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:30 PM

U.S. general ‘predicts’ problems for Cuba, Venezuela

U.S. general ‘predicts’ problems for Cuba, Venezuela

The head of the U.S. Southern Command, Gen. John Kelly, who oversees U.S. forces in Latin America, is afraid that Nicolás Maduro will become the new Venezuelan president and that the Bolivarian Revolution will continue. That didn’t stop him from engaging in a little wishful thinking — or from slandering and implicitly threatening the Venezuelan and Cuban revolutions.

Venezuela will be hard-pressed to keep providing cheap oil and loans to Cuba and other allies given the“faltering” state of its economy, Kelly said on March 20 to the U.S. House Armed Services Committee. The general admitted that Maduro, the current acting president of Venezuela, has a lot of public support: “Expectations are that the vice president [Maduro] will win the election of April 14 and things will be business as usual, at least for the time being. Who knows within five years.” (DPA, German Press Agency, March 20)

The general’s comments received prominent and favorable coverage in a conservative Caracas newspaper, El Universal, which has opposed the Bolivarian Revolution led by the late Hugo Chávez. For example, in April 2002, when the U.S.-backed coup against Chávez appeared to be successful, El Universal carried the headline “Un Paso Adelante!” or “One Step Forward!” (Luis Duno-Gottberg, Journal of Latin American Cultural Studies, 2004)

What is important about “predictions” of the sort made by Gen. Kelly is not their accuracy. Rather, those who support and defend the Bolivarian and Cuban revolutions should examine who made the statements, to whom they were made and in what context.

Neither an economist nor a social scientist, Gen. Kelly is a Marine commander. He was in charge of U.S. troops in Iraq from 2008 to 2009. In addition to being the chief of the Southern Command, Kelly is the senior military assistant to the Secretary of Defense and personally greeted Secretary Leon Panetta at the entrance to the Pentagon on July 1, 2011, Panetta’s first day as secretary.

The Southern Command was created in 1903 in order to control the Panama Canal zone, which had just been illegally seized by U.S. imperialism. Over the years its scope has expanded to include all of Central and South America and the South Atlantic Ocean. It is an “interagency” task force, meaning it is composed of virtually all branches of the U.S. military as well as several other federal departments.

Kelly made his statements to the House Armed Services Committee immediately following Chávez’s death. Given the extreme hostility of the U.S. toward both Cuba and Venezuela, it is not difficult to assess their meaning or intent.

Millions spent to destabilize Cuba

The U.S. has a long history of trying to destabilize and defeat revolutions and progressive movements in Latin America. These efforts continue today.

Between 1996 and 2011, the U.S. government earmarked over $205 million to try to bring down the Cuban government. Programs were carried out by the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Department of State over the last eight years — from former President George W. Bush’s second term to President Barack Obama’s first term — according to a statement released by the Cuban Foreign ministry. (Xinhua, March 15)

This figure does not include an additional $30 million spent on illegal propaganda broadcasts and intelligence operations in support of anti-Cuban activists. According to the Cuban foreign ministry, this money would “be better used in building a respectful relationship between the two countries.”

Poor people in the U.S. might add that the money has been stolen from vital social services and that the economic and social problems which Gen. Kelly attributes to Venezuela are present within every major U.S. city. The difference is that governments within the U.S., instead of trying to help the poor as the Venezuelan government does, squeeze the poor even more on behalf of big business.

During the Obama administration, Washington’s illegal embargo against Cuba has become even more severe.

These facts clarify the statements by the Southern Command. U.S. imperialism aims to break the solidarity among Cuba, Venezuela, and other Latin American countries, the better to defeat them all. Washington’s efforts to strangle socialist Cuba, particularly with an oil boycott, were made much more difficult by the development of the Bolivarian revolution in Venezuela. Progressives around the world must be vigilant and see to it that Washington’s threats and machinations fail.

http://www.workers.org/2013/03/26/u-s-general-predicts-problems-for-cuba-venezuela/

Articles copyright 1995-2013 Workers World. Verbatim copying and distribution is permitted in any medium without royalty provided this notice is preserved.

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Reply U.S. general ‘predicts’ problems for Cuba, Venezuela (Original post)
Catherina Mar 2013 OP
Mika Mar 2013 #1
idwiyo Mar 2013 #2
Bacchus4.0 Mar 2013 #3
ocpagu Mar 2013 #4
Bacchus4.0 Mar 2013 #5
joshcryer Mar 2013 #11
dipsydoodle Mar 2013 #6
Mika Mar 2013 #7
Catherina Mar 2013 #10
Peace Patriot Mar 2013 #8
Bacchus4.0 Mar 2013 #9

Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:38 PM

1. Sounds familiar.

 

The Breckenridge Memorandum
http://www.historyofcuba.com/history/bmemo.htm
J.C. Breckenridge, U.S. Undersecretary of War in 1897,
sent the following memo to the Commander of the U.S.
Army, Lieutenant General Nelson A. Miles. The memo
explains what is to be U.S. policy towards Cuba.

{snip}

It is obvious that the immediate annexation of these disturbing elements into our own federation in such large numbers would be sheer madness, so before we do that we must clean up the country, even if this means using the methods Divine Providence used on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

We must destroy everything within our cannons’ range of fire. We must impose a harsh blockade so that hunger and its constant companion, disease, undermine the peaceful population and decimate the Cuban army. The allied army must be constantly engaged in reconnaissance and vanguard actions so that the Cuban army is irreparably caught between two fronts and is forced to undertake dangerous and desperate measures.

-

When this moment arrives, we must create conflicts for the independent government. That government will be faced with these difficulties, in addition to the lack of means to meet our demands and the commitments made to us, war expenses and the need to organize a new country. These difficulties must coincide with the unrest and violence among the aforementioned elements, to whom we must give our backing.

To sum up, our policy must always be to support the weaker against the stronger, until we have obtained the extermination of them both, in order to annex the Pearl of the Antilles {Cuba}.





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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:42 PM

2. It just never stops, does it? How about you fix problems in your own country, arseholes?



Screw US economy, screw US poverty rates, screw everything but let's spend MORE money trying to destabilise the rest of the World. There is ALWAYS more money for that.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:47 PM

3. I predict the same problems

violence, economy, social unrest, shortages. Kind of like more of the same.


on edit, I see the only quote from the general was that it would be "business as usual". People are threatened by that?? Isn't that what the chavistas want?

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Response to Bacchus4.0 (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:49 PM

4. Oh, I thought...

 

... that you believed that announcing forecoming problems first hand was a tactic used by populist autocrats to divert and blame others from problems they intend to create...

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Response to ocpagu (Reply #4)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 01:51 PM

5. did you read the general's quote?

he predicted "business as usual". Are you threatened by that?

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Response to Bacchus4.0 (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 09:45 PM

11. Video of his statement here:

http://armedservices.granicus.com/ViewPublisher.php?view_id=2

Go to The Posture of the U.S. Northern Command and U.S. Southern Command (Full Committee) 03/20/13 01h 58m. Skip to 1:55:15.

I see nothing he said that isn't 100% factual. He states the condition of the country, he states that countries are dependent upon low interest loans, and he states that it is unsustainable. He admits he doesn't know if Maduro will be able to hold it together, but notes that Maduro doesn't have a good of a go of it as Chavez. "Who knows 5 years down the line?"

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:06 PM

6. General Daft In The Head

should learn to put his brain in gear before opening his mouth.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:41 PM

7. Hmmm ...

 


Deadly Virus Missing From Biolab In Texas


Published on Mar 25, 2013
"The Galveston National Laboratory lost one of five vials containing a deadly Venezuelan virus, according to the University of Texas Medical Branch, which owns the $174 million facility designed with the strictest security measures to hold the deadliest viruses in the country. Like Ebola, the missing Guanarito virus causes hemorrhagic fever, an illness named for "bleeding under the skin, in internal organs or from body orifices like the mouth, eyes, or ears," according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention...".




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Response to Mika (Reply #7)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 03:31 PM

10. I know n/t

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 02:52 PM

8. The U.S. "Southern Command" ought to be dismantled. What hubris!

What obnoxiousness! What a nasty name! What a goddamn waste of billions and billions of U.S. taxpayer dollars!

And for WHAT? For War! For training and infiltrating militaries and police forces--to mount fascist coups! For slaughtering labor leaders and other advocates of the poor! For the corrupt, murderous, failed "war on drugs"! For Exxon Mobil! For Chevron-Texaco! For Drummond Coal! For Chiquita--that cutsy murderous banana! For U.S. clothing retailers' disgusting sweatshops! For more wars for oil to fuel the U.S. war machine! For the banksters who are destroying the western world!

The "Southern Command."

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Response to Peace Patriot (Reply #8)

Wed Mar 27, 2013, 03:21 PM

9. one must conclude that the US military is going to do what it can for Maduro

since the general "predicted" his victory.

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