In the build up to the September
elections, the right-wing opposition is preparing on several fronts.
Economic sabotage is one of them, as are the manoeuvres on the part of
right-wing elements within the Bolivarian movement itself. Meanwhile,
all this is having a radicalising effect on the left.
The call issued by President Chavez to
set up a new revolutionary
international, the Fifth International, has provoked a passionate
discussion in the ranks of the workers’ movement in Latin America and on
a world scale. It is impossible for Marxists to remain indifferent to
this question. What attitude should we take towards it?
Recently we have seen many important events
happening in Venezuela, such as the devaluation of the bolívar and the
nationalisations in the banking sector, which needs to be analysed
carefully. The movement of occupied factories made important steps
forward last year, but still faces sabotage by counter-revolutionary
managers and workers are still struggling for nationalisation under
workers' control. In order to defend the conquests already made, the
revolution must put the nationalisation of the commanding heights of
the economy on the agenda. Only this can destroy capitalism and provide
the necessary prerequisites for a socialist planned economy.
At a public meeting organized by
various trade union, political organizations, and solidarity campaigns
(including Hands Off Venezuela), more than 3,000 people in Copenhagen
heard President Hugo Chávez correctly point out that a socialist
revolution is the only solution to the problems of humanity.
At the opening session of the PSUV
congress Chavez made a very radical left-wing speech, calling for the
setting up of a new international, explaining that it was necessary to
destroy the bourgeois state and replace it with a revolutionary state,
but also referring to the bureaucracy within the Bolivarian movement
itself. It was clearly a speech that reflects the enormous pressure
from the masses below who are getting tired of talk about socialism,
while real progress towards genuine change appears to be frustratingly
slow. Alan Woods reports on the start of the PSUV congress in Venezuela.