31 March 2019 — Countercurrents
- 800% increase of US surveillance on Venezuela
- Venezuelan electricity system sabotaged again
- We will defeat aggressions: Maduro
- Hundreds march in Washington, DC, to protest US interference in Venezuela
- Venezuelans march in defense of freedom and peace
- Solidarity from South African Alliance
Imperialism is increasing its interventionist acts in and around Venezuela. People’s protest against imperialism’s intervention in Venezuela is also spreading.
Media reports said:
U.S. surveillance increases
The U.S. intelligence activities have increased by 800% at Venezuela’s borders while international media has focused on the “scandal” of Venezuelan and Russian military cooperation, Venezuela’s Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez said Friday.
Padrino questioned silence of the mainstream media (MSM) while the U.S. seeks to violate Venezuela’s sovereignty.
“No scandal is heard when U.S. planes land in Cucuta [Colombia] or when the U.S. Air Force electronic signals surveillance around our territory have increased by 800%,” said Padrino.
He stressed that “when Venezuela’s sovereignty is about to be violated, nobody says anything!”
The remarks come weeks after U.S. planes were sighted at a military air base near Bogota. A U.S. Army EO-5C reconnaissance aircraft, a specialized airplane used to intercept communications, was also detected.
Several civilian-military maneuvers were carried out across the country by the Venezuelan Peace Squadrons (“cuadrillas de paz”), popular organizations which are aimed at protecting the security of communities, workspaces, study centers, water, electricity and other public services.
Popular participation in homeland security is one of the ways through which President Nicolas Maduro’s administration is taking preventive measures to counteract the destabilizing actions of the U.S. backed Venezuelan opposition.
Electrical system again sabotaged
Vice President of Communication, Tourism and Culture Jorge Rodriguez informed Saturday that Venezuela has been hit with a new wave of synchronized sabotages of the electric transmission lines.
Many areas of Caracas reported no service beginning at approximately 7:11 p.m.
“In an attempt to undermine the tranquility of our people, these two attacks, perpetrated on March 29 and 30, add to the past aggressions, just when the decisive action of the Government and the workers had achieved the restoration of the electric service,” said the minster.
Rodriguez added that the Bolivarian government “will persist with its effort to restore the stability of the electric service. We will achieve the recovery of equipment damaged by the empire and strengthen our system to make it impregnable.”
The first sabotage on March 7 made a six-day countrywide electricity outage, which was allegedly executed by the U.S.
A second major sabotage of the electricity system was made on March 25. The El Guri Hydroelectric plant was targeted twice on the same day.
The minister informed: “In the last two years, the Venezuelan fascist opposition has perpetrated more than 250 attacks on the National Electric System.”
We will defeat aggressions
With this background, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro tweeted: “I have the fullest conviction that we will be stronger than ever in the battle that is now being presented to us. We will defeat aggressions with the force stemming from the anti-imperialist spirit of Comandante Chavez. The fate of just causes will always be victory!”.
March for Peace
Hundreds of people marched through the streets of Washington, DC, the U.S. capital, to oppose the upcoming NATO ministerial meeting in the US capital. The demonstrators also decried the continued US involvement in the Venezuelan political crisis.
National Mobilization’s Steering Committee, a loose ad hoc coalition of activists representing dozens of peace movements and action groups, informed in a statement: The march was aimed at showing “mass popular opposition to NATO, wars, racism and US aggression against Venezuela.
The demonstrators gathered at the Lafayette Square in front of the White House and then marched through the area, stopping near the offices of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Organization of the American States (OAS), which the demonstrators also held partly responsible for the “imperialist” policies of the West. They also walked past the Washington mayor’s office to address the local issues and the Customs & Border Enforcement office to highlight the plight of the Latin American asylum seekers coming to the US.
The protesters carried placards and banners that read: “No to NATO, No to war and racism”, “Unite to fight NATO’s racist wars”, “NATO Bombs=Slavery in Libya”, “NATO Killed One Million Iraqis” and “Shut Down NATO’S War Crimes.”
Slogans also referred to the continued U.S. pressure on Venezuela.
The slogans also read: “Hands off Venezuela” and “No war on Venezuela”, “US Sanctions Caused Venezuela’s Crisis”, “Solidarity to defeat US imperialism & the NATO war machine!” and “Down with the empire!”
One slogan was: “Money for jobs and education, not for wars and occupation!”
The meeting of the NATO foreign affairs ministers is scheduled for April 3 and 4 in Washington DC to mark the 70th anniversary of the alliance.
One participant in the march tweeted:
“Hundreds of activists from around the world are gathered in front of the White House to denounce NATO and call for #HandsOffVenezuela”
Another participant wrote:
“Massive marching snaking through downtown DC!”
The International Action Center wrote:
“March stopping now outside the headquarters of the World Bank, responsible for the plunder of countries around the world. World Bank hands off!”
“The march stretches for blocks of DC streets as far as could be seen.”
Military veterans from Connecticut joined the Metro DSA, along with other activists, in the Washington D.C.-march to say “No to a Rich Man’s War!” in Venezuela or elsewhere. This is the beginning of a weeklong series of “Unwelcome NATO” events.
Venezuelans march in defense of freedom and peace
The Venezuelans held a large mobilization Saturday in rejection of the series of sabotages of the country’s electricity system in the last 22 days. The U.S. with help of the rightist groups in Venezuela led the sabotages. The mobilization was named “The Popular Operation in Defense of Freedom”.
One of the marches in capital Caracas included an act in solidarity with the workers of the National Electric Corporation (Corpoelec), the state organization in charge of the electric service.
The marches moved to the headquarters of the Public Ministry.
Political and social organizations and members of the public will deliver a signed document to the ministry requesting the acceleration of “the investigative processes against those who have betrayed the country,” said Vice President of Mobilization of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) Dario Vivas.
Another march in the capital city walk from Plaza San Martin, paying tribute to the medical staff that have been at the helm of the care centers assisting patients during the electric blackouts.
All marches converged at O’Leary Square, just steps from the Miraflores, the main seat of the government, where high government officials met the people with words of support.
Venezuelan President of the National Constituent Assembly (ANC) Diosdado Cabello assured that “in Venezuela, we are prepared for any attack” and that the people will be “standing ready to continue fighting.”
Cabello emphasized that the Venezuelan government has already initiated the pertinent actions against those who have violated the laws.
He also stressed that the administration of Nicolas Maduro is holding meetings with representatives of opposition political parties.
The Venezuelan official pointed out that Donald Trump’s government does not have the authority to make decisions about Venezuela, adding that “here Venezuelans have a single president; in the Constitution does not say that the US can make decisions.”
At the same time, the Venezuelan opposition led by Juan Guaido has called for anti-government protests at different points of the capital.
Solidarity from South African Alliance
The revolutionary multi-party alliance that ended apartheid supports the Venezuelan government and people.
The Gauteng Province Secretary of the African National Congress (ANC), Jacob Khawe, welcomed Wednesday Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza to “the Solidarity Assembly with Venezuela” and condemned U.S. President Donald Trump’s sanctions against the Latin American country.
“The fight for freedom must go on until it is won,” Khawe said quoting Oliver Tambo, a late revolutionary who served as ANC President from 1967 to 1991, a period in which the anti-apartheid leader and former President Nelson Mandela was a political prisoner.
During his speech, the Venezuelan Minister said: “The battle for Venezuela’s sovereignty is also taking place at the international level, and the support of the governments and peoples across the world allows us to face the threats.”
The solidarity event was held in Gauteng and organized by the Tripartite Alliance, a revolutionary force, which brought together the ANC, the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) and the South African Communist Party (SACP) in the early 1990’s.
Besides conveying support messages, this international meeting was conducive to the exchange of experiences and the analysis of the global political situation. The participants agreed that the U.S. blockade against Venezuela, which has no basis in international law, is a real crime against humanity.
“In the past, you were able to stand up thanks to international solidarity. Now it’s time to help Venezuela. The U.S. is preventing our economy from functioning. We work with Russia, China, Turkey, and India. Sometimes we send them oil and we buy goods to import them to Venezuela. This is something we could do with South Africa,” Arreaza said as reported by RFI, an African media.
South Africa stood with President Nicolas Maduro at the UN Security Council meeting held on February 28, where it voted against the U.S. request of new elections in the Latin American country.
On that occasion, the South African government stated that it “could not support the U.S. resolution as it reflected a serious bias, which goes against South Africa’s Constitution and foreign policy, as well as the letter and spirit of the Charter of the United Nations,” as the Daily Maverick recalled.