To help break the U.S. media/government blockade and offensive against Venezuela, PSL organizer and Liberation News reporter Gloria La Riva has traveled to more than 35 cities, sharing the voices, faces and resistance of the Venezuelan people whom she met during her month-long stay in Venezuela. And there are more cities to come on her tour!
From Boston to Chicago to Seattle to Los Angeles, the public forums have attracted anti-war activists, university students and many people who are simply concerned about a new threat of U.S. war against Venezuela. They are anxious to learn, “What is happening in Venezuela?” and “What is the U.S. aggression really about?”
It is no exaggeration to say that the U.S. corporate media is monolithic in supporting U.S. imperialism’s brazen and unprecedented aggression against the Bolivarian Revolution. Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting (FAIR) issued a report showing that from Jan. 15 to Apr. 15, 2019, “zero opinion pieces in the New York Times and Washington Post took an anti–regime change or pro-Maduro/Chavista position. Of the 76 total articles, opinion videos or TV commentator segments that centered on or gave more than passing attention to Venezuela, 54 (72 percent) expressed explicit support for the Maduro administration’s ouster.”
Billed as “Eyewitness Venezuela,” the tour has given local activists the tools to counter the U.S. government and media lies, and to help strengthen an anti-war response. This slide show above provides some scenes where La Riva and local activists have held events. Many youth have been present at the forums; a special university focus has brought a fresh perspective to students.
To provide an alternative to the corporate media, each person attending has received a “Resource list of progressive media coverage on Venezuela.”
The previous lack of information and response after the events has been remarkable. In college classes, an average of less than 5% of the students had heard of revolutionary leader Hugo Chávez or President Nicolás Maduro. La Riva begins with how the Bolivarian Revolution arose from Chávez’s courageous leadership against the longstanding oppression in Venezuela, and the remarkable gains in housing, education and healthcare. Of course a major part of the talk is the severe U.S. economic sanctions, the resulting threats to the people’s wellbeing by the U.S., and the need for U.S. people’s solidarity. Of late were updates on the brave Embassy Protecters in Washington, D.C. against the U.S. machinations.
La Riva’s short videos provide the Venezuelan people’s own testimony and their resistance. Almost all the students and the larger audiences sign up to help support actions the anti-war actions.
One student, Antonio, in California State University at Northridge, of a Salvadoran family, said, “I have never cared about politics, it has not interested me before. But I am stunned to hear what the U.S. is doing to Venezuela. I never knew this and it makes me angry.”
Several students along the tour has asked, “Do you think we can have socialism in our country?”