Four years ago today and only months after the U.S. had violence visited upon it on 9-11, Venezuelan military and civic opposition backed by the Bush Administration launched a violent and ultimately failed coup against Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. After massive protests against the coup, Chavez returned to office two days later.
Among the most memorable mental images I carry from my visit to Venezuela in 2006 are those of the many men, women and even young people who spoke passionately about how they risked much to defend their Constitution. Whatever you think or know or think you know about the Venezuelan revolution, there’s not a spec of legitimacy to the U.S. government’s efforts to overthrow a legitimately elected government. Not a spec.
Today, millions across the the planet are marking this anniversary with protests, vigils, educational events and other activities marking this historic date. These events come at an especially tense time as the U.S. continues its desperate attempts to turn the “red” and “pink” tide sweeping its former “backyard”, the rest of América. Again acting through one of its surrogates, the U.S. tried to draw Venezuela into a conflict by encouraging Colombia, one of its only allies in the region, to violate the sovereignty of Ecuador.
So, next time you hear people who said little or nothing about pre-Chavez Venezuela and who are now vociferous in their criticism, ask them for their opinion about April 4th.