US hemispheric policy reached a new low on March 9 when President Barack Obama invoked emergency powers to declare “a national emergency with respect to the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by the situation in Venezuela.” Thanks to Obama’s action, the US has now blatantly rehabilitated its traditional imperial posture towards the South and challenged the continent-wide Bolivarian cause of Latin American and Caribbean independence and sovereignty.
A largely unknown region to the rest of the world became one of the most talked about globally in recent months. Kobane is a town that suffered a too-harsh fate. Innocent civilians never think that one day they would face massacres — except that being a Kurd in a town like Kobane (in a largely Kurdish area in the north-west of the Syrian state), means you face such things.
US President Barack Obama issued an Executive Order regarding Venezuela on March 9 that escalated US attacks on Venezuela's left-wing government. The order amounts to an act of aggression against Venezuela's sovereignty by declaring a “national emergency” based on claims the oil-rich South American nation threatens US national security due to alleged human rights violations and corruption.
The Bolivarian Alliance of the Peoples of Our America (ALBA) is an anti-imperialist trading bloc first formed by the left-wing governments of Venezuela and Cuba to promote trade on the basis of solidarity rather than competition. It has since expanded to include 11 nations, with Venezuela and Cuba joined by Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua, Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint Lucia, Grenada and Saint Kitts and Nevis. Honduras was an ALBA member, but was forced to withdraw when a 2009 US-backed coup installed a right-wing dictatorship.
Bolivia's fast growing economy fuelled by social spending The Bolivian government said the Andean nation’s gross domestic product grew US$34 billion last year, establishing it as one of the fastest growing economies in the region, TeleSUR English said on February 17. Vice-President Alvaro Garcia Linera said that the country’s Social Community Productive Economic Model allowed for the economy to grow, despite a fall in prices for raw materials. “In 1996 the Bolivian economy accounted for $5.3 billion and by 2005, $9.5 billion dollars,” Garcia said.
Hugo Chavez was Venezuela's president from 1998 until his death from cancer on March 5, 2013. He led a mass process known as the Bolivarian revolution to redistribute wealth, promote popular power and challenge US domination and exploitation of Latin America. The goal of the Bolivarian revolution is to create a “socialism for the 21st century”.
If history is any guide, it is reasonable to assume that Greece’s recently-elected left-wing SYRIZA government will be subjected to a foreign-backed destabilisation campaign and possible attempts to install a new right-wing authoritarian regime. There is a long history in Greece of the left being suppressed by the oligarchy collaborating with outside forces.
A second round of talks between US and Cuban diplomats began in Washington on February 27, with the aim of restoring diplomatic relations. US President Barack Obama announced, in what he termed the most significant Cuba policy shift in more than 50 years, that he will pursue diplomatic relations and urge Congress to dismantle the US blockade of Cuba.
The statement below was released on February 17 by socialist groups in the Asia-Pacific region in response to a new coup attempt, including planned assassinations and bombings, by the US-backed right-wing opposition against Venezuela's socialist government of President Nicolas Maduro. *** We, the undersigned organisations, strongly condemn the recent coup attempt that sought to overthrow the democratically elected government of Venezuela in order to reverse the achievements of the socialist Bolivarian process.
A coup plot against the Venezuelan government has been foiled, with both civilians and members of the military detained, President Nicolas Maduro revealed on February 12 in a televised address. Those involved were being paid in US dollars. One of the suspects had been granted a visa to enter the United States should the plot fail, Maduro said.