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21 May, 2018

France: Melenchon defends Venezuela elections' legitimacy

Jean-Luc Melenchon, former head of the European Parliament, condemned critics of Venezuela's electoral process as U.S. "puppets."

As the United States continues to claim Venezuela's presidential elections are illegitimate, the leader of France's radical left has defended the Latin American nation's electoral process, condemning critics as U.S. "puppets."

Jean-Luc Melenchon, former head of the European Parliament, denied U.S. claims that the international community is rejecting the elections: "There are a certain number of countries, the puppets of the United States, which have decided that these elections did not suit them."

In an interview with La Chaine Info (LCI) and RTL, a French radio network, Melenchon said that Spain's former socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero also approved of Venezuela's electoral system.

"It is not true that the opposition has boycotted, because there are three other candidates," he said.

The leader of France Insumisa, the left-wing populist and democratic socialist party, also acknowledged "there is a great difficulty in Venezuela," which he said was caused by the fall in oil prices.

Melenchon also said: "There was a terrifying crisis that comes from a part of the opposition that is violent... it has created such an explosive situation."

He concluded by condemning foreign interference by the French government of Emmanuel Macron, along with other EU member states which he said have repeatedly failed the electoral process in Venezuela.

Earlier, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert posted on Twitter: "The so-called elections in Venezuela today are not legitimate.

"The United States is on the side of the democratic nations in the world that support the Venezuelan people and their sovereign right to elect their representatives in free and fair elections."

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Analyzed: The Western media's fear and loathing of Venezuela

"The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum." – Noam Chomsky

By Manmeet Sahni

Part 2 - Power of Suggestion

Words are powerful: they suggest, and help shape public opinion. Used the wrong way, they can prove extremely damaging. For instance, while Chavez was in power, Western media frequently described him as a 'quasi-dictator' and 'strongman.'

Jonathan Cook is a senior policy officer with the World Wildlife Fund. He says: "Columnists like the Washington Post's Jackson Diehl and the Miami Herald's Andres Oppenheimer have wielded the sharpest hatchets. Diehl, for instance, labeled pro-Chavez social movements 'anti-democratic' while lauding the anti-Chavez opposition, which used such tactics as distributing false exit poll results during the 2004 referendum.

"Washington's hostility toward the recent changes echoes a wave of earlier suspicion of the likes of Cuba's Castro, Nicaragua's Ortega and Chile's Allende. It also reflects unease at declining U.S. influence in the region.

"The Post's Diehl gripes about Venezuela 'buying the support of' other Latin American governments with subsidized oil, and an April 4 article in the New York Times prods Chavez for 'spending billions of dollars of his country's oil windfall on pet projects abroad.' Nothing is said about Uncle Sam's own long history of handing out carrots and wielding sticks in the region."

Now, words such as 'dictator,' 'extreme' and 'radical' are being deployed by Western media to describe Maduro and other left-wing governments in the region for one reason alone: to stoke fear.

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Prediction of new false-flag gas attack in Syria seems to fit US escalation plans

If a chemical weapons “attack” comes to pass in the place it has been predicted, it would be the first such provocation blamed on Assad to take place in territory occupied by a foreign power, likely triggering an intensified military response from the U.S.

by Whitney Webb

Part 4 - Setup for two-front U.S.-Israeli attack?

While no new information has since emerged that would corroborate Novosti’s report, it is true that the U.S. — as the occupying force in the area where the provocation is allegedly being planned – does have a motive to conduct such a false flag attack, as the U.S. and Israel stand to benefit the most were the worst to occur. As MintPress has reported over the course of the war in Syria, the U.S. has long had the goal of regime change in Syria and it – along with many of its allies – have helped foment and prolong the Syrian conflict in pursuit of this end.

However, timing here is key. Such a provocation, and the retaliation it would inspire, would come just as Israel and Syria are the closest to outright war in decades, as Israeli airstrikes targeting Syria earlier this week were extensive and have led to the relocation of significant military assets, including tanks, to the Golan Heights, the portion of southern Syria under illegal Israeli occupation.

Were a U.S. and Western military intervention – provoked by another alleged chemical weapons attack blamed on Assad – to occur while Israel is actively preparing for a major conflict with Syria, it would put pressure on Assad from the U.S.-occupied east while Israel attacks from the south, making any military campaign against the Syrian government much more effective for those forces that have long sought the destruction of the Syrian state.

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20 May, 2018

Why after the next financial meltdown the system will be probably crushed beyond repair

We are running out of time. And maybe it's too late already ...

by system failure

Capitalism apologists frequently use a very common argument (to the point that it has become a cliche) to defend the capitalist system. They often support - in the context of a pseudo-rational dominant perception - that financial crises is a kind of a natural phenomenon and that capitalism will always survive, no matter what.

Yet, today there are signs showing that we are probably living in a unique moment in history. For the first time, there is a constant and bizarre atmosphere of uncertainty, inside which, only one certainty manages to survive: that another major crisis is about to come. The only question is "when".

Indeed, in the past, capitalism was always finding ways to escape dead ends and contradictions, through its ability to transform itself and mutate. Yet, after major financial crises, a big war was necessary to restart that process. However, the last mutation of capitalism, which has started about four decades ago, appears to contain the tools of its final demolition. Financial capitalism, accompanied with the corresponding neoliberal ideology, created a deeply unequal and unstable system.



The mainstream neoliberal ideology has penetrated in almost every aspect of life. Naturally, the so-called political center, especially in the West, has been bought by that ideology. In our strange times, establishment politicians have adopted a completely distorted perception of reality, in which, their political amoralism is often considered something natural and justifiable.

This blatant dysfunctionality continuously grows through a vicious cycle in which the system produces types of politicians who have no real vision and zero ability to foresee developments. Therefore, they have absolutely no idea how to handle another major crisis, and, naturally, their only option is to mobilize all energy and means to save that system from definite collapse, just to keep it alive until the next crisis.

We are now exactly at the point where we should expect another major war, after the big financial crisis of 2007-08, that will permit the system to survive. Only this time, a WWIII is not an option because with all this terrifying nuclear arsenal, it would probably mean the end of civilization.

So, what should we expect to happen after the next big financial meltdown?

It seems that the only answer to that question is that the system will be probably crushed beyond repair. This is as far as we can go, for now.

Hyper-automation evolves rapidly, throwing millions out of the working force. Small-medium businesses are being eliminated by a system in which only the big players have direct access to the printing and digital money machine, and creates bubbles of all sizes that finally burst, more and more frequently. And, despite the inflating instability, the elites continue to accumulate capital as if they are preparing for the final collapse, no longer being able to maintain their failed model.

Meanwhile, the only reverse contribution of that system to the planet, is the rapid environmental degradation with immeasurable impact to our lives in the close future. And, of course, the constant threat of a nuclear holocaust through an accident, or through a creepy, lunatic clown in power who will finally push the button.

Above all, and perhaps the most frightening, is that this is a picture of a system that makes absolutely no sense.

In short, we could say that, while the arrow of technology goes always forward, the arrow of the cultural progress of societies goes back and forth. Well, we don't have the luxury to go back and forth many times until we meet the arrow of technology and behave for the first time with true responsibility. Meaning, managing technology only for the benefit of the whole, and not for war and destruction of nature.

We are running out of time. And maybe it's too late already ...

19 May, 2018

Make the economy scream ... this time in Venezuela

The Greek journalist Aris Chatzistefanou, creator of impressively revealing documentaries such as Catastroika, Debtocracy, FASCISM INC and This is not a coup, reports from Caracas-Venezuela about the oncoming elections, while filming his new documentary about Venezuela called ‘Make the Economy Scream'.



Ignacio Ramonet, former editor-in-chief of Le Monde diplomatique, explained during the filming of Make the economy scream, that the continuous elections was one of the features of what Hugo Chavez called "Socialism of the 21st century".

The most paradox thing lately, is that the opponents of the so-called Bolivarian Revolution in Caracas are trying to prove that what happens in Venezuela is the purest type of Socialism and that the result of the elections in May, 20, will be a product of a rigged process.

Every phrase coming from their mouths actually echoes Donald Trump's statement that "the problem of Venezuela is not that Socialism has been poorly implemented, but that Socialism has been faithfully implemented". Another statement from 14 right-wing governments of the Lima Group through which they requested the cancellation of the presidential elections, it was like it was coming straight from the US State Department.



Despite the fact that the Government of Venezuela has invited the UN to send inspectors since February, the organization refused supporting that it did not have enough time to prepare for such a mission, according to diplomatic sources.

It should be noted that the biggest coalition of the right-wing opposition, MUD, called the UN to refuse to accept Maduro's invitation because such an action would legitimize the elections.

The opposition is now typically divided, especially after Henri Falcon's decision - who was cooperating with MUD in the past - to break the boycott of the elections by running for president. There is a creepy silence in the streets of Caracas, because of the fact that MUD has put all its power to dispute the result of the elections, even before the start of the process.

Yet, there is a broad fear for potential riots the first days after the announcement of the results, which according to the first signs, will give Maduro another victory.

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