Assad: US Syria strike ever present

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Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says an attack by the US is likely despite ongoing peace initiatives by Russia, China and others.

“The possibility of a military offensive will always be present, maybe at one time on the pretext of chemical weapons, and at other times on different pretexts,” he told Caracas-based television network teleSUR late on Wednesday, which broadcasts across Latin America.

“If we take a look at previous (US) wars, at least from the early ’50s, we see that (US) policy is to go from one aggression to the next,” he said, referring to US involvement in conflicts in Korea,Vietnam, Lebanon, Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq.

“Not to mention its actions in South America, where it instigated coups and the deaths of millions of people,” he said.

The US has been sidestepping the UN Security Council for decades, violating the UN’s Security Charter, other nations’ sovereignty, and all human and moral values, he said.

He said the US was a “great power,” and that “good relations are possible on condition of mutual respect.” But he questioned whether this could be achieved given the US dissemination of “terrorism, destruction and fear.”

Al-Assad also drew parallels between his country’s position in international politics and those of Latin American socialist nations Venezuela and Cuba.

“The trajectory of Latin America is the same as the one that Arab countries should follow,” he said.

Late Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez represented “a path to independence and freedom,” he said. Chavez and Cuba’s former revolutionary and president Fidel Castro “follow the same line, see things from the same perspective, and take the same path.”

Chavez’s successor, current President Nicolas Maduro, also “possesses the tenacity, the energy of our region,” he said.

Chavez, Maduro and Castro have all made their own repeated verbal attacks on the US. Anti-US positions have also been expressed by fellow left-leaning Latin American countries Nicaragua and Bolivia.

Asked about the political consequences in Syria of a US attack, he said such a move would impact the whole of the Middle East.

“The world is a small village, what happens in Syria will affect surrounding countries and the most distant parts of the planet.”
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Venezuela’s Oil Refinery Blaze – Seven Good Reasons To Suspect Sabotage

 

By James Petras
9-3-12

“You can’t exclude any hypothesis … It’s practically impossible that here in an [oil] installation like this which is fully automated everywhere and that has thousands of responsible workers night and day, civilian and military, and that there is a gas leak for 3 or 4 days and nobody responds.  This is impossible.” — President Chavez responding to US media and opposition charges that the explosion and fire at the oil refinery was due to government negligence.

Amuay Refinery

Introduction

Only 43 days before the Venezuelan presidential election and with President Chavez leading by a persistent margin of 20 percentage points, an explosion and fire at the Amuay refinery killed at least 48 people – half of those were members of the National Guard ­ and destroyed oil facilities producing 645,000 barrels of oil per day. Continue reading

Presidente Chávez anuncia firma de convenio energético con estatal argentina YPF

Brasilia, 31 Jul. AVN.- Tras su llegada a la capital de Brasil para participar en la cumbre de Mercosur, el mandatario venezolano, Hugo Chávez Frías, informó este lunes que Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) establecerá un convenio energético con la estatal argentina YPF.

“Mañana firmaremos un convenio entre PDVSA e YPF”, dijo Chávez, en declaraciones a la prensa en Brasilia, acompañado por el ministro de Petróleo y Minería, Rafael Ramírez; el canciller Nicolás Maduro, así como de los titulares de las carteras de Comercio e Industrias, Edmée Betancourt y Ricardo Menéndez, respectivamente.

Chávez estimó que con el establecimiento de alianzas con las estatales petroleras de Brasil y Argentina permitirá que se vaya “diseñando Petrosur, así como una vez nació Telesur, Unasur o el Banco del Sur”.

El Jefe de Estado reiteró que con la entrada de Caracas al bloque regional “se está completando la ecuación dentro del Mercosur”, debido al inmenso potencial energético venezolano y la fachada al Caribe que ofrece su ubicación geográfica. Continue reading

La nueva guerra: Latin Spring being sprung?

A demonstrator is detained by riot police officers during a protest in Valparaiso city, about 121 km (75 miles) northwest of Santiago, July 25, 2012. (Reuters / Eliseo Fernandez)

From protests in Chile to a “coup” in Paraguay, the worrying signs come across Latin America that it may have an Arab Spring of its own, but in fact those are the signs of a new form of war waged against the region.

By Adrian Salbuchi, RT

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A specter haunts Latin America

­Latin America is undergoing increasingly violent turmoil on many fronts. This often makes it difficult to distinguish between spontaneous, bona fide social protest and covert foreign intervention, just as we see today throughout the Arab world.

In spite of Latin America’s decades of experience with foreign-orchestrated military coups, in today’s world the local military are no longer an option. They were necessary proxies acting as local cops for the US during the Cold War, until they became a redundant embarrassment.

So just as the ’60s and ’70s saw a domino effect of “anti-communist military coups” – graciously applauded by the US and UK – the ’80s and ’90s saw a comeback of “democracy”, riding on the wave of “human rights”. In short: military boots were “out”; corrupt controllable “democratic” politicians were “in”.

Nominally “democratic” governments mean local power no longer managed by guns and bayonets but by tons of money. As the Global Power Masters execute a highly complex planet-wide strategic reset, Latin America is ripe for another turn of the screw: a new bout of “Spring” treatment.

It would, however, be a mistake to think this will be a copy of the Arab Spring, because a key factor behind today’s global Machtpolitik lies in understanding prevailing local conditions, which in Latin America are very different from those of the Arab world.

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What makes each country tick?

­Last year’s lighting of the Arab Spring fuse depended very much on understanding that fact huge sectors of the local populations – particularly the young – were fed up with authoritarian, long-entrenched regimes: whether Mubarak’s 31 years in Egypt, Gaddafi’s 42 years in Libya or the al-Assads’ 40 years in Syria.

But there’s no way this can be done in Latin America, because all governments here are nominally “democratic”, with corrupt politicians taking turns in mismanaging their countries.

On the religious front, Islam demands active militancy from its followers to defend the Faith, so an important dividing line for the Arab Spring is the centuries-old conflict between Shiites and Sunnis, plus the modern struggle between clerical and secular regimes.

Such highly complex issues have thwarted the Muslim world’s ability to unite under one solid and strong leadership, so fundamental to neutralize decades – centuries! – of Western interference and intervention in that region. Divide and conquer has always been imperialism’s leitmotiv.

By playing one side against the other; by appealing to the naïve young yearning for change whose paradigms are (de)formed by Western pop “culture”, last year’s triggering of social and generational conflict was really a “piece of cake”: from Tunisia to Egypt; from Libya to Syria; from Sudan to Iran.

At most, the tricky part was keeping FOW’s (Friends of the West) like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Bahrain isolated from this process. The West’s ability to slosh trillions of Petro-Dollars, plus the Western Media’s extreme discretion towards “friendly countries”, the ominous presence of the US Fifth Fleet and a little help from our (Israeli) friends seems to have done the trick. So far, anyway…

Latin America is not at all like this. Not a chance of violently pitting Catholics against Protestants…and since all countries are formally “democratic”, people won’t readily take to the streets to get rid of any authoritarian regimes because, officially, there are none. Maybe a Monsanto-coup in Paraguay or an electoral money-for-your-vote hiccup in Mexico, but the US is too busy looking at Chavez in Venezuela to bother.

Where, then, is the war front in Latin America?

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Latin America: Is “Arab Spring” coming to town?

Venezuelans stand a demonstration in support of Syrian President Bashir al-Assad in front of the Syrian embassy in Caracas (AFP Photo / Leo Ramirez)

By Adrian Salbuchi, RT

A wave of protests have rolled across Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia – countries taking a strong stance against the US and its allies’ policies in the region. Are we witnessing a “Latin American Spring”?

­Whilst engineering violent insurgency does not yet seem to be on the  agenda of the Global Power Masters, there are indications of growing PsyWar activity by “pro-democracy”, “pro-human rights”, “aid” agencies and NGO’s acting through local players aligned to US/UK/EU interests.

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Lighting the match

Is this paving the way for far worse things to come? Those who “light the match” that fires popular protests and unrest have learned only too well from their “Arab Spring” experience how to fan those flames into catastrophic social wildfires…

Some alarm bells are beginning to go off in countries like Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia, whose presidents – Hugo Chávez, Rafael Correa and Evo Morales, respectively – are not playing to the tune played by the US and its allies, who for over a century have exerted economic colonial domination over Latin America.

Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador insist in maintaining close relations with countries the US and its allies have branded as “rogue states”, notably, Iran, Syria and, until Muammar Gaddafi’s public murder, Libya.  Have they been thus earmarked to become beachheads for a coming “Latin American Spring” of engineered insurrection?

The so-called “Arab Spring” too began by fanning the flames of a wide assortment of popular grievances that grew into mass demonstrations that quickly escalated into uncontrolled social violence on all sides.

A sign that this kind of “match” is being lit can be seen in Ecuador where Quito newspaper “El Telégrafo” revealed that a so-called “Active Citizenry Project” to “train opposition journalists” is getting 4.3 million dollars in funds from USAID – the United States Agency for International Development, who also funnel funds to local opposition groups like Faro and Fundamedios with the declared excuse of “strengthening democracy” through workshops, forums, and media surveillance projects.

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Chavez Announces “Immediate” Withdrawal from Inter-American Court of Human Rights

By RACHAEL BOOTHROYD

Liverpool, July 26th 2012 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Following an announcement earlier in April that his government would be withdrawing from the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights (IAHRC), Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez confirmed on Tuesday that his administration would also no longer recognise the IAHRC’s sister organisation, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACrtHR) with “immediate” effect.

Both organisations are affiliate bodies of the Organization of the American States (OAS), with the commission recommending and submitting human rights cases to the court for review.

In a televised address to the public on Tuesday evening, the Venezuelan head of state confirmed the country’s exit from the human rights tribunal after accusing the body of “political manipulation” and attacking the South American nation for “daring to liberate” itself from Washington’s influence. Continue reading

The Paraguay Coup: Carefully Organized, Assisted by Unidentified Snipers

Deposed president Fernando Lugo

By Nil Nikandrov

Source: Strategic culture foundation

The operation launched by the US Department of State and the CIA with the aim of displacing Paraguay’s first leftist president Fernando Lugo entered the final phase on June 16, when police forces were dispatched to evict squatters from the Morumbí farm in the Curuguaty district, near the Brazilian border. The land holding is known to be owned by Paraguayan businessman and politician Blas Riquelme. Upon arriving to the site, the police unexpectedly came under professional gunfire from rifles with the caliber high enough to drill bulletproof waists. The chief of a special operations police unit (GEO) and his deputy were shot dead, and the police to which instructions had been issued to avoid using force was left with no choice but to return fire. Eleven civilians were mowed down and dozens – wounded as a result.

The bloody incident in Curuguaty immediately drew response from the Paraguayan legislature, with the parliamentarians and senators, mostly representatives of right-centrist parties, charging that president Lugo had lost his grip on the situation and was unable to run the country. Even the Liberal Party which upheld Lugo’s candidacy in the 2008 elections distanced itself from its former protégé. Overall, Lugo faced an impeachment which he described as the parliament’s “express coup”.  Continue reading

Bolivia nationalises Spanish-owned electricity firm

Evo Morales said he was nationalising the company in the name of the Bolivian people

Bolivian President Evo Morales has nationalised a Spanish-owned electric power company.

Mr Morales ordered the military to take over the subsidiary of Spanish power company REE, which owns and runs around three-quarters of Bolivia’s power grid.

Mr Morales said he had ordered the move in honour of the Bolivian people fighting to regain control of their natural resources.

Last month Argentina took control of Spanish-owned oil company YPF.

Speaking at a May Day ceremony, President Morales said that “in honour of all Bolivian people who have struggled to recuperate our natural resources and basic services, we are nationalising Transportadora de Electricidad (TDE)”.

‘Failure to invest’

He said he was expropriating the company because it had failed to invest sufficiently in Bolivia.

Spanish power company REE bought 99.94% of shares in TDE in 2002. The remaining 0.06% are in the hands of the Bolivian employees of TDE. Continue reading

Iran, Venezuela slam Western threats

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (L) and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez at the Miraflores presidential palace, Caracas, January 9, 2012
Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez have censured the hegemonic powers’ persisting efforts to make war threats and impose sanctions against independent and developing nations of the world.

In a joint statement issued Monday in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas, the two presidents denounced all acts of terrorism in the world and called for collective efforts by the international community to counter the “sordid phenomenon.”

Referring to the ongoing freedom- and justice-seeking uprisings across the Middle East, Presidents Ahmadinejad and Chavez voiced support for the rightful demands of people in the region and denounced any foreign interference as the key element in aggravating regional crises.

The Iranian and Venezuelan presidents also expressed regret over the massacre of civilians and security forces in Syria, voiced support for the Syrian reform process and lashed out at global imperialism and the Israeli regime for their “blatant interference” in regional affairs.  Continue reading