In Venezuela 23F ended up ‘one more collapsed coup’

Posted On Jun 15 2021 by

first_imgThe following are excerpts from an interview by Mario Hernández with Argentine economist and political analyst Claudio Katz published by lahaine.org on March 20. (lahaine.org/bU5s) Translated by Michael Otto.Mario Hernández: You wrote an article in La Haine, “Venezuela defines the future of the entire region.” (https://katz.lahaine.org/) Why? Claudio Katz: Because it is very clear that what happens [in Venezuela] will determine whether in all of Latin America there is a shift to neoliberal authoritarianism or an opposite process of resuming a course of popular emancipation.I think that what’s interesting about the current situation is that the coup-plotters’ failures are coming one after the other. The first happened when, upon Guaidó’s self-nomination as president, he said he would call elections in 30 days. Time has passed and this guy has carried out no presidential function at all.The Venezuelan rightwing is experienced at mounting abortive coups; we can’t forget that it tried and failed five times since 2013, and this one isn’t succeeding either. What happened on Feb. 23 is the second collapsed coup. It was supposed to be “D” day. All the opposition was betting the trucks would get in. None did, and the farce of humanitarian aid was exposed, because to deliver humanitarian aid you need political neutrality. There has to be a neutral entity separate from both sides of the dispute to help those who are in need. Neither the Red Cross nor the United Nations nor Doctors Without Borders nor any neutral body participated. If the ones bringing “aid” really wanted to help the country, the first step should be to unblock the accounts that are preventing the financing of Venezuela. It’s the same [U.S.] hypocrisy as the embargo on Cuba.I believe that this operation has been very well defined as a Trojan horse. It was a military action in disguise, because the humanitarian aid arrived on planes dispatched from U.S. bases in the Caribbean and was coordinated by Pentagon contractors. Saturday F23 was an incredible farce. The famous bridge that Venezuela was alleged to have blocked to prevent aid had never been inaugurated and opened. The collectives were accused of burning the trucks, but they were burned from the Colombian side. It was a lot like Bush’s farce against Saddam Hussein, using weapons of mass destruction that never existed and that were the main pretext for the attack on Iraq.Saturday F23 ended like one more guarimba [violent right-wing demonstration], with a group of rightwing provocateurs conducting a meaningless exercise and the hopefuls waiting for a major military desertion, a kind of Berlin Wall that was supposed to fall with the great desertion of [Venezuelan] armed forces crossing over to the Colombian side. It didn’t happen. There was pressure on the barracks and still nothing happened.‘A third failure’It seems to me, and I’m being a little more speculative, that we are beginning to witness a third failure, because the Brazilian vice president has already said that he opposes a military invasion. There is a clash with Bolsonaro [president of Brazil]. Military leaders, who are in effect ruling Brazil, are saying, “I don’t like the transfer of the Brazilian embassy to Jerusalem”; “I don’t like the Alcántara base”; “I don’t want to get into a military adventure against Venezuela.” So this whole Lima Group is beginning to leak.That’s why Vice President Mike Pence is complaining to Guaidó that he fooled him, because there was no military desertion, the social base of Chavismo is holding up, the regime is not collapsing. What happened with Brazil is important because if Brazil puts on the brakes, Colombia will also begin to falter. Colombia alone is not going to be willing to launch a military operation. Colombian opposition leader Gustavo Petro is already campaigning against it, and then there are the other ridiculous countries. Chilean President Sebastián Piñera did an absurd show of going to Cúcuta [on the Colombia-Venezuela border] and came back empty handed, as did Paraguay and Panama.There are failures in the self-nomination, in the humanitarian aid operation and in the Lima Group. The big question is whether the stakes get raised and whether they [the U.S.] are going to try a military operation. There are many declarations. There is the U.S. ultra-right in Cúcuta. There is U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Díaz-Balart and these architects of [U.S.] massacres, Elliott Abrams and John Bolton. There are many boorish speeches. But it is very difficult to launch a seizure of territory and set up a parallel government [in Venezuela] following the Middle East model.It’s even more difficult to arm an entire Latin American military contingent of the type that went to Haiti. I believe that what [the U.S. is] going to try are border operations, terrorism, limited actions, [like the U.S. did supporting and arming] the Nicaraguan Contras of the 1980s and 1990s. Trump has a lot of problems with a military retreat in Syria, in Afghanistan and Iraq. He’s trying to make peace with North Korea because he doesn’t have the courage to do much more. The possibilities are very difficult for Trump to repeat: the 1983 [U.S.] invasion of Grenada, 1989 invasion of Panama or 2009 action in Honduras. Europe is not following him. There is a very strong crisis in NATO. Therefore, I think the good news is that the right has problems. And we also have to make an evaluation of the other side.Economic blockade by U.S.MH: I was going to ask you about that, because although so far we understand it as a battle won, the economic situation in Venezuela has serious problems. … In your article I mentioned at the beginning, you pointed out that there was a 30 percent drop in [gross domestic product], a 50 percent drop in oil extraction, combined with the phenomenon of immeasurable hyperinflation.CK: The situation is very grave and will get worse now because the blockade is going to increase. The U.S. has expropriated Citgo, so no one knows what is going to happen to the flow of dollars that Venezuela needs. There is a collapse of the economy that is primarily caused by the economic war, foreign sabotage and the siege; but the government must also bear responsibility because of its improvisation, impotence and complicity with the new so-called “bolibourgeoisie” [elements of the bourgeoisie within Bolivarian Venezuela who are not openly aligned with the right-wing opposition].There are many Chavista economists who are critical [of government policies], proposing that now is the time to make a turn, because Venezuela needs to respond to the new aggression of embargoes and expropriation of Citgo, and the starting point would be a moratorium on debt. Venezuela has paid some $70 billion in interest on the debt, but now it is left with nothing. Many economists … propose the importance of an immediate moratorium … differentiating clearly the different bonds according to each creditor. Venezuela needs to maintain a network of international economic alliances, which is indispensable. And it needs an economic policy based in the communes, in the dynamic of the popular economy but with a totally different macroeconomic orientation. And I believe that a turn of this kind is possible because there is a will to struggle.‘Chavismo encompasses all the Venezuelan people’ What was demonstrated this past month is that there is a people and there is a government, because Chavismo is not only Maduro or the PSUV [United Socialist Party of Venezuela]. It is a political matrix that encompasses all the Venezuelan people. There is a resolve to resist, unlike what happened with Dilma [Rousseff, Brazilian president from 2011 until impeached by right-wing cabal in 2016]. Maduro has called six mobilizations in a matter of days, and he fights for the streets on equal terms with the right. There is a very strong patriotic feeling in the Army that blocks the campaign for defections.MH: 300 defections out of 300,000 troops.CK: There is a 20-year-old construction of consciousness of sovereignty in the Army; there is socialist education in the Armed Forces. In addition, the government is acting intelligently, maintaining serenity in the face of provocations. I believe that they learned from the 2017 guarimbas, [when] they launched tear gas against the fascist gangs, preventing them from escalating the guarimbas into an armed conflict and, above all, maintaining the flag of peace.Nobody wants a civil war, and the government insists that’s what Trump is all about. They say they don’t want a massacre or a repeat of Libya. Eight years have passed since the Gaddafi coup and Libya no longer exists. It was dismembered and the main oil field is closed because armed groups fight over it. Each party has a local sheikh with whom it does business.So the Venezuelan government carries out measured actions, closes the border, breaks relations with Colombia because the aggression is organized there. It has an intelligent international strategy; there are more countries that recognize its government than those that recognize Guaidó. [And] a military alliance with Russia, the actions preventing the U.N. from repeating the Saddam Hussein story, that is, stopping the U.N. from issuing a declaration that legitimizes an invasion. It is a struggle of David against Goliath. We must not lose sight of this, but the great battles were always like this.‘It is possible to resist’And as for Latin America … it’s key, it defines everything. I believe that if the right triumphs, it is like Pinochet’s coup [in Chile that overthrew the pro-socialist Allende government in 1973] … a change of era, 1973 in Latin America. That’s why resistance is so important and overcoming the climate of defeatism that exists among many progressives, while the superficiality of triumphalism that exists on the right fades away.It is possible to resist. Cuba has been resisting for more than five decades. Iran for four decades. It is a complicated struggle. Of course it is. [As for the U.S.] it is not only a military campaign, it’s an attempt to demoralize “the enemy” using a media campaign in the battle for public opinion. What Venezuela has going for it is that this war of public opinion is being commanded by a person of supreme ineptness like Trump and all his fascists in Miami.In addition, the conflict is being internationalized. Banners in favor of Venezuela appeared among the Yellow Vests of France.[Increasingly] you are either in favor of the coup or you are defending Venezuela. There is less and less space for that neutral world inhabited by some intellectuals who think that we have to be in the middle, that Maduro is as guilty as Guaidó, that a right-wing dictatorship is equal to government by Chavismo. I believe that fortunately this type of position is losing strength. I comment on it because I have seen a shameful event, that a group of leftist intellectuals in Venezuela had a meeting with Guaidó.MH: You mean the meeting of the group Socialist Tide (Marea Socialista).CK: Exactly. It is shameful, unacceptable. It isn’t the subject matter that counts, but the act. Whatever they may have talked about, what matters is the photo op. Function of a left movementIn addition, the function of a left-wing movement or party is not to be intermediaries, not to be the organizers of a mediation; that is what Uruguay, Mexico, the Vatican are for. A left-wing organization has to say what it is doing, what sector it’s working with. It is important to maintain distance from the counterrevolution, above all because this [position] goes hand in hand with very mistaken ideas, such that Maduro’s government is a dictatorship or a totalitarian government. Totally absurd.I don’t agree with many things about Maduro’s government. I could write a pamphlet about the things I dislike. But it is not a repressive government. In reality, it’s a government that is more permissive than anything else. Very few governments would tolerate what Maduro endures.It is a government that does not persecute popular sectors. It puts in prison those who have to be put in prison, who are the fascists who carry out coups d’état. They aren’t imprisoned for their opinions but for organizing coups d’état. It is also completely ridiculous to say that it’s a dictatorship when every day there is [both] a massive right-wing protest and a huge demonstration in support of the government.MH: In other words, a situation like that of Guaidó is not acceptable anywhere in the world and moreover without any authority.CK: Yes. I think it is very auspicious what is happening among the left here because I remember that when the 2017 guarimbas occurred, there was a very big debate on the left. There was a sector that was thinking Maduro was the culprit, not the right. There were many hesitations. It seems to me that [now] the whole left has turned around and is taking a correct position that not only denounces the coup without hesitation, but they march and they mobilize.And so we must continue in the struggle, be in the mobilizations and be in the front row defending the Venezuelan people against imperialism.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more


Buying a Used Car? Here Are Top Tips from a Local Expert

Posted On Jun 12 2021 by

first_img Business News 8 recommended0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Subscribe Mike Kefalas of J.K. Volvo Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Make a comment faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Virtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Top of the News Cover Story Buying a Used Car? Here Are Top Tips from a Local Expert By ANGELA MORGAN Published on Monday, October 19, 2015 | 3:37 pm Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. More Cool Stuff Herbeauty6 Trends To Look Like An Eye-Candy And 6 To Forget AboutHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty7 Reasons Why The Lost Kilos Are Regained AgainHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyCostume That Makes Actresses Beneath Practically UnrecognizableHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyFinding The Right Type Of Workout For You According AstrologyHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty10 Instagram Girls Women Obsess OverHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty6 Strong Female TV Characters Who Deserve To Have A SpinoffHerbeautyHerbeauty Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday First Heatwave Expected Next Week Community News Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy Is it time to get a new set of wheels? There are probably hundreds of options out there that seem to fit your criteria. (Has the internet really made car-hunting easier?) But, if you’ve ever heard the saying that a car loses value as soon as your drive it off the lot, you know that a used car may be your best bet. Buying a used car isn’t as easy as it sounds.Pasadena Now sat down with a car business insider to get you the best advice on how to buy a used car. Mike Kefalas of J.K. Volvo has some great tips to make sure you’re not stuck with a lemon. Mike’s father opened the original Volvo repair shop in Pasadena in 1969 and Mike practically grew up in the repair bays.“I was basically born into [the car] business. My entire life has been cars and automotive,” says Kefalas. He really knows cars.When shopping for a car, Kefalas suggests that buyers do their research on the year and the make of the model and find an auto repair shop that specializes in that specific car. He also advises buyers to get a pre-purchase check-up because professionals can spot many warning signs that consumers can’t.Kefalas adds that when testing out a used car, it’s smart to put it through its paces. Try the windshield wipers, AC and heat, make sure you can open the truck and execute all necessary driving maneuvers. Some wear and tear is normal, but it’s never ok to buy a car you feel unsafe driving. Ask for a second opinion if you’re unsure but remember that there are some things that just can’t be fixed.After you get your car home, it’s important to keep up with your investment. Proper maintenance is a key part of keeping a car in good health. It also helps you get the best price when it comes time for resale.“Back when the cars are simpler, repairs were simpler and less frequent [there was] more longevity to a car,” he said. Now, waiting for an oil change or skipping a check up can put you on the fast-track to a damaged car.Kefalas also advises customers to look at the cost to maintain the vehicle, not just the purchase price.“Different cars have different related maintenance cost,” he said. It’s important to remember that a car is not a one-time expense. Always budget for insurance, maintenance, repair and gas. When it’s time to buy your next set of wheels, consider a used car. Do your research, take your time testing and make sure you don’t drive off in a jalopy.J.K. Volvo is located at 1587 E. Walnut Street in Pasadena. Call Mike at (626) 792-2240 or visit www.jkvolvospecialists.com for more information. Community News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *last_img read more


Gorta Raffle

Posted On Jun 4 2021 by

first_img TAGS000 summer raffleGorta €5Music Limerick Watch the streamed gig for Fergal Nash album launch NewsCommunityGorta RaffleBy Guest Writer – July 30, 2013 911 #HearThis: New music and video from Limerick rapper Strange Boy Email Twitter WhatsApp Celebrating a ground breaking year in music from Limerick New Music: 40Hurtz Printcenter_img TICKETS for the first Gorta €5,000 summer raffle are now available at the Gorta shop in High Street.The overall winner of the raffle will receive a total prize of €5,000 with second and third prizes set at €2,000 and €1,000 respectively. As well as this, there is a cash prize of €1,000 for the person who sells the most tickets. The raffle closing date is Monday 14 October with the winner being announced on Friday, 18 October. Tickets cost €5 per ticket or a book of 6 for €25. For more information call 061 310833 or visit www.gorta.org for full terms and conditions.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Advertisement #SaucySoul: Room 58 – ‘Hate To See You Leave’ Emma Langford shortlisted for RTE Folk Award and playing a LIVE SHOW!!! this Saturday Linkedin Previous articleLimerick GAA Club Notes 30/7/13Next article€1.5m living space for artists Guest Writerhttp://www.limerickpost.ie Facebooklast_img read more


Missing California sisters, aged 5 and 8, survived 44 hours in forest

Posted On Dec 30 2020 by

first_imgThe girls said they used survival skills they learned on family camping trips, their participation in 4-H, and from movies they’d watched about people being lost. The key lesson they followed was to stay in one place once they realized they were lost, search and rescue crews say. The massive search and rescue operation drew more than 200 law enforcement and military personnel from around California. The girls huddled under Caroline’s rain jacket for shelter and cuddled under a huckleberry bush to stay dry and warm as it began to rain and nighttime temperatures dropped to 38 degrees. When they became dehydrated they drank water from huckleberry leaves, which their parents had taught them to do. Missing California sisters Caroline Carrico, 5, and Leia Carrico, 8, survived 44 hours in the forest after they went for a walk on a deer trail on their family’s 80-acre property, wandered past a fallen tree that their father had warned them not to go beyond, and became lost. center_img Wilderness training credited for saving their liveslast_img read more


Bayern Munich’s Uli Hoeness criticises FIFA scheduling

Posted On Aug 28 2020 by

first_imgBayern Munich president Uli Hoeness on Wednesday criticised football’s world governing body FIFA for allowing so many international matches to be played this early in the season.“It is a joke that we are only in mid-September and have only played two league matches but have already had to play three internationals. It’s ridiculous,” the outspoken Hoeness said.The Bavarian club’s chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has previously gone public with his displeasure at the number of international dates on the FIFA calendar, an issue which has created rifts in the past between the Bundesliga and the German Football Federation (DFB).Germany lost 3-1 at home to Argentina in a friendly in mid-August, and then opened up their 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign with two wins against the Faroe Islands (3-0) and Austria (2-1) in the last week.The Bundesliga was one of the last major leagues in Europe to restart this season, with the opening game played on August 24.last_img read more