Donald Trump, in regards to the current situation in Venezuela, has stated that he is "not going to rule out a military option". With such comments, Trump is speaking on behalf of the imperialist US establishment. We publish here a statement by Hands Off Venezuela USA and the US section of the IMT, calling for solidarity with the Venezuelan masses and the defence of the Bolivarian Revolution against Trump and imperialism.
Donald Trump has promised "fire and fury like the world has never seen" and will not rule out a first strike against nuclear-armed North Korea. In the same breath, he made the following crudely open threat against Venezuela:
"We have many options for Venezuela. And by the way, I am not going to rule out a military option. We have many options for Venezuela. This is our neighbor. You know, we are all over the world and we have troops all over the world in places that are very, very far away. Venezuela is not very far away and the people are suffering, and they are dying. We have many options for Venezuela, including a possible military option if necessary."
Donald Trump heads the most powerful military machine the world has ever seen, an apparatus designed to kill and maim on an industrial scale—one that has killed no fewer than 20 million since the end of World War II. He rules the country with the largest prison population in the world, a nation in which capital punishment and rampant police brutality terrorize millions. In the richest country on the planet, millions do not have access to basic healthcare, which leads to thousands of preventable deaths every year. Donald Trump cares not a bit about "lives being lost" in Venezuela—which by the way, are being lost in violence directly orchestrated and approved by US officials operating on behalf of the counterrevolution in Venezuela.
For nearly two decades, Venezuela has been an example of how things could be done differently. Time and again, the revolutionary masses have seized their destinies into their own hands, defied imperialism, the oligarchy, and fought to reorganize society along more democratic and participatory lines. While in Venezuela the Revolution use oil revenues to eliminate illiteracy and provide health care for all, in the US, workers were made to pay trillions in taxes to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and to bail out the banks and insurance companies. It is this example above all that must be crushed. But for far too long, the leadership of the revolution has vacillated, compromised, conciliated, and taken half measures. Despite their astonishing reserves of revolutionary enthusiasm, this has led to a certain and inevitable tiredness among important layers of the masses.
This is the opportunity the reaction has been tirelessly working towards for years. For US imperialism and the oligarchy, enough is enough! Enough of ordinary people believing they have a sovereign right to collectively decide their fates! Enough instability and threats to private property and profits! Now is the time to wear out and strangle the revolution—and once back in power, to drown it in rivers of blood. This is the real face of imperialism's "humanitarianism"!
Many liberals vociferously opposed US intervention in Venezuela when GW Bush was in office—only to fall mysteriously silent once Barack Obama was elected. But let us be clear: both the Democrats and Republicans are parties of imperialism and the counterrevolutionary intervention against the Venezuelan Revolution was by no means diminished under Obama, even if the aggressive public rhetoric was toned down. Along with covert operations aimed at sabotage and destabilization the Obama administration sent millions of dollars to “support political competition-building efforts” in Venezuela, no less than $5 million in 2014 alone. For all their crocodile tears over Russian meddling in the US elections, the liberals have not a word to say about the direct interference of the CIA and US Embassy in Venezuela's political affairs!
The Venezuelan Revolution has only one reliable source of support: the world working class, and above all the US working class. The actions of the masses over the last 15 years in Venezuela have been a source of inspiration and enthusiasm for millions of Americans, who are by no means a single "reactionary bloc" as some on the Left have scandalously asserted. Let us not forget that in the country of the Red Scare and McCarthyism, millions now favor socialism over capitalism and came out in droves last year to support a candidate calling for "political revolution against the billionaire class." The completion of the socialist revolution in Venezuela—through the expropriation of industry, the banks, and landed estates, to be run under democratic workers' and peasants' control—would have an electrifying effect across the Americas, including in the US. It is by no means too late for the Venezuelan workers, peasants, and poor to lead the world to a socialist future!
No revolution in Latin America or around the world will be safe until capitalism and imperialism are buried once and forever. While the socialist revolution will of necessity be worldwide process, the US working class has a unique and indispensable role to play. Just as war is an extension of politics by other means, foreign policy is an extension of domestic policy—a capitalist government in power means pro-capitalist policies at home and abroad!
We must unite with our class brothers and sisters in struggle against our common enemy: Trump and the capitalists of the entire planet. Only when US workers have direct control over the politics and economy of the country will we be able to relate to the rest of the world on the basis of solidarity, fraternity, and equality, not exploitation, domination, and intimidation. As part of a voluntary Socialist Federation of the Americas, the peoples of the Americas will work together to eliminate poverty, unemployment, war, illiteracy, hunger, and disease.
If we are serious about ensuring that the US keep its hands off Venezuela, we must fight for and win the struggle for socialism right here in the belly of the beast.
Hands Off Venezuela!
Solidarity with the Venezuelan Revolution!
For a Socialist Federation of the Americas and the world!
Long live the world socialist revolution!