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Human rights and labor lawyer Dan Kovalik, just back from Caracas, reports on Maduro’s newly-elected constituent assembly, with perspectives that differ from corporate media coverage.Kovalik was our guest here just a week ago, talking about his new book, The Plot to Scapegoat Russia: How the CIA and the Deep State Have Conspired to Vilify Russia. That’s when I learned of his plans to be an international observer for this controversial election.
Our conversation is framed around the misinformation and spin on Venezuela in our mainstream media. Trump’s threats of sanctions if the election went forward–an overt act of interference in the Venezuelan election–are shrugged off by the media that promote the unproven narrative of Russian interference in the 2016 US election. When asked if there were any recent Venezuelan elections that the US did NOT interfere in, Kovalik says, “non”.
Kovalik describes the scene in Caracas, and the hardships of daily life; he contrasts this with descriptions of everyday people he encountered as a poll watcher, and that the new constituent assembly is an effort to deliver the promise of the Chavista revolution.
He offers history and context of the struggle between capitalists and socialists, the 2002 US-backed coup that displaced Hugo Chavez until a rebellion returned him to power, and the drop in oil prices that hammered the Venezuelan economy. He argues that, if Maduro wants to be dictator, this process isn’t a viable route to that end.
We discuss how most major media outlets demonize socialism, and focus on violence that is often sparked by Maduro’s opposition, leaving most Americans with a highly inaccurate view of the struggle.