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CHAVEZ: “That day I had to swallow sand.” On the 2002 Coup, Fidel and Yankee Military Bases

August 21, 2009

(“How can I forget that terrible August 14, 2002! When seven years ago
the Supreme Court of Justice issued a ruling establishing that on
April 11, 2002, there was no coup d’état, but a “vacuum of power.”
And, even worse, that the accused (the putschists) acted full of good
intentions. That day, I have repeated several times, I had to swallow
sand. That ruling was a real consecration of the impunity; which was
the loyal reflection of an institution that was mostly with its back
to the popular will. It was the bourgeois state stabbing the revolution.”)

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LATIN AMERICAN HERALD TRIBUNE
Caracas,
Thursday
August 20,2009

Chávez: Fidel … Long Live Fidel!
By Hugo Chávez Frías

After the meeting of Unasur, the panorama of the region is clear. But to understand this situation, we must put two and two together. President Uribe, with his announced absence and his selective explicative tour, shamelessly abandoned the occasion of meeting face to face and talk in a South American way, as compatriots who share the same luck and destiny. He preferred what he has called silent diplomacy, which lacks of self voice.

Everything indicates that they want to take our peoples to a dead-end street. In Trinidad and Tobago, President Obama proposed to forget the past and exclusively get interested in future. By the way, that Obamist idea was unoriginal. That is the sublime sign of capitalism; the swan song, modernity. In the meeting held last Monday in Quito, the Colombian representative recommended us the missing part of the recipe: to deideologize the dialogue. What a proposal: living without history to tell and with no ideas to show the way.

There has been a lot of water under the bridge since colonialism came upon us. They are not going to deceive us and try to confuse us with foggy mirrors and mirages. Our travel has been long and they want to make us believe that, behind the Yankee military bases in Colombia, the war and the desolation are not hidden as terrible threats for peace, unity and the future of the South American and Caribbean people.

Argentinean thinker Atilio Borón says What does Uribe pretend with his frenetic tour around South American America’ Nothing but selling a toxic initiative and use the language imposed by the capitalist crisis, which consists on justifying the climbing military offensive of the empire in order to revert the changes that in the last years has altered the social-political feature of the region.

President Rafael Correa was right when he denounced the double international moral in the Unasur meeting held last Sunday. I’m going to comment his arguments. The US military bases, according to the empire, make part of the sovereignty of a country, in this case, Colombia. But the development of a nuclear program by a country that Washington considers the evil axis is not a sovereignty problem, but a threat to the world. Thus, the unsubmissive governments must be accused of everything and the submissive governments must be supported in everything. What a cynicism! This is actually the imperial double moral.

But, despite the imperial forces, our peoples have already waken up and their conscience is on alert. The proposal of the “peace bases” has come out from that conscience in order to neutralize the pro-war of that replica of the Israeli state into which they now try to transform Colombia.

But don’t make a mistake. If Venezuela is attacked, it will defend with everything it has. We are now strengthening our defense capacity and our military power.

As we said in the Unasur Summit in Quito, the Yankee empire wants to take control of the world’s largest oil reserve, the Orinoco Oil Belt.

However, we have to take into account that the military shield on South America starts to crowd together; not only because of our energy wealth. Since long time ago, the empire’s greed is in the sight of other strategically important aims. The Amazonia (in Brazil) and the giant aquifer of the Southern Cone located in Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.

II

How can I forget that terrible August 14, 2002! When seven years ago the Supreme Court of Justice issued a ruling establishing that on April 11, 2002, there was no coup d’état, but a “vacuum of power.” And, even worse, that the accused (the putschists) acted full of good intentions.

That day, I have repeated several times, I had to swallow sand.

That ruling was a real consecration of the impunity; which was the loyal reflection of an institution that was mostly with its back to the popular will. It was the bourgeois state stabbing the revolution.

Seven years later, the institutions of the state are certainly much more strengthened. The ruling that condemned this week three of the main responsible of the massacre of Puente Llaguno demonstrate it.

But the battle against impunity goes on. There is still a lot of justice to do. Remember always what Bolívar said: the impunity of crimes makes them be committed more frequently. Finally, the case in which the punishment is not enough to suppress them. It is necessary that we continue instituting the new social state of right and justice!

III

“It seems that August 15th, as a date, is reserved for great events. On August 15th, 1805, with the Monte Sacro Oath, the Liberator of a world was born. On August 15th, 1819, the second Constitution of the Republican Venezuela came to light. On August 15th, 2004, the Bolivarian people won a decisive political battle in the presidential referendum. Nobody will forget that day and its general singing: Florentino y el Diablo (Florentino and the Devil).”

“Yesterday, August 15th, 2009, the Organic Education Law (LOA Spanish acronym) was enacted. This liberating law proves that the constituent process continues. The new revolutionary laws are breaking through.”

What has the counter-revolution pretended with its media plotting actions’ Do they want that the teacher state does not assume its responsibilities’ With the enactment of the Organic Education Law, the state as a teacher is not only reaffirmed, but it also strengthens to full play its role. The teacher state guarantees the public, free and high quality education for everyone.

All these set of triviality and lies that the counter-revolution has spread, such as the elimination of the children’s legal authority, are just that, banalities and lies. They lack of arguments and are afraid of any public discussion and popular plebiscite.

They think of education as business and practices to train vassals of the empire. Education is to train citizens, to learn how to live in Republic. They do not understand it.

Robinson used to say in his treaty about the lights and social virtue: “Making education a business is… every reader can say all the bad thing he/she wants and there will still be a lot to say.” With the LOE, the time of education as business has definitely stayed back. Education time starts as an eminently social good, eminently collective.

IV

With his 83 years, last Thursday August, 13, Fidel is still in the first line of battle and he will never abandon it. This great father of the revolutionary people of our America keeps on guiding us with his ideas. His word is more than ever necessary and lightening, now when the empire counterattacks.

We were there with him, in family, having pleasant seven-hours talk, analyzing, reading, remembering, observing the horizon and its dangers and reviving the flame that encourages us with this hard fight for the freedom of the homeland.

He told us about his childhood and when the three bothers (Ramón, Raúl and Fidel) were expelled form school and the principal said to his father that “they were the three biggest bandits that had ever gone to that school.”

He remembered Caracas, the Venezuelan plains, the Bolivarian people. He is more informed than anybody about what is happening in here.

Sun was hiding when we said good bye. We were also with Raúl, that efficient comrade and revolutionary leader.

Fidel stayed there, standing with his fist raised and 83 years behind.

I remembered the poet: “Open your gates, history that we are entering with Fidel. With the horse.”

And from far away, as usual we shouted: Homeland, Socialism or Death! We will defeat!

Hugo Chávez Frías has been the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela since taking office in February of 1999.

Click here to read this article in the original Spanish

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