Sunday, 5 April 2015

US Unhappy as 'Back-Yard' Countries Refuse to Place Sanctions on Venezuela

The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, or CELAC, is a regional bloc of Latin SAmerican and Caribbean states created in December 2011. In 2010 President Evo Morales of Bolivia stated that CELAC was: "A union of Latin American countries is the weapon against imperialism. It is necessary to create a regional body that excludes the United States and Canada… it is the best time for prime ministers of Latin America and the Caribbean to gestate this great new organization without the United States to free our peoples in Latin America and the Caribbean."

Given the, often bloody, history of this region and the often unwanted attention foisted upon many of the CELAC states by the USA it is hardly surprising that such a body has been formed.

Yet, the USA refuses to accept it neither has the authority or the muscle to walk into these countries and dictate terms. This was illustrated this week when the US sub-secretary for Latin America Roberta Jacobson voiced her ‘disappointment’ “that there were not more countries to defend (the sanctions). They were not made to harm Venezuelans or the Venezuelan government.”

Roberta Jackson, US Sub-Secretary for Latin America is miffed because the
entire CELAC membership of 33 states refuses to agree to sanctions for Venezuela

In criticism of the solidarity expressed by Latin American countries for Venezuela Jacobson uttered that, “The tone that Latin American leaders are using demonizes the United States as if it were the source of Venezuela's problems, and this makes it hard for us to proceed pragmatically.”

Demonizes? Whoa, slow down for a minute. Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Chile, etc, etc. Come on USA you’ve stamped your military power across this region demonising and vilifying any and every progressive movement that has attempted to break the strangulating chains of your blood-sucking corporations.

If you want proof of the USA bully-boy tactics in the region just listen to what Smedley Butler an ex-United States Marine Corps major general had to say about America’s actions in the 1930s:

“I spent 33 years and four months in active military service and during that period I spent most of my time as a high class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1914. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City Bank boys to collect revenues in. I helped in the raping of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street. I helped purify Nicaragua for the International Banking House of Brown Brothers in 1902–1912. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for the American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Honduras right for the American fruit companies in 1903. In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went on its way unmolested. Looking back on it, I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate his racket in three districts. I operated on three continents.”

These kind of actions continued decade after decade; and having the misfortune of living in the USA’s ‘back-yard’ Central American and Caribbean states have felt the full force of having the world bully as a close neighbour.

Back to the present. The USA is now attempting to impose economic sanctions on Venezuela mainly because this state has for most of this century been governed by Leftist socialist governments who have pushed a progressive programme with policies that include nationalization, social welfare programs and opposition to neoliberalism policies favoured by the IMF and the World Bank.

Indeed Chavez was striving to create with the Bolivarian State of Venezuela a communal state, whose main idea is to build self-government institutions like communal councils, communes, and communal cities.

On the death of Hugo Chavez in 2013 Nicolas Maduro took office as the democratically elected president of Venezuela. Since then the US has been running a negative campaign against both Maduro and the Bolivarian Stsate of Venezuela. However, their attempts at imposing sanctions are being met with resistance from CELAC.

Highly respected politicians such as the former Uruguayan president, Jose Mujica are vocally supporting Venezuela and its president. More so in March 2015 all 33 CELAC member states came out in opposition to the US’s demand for sanctions. This action provoked some 5 million Tweets across 105 countries protesting against President Obama’s attempts at sanctions.

A word to the wise USA, sort out your own home. Put roofs over the heads of your millions who are homeless. Give to the 40+ million Americans who do not have medical insurance. Stop the corporations bleeding their workers dry as they squeeze every cent of profit. Cease giving tax breaks to the rich while the real wealth creators work for starvation wages. Stop your wars and stop arming every would-be tyrant on the basis of my enemies enemy is my friend; it hasn’t ever worked and won’t in the future.

Instead look to your Latin American and Caribbean neighbours for political and democratic guidance. Because they’re the future…you’re yesterday’s news.

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