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US backs coup in oil-rich Venezuela, right-wing opposition plans mass privatization and hyper-capitalism

The US has effectively declared a coup in Venezuela. Trump recognized unelected right-wing opposition leader Juan Guaidó as new “president,” who plans mass privatization and neoliberal capitalist policies.
by Ben Norton
Part 3 - Opposition Plans for Privatized ‘Free Market’ Economy
While supporters of regime change in Venezuela insist this blatantly undemocratic move is necessary to “defend democracy,” make no mistake, the upheaval is clearly not motivated by resistance to authoritarianism.
Venezuela, which has the world’s largest oil reserves and has challenged the hegemony of the US dollar, has long been a target of US aggression. In 2002, the United States supported a military coup that briefly ousted democratically elected President Hugo Chávez and replaced him with the right-wing oligarch Pedro Carmona. US intervention, including crippling economic sanctions, has only continued since then.
Elements of Venezeula’s opposition have portrayed themselves to credulous foreign observers as “…

Canada has been trying to destabilize Venezuela at least since 2004

globinfo freexchange
Paul Jay, editor in chief at The Real News, gave some very interesting information - some based on personal experience - about Canada's total alignment with the US on its imperialist missions against Venezuela and other countries:
Mexico was part of the Lima Group, but now with the new leadership - with AMLO now taking office in Mexico - Mexico is not going along with this plan to recognize Juan Guaido. And Mexico is not the only country of the region. Many, many countries of CARICOM have come forward and have said they do not support this plan. So, the corporate media is trying to make this sound like the whole region is on board with this scheme.
For months, Canada has been playing a leading role in preparing for - according to the Canadian newspapers - for exactly what happened, the recognition of Juan Guaido.
And Canada has been into this scheme for months. And the rationale is supposedly that the election of 2017 was not a legitimate election because people w…

Venezuelan pro-opposition field news outlet appears to be run Toronto, by Bellingcat member

The Twitter account of the pro-opposition blog “In Venezuela,” appears to be run from Toronto, Canada and the field news source is run by a Bellingcat member, Giancarlo Fiorella. The “open-intelligence investigation network” Bellingcat is infamous for its biased reporting and forwarding the mainstream media narrative. Its connections to the Institute of Statecraft and its pet project the Integrity Initiative are also not a secret.
[...]
Some [Twitter] users suggested that the Venezuela Opposition field news account is similar to many of “patriotic Syrian accounts” based in Tel’Aviv, Israel.
[...]
It should be reminded Bellingcat published numerous pieces claiming that non-Western backed governments were gassing protesters and using over-the-top violence against them. So, reports claiming that protesters are being targeted by live rounds could possibly follow shortly.
It wouldn’t be surprising if the Integrity Initiative launched an operation to combat “Russian disinformation” in Venezuela,…

The making of Juan Guaidó: How the US regime change laboratory created Venezuela’s coup leader

Juan Guaidó is the product of a decade-long project overseen by Washington’s elite regime change trainers. While posing as a champion of democracy, he has spent years at the forefront of a violent campaign of destabilization.
by Dan Cohen and Max Blumenthal
Part 1
Before the fateful day of January 22, fewer than one in five Venezuelans had heard of Juan Guaidó. Only a few months ago, the 35-year-old was an obscure character in a politically marginal far-right group closely associated with gruesome acts of street violence. Even in his own party, Guaidó had been a mid-level figure in the opposition-dominated National Assembly, which is now held under contempt according to Venezuela’s constitution.
But after a single phone call from US Vice President Mike Pence, Guaidó proclaimed himself as president of Venezuela. Anointed as the leader of his country by Washington, a previously unknown political bottom dweller was vaulted onto the international stage as the US-selected leader of the nation…

New documents reveal a covert British military-intelligence smear machine meddling in American politics

The Integrity Initiative has mobilized an international disinformation campaign across Europe. Now, with government and right-wing foundation money, this massive “political smear unit” is infiltrating the US.
by Max Blumenthal and Mark Ames
Part 8 - Reanimating the “red-brown” grifter
The presentation was delivered by Alexander Reid Ross, a half-baked political researcher who peddles computer-generated spiderweb relationship charts to prove the existence of a vast hidden network of “red-brown” alliances and “syncretic media” conspiracies controlled by puppeteers in Moscow.
Ross is a lecturer on geography at Portland State University with no scholarly or journalistic credentials on Russia. His students have given him dismal marks at Rate My Professors, complaining about his “terrible monotone lectures” and his penchant for “insert[ing] his own ideologies into our class.” But with a book, “Against the Fascist Creep,” distributed by the well-known anarchist publishing house, AK Press, the mi…

Amnesty International’s troubling collaboration with UK & US intelligence

Some troubling connections contradict Amnesty’s image as a benevolent defender of human rights and reveal key figures at the organization during its early years to be less concerned with human dignity and more concerned with the dignity of the US and UK’s image in the world.
by Alexander Rubinstein
Part 5 - Amnesty’s role in the death of Black Panther Fred Hampton
But two years later, senior Amnesty officials engaged in far more troubling coordination with Western intelligence agencies.
FBI documents, released by the Bureau in the spring of 2018 as a part of a series of disclosures of documents pertaining to the assassination of President John Kennedy, detail Amnesty International’s role in the killing of Black Panther Party (BPP) Deputy Chairman Fred Hampton, the 21-year-old up-and-coming black liberation icon — a killing that was widely believed to be an assassination but was ruled officially as a justifiable homicide.
Amnesty International co-founder Luis Kutner attended a November 23,…

‘Good for business’: Trump adviser Bolton admits US interest in Venezuela’s ‘oil capabilities’

With the Venezuela crisis escalating after the US’ provocative intervention against elected leader Nicolas Maduro last week, an honest admission by National Security Advisor John Bolton was overlooked by the media: It’s about oil.
Trump’s top adviser, who has been branded the most fervent hawk in the administration, has admitted that Washington is heavily invested in political outcomes in Caracas particularly because of Venezuela’s vast untapped oil reserves.
Indeed, it just so happens that Venezuela has the world’s largest proven oil reserves.
Speaking to Fox Business host Trish Regan, Bolton said that the US had “a lot at stake” in Venezuela’s political crisis, specifically citing the country’s oil and the economic benefit it could bring to the US.
"We're in conversation with major American companies now...It would make a difference if we could have American companies produce the oil in Venezuela. It would be good for Venezuela and the people of the United States." - Joh…

Congresswoman who fixed Democratic primary for Clinton now ‘fixing’ democracy in Venezuela

Regime change and foreign interventions are things that the two US ruling parties agree on regardless of how much they exchange blows at home. Venezuela is the latest place where Republicans and Democrats have found common ground.
If you watch the US media, you know what is happening in Venezuela: Dictator Nicolas Maduro is brutally suppressing the people he has been robbing for years, and now they have revolted and elected a true representative of their interest, the one true legitimate acting president Juan Guaido. And now it’s up to America to ‘fix’ democracy by whatever means necessary.
The House Foreign Affairs Committee has even offered a simple explanation on how a ‘dream team’ of Democrats have prepared a package of laws, which will ensure Venezuela’s transition into a better future. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell will be bringing humanitarian aid, Donna Shalala will stop the arming of Maduro’s thugs with batons and tear gas, while Debbie Wasserman Schultz gets arguably the hardest task…

Venezuela’s US-backed coup leader immediately targets state oil company, requests IMF money

Unelected US-backed coup leader Juan Guaidó immediately moved to try to restructure Venezuela’s state-owned oil company and seek financing from the neoliberal IMF.
by Ben Norton
Part 1
The right-wing opposition leader that the United States is trying to undemocratically install as Venezuela’s president immediately set his sights on the country’s state-owned oil company, which he is hoping to restructure and move toward privatization. He is also seeking money from the notorious International Monetary Fund (IMF) to fund his unelected government.
On January 23, US President Donald Trump recognized the little-known, US-educated opposition politician Juan Guaidó as the supposed “interim president” of Venezuela. Within 48 hours, Guaidó quickly tried to seize control of Venezuela’s major US-based oil refiner and use its revenue to help bankroll his US-backed coup regime.
Guaidó is attempting to fire the directors of Citgo Petroleum, which is owned by Venezuela’s state oil company PDVSA, and seeks…

Coincidence? Venezuela green lights Russia to mine gold, days later US attempts overthrow

For those who don’t remember, nearly the exact same tactics were used just before the US invaded Libya and turned this bastion of hope in Africa into a terror-infused hell-state in which human slaves are now openly sold in public.
Just like Guaidó claimed to be president and was recognized by the US, in Libya, the head of the Libyan National Transitional Council, Mustafa Abdul Jalil threatened mass deaths if the West did not intervene and was quickly given control. Days later, the Libyan NTC was officially recognized as the Libyan government and the Gaddafi regime was out. Days after this, NATO powers, led by the US, proceeded to turn Libya into the war ravaged hell hole it is today.
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Make no mistake, this has likely long been the plan. As George Galloway, former 30 year member of the British Parliament noted, “before they drop the bombs, they drop the narrative, of course. And the disinformation bombardment in Venezuela has been one of the longest bombing runs in history. Massive …

US backs coup in oil-rich Venezuela, right-wing opposition plans mass privatization and hyper-capitalism

The US has effectively declared a coup in Venezuela. Trump recognized unelected right-wing opposition leader Juan Guaidó as new “president,” who plans mass privatization and neoliberal capitalist policies.
by Ben Norton
Part 2 - Region’s Right-Wing Countries Join US in Recognizing Coup
Canada’s Liberal government, led by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau; Brazil’s new far-right leader Jair Bolsonaro; and the overtly pro-US Organization of American States (OAS) and its Secretary General Luis Almagro have joined Trump in endorsing this diplomatic coup in Venezuela.
Likewise, the right-wing, US-allied countries in Latin America, including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, and Ecuador have joined Trump in anointing Guaidó as leader.
The region’s few remaining leftist governments, Bolivia, Cuba, and Nicaragua, have continued recognizing Venezuela’s legitimate government, as has Mexico’s newly elected left-wing President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
Bolivian President Evo Morales warned that “t…

Labour and anti-Semitism in 2018: The truth behind the relentless smear campaign against Corbyn

Bombarded by disinformation campaigns, many British Jews are being misled into seeing Corbyn as a threat rather than as the best hope of inoculating Britain against the resurgence of right-wing anti-Semitism menace
by Jonathan Cook
End-of-year polls are always popular as a way to gauge significant social and political trends over the past year and predict where things are heading in the next. But a recent poll of European Jews – the largest such survey in the world – is being used to paint a deeply misleading picture of British society and an apparent problem of a new, left-wing form of anti-semitism.
Part 10 - The real remedy
There is a serious, if rarely explored, ideological tension between Israeli-style Zionism and a progressive or liberal outlook, just as there is between Orbanism and liberalism.
In a political climate where European nativists are on the rise, the stark choice facing Europe’s Jews is to double-down on their traditional left-liberal worldview or abandon it entirely an…

Amnesty International’s troubling collaboration with UK & US intelligence

Some troubling connections contradict Amnesty’s image as a benevolent defender of human rights and reveal key figures at the organization during its early years to be less concerned with human dignity and more concerned with the dignity of the US and UK’s image in the world.
by Alexander Rubinstein
Part 4 - A tangled web
As all of this was unfolding, a similar funding scandal was developing that would rock Amnesty to its core. Polly Toynbee, a 20-year-old Amnesty volunteer, was in Nigeria and Southern Rhodesia, the British colony in Zimbabwe, which was at the time ruled by the white settler minority. There, Toynbee delivered funds to prisoner families with a seemingly endless supply of cash. Toynbee said that Benenson met with her there and admitted that the money was coming from the British government.
Toynbee and others were forced to leave Rhodesia in March 1966. On her way out, she grabbed documents from an abandoned safe including letters from Benenson to senior Amnesty officials wo…

It seems that Bernie Sanders got it all wrong again, this time regarding the situation in Venezuela - very disappointing

globinfo freexchange
In an unfortunate series of tweets regarding the situation in Venezuela, Bernie Sanders exposed his weak spot again on foreign policy matters.
Sanders tweeted:
The Maduro government has waged a violent crackdown on Venezuelan civil society, violated the constitution by dissolving the National Assembly and was re-elected last year in an election many observers said was fraudulent. The economy is a disaster and millions are migrating. 1/3 — Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 24, 2019
The United States should support the rule of law, fair elections and self-determination for the Venezuelan people. We must condemn the use of violence against unarmed protesters and the suppression of dissent. 2/3 — Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 24, 2019
But we must learn the lessons of the past and not be in the business of regime change or supporting coups—as we have in Chile, Guatemala, Brazil & the DR. The US has a long history of inappropriately intervening in Latin Amer…