VENEZUELA — A statement of US activists : Stop Trump’s « Humanitarian » Intervention! U.S. Hands Off Venezuela! Respect the Sovereignty and Right to Self-Determination of the Venezuelan People

The Trump administration, with the complicity of governments and political leaders of all stripes, is stepping up its intervention in Venezuela, trampling upon this nation’s sovereignty and self-determination in the guise of so-called « humanitarian aid. »

Who can accept such hypocrisy!

The U.S. government — under George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and now Donald Trump — promoted a failed coup attempt against Hugo Chávez (2002), imposed sanctions that deny Venezuela access to hard currency with which to purchase basic foods and medicines, prevented medicines from reaching Venezuela[1], demanded strict foreign debt repayment (under threat of even stiffer sanctions), and funded economic destabilization and sabotage of the economy by the private sector … all with the aim of starving a proud nation into submission to impose « regime change. »

UN Rapporteur Alfred de Zayas, in a March 3, 2018 report to the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights, exposed this hypocrisy. « Countries that continue to wage economic war on Venezuela have no right to scream ‘humanitarian crisis’ because they themselves are part of the problem. … The U.S.-European Union sanctions have caused untold numbers of deaths, mainly of children and the elderly, and must be condemned as a crime against humanity. »

Trump has now tightened the sanctions and seized the assets of Citgo and PDVSA[2] in a barely disguised effort to take over Venezuela’s massive oil resources on behalf of U.S. multinational corporate interests.

The convoy of « humanitarian aid » at the border of the Venezuela-Colombian border

is nothing more than the means through which the U.S. government, with proxy forces like Brazil and Colombia, is readying to overthrow a democratically elected president and reverse a political process that has been viewed by Washington as « an unacceptable alternative economic model for the Americas », to quote what former President Richard Nixon said to justify U.S. support for the coup in Chile that overthrew President Salvador Allende.

We, the undersigned unionists and activists in the United States, oppose the ongoing coup attempt to overthrow the government of Nicolás Maduro. We denounce this « humanitarian aid » hoax, which is but a means to prepare a direct military intervention in Venezuela. The U.S., the European Union and all the governments that have bowed to U.S. pressures have no right to speak of « humanitarian crisis » or to parade as purveyors of « humanitarian aid » when they have caused the shortages of foods and medicines through their sustained economic war on Venezuela.

Stop Trump’s « Humanitarian Intervention »!
U.S. Hands Off Venezuela! Respect the Sovereignty and Right to Self-Determination of the Venezuelan People

1) In his March 3, 2018 report, UN Rapporteur Alfred de Zayas explains that the Colombian government had refused in 2017 to deliver anti-malaria medicines that had been ordered by Venezuela to halt an outbreak of malaria in that country, an action, he added, that was not condemned by the international community. The Venezuelan government had to order these medicines from India at predictably higher prices, further draining its foreign-currency reserves.

2) Citgo and PDVSA : oil company owned by the Venezuelan state.

Initial endorsers

Kali Akuno, Cooperation Jackson, Jackson, Mississippi; Don Bechler, Chair Single Payer Now, San Francisco CA; Alan Benjamin, Editorial Board member, The Organizer Newspaper, San Francisco, CA; Thomas Bias, National Secretary, Labor Fightback Network, Flanders NJ; Katherine Black, co-convenor US Labor Against the War, Philadelphia Pennsylvania; Nick Brana, Executive Director, Movement for a People’s Party Washington, DC; Gene Bruskin, NWU/UAW, Silver Spring, MD; Michael Carano, Teamsters Local # 348, retired, Tallmadge, Ohio; Donna Dewitt, President Emeritus, SC AFL-CIO Communications Workers of America, Orangeburg SC; Berthony Dupont, Editor Haiti Liberté (NYC) ; Michael Eisenscher, National Coordinator Emeritus, US Labor Against the War (USLAW), Oakland, CA, Carol Ehrle Political Director, Movement for a People’s Party San Mateo, California; Chris Kaihatsu, RedMarx Chicago Illinois; Jim Lafferty, Executive Director Emeritus, National Lawyers Guild, L.A., Los Angeles, California; Nnamdi Lumumba, State Organizer Ujima People’s Progress Party (Maryland), Baltimore Maryland; Saladin Muhammad Retired UE International Rep, Co-coordinator of the Southern Workers Assembly, Rocky Mount, NC; Milie Phillips, Steering Committee Labor Fightback Network, Oakland, CA; Linda Ray, Delegate from SEIU 1021 San Francisco Labor Council, San Francisco, CA; Al Rojas Vice President Sacramento LCLAA (AFL-CIO), Sacramento, CA; Desiree Rojas, President Sacramento LCLAA Sacramento, CA; Ralph Schoenman, Editorial Board member The Organizer Newspaper, Co-producer, Taking Aim, Vallejo, Ca; Mya Shone, Editorial Board member The Organizer Newspaper, Co-producer, Taking Aim Vallejo, Ca; Tom Sodders Corresponding Secretary Labor Education and Arts Project (LEAP), Cleveland, Ohio; Haldon C. Sutton, 1st vice president SW Florida UAW Retired Workers Council (for id. only), North Port Florida; David Walters IBEW 1245 Ret. Pacifica, CA; Nancy Wohlforth Secretary-Treasurer Emerita OPEIU, Washington, DC; Carole Seligman, co-editor, Socialist Viewpoint, NEA, retired, San Francisco CA;