Monday, July 3, 2023

Trump’s statements and PSUV’s false anti-imperialism

Recently, the ultra-conservative former president of the United States, Donald Trump, revealed during a pre-election campaign rally the true objective he pursued with the criminal unilateral sanctions against Venezuela during his administration: to collapse the national economy in order to bring about a change of government and thus take control over the country’s oil wealth.

The government leadership and the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) and its propaganda machine did not miss the opportunity to use Trump’s confession to feed the narrative with which they seek to absolve President Maduro’s administration from any responsibility for the country’s crisis. 
Even the most despicable of these characters have had the nerve to point their finger at the Communist Party of Venezuela (PCV), seeking to cast doubt on its anti-imperialist character. The right-wing opposition is not far behind. After encouraging and celebrating the aggressions of the Trump administration against the Venezuelan people, they now come out to condemn his speech. Many of these right-wing political parties and leaders who now disavow Trump previously sponsored the «interim» government of Juan Guaidó, who went so far as to say publicly that the option of a possible foreign military intervention for the «cessation of the usurpation» was on the table.

The arguments of the right-wing opposition and the government coincide in one aspect: both believe that the working people suffer from permanent amnesia. It is a waste of time to respond to the characters that serve the dirty war laboratories that are trying to smear the PCV. The working people know about the anti-imperialist record of the PCV and there is plenty of information about the position of the communists on Trump’s policy against Venezuela, even in the official media, which at that time were busy covering the international and national accusations and actions that our party carried out to confront imperialist interference in the country.

The PCV has always denounced that behind the rhetoric of defense of human rights and democracy with which US imperialism covers up its aggressions against Venezuela lies the desire to take control of its energy resources and mineral wealth. We were the first to point out that Obama’s executive order, later ratified by the Trump and Biden administrations, was the beginning of an offensive that would escalate to more serious economic measures as a whole and open up possibilities for direct military aggression.

From government naivety to the surrender of the country

At the time, we demanded actions from Nicolás Maduro’s government to strengthen the capacity to protect industrial activity, the production of food and medicine, as well as the infrastructure of services in the face of a possible intensification of the imperialist siege. Meanwhile, the government and the PSUV leadership proved that they were only using an «anti-imperialist» discourse as empty rhetoric for political purposes. The government never imagined that imperialist aggression would intensify, as President Maduro himself confessed. The close ties that bind the old and new national bourgeoisie with the United States and Europe’s interests generated resistance in the government leadership to believe in the possibility of a total rupture of relations with the countries receiving the fled and stolen capital from Venezuela.

But that was not the only naivety of the PSUV government. Between 2014 and 2017 they spent more than $100 billion on debt service payments to win the approval of global financial capital, believing that this would open up new possibilities of indebtedness. Through Citgo, they donated $500,000 to Trump’s inauguration, trying to influence his policy towards Venezuela. They have also made the domestic market dependent on the United States for the supply of fuel and additives, keeping the country’s refineries at a standstill.

The false anti-imperialism of the PSUV leadership ultimately led to the imperialist assault achieving its goal. There was certainly no change of government in Venezuela, but there was a shift in economic policy in favor of the interests of global capital and particularly the US oil transnationals. It is not the opposition right wing that is celebrating the extension of Chevron’s operations under disadvantageous conditions to the interests of the country, it is the PSUV itself that is carrying out the process of handing over sovereignty and national wealth.

The truth is that the «anti-imperialist» government of the PSUV has given in to the US and its allies, not because it is inconsistent, but because of its profoundly social-democratic character. While the regularization of relations, the progressive lifting of the criminal coercive measures and the agreements between the government and the right-wing opposition, endorsed by US imperialism, are moving forward, it is the working people who are paying for the colossal damage caused by the crisis of dependent-rent capitalism and the harmful effects of the imperialist sanctions. 

Héctor Alejo Rodríguez