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Over 70 Experts Call for US to Stop Interfering in Venezuela

via Venezuelan Analysis, 24 January 2019

Noam Chomsky, Alfred de Zayas, Sujatha Fernandes, Boots Riley, John Pilger, Vijay Prashad and many others oppose US interventionism in Venezuela. The statement is worth the read.

The United States government must cease interfering in Venezuela’s internal politics, especially for the purpose of overthrowing the country’s government. Actions by the Trump administration and its allies in the hemisphere are almost certain to make the situation in Venezuela worse, leading to unnecessary human suffering, violence, and instability.

Venezuela’s political polarization is not new; the country has long been divided along racial and socioeconomic lines. But the polarization has deepened in recent years. This is partly due to US support for an opposition strategy aimed at removing the government of Nicolás Maduro through extra-electoral means. While the opposition has been divided on this strategy, US support has backed hardline opposition sectors in their goal of ousting the Maduro government through often violent protests, a military coup d’etat, or other avenues that sidestep the ballot box.

Under the Trump administration, aggressive rhetoric against the Venezuelan government has ratcheted up to a more extreme and threatening level, with Trump administration officials talking of “military action” and condemning Venezuela, along with Cuba and Nicaragua, as part of a “troika of tyranny.” Problems resulting from Venezuelan government policy have been worsened  by US economic sanctions, illegal under the Organization of American States and the United Nations ― as well as US law and other international treaties and conventions. These sanctions have cut off the means by which the Venezuelan government could escape from its economic recession, while causing a dramatic falloff in oil production and worsening the economic crisis, and causing many people to die because they can’t get access to life-saving medicines. Meanwhile, the US and other governments continue to blame the Venezuelan government ― solely ― for the economic damage, even that caused by the US sanctions.

Now the US and its allies, including OAS Secretary General Luis Almagro and Brazil’s far-right president, Jair Bolsonaro, have pushed Venezuela to the precipice. By recognizing National Assembly President Juan Guaido as the new president of Venezuela ― something illegal under the OAS Charter ― the Trump administration has sharply accelerated Venezuela’s political crisis in the hopes of dividing the Venezuelan military and further polarizing the populace, forcing them to choose sides. The obvious, and sometimes stated goal, is to force Maduro out via a coup d’etat.

The reality is that despite hyperinflation, shortages, and a deep depression, Venezuela remains a politically polarized country. The US and its allies must cease encouraging violence by pushing for violent, extralegal regime change. If the Trump administration and its allies continue to pursue their reckless course in Venezuela, the most likely result will be bloodshed, chaos, and instability. The US should have learned something from its regime change ventures in Iraq, Syria, Libya, and its long, violent history of sponsoring regime change in Latin America.

Neither side in Venezuela can simply vanquish the other. The military, for example, has at least 235,000 frontline members, and there are at least 1.6 million in militias. Many of these people will fight, not only on the basis of a belief in national sovereignty that is widely held in Latin America ― in the face of what increasingly appears to be a US-led intervention ― but also to protect themselves from likely repression if the opposition topples the government by force.

In such situations, the only solution is a negotiated settlement, as has happened in the past in Latin American countries when politically polarized societies were unable to resolve their differences through elections. There have been efforts, such as those led by the Vatican in the fall of 2016, that had potential, but they received no support from Washington and its allies who favored regime change. This strategy must change if there is to be any viable solution to the ongoing crisis in Venezuela.

For the sake of the Venezuelan people, the region, and for the principle of national sovereignty, these international actors should instead support negotiations between the Venezuelan government and its opponents that will allow the country to finally emerge from its political and economic crisis.

Signed:

Noam Chomsky, Professor Emeritus, MIT and Laureate Professor, University of Arizona

Laura Carlsen, Director, Americas Program, Center for International Policy

Greg Grandin, Professor of History, New York University

Miguel Tinker Salas, Professor of Latin American History and Chicano/a Latino/a Studies at Pomona College

Sujatha Fernandes, Professor of Political Economy and Sociology, University of Sydney

Steve Ellner, Associate Managing Editor of Latin American Perspectives

Alfred de Zayas, former UN Independent Expert on the Promotion of a Democratic and Equitable International Order and only UN rapporteur to have visited Venezuela in 21 years

Boots Riley, Writer/Director of Sorry to Bother You, Musician

John Pilger, Journalist & Film-Maker

Mark Weisbrot, Co-Director, Center for Economic and Policy Research

Jared Abbott, PhD Candidate, Department of Government, Harvard University

Dr. Tim Anderson, Director, Centre for Counter Hegemonic Studies

Elisabeth Armstrong, Professor of the Study of Women and Gender, Smith College

Alexander Aviña, PhD, Associate Professor of History, Arizona State University

Marc Becker, Professor of History, Truman State University

Medea Benjamin, Cofounder, CODEPINK

Phyllis Bennis, Program Director, New Internationalism, Institute for Policy Studies

Dr. Robert E. Birt, Professor of Philosophy, Bowie State University

Aviva Chomsky, Professor of History, Salem State University

James Cohen, University of Paris 3 Sorbonne Nouvelle

Guadalupe Correa-Cabrera, Associate Professor, George Mason University

Benjamin Dangl, PhD, Editor of Toward Freedom

Dr. Francisco Dominguez, Faculty of Professional and Social Sciences, Middlesex University, UK

Alex Dupuy, John E. Andrus Professor of Sociology Emeritus, Wesleyan University

Jodie Evans, Cofounder, CODEPINK

Vanessa Freije, Assistant Professor of International Studies, University of Washington

Gavin Fridell, Canada Research Chair and Associate Professor in International Development Studies, St. Mary’s University

Evelyn Gonzalez, Counselor, Montgomery College

Jeffrey L. Gould, Rudy Professor of History, Indiana University

Bret Gustafson, Associate Professor of Anthropology, Washington University in St. Louis

Peter Hallward, Professor of Philosophy, Kingston University

John L. Hammond, Professor of Sociology, CUNY

Mark Healey, Associate Professor of History, University of Connecticut

Gabriel Hetland, Assistant Professor of Latin American, Caribbean and U.S. Latino Studies, University of Albany

Forrest Hylton, Associate Professor of History, Universidad Nacional de Colombia-Medellín

Daniel James, Bernardo Mendel Chair of Latin American History

Chuck Kaufman, National Co-Coordinator, Alliance for Global Justice

Daniel Kovalik, Adjunct Professor of Law, University of Pittsburgh

Winnie Lem, Professor, International Development Studies, Trent University

Dr. Gilberto López y Rivas, Professor-Researcher, National University of Anthropology and History, Morelos, Mexico

Mary Ann Mahony, Professor of History, Central Connecticut State University

Jorge Mancini, Vice President, Foundation for Latin American Integration (FILA)

Luís Martin-Cabrera, Associate Professor of Literature and Latin American Studies, University of California San Diego

Teresa A. Meade, Florence B. Sherwood Professor of History and Culture, Union College

Frederick Mills, Professor of Philosophy, Bowie State University

Stephen Morris, Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Middle Tennessee State University

Liisa L. North, Professor Emeritus, York University

Paul Ortiz, Associate Professor of History, University of Florida

Christian Parenti, Associate Professor, Department of Economics, John Jay College CUNY

Nicole Phillips, Law Professor at the Université de la Foundation Dr. Aristide Faculté des Sciences Juridiques et Politiques and  Adjunct Law Professor at the University of California Hastings College of the Law

Beatrice Pita, Lecturer, Department of Literature, University of California San Diego

Margaret Power, Professor of History, Illinois Institute of Technology

Vijay Prashad, Editor, The TriContinental

Eleanora Quijada Cervoni FHEA, Staff Education Facilitator & EFS Mentor, Centre for Higher Education, Learning & Teaching at The Australian National University

Walter Riley, Attorney and Activist

William I. Robinson, Professor of Sociology, University of California, Santa Barbara

Mary Roldan, Dorothy Epstein Professor of Latin American History, Hunter College/ CUNY Graduate Center

Karin Rosemblatt, Professor of History, University of Maryland

Emir Sader, Professor of Sociology, University of the State of Rio de Janeiro

Rosaura Sanchez, Professor of Latin American Literature and Chicano Literature, University of California, San Diego

T.M. Scruggs Jr., Professor Emeritus, University of Iowa

Victor Silverman, Professor of History, Pomona College

Brad Simpson, Associate Professor of History, University of Connecticut

Jeb Sprague, Lecturer, University of Virginia

Christy Thornton, Assistant Professor of History, Johns Hopkins University

Sinclair S. Thomson, Associate Professor of History, New York University

Steven Topik, Professor of History, University of California, Irvine

Stephen Volk, Professor of History Emeritus, Oberlin College

Kirsten Weld, John. L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences, Department of History, Harvard University

Kevin Young, Assistant Professor of History, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Patricio Zamorano, Academic of Latin American Studies; Executive Director, InfoAmericas

 

22 Comments

  1. Kavy says

    Why Would The US Want Venezuela’s Oil When It Already Buys 41% Of Its Total Exports?

    Excerpt:

    Nevertheless, the truth of the matter is that control over Venezuela’s oil is indeed one of the motivations behind this conflict, though not in the way that it’s being portrayed. Alongside ensuring full geopolitical control over the Caribbean Basin and ideologically confronting socialism, the US wants to obtain predominant influence over Venezuela in order to incorporate it into a parallel OPEC-like structure for challenging the joint Russian-Saudi OPEC+ arrangement per the author’s late-2016 prediction about the formation of a “North American-South American Petroleum Exporting Countries” (NASAPEC) cartel. This entity would function as “Fortress America’s” energy component and have the potential to exert powerful long-term pressure on the international oil market at Russia and Saudi Arabia’s expense. When coupled with the US and Qatar’s joint LNG investment plans, it’s clear to see that the US is making a global power play for control over the world’s energy industry, which could very adversely affect Russia.

    Eurasia Future

    https://eurasiafuture.com/2019/01/26/why-would-the-us-want-venezuelas-oil-when-it-already-buys-41-of-its-total-exports/

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  2. Gezzah Potts says

    Yet again, the United States bares its blood drenched fangs. Any country that is not a puppet regime of the United States and does the bidding of the Empire is targeted for regime change. William Blum at Anti Empire Report has a very comprehensive list of all the countries the U.S has bombed, invaded, overthrown Govts, had ‘uppity leaders’ bumped off, on and on. Its a long list. This is about Imperialism. Its about power, control and greed. Its about $$$. You don’t have to be a fan of the Maduro Govt to realise this. If people out there actually believe this is about ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’, then they are very much deluded. I was involved in a Central American solidarity group in the late 80s and 90s here. I found out what Uncle Sam’s pets got up to in countries like Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras. It was horrifying stuff. Just pure fecken Evil.

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  3. Stephen Morrell says

    The following from the above statement shows, and sows, profound illusions in US imperialism:

    “The US and its allies must cease encouraging violence by pushing for violent, extralegal regime change. If the Trump administration and its allies continue to pursue their reckless course in Venezuela, the most likely result will be bloodshed, chaos, and instability. The US should have learned something from its regime change ventures in Iraq, Syria, Libya, and its long, violent history of sponsoring regime change in Latin America.”

    However, the whole aim of the US imperialism actually is to produce ‘bloodshed, chaos and instability’ if a lesser power persistently fails to follow its instructions. At the moment, the US imperialists and their junior partners very likely expect a civil war to ensue in Venezuela, with opposing forces apparently relatively ‘balanced’. They likely see ‘failed state’ as the likely outcome from a protracted civil war of attrition. It’s then relatively easy and cheap for them to conduct a military invasion and occupation, with OAS partners of course, to ‘restore order’ and ‘human rights’ and all the other blather in Venezuela, as in Libya and Iraq. Rather than rebuild the country they ruin, the aim ultimately is for the military occupation to preside over a country wrecked on purpose to prevent it expelling the invaders and stopping their theft of its resources, in this case oil for US corporations.

    US imperialism thus has learnt something ‘from its regime change ventures’. It has learnt that the Libya and Iraq models are relatively cheap and ‘work’, that the aim of subjugation is achieved with little or no need for any pretence that the occupied country actually exists as a national entity. One might characterise this as neocolonialism by obliteration.

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  4. Tolkach says

    Why don’t you mention the Ron Paul Institute?

  5. RetroSpin says

    I hope I do not upset too many here, but considering that list of names appended to the article, the statement seems to me to be as weak as tissue paper. Where is the outrage? Where is the justifiable condemnation, rolling down like raging waters upon the perpetrators?

    The massively criminal assault on the government and the people of Venezuela, including the deliberate murders of thousands deprived of blockaded medications, must be met with thunder-blasts loud enough and large enough to blow over and smash the orcs of Mordor-on-the-Potomac and the poodles who traipse along in their murderous wake.

    Simply casting a dubious glance in their direction just ain’t gonna do it.

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  6. I agree, and I’m sure many others do, too. I think the key sentence though is: “in the face of what increasingly appears to be a US-led intervention”. My point is that Trump has no say in what the CIA does or doesn’t do; he has a choice between supporting the CIA or getting a hole in his head. So what does he do? He does what he’s been doing consistently, in making the CIA policy so blatantly obvious to all that he’s guaranteed to rouse the opposition against him and the CIA. He doesn’t care what the mainstream media write about him because they will write such stuff anyway. By bringing this to a stark confrontation between the US and the Russia/China block, he has a chance of stopping the CIA advance in its tracks.

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    • mark says

      It’s ironic that as the Orange Baboon openly threatens and plots regime changes against Iran, Venezuela and other countries, regime change is coming home. The Spook Agencies, the Dirty Cops, the corrupt, politicised “justice” system, the Fake News MSM, and the Faux Left Democrats have all combined to use the skills honed in so many regime change adventures abroad, to topple him at home.

      Regime Change is coming home, it’s coming home.

  7. Denis O'hAichir says

    The preachers of United States need to scream from the pulpits about this, the regular yank hasn’t a clue they’re mislead, the pastors of US have a moral duty to lead and inform their flock against the evil in their midst. Steven Anderson in Tempe Arizona is the only one I hear speaking of this.

    • Maggie says

      What good will that do Denis. Who goes to church these days????
      It is down to us, you and me, to spread what we know far and wide.
      The internet is a wonderful thing and the message can be spread through social media and u tube as well as progressive press like off Guardian in other countries.
      Forget the bloody pulpit. Preachers have caused more harm than good in tis world up to press.

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      • Denis O'hAichir says

        That’s my point, these preachers aren’t doing their job, I feel that Anderson is he’s not to everyone’s taste, not much point in us just chatting to each other here it’s like preaching to the choir, I talk about this carry on all the time as I’m sure we all do, however we don’t have the reach that the pulpit does, the media is a joke and the church has fallen away due in my opinion to poor teaching, it’s all inclusiveness now, there’s plenty that don’t believe in anything anymore it’s hard to blame them, maybe it’s just the way it’s has to be. Be not of the world I starting to think, to hell with it.

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    • mark says

      Most of them are scum like Hagee and his ilk, constantly shilling for war, racism and apartheid.

  8. Fair dinkum says

    Cold blooded psychopaths?
    That isn’t blood in their veins.
    That would make them human.
    It’s the fuel and the lubricant of Mammon.
    And the downfall of the world as we know it.

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  9. summitflyer says

    Well said .I must say and totally agree .
    “The US should have learned something from its regime change ventures in Iraq, Syria, Libya, and its long, violent history of sponsoring regime change in Latin America.”
    As a reminder to the above see “The war on Democracy” by John Pilger

    The US does not give a shit about what happens in other countries as long as it it is in other countries. Most people living in the United States don’t either , because they have not felt the heat yet but it is coming and when it comes it will not be pretty .The pitchforks should be out already but the society has been so severely polarized , no one has noticed the big elephant in the room.

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  10. If some dissatisfaction with the ruling regime and some public protest is the criteria for externally imposed regime change in the eyes of the West, I’d think that there is a more appropriate target closer to home than Venezuela.

    Why not a no fly zone over France? We could follow the no fly zone with the importation of thousands of our heavily armed jihadist buddies forced out of Syria, then we throw in a series of false-flag attacks following which Western media would dutifully point out that Macron is a “blood-thirsty monster,” who can’t sleep well at night unless “he’s tear gassing his own people,” (oh, wait, that’s a poor example because Macron actually is tear gassing his own people every day). There are of course also the rubber bullets aimed intentionally to at his citizen’s faces blinding and severely injuring peaceful protestors. There are also the police clubs, water cannon, and the normalized overall police brutality, but who in the Western MSM can be bothered to notice this? We’d of course follow the false-flag attacks up by bombing France back into the stone age, a specialty of U.S. bombing campaigns. These are all tried and true methods used over and over by the West. They work. We can do this!

    It just would seem that given our Western elite’s criteria for regime change that France would be a much, much, higher priority target than toppling the government of poor oil rich Venezuela. “Oil rich?” Wait, wait, I think I may have finally figured this out.

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    • Maggie says

      Not just OIL but GOLD rich…..
      And the US/UK scavengers are going to have it at ANY COST so just look the other way, because there is NOTHING we can do?

      Venezuela Oil reserves 300,878
      Saudi Arabia Oil reserves 266,455
      Canada: Oil reserves 169,709
      Iran Oil reserves 158,400
      Iraq Oil reserves 143,100
      Kuwait Oil reserves 101,500
      UAE Oil reserves 97,800
      Russia Oil reserves 102,400
      Libya Oil reserves 78,400
      Nigeria: Oil reserves 37,100
      United States Oil reserves 35,000
      Kazakhstan 30,000
      Venezuela has more oil than Saudi.. But are only allowed to use it to buy food at over inflated prices because of SANCTIONS????
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_proven_oil_reserves
      Venezuela and Turkey are working on a deal to ship tonnes of gold to refine and certify in the Turkish city of Corum this year.
      Facing sanctions and international pressure, Venezuela is increasingly turning to Turkey as a partner in the Middle East. Ankara will provide a host of services to Caracas, including building hospital and schools and providing humanitarian aid as a part of the gold refining deal.
      https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/venezuela-intends-refine-tons-gold-turkey-amid-us-sanctions-378492428
      The Bank of England have ”refused” to release $550 million in Gold Bars to President Maduro because he might use it to launder money?
      Has 32 gold fields and has made efforts to become a major exporter. Built 54 processing plants in the hope of becoming the second largest gold reserve on earth…
      https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-11-08/bank-england-refuses-release-venezuelas-gold

      Incidentally, there is a D notice on reporting on the French catastrophe.

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      • Well presented Maggie. Hope you don’t mind but I intend to quote your comment when I reblog this article.

  11. jo pac says

    Sadly Amerikas liberal-nel-conns are running the show and really don’t what any one in Amerika thinks that against their plans for the world. Sad

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