Politico: Latin America


Reading for those with a political interest

The Destabilization of Bolivia and the "Kosovo Option"

By: Michel Chossudovsky

From: Global Research

Date: September 21, 2008

 

The secession of Bolivia's Eastern provinces is part of a US sponsored covert operation, coordinated out of the US State Department, in liaison with US intelligence.

 

The death squads armed with automatic weapons responsible for killing supporters of Evo Morales in El Porvenir are supported covertly by the US. According to one report, "USAID has an "Office of Transition Initiatives" operating in Bolivia, funneling millions of dollars of training and support to right-wing opposition regional governments and movements."(The Center for Economic and Policy Research, September 2008). The US also provides support to various opposition groups through the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

More… 

The failure of deregulation : A South American Alternative

By: John Laun

From: Colombia Support Network

Date: September 21, 2008

 

The week of September 15 – 21 brought a basic change in the approach of the U.S. government.

 

The Bush administration, having mismanaged the economy spectacularly by eschewing regulatory oversight of the financial markets, decided on a 180 degree change to "save" the US economy. As the stock market sank and banks appeared more and more threatened, Bush and his advisers abandoned their supposed philosophical distrust of "big government" and presented the U.S. Congress with a "bailout" plan which will ( if Congress accepts it, which with a few changes on the periphery it almost certainly will) effectively nationalize the US financial system, making private enterprise dependent upon government investment for its survival.

More…

 

Latin America: ‘Don’t mess with us’

By: Federico Fuentes, Caracas

From: Bolivia Rising

Date: Sept 22 2008

 

Arriving at the Palacio Moneda in Santiago, Chile, on September 14, where close to 35 years ago to the day Chile’s left-wing president Salvador Allende was overthrow in a military coup, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declared that “in Bolivia a conspiracy is underway, an international conspiracy, financed and directed by US imperialism, just like that which occurred in Chile in 1973’’.

 

The day before he had warned that if something were to happen to Bolivian President Evo Morales, he would not remain with his “arms crossed”.

More...

 

Bolivia and the Echoes of Allende: Morales Confronts the Insurrection

By: Roger Burbach

From: Global Research

Date: September 17, 2008

 

As Bolivia teeters on the brink of civil war, President Evo Morales staunchly maintains his commitment to constructing a popular democracy by working within the state institutions that brought him to power. The show down with the right wing is taking place against the backdrop of the thirty-fifth anniversary of the overthrow of Salvador Allende, the heroic if tragic president of Chile who believed that the formal democratic state he inherited could be peacefully transformed to usher in a socialist society.

More…

 

Political Violence Increases in El Salvador

From: CISPES Update

Date: July 29, 2008

 

As student groups prepare to commemorate the anniversary of an infamous massacre of students by government forces on July 30, 1975, political violence continues in El Salvador 33 years later.  In the last two years, social organizations, human rights monitors, community groups and the Frente Farabundo Martí para la Liberación Nacional (FMLN) political party have publically denounced the alarming increase in politically-motivated assassinations of their members and leadership. 2008 has been particularly violent for organized sectors of the population.

More...

Scenarios for the FARC

By: Raúl Zibechi

From: CIP Americas Program

Date: July 24, 2008

 

The first half of 2008 produced a sharp political change that allowed the local and global right-wing, as well as the multinationals, to recuperate their positions and retake the offensive. The change is not confined to Colombia—although it has its epicenter there—but extends to countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, and Peru, and affects the entire region.

 

If in the past a kind of strategic equilibrium existed between the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarios de Colombia) and the armed forces, events of the last months have tipped that balance in favor of the Colombian government. The guerrillas have lost all possibility of negotiating a humanitarian accord under favorable conditions. They cannot sustain political or military offensives, and have suffered a severe loss of credibility among the population. Today the FARC cannot count on any significant allies in the region or in the world.

More…

Bolivian President Evo Morales on the WTO's Round of Negotiations

By: Evo Morales Ayma

From: Upside Down World

Date: 22 July 2008

 

“International trade can play a major role in the promotion of economic development and the alleviation of poverty. We recognize the need for all our peoples to benefit from the increased opportunities and welfare gains that the multilateral trading system generates. The majority of WTO members are developing countries. We seek to place their needs and interests at the heart of the Work Programme adopted in this Declaration.”

 Doha World Trade Organization Ministerial Declaration,

November 14, 2001

 

With these words began the WTO round of negotiations seven years ago. In reality, are economic development, the alleviation of poverty, the needs of all our peoples, the increased opportunities for developing countries at the center of the current negotiations at the WTO?

More…

Chile: still shaking off the legacy of Pinochet

By: Bob Briton

From: The Guardian

Date: 23 July, 2008

 

Victor Hugo Tiznado is a member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Chile and its trade union commission. He was a long-time activist in the coal mining union and now serves on the city council of the former coal mining centre of Lota. He recently visited Australia to strengthen contact with the Chilean community in several Australian capitals as they prepared to commemorate the centenary of the birth of the late President Salvador Allende. In Adelaide, he took time out of his schedule for the following interview with Bob Briton from The Guardian.

More…

Peruvian Campesinos, Workers in General Strike

By: Weekly News Update on the Americas

From: WNU #954

Date: July 13 2008

 

On July 8, thousands of Peruvians mobilized for the first day of a 48-hour national agricultural strike, called by the National Agrarian Confederation (CNA) and the Campesino Confederation of Peru to demand the repeal of a decree that makes it easier to sell campesino and indigenous land. The campesino mobilizations were strongest in the regions of Cusco, Puno, Ayachucho, Ucayali, Madre de Dios, Huanuco and Tacna. (Télam (Argentina) 7/8/08; La Jornada (Mexico) 7/10/08 from AFP, DPA, Reuters) The decree, D.L. 1015, was signed on May 20 by President Alan García; it allows communally owned indigenous and campesino land to be sold to private investors with the vote of a simple majority of communal assembly members. The previous regulation, Law 26 505, required a two-thirds vote of the qualified members of each community in order for communal lands to be sold. (AIDESEP Communiqué 7/8/08) The new regulations also apply to the approval of mining concessions on communal lands.

More…

The truth about Ingrid Betancourt and the US mercenaries

By: Lisa Karpova

From: Pravda (Translated from the Portuguese)

Date: 09July, 2008

 

To be able to understand "Operation Redemption" to free Ingrid Betancourt and the mercenaries of the company Northrop Grumman Corporation who were released together with her, it is necessary to connect the pieces published in the media and their meaning, to filter the content, and from there to form a true understanding of the facts of what happened.

More…

Nicaraguans Demand Justice from World Bank-Financed Sugar Cane Company

By: Sydney Frey   

From: UpsideDown World 

Date: 11 July 2008

 

In Chichigalpa, Chinandega, a company town in the hottest part of Nicaragua – former full-time cane workers have set up a permanent presence with tents and banners outside the entrance of the mill to draw attention to the prevalence of kidney disease among former workers, and to protest the Ingenio San Antonio sugar cane company's refusal to acknowledge its responsibility. They're there because they've been diagnosed with Chronic Renal Insufficiency (CRI), or because they've been widowed by it.

More…

Lies, kidnapping and a mysterious laptop

By: Johann Hari

From: The Independent

Date: 7 July 2008

 

Sometimes you hear a stray sentence on the news that makes you realise you have been lied to. Deliberately lied to; systematically lied to; lied to for a purpose. If you listened closely over the past few days, you could have heard one such sentence passing in the night-time of news.

 

As Ingrid Betancourt emerged after six-and-a-half years – sunken and shrivelled but radiant with courage – one of the first people she thanked was Hugo Chavez. What? If you follow the news coverage, you have been told that the Venezuelan President supports the Farc thugs who have been holding her hostage. He paid them $300m to keep killing and to buy uranium for a dirty bomb, in a rare break from dismantling democracy at home and dealing drugs. So how can this moment of dissonance be explained?

More…

Interview with Ing. Francisco Lpez, President of Petrleos de Nicaragua

By: Tortilla con Sal

 From:Tortilla con Sal via Scoop

Date: 04 July, 2008

 

Early in July, Tortilla con Sal interviewed Ing. Francisco Lpez, President de Nicaragua's State oil company Petrleos de Nicaragua (Petronic). Ing. Lpez is a key figure for Nicaragua in the development of the Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) – the regional economic cooperation programme led by Venezuela and Cuba. Ing. Lpez talks about the achievements and challenges of ALBA in Nicaragua, how Petronic has been revived to benefit the Nicaraguan economy and also comments on the Nicaraguan opposition's disinformation campaign . This month Guatemala formally joined ALBA's flagship oil cooperation programme Petrocaribe. Costa Rica also applied to join Petrocaribe this month. The significance for United States policy in the region is hard to overstate.

More…

Selective Idealism - Selective Indignation: Double-Standards and Inconsistencies Persist in U.S. Foreign Policy

By: Elizabeth Reavey

From: Council on Hemispheric Affairs

Date: July 2nd, 2008

 

    • The case against CISPES 
    • The case against the Department of Justice 
    • The ad hoc war on terror

A few days ago, Washington purged North Korea from its ‘terrorist’ list after Pyongyang demolished a cooling tower at the Yongbyon nuclear plant, symbolizing an end to the country’s nuclear program and its being out in the cold for a half century. Still, over seven years of President Bush’s “War on Terror” have passed, but the American public has yet to see much consistency in this country’s anti-terrorist practices. Some would contend that the term “war on terror” has proven to be an overused misnomer – often employed to bolster arbitrary U.S. foreign policy initiatives. Recent events have exposed the continuing disparity between the Bush administration’s high-flying ideological rhetoric and the practical results of its day-to-day policies

More

The rise of food fascism: Allied to global agribusiness, agrarian elite foments coup in Bolivia

By: Rodger Burbach

From: TNI

Date: 30 June 2008

 

The powerful agrarian interests in Santa Cruz, nurtured and developed in the 1980s by the multinational corporations in conjunction with the World Bank and the IMF, are sabotaging the central government of Evo Morales.

 

Like many third world countries Bolivia is experiencing food shortages and rising food prices attributable to a global food marketing system driven by multinational agribusiness corporations. With sixty percent of the Bolivian population living in poverty and thirty-three percent in extreme poverty, the price of the basic food canasta--including wheat, rice, corn, soy oil and potatoes, as well as meat—has risen twenty-five percent over the past year with prices gyrating wildly in the local markets.

More

Obama and the School of the Americas

By: Nikolas Kozloff

From: NACLA

Date: June 24 2008

 

For a candidate who talks the talk on human rights, Barack Obama has little to say about the infamous School of the Americas (SOA). Originally established in the Panama Canal Zone in 1946, the school later moved to Fort Benning, Georgia in 1984. Since its inception, the institution has instructed more than 60,000 Latin American soldiers in military and law-enforcement tactics.

 

The Pentagon itself has acknowledged that in the past the School of the Americas utilized training manuals advocating coercive interrogation techniques and extrajudicial executions. After receiving their training at the institution, officers went on to commit countless human rights atrocities in countries like El Salvador, Guatemala, and Colombia.

More…

 

Anti-FSLN opposition seeks unity to topple Ortega government

By: Felipe Stuart Cournoyer

From: Links

Date: June 24 2008

 

On June 11, 2008, the axe of Nicaragua’s Supreme Electoral Council (CSE) came down on the Sandinista Renovation Movement (MRS[i]) and the old historic Conservative Party of Nicaragua (PCN), now a tiny shell of its former self. The CSE unanimously decided to deregister both parties on the grounds that they had failed to fulfill the requirements of the national electoral law.

 

That law states that only registered parties can participate in Nicaraguan elections. It obligates registered parties to submit their statutes and the results of internal elections to the CSE. It also stipulates that parties must have organised structures and executives in most of the electoral districts of the country, with the exception of parties that only exist in the Caribbean Coast autonomous regions (RAAN and RAAS), such as YATAMA

More…

 

Truth and Justice in Uruguay, Two Decades Delayed

By: Joshua Frens-String   

From: Upside Down World

Date: June 11 2008

 

After twelve years of Cold-War inspired dictatorship, formal democracy was re-established in Uruguay in 1985. However, while transitional experiences in other Southern Cone countries like Chile and Argentina have often been marked by state-led investigations of human rights atrocities during the respective authoritarian periods of each country, often coupled with military trials, such human rights advances largely stagnated in Uruguay. This was due to a law implemented in the negotiated democratic transition that sheltered military officials from prosecution. Today, two decades later, social and human rights activists have re-initiated a popular movement to annul the infamous "Ley de Caducidad" via a national plebiscite. In doing so, the democratic-legalist national tradition of Uruguay is being converted by popular actors into the means of creating a new image of a progressive society within an ever-changing Latin American political landscape.

More…

 

Viewed against a backdrop of draconian US Homeland Security provisions, Venezuela's efforts are but a pussy-cat!

By: Roy S. Carson

From: PR Inside

Date: June 5 2008

 

It was probably to be expected that the mainstream US media should go into overdrive when presented with news from Venezuela that the country's National Assembly (AN) has approved a new Intelligence & Counterintelligence Act. Headlines claiming Chavez is setting up a spy organization, and that Venezuelans are being ordered to snitch on one another, were the Stateside order of the day ... but, as usual when taking a closer look at the US mainstream media, what is really the truth?

More...

U.S. Military Looks to Colombia to Replace Base in Ecuador

By: Teo Ballvé

From: NACLA

Date: June 6 2008

 

An article by the Colombian weekly magazine Cambio suggests the U.S. military base in Manta, Ecuador will be moved to a new location in Colombia after the U.S. military’s contract with Ecuador expires in 2009. The likely new host for the U.S. base is Colombia’s Palanquero Air Force base in Puerto Salgar, just 120 miles north of Bogotá.

 

Cambio cites an April 22 meeting between U.S. Ambassador to Colombia William Brown and Defense Minister Juan Manuel Santos in which the U.S. diplomat delivered some unexpected news. Brownfield told the minister the State Department had decided the Palanquero base was being “re-certified.” Cambio says “military and diplomatic circles” interpreted the decision as the first step toward establishing the new U.S. base in Palanquero.

More…

 

The Deterrence Strategy of Homeland Security

By: Teo Ballvé

From: IRC Americas Program

Date: June 5 2008

 

When the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) refers to its new deterrence strategy, the agency is not talking about nuclear arsenals, missile defense, or border security. For DHS, deterrence is a strategy of immigration control that relies on what U.S. law enforcement does best: imprisonment.

 

The United States has more people in jail—2.3 million—than any other nation. Although the United States has less than 5% of the world's population, it holds almost a quarter of the world's prisoners. One of every 100 adults in the "land of the free" is locked up.

More…

 

Meet South America's New Secessionists

By: Nikolas Kozloff

From: CounterPunch

Date: May 30th  2008

 

Having failed to halt the tide of South America’s Pink Tide, Washington is seeking to cultivate relationships with secessionist leaders in order to facilitate the breakup of countries which share left leaning governments.  In Bolivia, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has explicitly supported demands of the political opposition for greater regional autonomy in the eastern section of the country and has funneled millions of dollars to the right.

More…

How to Turn Chávez Into a Terrorist in Two [Short] Months

By: Pascual Serrano 

From: Diagonal

Translation: Machetera

Date: May 30th  2008

 

Colombia’s bombing of a FARC camp in Ecuador set off a real media war. Any similarity between the mainstream media version and reality is purely coincidental.

 

First they said Chávez was a dictator, but that didn’t convince anyone, considering that he was the president who’d won more elections than anyone in the Americas. Then they said he was armed to the teeth and a danger to the region’s stability, but the truth is that Chávez never used a single weapon outside his own country. So the latest tactic has been to turn him into a terrorist through a two month long media operation. Let’s review the chronology of the operation and compare each event as reported by the Media Axis (El País, El Tiempo, The Wall Street Journal, Colombia’s President Uribe, the White House) with what actually happened.

More…

Obama and the US-Latin America Time Bomb

By: Al Giordano

From: The Narco News Bulletin

Date: May 26, 2008

 

We’ve all seen those action movies in which a bomb – its digital clock ticking down the seconds to explosion – must be defused. There is typically a clump of wires and a hurried discussion between the heroes – “no, no, don’t cut the red one!” – because the wires have to be disconnected in a certain order or the whole city will be instantly destroyed.

 

Such is the situation in the Western Hemisphere today. The bomb was built and planted by decades of US imperial policy, from Republican and Democratic administrations alike. The old methods of imposing Washington and Wall Street agendas on Latin America never went away: attempted Coups de E’tat, political assassinations, dirty wars of repression carried out by torturers trained by the US School of the Americas and by paramilitary death squads remain part of the daily nightmare in so much of the hemisphere. But those “traditional” techniques been surpassed by new, more technologically proficient means of control: state-of-the-art electoral fraud, mercenary swat teams contracted from the corporate private sector and not beholden to any country’s law or constitution, technologies of total surveillance upon dissidents via telephone, Internet and satellite, economic blackmail through “free trade” deals and the daily confusing blare wrought by mass media simulation.

More…

Mixed Blessing

By: Tom Hayden

From:  The Nation

Date: May 25, 2008

 

In Miami recently, Barack Obama called for new Latin American policies in his first major policy declaration towards the region. The speech was classic Obama: substantive, centrist, subtle and pragmatic, above all drawing a sharp difference between Obama's support for "direct diplomacy" versus John McCain's status quo policies towards Cuba and the region. As a measure of how far the anti-Castro Cubans have shifted towards the center, Obama's speech was praised by his hosts, the Cuban American National Foundation.

 

As a measure of Obama's own evolution to the center from the left, however, Obama committed himself to maintaining the economic embargo of Cuba which he questioned when he ran for the US Senate in 2004. Nevertheless, the speech will be well-received in progressive circles as a breakthrough from past policies aimed at isolation and undermining of the Cuban government.

More…

 

Revolutionary Latin America

Video 32 min

Date: May 17th, 2008

 

Jorge Martin, International Secretary of the Hands Off Venezuela Campaign, speaks at "Revolutionary Latin America" at the Central Labor Union Council in Minneapolis, MN on the revolutionary process taking place in Venezuela. The event was held on May 17th, 2008 and was co-sponsored by Hands Off Venezuela and the Workers International League

View...

 

Extending "people’s power" in El Salvador

By: Bob Briton

From: The Guardian

Date: 21 May, 2008

 

Interview with Jorge Schafik Handal a member of the Central American Parliament representing El Salvador. He is the Vice-President of its Commission for Municipal Development and Citizen’s Participation. He is also a senior figure in El Salvador’s left opposition Farabundo Martí National Liberation front (FMLN) which appears set to assume government in the troubled Central American country at elections to be held next year.

More…

 

The U.S. penetration of Venezuelan Airspace. Another brick in the crumbling wall of Bush & Uribe

By Les Blough

From: Axis of Logic

Date: May 20, 2008

 

The Colombian-US missile attack in Ecuador, the US 4th Fleet in the Caribbean, the US-backed secessionist push in the Venezuelan state of Zulia, the US-backed, illegal referendum by the rebel oligarchs in the state of Santa Cruz to secede from Bolivia, the threat by US Ambassador Brownfield (formerly in Venezuela, now in Colombia) to relocate the US air base in Manta to La Guajira on the Venezuelan border, the baseless media show of FARC laptops in an attempt to label Venezuela with "state sponsored terrorism" and on and on it goes.

More...

 

The War Machine: Or How to Manipulate Reality

By: Eva Golinger

From: Postcards from the Revolution

Date: May 18 2008

 

Since 2002, the Pentagon has been seeking evidence that intimately relates President Chávez and his government with the FARC. Top secret documents from the Department of Defense (that we have declassified under FOIA) evidence that the Pentagon has been unable to find proof of a clandestine, subversive relationship between the Venezuelan government and the FARC. The sources used in some Pentagon documents that attempt to show such a relationship are completely unreliable, since they are mass media outlets from Venezuela and Colombia, such as Globovisión, Caracol, El Universal and El Nacional – all of whom are aligned with the opposition to Chávez.

More…

The Silent Violence of Peace in Guatemala

By: Joy Agner

From: NACLA

Date: May 14 2008

 

Standing in a crowded bookstore in Guatemala City, my patience was tested as I waited over an hour for some photocopies. The manager of the store, an older, short, red-headed woman saw my unease and came up to chat with me. One of the books I was making copies of, Guatemala: Memoria del Silencio, the final report of the UN-sponsored Historical Clarification Commission (CEH), rested on the table.

 

She picked it up and asked me why I was reading it. “Did you know one of the authors was assassinated?” she queried. I told her that I was doing research to compare rates of violent crimes today to rates from the war. She laid the text down on the table and said, “It is more or less the same.” She matter-of-factly added, “Nothing has changed. They wanted to exterminate us then; they want to exterminate us now.”

More...

The Bolivarian Revolution is a global revolution

By: Jean-Guy Allard—

From: Granma International

Date: May 14 2008

 

Interview with the Venezuelan-U.S. lawyer and researcher Eva Golinger author of The Chávez Code and Bush v. Chávez: Washington's War on Venezuela

More…

Statement of Communist and Workers’ Parties from EU countries about the 5th EU-LAC summit

By: Mtg Record – (EU-LAC Lima, Peru)

From: KKE website

Date: May 14 2008

 

The objectives of the European Union have nothing to do with combating poverty and social inequalities, or with promoting the environment – benevolent policies as they claim. It seeks to open up the economies of these countries to exploitation, demanding the privatisation of state industries and natural resources, even water, for the benefit of the monopoly capital. It is an illusion to see it as a counterweight to the United States, in favour of the peoples: on the contrary, it has the same imperialist and neo-colonial goals

More…

US Navy resurrects Fourth Fleet to police Latin America

By: Humberto Santana

From: World Socialist Web

Date: May 7, 2008

 

Washington announced at the end of last month that it is resurrecting the long-ago moth-balled Fourth Fleet to reassert US power in the Caribbean and Latin America. Created at the time of World War II to combat German submarines attacking merchant shipping convoys in the South Atlantic, the Fourth Fleet was seen as no longer necessary after the Second World War and was disbanded in 1950.

More… 

Bolivia: Failure of the referendum on autonomy

By: Corriente Marxista Internacional - El Militante Bolivia

From: In Defence of Marxism

Date: May 6, 2008

 

The referendum on autonomy organized by the right wing and the Santa Cruz oligarchy has been clearly defeated, and received the response of mass mobilizations of workers and peasants throughout the country. While this article is being written, the right wing is still celebrating their "victory" in the "Plaza 24 de Setiembre" in Santa Cruz, but their defeat is clear for all to see: even if one accepts as real the provisional results announced by the Departmental Electoral Court and the mass media, the number of votes for Autonomy is significantly lower than the 2006 referendum. However, the real figures are even worse for them.

More…

It's Not the First Time - U.S. is Promoting Secession in Bolivia

By: Kikolas Kozloff

From: CounterPunch

Date: May 6, 2008

 

Having avoided any meaningful coverage of Bolivia since the election of Evo Morales in December, 2005, the international media is now obliged to play catch up.  Yesterday, the Andean nation of 9.1 million held a crucial vote which could pave the way for secession of the resource-rich Santa Cruz region.

More…

A Primer on Plan Mexico

By: Laura Carlsen

From: Narco News Bulletin

Date: May 5, 2008

 

The Bush Administration Has Put Its Proposal to Militarise Mexico to the Upcoming Iraq Supplemental Bill

 

On October 22, 2007 President Bush announced the $1.4 billion dollar “Mérida Initiative,” security aid package to Mexico and Central America. The initiative has fatal flaws in its strategy; instead of leading to a stable binational relationship and peaceful border communities, its military approach will escalate drug-related violence and human rights abuses.

More…

An intellectually exhausted right wing

By: Atilio Borón

From: Rebelión

Date: 22 April 2008

 

The meeting of right-wingers of the Americas that aimed to relaunch, on a continental scale, a conservative force capable of putting a stop to the advances of the left, was a farce that went by almost unnoticed in Rosario.

More… 

Venezuela: Democracy, Socialism and Imperialism

By: Prof. James Petras

From: Global Research,

Date: April 17th 2008

 

Venezuela ’s President Hugo Chavez remains the world’s leading secular, democratically elected political leader who has consistently and publicly opposed imperialist wars in the Middle East , attacked extra-territorial intervention and US and European Union complicity in kidnapping and torture. Venezuela plays the major role in sharply reducing the price of oil for the poorest countries in the Caribbean region and Central America, thus substantially aiding them in their balance of payments, without attaching any ‘strings’ to this vital assistance. Venezuela has been in the forefront in supporting free elections and opposing human right abuses in the Middle East, Latin America and South Asia by pro-US client regimes in Iraq , Afghanistan and Colombia . No other country in the Americas has done more to break down the racial barriers to social mobility and the acquisition of land for Afro-Latin and Indio Americans.

More…

How Not to Attack an Economist (and an Economy): Getting the Numbers Right

By: Mark Weisbrot

From: CEPR

Date: April 2008

 

This paper continues a debate over the extent of economic and social progress in Venezuela that began with an article in the March/April 2008 issue of Foreign Affairs. This article argued that “a close look at the evidence reveals just how much Chávez's 'revolution' has hurt Venezuela's economy -- and that the poor are hurting most of all.” CEPR responded with “An Empty Research Agenda: The Creation of Myths About Contemporary Venezuela,” showing that the main allegations of the article were wrong. The author of the Foreign Affairs article, economist Francisco Rodriguez, then responded with an Economics Working Paper at Wesleyan University, which defended his original analysis.

More…

 

The Coming War on Venezuela

By: George Ciccariello-Maher

From: Counter Punch

Date: March 24, 2008

 

More than a year ago, I attended the official book release for the Venezuelan edition of Eva Golinger's Bush Versus Chávez, published by Monte Avila, and the book had previously been printed in Cuba by Editorial José Martí. I recount this to make the following point: long before the publication of Bush Versus Chávez in the current English-language edition, the book was already a crucial contribution to international debates regarding United States' efforts to destroy Venezuela's Bolivarian Revolution.

More…

 Caveat Venditor

The Imperial Branding of Simon Bolivar and the Cuban Revolution

By: Nelson P. Valdés

From: Counter Punch

Date: March 17, 2008

 

In 2007, before leaving for Latin America, George W Bush spoke to a Spanish speaking audience of business people in New York City where he claimed he was a "Bolivariano" and a son of Simon Bolivar. [1] There are some people who just don't understand the United States government and its foreign policy, so they were puzzled and asked "how can George call himself an 'hijo de Bolivar'? The answer is simple: branding.

More…

 

The Heuristic of Fear

By: Pablo Dávalos

From: Latin America in Movement

Date: April 4 2008

 

There is a relation between the notion of “the right to preemptive self-defense” that allowed, legitimated, and justified the US invasion in Afghanistan and Iraq, that was announced by the hawks of the Bush administration, and Colombian President Álvaro Uribe’s doctrine of Democratic Security. In both cases, war is deterritorialized in the search for a ubiquitous and almost abstract enemy: the terrorist.

More… 

The “Bono-Banalization” of Globalization in Davos

By: Eduardo Gudynas

From: South Development

Date: January 25 2008

 

The World Economic Forum is held at the beginning of every year; this time from January 23rd-27th. Its usual participants are well-known names from presidents, to primeministers, from heads of large corporation, to some academics. It’s a space for celebrating and reproducing globalization, and for this it has received serious criticisms from global citizens. We should remember that the World Social Forum began as a counterproposal to Davos, showing that another world is possible.

More…

Resolutions adopted at the Latin America & Asia Pacific International Solidarity Forum in Melbourne, October 11-14, 2007