When 100,000 wealthy, white Venezuelans march on the streets to protest Maduro’s government, the corporate media splashes images of their marches everywhere. Good for them! Protest is a healthy thing, and the vast majority of these marches have been peaceful, unmarred by violence committed by the protesters or the state.
After all, this isn’t Occupy Wall Street we’re talking about — a peaceful protest movement violently crushed in an illegal, federally-coordinated, 18-city crackdown: they burned our libraries, tore down our encampments, and arrested hundreds — blasting pepper spray in our faces and firing tear gas canisters into protesters at point blank range. I’ve seen the bruises myself, having spent time at several OWS camps.
But when half a million Venezuelans of color protest against the Washington-backed coup, the MSM declines to cover their actions. Few Americans see the images of the Maduro government’s throngs of peaceful supporters, the indigenous and dark-skinned, those of African descent.
The MSM, which feigns outrage at Trump’s racism, has unequivocally sided with the wealthy, white Venezuelans who call themselves “Spaniards” and routinely called dark-skinned, curly-haired Hugo Chavez, the most popular leader in the hemisphere before his untimely demise, “MONKEY.”
In the coup-supporting Western media, the vast majority of Venezuelan people are disappeared, as if they simply don’t exist. That is what this coup is about: erasing two-thirds of Venezuela’s population — the millions lifted out of poverty by Hugo Chavez and his movement — because the Chavistas have stood in the way of the Koch Brothers, Goldman Sachs, and British Petroleum, slavering to get their tentacles on the world’s largest proven oil reserves.
(The Chavistas have had the temerity to channel the profits from their nation’s top resource into social programs that aid the poor. They cut poverty in half, rose literacy to over 90% for men and women, reduced infant mortality, and instituted land reforms that have protected the rights of the indigenous. They also put in place a people’s constitution, ratified by the citizenry, and created an election system that Jimmy Carter has called the best and most transparent in the world.)
I highly recommend Jimmy Dore’s two–part interview with the BBC’s Greg Palast, following his recent visit to Venezuela.
Palast has spent much of his career as a journalist exposing the schemes of white-supremacist conservatives to disenfranchise people of color, stealing one election after another. He covered the GOP’s theft of the 2000 presidential election, which required the purging of tens of thousands of African-Americans from the voter rolls in Florida. More recently, he covered Georgia Republicans’ theft of the governor’s race in 2018, thanks to Brian Kemp’s purging of hundreds of thousands of African-Americans from the voter rolls.
Today, Palast is focused on the Washington-instigated coup in Venezuela — which, if successful, will invalidate the votes of some eight million POC in that country, mestizos who’ve been resisting foreign-supported oppression ever since their movement won power 20 years ago.