The spectre of 'Chavismo'

Issue 

The article below is abridged from a July 12 column by Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. In it, Chavez takes up an allegation of the Honduran coup plotters that overthrew the elected President Manuel Zelaya on June 28. They claim their action was justified because Chavez was seeking to control their country. This allegation has been used by right-wing forces across Latin America.

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Karl Marx's famous line in the Communist Manifesto of 1848 is not exempt from irony: "A spectre is haunting Europe—the spectre of Communism."

One hundred and sixty years later, the bourgeoisies of this continent, using their institutions, immoral media outlets, centres of study and inorganic soulless intellectuals, have created a new spectre that they have made haunt this continent.

They do not call it communism any more, not even socialism; they call it Chavismo.

And the new "holy pack of hounds" has united to finish the threat. Chavismo is condemned by the Catholic leaders. It is used as weapon in electoral campaigns. It is used as reason to block trade agreements aiming to promote regional integration.

It is also used to frighten small businesspeople and to blackmail governments.

Behind this great operation is the hand of the Yankee empire and its huge legion of bourgeois sects composed of the most florid Yankee-lovers.

The truth is that what is rising with great strength in Latin America and the Caribbean is not a spectre at all, fortunately. It is a powerful movement produced by the wake-up of that collective Lazarus — the people of the region.

What is really true is that those forces have taken Venezuela as a net, as a spring, as a volcano.

For those reasons, men, women, young people who read me today, our commitment, as years go by, is nothing but growing, growing, growing...

Like cornfields grow, which are about to spindle by these days...

Like the rivers of the savannah with their flows that come down from the Andes, the rivers Bocono, Portuguesa, Apure, Arauca, Capanaparo…

Like our children and our grandchildren grow.

Thus, I urge you who read these lines, I invite you to redouble your efforts, to deepen your knowledge, to reinforce your conscience and to ratify your commitment daily.

As Simon Bolivar [who led the liberation of much of South America from Spanish rule in in the 19th Century] said: "I shall not give rest to my arms nor respite to my soul."

The supreme goal, we know it, is Independence. Don't even doubt it, Revolution is the way.

Socialism is the flag!

Homeland, socialism or death! We will win!

[This article is reprinted from .]