We are struggling to reach the shore and not die in the attempt
By: Julio Escalona
I am quoting a saying of Venezuelan sailors whose meaning is clearly understood: enduring and overcoming the rigors of the sea, only to die when the shore is reached. Venezuelans are still far from the shore. But Pepe Mujica’s proposal seems to indicate that it is better that we desist, for now, from the attempt to approach it because in the immediate future that attempt can lead to a tragedy. Thanks camarada Pepe, I take your proposal very seriously.
We Venezuelans are closing on the shore, but we are still struggling to reach it, when the shore means peace, health, harmony, prosperity, democracy and respect for human rights for Venezuelans of all creeds, opinions, visions, hopes and dreams of course, the defense and respect for generous Nature that daily gives us life without expecting anything in return.
We are verging on the shore, but we have been there, we have glimpsed it, we have foreseen it, we have dreamed it since the time of Guaicaipuro, Negro Miguel, Gual and Spain, Miranda, Bolívar, Zamora, Pío Tamayo, Eutimio Rivas, José Montesinos , Livia Gouverneur, Rudas Mezone, Alexander Alzolay, Fabricio Ojeda, Alberto Lovera, Bartolome Vielma Hernandez, Jorge Rodriguez, Vera Betancourt, Víctor Soto, Lieutenant Hurtado, Francisco Prada, Alí Rodríguez …
A condition to solve the problems of Venezuela is that the US aggression cease: Venezuela is a country at war.
The Bolivarian process, like all political processes, is full of imperfections, errors. These errors are not only exacerbated, but magnified, when this process is performed surrounded and facing permanent siege by an imperial power led by a criminal government like Trump’s.
The commercial, economic and financial blockades are known, but less is known, above all, about the effects of the media war, of psychological warfare operations and the consequences, in Venezuelan society, of the economic war that is primarily responsible for induced shortages and inflation, smuggling of contraband goods into Colombia, Brazil, the Caribbean Islands; of the attacks on our currency, of the hyper-speculative mechanism of the so-called dollar today (black market dollar).
Have there been mistakes in the government’s economic policy? Yes. Is there corruption within the government? Unfortunately, yes. But the main source of the evils of today is the effects of the economic war and particularly the blockades and in general, the war suigéneris that under the orders of Trump is carried out against our homeland.
Are our borders permanently threatened by the concentration of regular forces, particularly from Colombia and, more recently, from Brazil? Yes. Even now, through the agreements between Netanyahu and Bolsonaro, by Zionist military and security forces.
Of paramilitary groups and criminal gangs (Bacri)? Yes. Gangs that harass and frighten our population, who commit kidnappings, murders, robberies … Who participate in the smuggling of gasoline, agricultural products (coffee, grains), livestock, raw materials and products in process that Venezuela imports as a necessity of our production process and business leaders and corrupt government officials, facilitate that they end up in the hands of those who direct the offensive against the Bolivarian process and exit the country to Colombia, Brazil, the Caribbean …
Cadres, also formed by members of the regular military forces of Colombia, camouflaged, who will participate as conductors, animators, at the moment when the order is given to cross our borders (if our political and diplomatic initiatives, plus international solidarity cannot avoid it) and the horrendous murders and crimes against our population are generalized.
Is President Maduro’s re-election legitimate?
Of course yes. The re-election is undoubtedly widely permitted by the constitution of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Then, he was chosen as a candidate and duly registered by the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), the Communist Party of Venezuela, the Patria Para Todos Party and other political organizations, all duly registered and empowered for that purpose, according to the laws and Venezuelan regulations. He registered his candidacy, also fulfilling all the requirements.
Four candidates participated and he obtained a simple majority of the votes in the only electoral round held in Venezuela. There is no second electoral round in our constitution and it is not necessary to obtain an absolute majority of the votes. This condition is that which is constitutionally established in Venezuela, not now but always.
Full guarantees were granted to all participants. Even in the round of negotiations between representatives of the Venezuelan government and representatives of the opposition, which took place in the Dominican Republic last year (2018), facilitated by the president of that country, Danilo Medina and the former president of Spain, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, the representatives of the opposition demanded additional guarantees, which were granted and on that basis the call for elections was made.
A pre-agreement between government and opposition was established. When the meeting was called for the signature to formalize this pre-agreement, the representatives of the opposition, among whom was Julo Borges, without any explanation, got up from the table and broke the negotiations. Which caused President Danilo Medina frustration and deep annoyance to the former president Rodríguez Zapatero. Whoever wants more details can look at the statements they made after the opposition broke the negotiations.
Even so, then an opposition sector requested the postponement of the date set by the National Electoral Council for the conduct of the presidential elections, and this was done. The date was postponed.
I must add that this was a process with international monitors from the US, Europe, from the Latin-Caribbean region, including members of the most important electoral bodies in our region. There was no challenge to the results and the various international chaperones endorsed the results.
However, in any case, that sector decided to call for abstention and today, by decision of the president of the United States, says it does not recognize President Maduro and this is part of an operation that includes among the options that are open, military intervention, which would involve the murder of thousands of Venezuelans and most likely the destruction of the Venezuelan homeland, which, without a doubt, would rise again.
So, camarada Mujica, why should we annul this process and unrecognize President Maduro? You are intervening in the internal affairs of our country, nothing less than the substitution of the president of the republic.
If it has not been proven that there was fraud or at least some notorious irregular fact. If in the middle of all the conflict that exists in Venezuela the electoral consultation ended in an absolutely peaceful way. If even the US information services, convicted and confessed enemies of Venezuela, did not report or report any irregular facts. If as you know the Carter Center, headed by President Carter himself, has described the Venezuelan electoral system as the best in the world. If after more than 20 electoral processes in the course of 20 years, nobody has been able to demonstrate irregularities in the electoral processes of our country? Why should we ignore the electoral result that, precisely, elected President Maduro? Why is there an argument to ignore the act of more than 9 million voters, among whom I count myself?
You know that the essential reason is the US government, one of the main representatives and executive arm of the Pentagon-Otan in the name of transnational capital, precisely, representing interests of that capital, wants to overthrow the government of Venezuela.
President Trump has not been able to attack our country militarily because the geopolitics executed by President Maduro has systematically defeated him, both in the OAS (using the vassals he has there) and recently in the political debate that took place in the UN Security Council.
The Secretary General of the UN has just declared, bound by the respect of the Charter of the United Nations and international law, that they only recognize as President of Venezuela Nicolás Maduro, because only the General Assembly of the United Nations and the Council of Security can decide otherwise.
With all due respect, camarada Mujica, you do not have any authority to propose a new election and that puts you outside international law. Above all, at a time so critical for the Venezuelan people. Your voice has weight and continental respect. Is it too much to ask you put that weight in favor of the defense and sovereignty of our nation threatened by imperial intervention?
Pepe Mujica’s proposal is summarized by him as follows: “A kind of executive board of all inclinations, but strongly monitored and guaranteed by the United Nations.” He concludes: “I do not see another way that gives guarantee”.
I understand that this “executive board”, which would come out of “total elections”, would replace President Maduro and I believe, by the name of “total elections”, that it is about, besides replacing the president, electing a new National Assembly , and even new governors, new mayors, which contradicts the opinion expressed by a majority of Venezuelans, who participated in an absolutely legal election, held as recently as May 20 of last year and barely two months ago, in the elections for governors and mayors. That, without anyone showing there was fraud, even though it is known that this election, that of the president, was held under the presence of international and national observers.
Pepe Mujica’s proposal implies that the neoliberals can enter the “executive board” that he proposes
As Mujica says, it would be an “executive board where all the inclinations are represented”. Therefore, the neoliberals, who have not even dared to present themselves as such to a popular election in Venezuela, because they are very discredited, through negotiation, why could they not enter if as a tendency they exist in Venezuela?
This paradox is presented in Mujica’s proposal: The election of President Maduro widely certified nationally and internationally is not valid, but a negotiation could lead the neoliberals to share power. This is unacceptable
Now, comrade Mujica, as you allowed yourself to intervene in the internal affairs of Venezuela, I have not found your words condemning President Trump for appointing a president for our country. That citizen has violated the Bolivarian Constitution, receives orders and guidance from a government that has declared itself an enemy of Venezuela and threatens us with a military intervention, which, given known experience, Venezuela could be destroyed with thousands of Venezuelans killed or wounded physically, morally and psychologically, with our physical infrastructure bombed and destroyed. What do you call, camarada Mujica. a citizen of a country that proceeds in this way against his homeland? How do you, with your voice that weighs and influences, not condemn a solution that can mean untold sacrifices for Venezuelans?
Don’t forget the one who facilitated Almagro to be Secretary General of the OAS was you. You have to see how much damage he has done to the region and to Venezuela in particular, he who was your chancellor for a long time! I respect you because you dared to break with him and the Frente Amplio expelled him from their ranks. The Caribbean Latin region, I think, is deeply grateful.
I understand that you do not like President Maduro. You once said something like this: Maduro must be crazy, having political prisoners. It was at a time when the organization called Vanguardia Popular, led by Leopoldo López, called to violently take the streets of Venezuela and this led to deaths, injuries, destruction of property, etc. Finally, Venezuelan justice took care of him and sent him to jail, where his rights have been respected to the last detail.
You and I were guerrillas and the justice of those times persecuted, tortured and murdered many of our compañeras and compañeros. You had to suffer infamous imprisonments that you knew how to carry with courage and dignity. That’s why you have my recognition.
Those who repressed you were not crazy, evidently. They were murderers, very aware of what they were doing. It is possible that Maduro is crazy, yes, for daring to challenge imperial domination in a phase in which there is a clear drift towards fascism. But you did not say it for that reason. Calling a president crazy, besieged by violence, is something more than diplomatic mistreatment. I read this in a press statement that is attributed to you. I consulted with very close friends and they read the same thing. You do not know how much I wish you didn’t say that, because I maintain respect for you.
The presence of the UN was not a guarantee in Libya, quite the opposite
When through a media operation, hollywood style, Gaddafi was “overthrown”, through the taking of a Green Square that was not in Tripoli, the capital of Libya, but reproduced on a stage in Qatar, the UN, instead of condemning the fact and denouncing it, legitimized it. The Secretary General of that time, Ban Ki Moon, endorsed it with a visit to the so-called transition government located in Benghazi.
In Haiti the presence of the UN, through the peace forces that it maintains there, has not been able to avoid cruel situations, criminal acts. This does not negate the heroic character of UN officials in other parts of the world. What happens is that the US power in the UN remains decisive. The problem is not the UN. It’s the US government.
Mujica and López Obrador
President López Obrador, as far as I know, has maintained a principled position: respect for the internal affairs of States. According to this principle, he does not have to pronounce on the kindness or not of President Maduro and his government. Whether it is pronounced or not is a matter of your convictions. It is expected, of course, that if a pronouncement is made, it is to defend a people aggrieved and about to be subjected to serious torture.
I deeply thank president of Mexico for maintaining that position at such a crucial moment for Venezuela and the entire Latin-Caribbean region.
Our homeland will rise worthy, proud and hopeful
We fight for peace, war is a hellish nightmare, which can be imposed on us. With dignity and without fear we will fight. The traitors, the corrupt, the false, the liars, will be left without masks. The war will take them away.
Staunching the wounds, drying the tears for the fallen, the parents, the brothers, the children, the friends, and stone on stone, seed for seed, petal on petal, hug for hug, kiss for kiss, hope for hope, retrieving ashes and transforming them into fertilizer that will cradle the newborn, the new, the uncontaminated, from love and work, will rebuild our Venezuela Bolivariana, our American homeland. Sister of all the continents of the planet, because all that blood runs through our veins and those rains are part of our waters, those suns have fed our crops and that international solidarity will build a diverse, wonderful and indestructible world culture, because one day of truth we will be indestructible. Politics will be that social being that destroys all opportunism and will shine for everyone from the heaven that will shelter us with stars that will be like the eyes of the spirits who awakened and accompanied us when God said let there be Light.
The rules and guidelines that Simón Bolívar has left us, liberator of peoples
It’s been two centuries since the Angostura Congress, key to the independence of Venezuela, New Granada and the entire region. The USA, given its generative interventionist and plundering vocation, at the time of our war of independence, became an ally of the Spanish empire and at a time when decisive battles were being fought and our liberator had converted what is now Ciudad Bolivar and its surrounding regions, into a support base to confront the invading forces, liberate Venezuela, the New Granada and advance towards the south and carry forward, what I have called, its geopolitics of liberation.
The US, which supported Spain, decided to send two ships loaded with weapons, ammunition and food, that penetrated through the Orinoco, in order to strengthen the attack of the Spanish against the Venezuelan patriots, who had built up in Ciudad Bolivar. They forgot that Miranda, one of our liberators and forerunner of the geopolitics of liberation, fought for US independence from England, fighting on the spot and taking Pensacola, forcing the English to capitulate. As has been said, capitalist states have no friends only interests.
Bolivar ordered the capture of the ships, which carried the US flag and took the cargo they carried for the Spaniards. The American government sent an agent named Bautista Irving on a mission to recover the ships, using lies and blackmail. The negotiation was done in an epistolary manner.
I will copy some fragments of these letters to give us an idea of how Bolivar faced imperial threats. Let’s see:
1. The following is an instruction on the position of supposedly neutral nations, very valuable in current conflicts:
“If the neutral nations had forced our enemies to strictly respect the rights of the public, and of people, our advantages would have been infinite, and we would have less to complain about the neutrals, but the opposite has happened in the course of the present war … It would not be very sensible for the laws to be practiced by the weak and abuses practiced by the strong? “
2. This other letter guides us on how to deal with insults and the care of our language. It is not convenient to respond to insults with insults and much less with profanities:
“It seems that your intent is to force me to reciprocate the insults: I will not do it, but I protest to you that I will not allow you to despise the Government and the rights of Venezuela. Defending them against Spain a large part of our population has perished and the remaining part wishes to have the same faith. It’s the same thing for Venezuela to fight against Spain as against the whole world, if the whole world offends it”.
3. This one illustrates how to respond to threats:
Before a veiled threat from the American agent Irving, he replies: “Courage and ability, Mr. Agent, provide better than numbers (of troops).” Unhappy the men if these moral virtues did not balance and even surpass the physical ones! Very soon, The Lord of the most populated kingdom will rule the whole earth. Fortunately a handful of free men have often been seen defeating powerful empires. “
We are facing another experiment in how a government is overthrown. The issue is to chaotise society, government management, to politically and diplomatically surround the State; strengthen corruption, theft, boycott of various government activities, strengthening a corrupt fifth column, which multiplies inefficiency and takes advantage to sabotage government action from key positions.
Have a multilateral organization like the OAS and a General Secretary like Almagro, to work for sanctions and diplomatic isolation.
Use paramilitary groups and criminal gangs to generate fear, terror, promoting kidnappings, robberies, horrendous crimes, boycotts and sabotage of economic activities
In society, induced scarcity and inflation are promoted; the currency is attacked and the international reserves are liquidated, trying to prevent the currency from stabilizing and managing the exchange rate from outside the Venezuelan economy to prevent it from stabilizing.
The market for goods and services would never be stabilized, no matter what the government’s efforts are: smuggling, hoarding, blatant boycott using theft, destruction of goods, attacks on transportation will impede it.
The generalized and coordinated crisis of all services, a tactic of the fifth column (water, electricity, transport, health, education), which generates discontent, even demoralization, strengthening the legitimate popular discontent.
The media war, psychological warfare operations linked to the so-called fake news (false news) disseminated through news portals, print media, radio, television and social networks and whose goal is misinformation, confusion, demoralization …
The endpoint is the threat of military intervention, the economic, commercial, financial blockade, the attempts to fragment the FANB, plus the economic, financial, commercial blockade, the shortage of medicines.
The creation of a parallel government and the ensuing diplomatic conflicts and the threats of the US government to try to legitimize the aggression by having a puppet that legitimizes it.
What has been said does not mean that with denunciations related to a fifth column, corruption, bureaucratization and inefficiency, etc., we make a clean slate and a new account. Quite the opposite. We will continue forward and we will build a people’s front with the popular sectors that consequently maintain these criticisms.
Translated by JRE/ef