There is a coup underway in Venezuela. The pieces are all falling into place like a bad CIA movie. At every turn, a new traitor is revealed, a betrayal is born, full of promises to reveal the smoking gun that will justify the unjustifiable. Infiltrations are rampant, rumours spread like wildfire, and the panic mentality threatens to overcome logic. Headlines scream danger, crisis and imminent demise, while the usual suspects declare covert war on a people whose only crime is being gatekeeper to the largest pot of black gold in the world. Media attacks
Chile’s interior minister Rodrigo Penailillo announced on December 4 that university education would be free by 2016. The announcement comes after huge protests by Chilean students for greater equality in education that broke out under former president Sebastian Pinera's right-wing adminstration. The Socialist Party's Michelle Bachelet won presidential elections last year, in part by promising to implement many of the student movement's demands.
'Salvador Allende: Revolutionary Democrat' reviewed Laurence Goodchild writes that, in a succinct and well-researched book, Victor Figueroa Clark provides a vivid account of former Chilean president Salvador Allende’s life. Clark also provides much needed historical context to Allende’s Popular Unity government, and addresses his political strategy in a manner relevant to the contemporary “pink tide” in Latin America. Ukraine debate dominates European Left
El Salvador joined four other Latin American countries in recalling its ambassador from Tel Aviv in protest against Israel’s bloody attack on the Gaza Strip, International Business Times said on July 30. Brazil, Chile, Ecuador and Peru have all recalled their diplomatic representatives to Israel.
Venezuela: Social programs expanded in poorest communities The Venezuelan government has initiated its policy of expanding social programs in the country’s most deprived areas in a bid to eradicate extreme poverty, Venezuelanalysis.com said on June 30. The initiative, called “Red Sundays”, involves teams of social program workers visiting poorer communities every Sunday to diagnose which households are deprived of certain basic needs and which social programs are required to attend to these needs.
Why would the victim of a brutal military dictatorship appoint someone accused of covering up the regime’s crimes as ambassador to the country in which she once sought exile? This is the question many Chileans are asking after the new government of President Michelle Bachelet named James Sinclair as Chile’s highest diplomatic representative in Australia. In response, several groups have begun organising a campaign against the appointment.
Tens of thousands of students protested in Chile on May 8. It was the first march demanding education reform since President Michelle Bachelet took power on promises of deep changes. Marchers passed through the streets of central Santiago towards the La Moneda presidential palace. The mostly peaceful protest that turned violent at the end as hooded rioters clashed with police, throwing rocks and petrol bombs. About 1800 police officers flanked the march that student leaders estimated at 100,000-strong, but police said was closer to 40,000.
Newly re-elected President Michelle Bachelet has reaffirmed her election promise to introduce free tertiary education in Chile — one of the demands of the country’s powerful student movement. In elections in December, the New Majority coalition of centre-left parties won a majority in both the Chilean Congress and Senate. Bachelet, the New Majority candidate, was elected president. On March 11, Bachelet began her second term as president, having served as president from 2006-2010. She replaced right-wing president Sebastian Pinera.
In recent years, a powerful student movement has erupted in Chile against right-wing neoliberal attacks on education, and fighting for a fundamentally different, pro-people education system. The mass movement has developed in the face of often brutal state repression.
The Chilean Supreme Court issued a request on January 15 that the Australian government extradite a former agent of dictator Augusto Pinochet’s notorious secret police back to Chile to face charges of kidnapping and forced disappearances. The move comes after the revelation made public last September by SBS journalist Florencia Melgar that former National Intelligence Directorate (DINA) agent Adriana Rivas had been in Australia since 2010, despite bail conditions imposed following Rivas’s 2006 arrest prohibiting her from leaving Chile.