11 Apr 2007

Green Venezuela

A couple of years ago I watched the documentary 'The Revolution Will Not Be Televised', which is about the 2002 coup against President Hugo Chavez. Since then I have taken a personal interest in the progress of Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution. My party, the Green Party of England and Wales, is affiliated to the Venezuela Information Centre (VIC), which is a solidarity organisation that campaigns against foreign interference in Venezuela’s internal affairs. I have a lot of links with friends in Caracas and a Green Party delegation, including our chair Richard Mallender, went to listen to Hugo Chavez when he spoke in London last year. Caroline Lucas, who represents our party in the European Parliament, is a patron of VIC, and I travelled to Caracas with my partner Sarah Farrow as part of a VIC delegation in 2006.

So I think it is fair to say that on the whole the Green Party is pretty supportive of solidarity with Venezuela.

More here...see you in Stroud later perhaps.


studentmedic said...

For anyone interested, a low-quality version of the film mentioned (The Revolution will not be televised) is available here:
(Or just search for it at the google video site).

tim said...

Here it is on youtube in 8 parts as well:
Audio is a bit of sync for some of it.

Anonymous said...

Derek, how can you label as green a president who is instigating the construction of a pipeline through the Amazon to supply an uncertain quantity of Venezuelan gas to Argentina, when Argentina can easily be supplied by Bolivia's massive reserves through existing infrastructure?

Friends of the Earth Brazilian-Amazon has denounced the pipeline project as "completely foolish":

"...the list of concerns about the pipeline project is long and diverse. The pipeline would cross more than 2,000 km of Amazon rainforest. The impacts of this would be immense, causing erosion, water pollution, damage to river regimes and disrupting 22 different groups of indigenous people. In addition, much confusion surrounds the project - no one is sure how long the Venezuelan gas supply will actually last and the South American governments involved are unable to agree exactly which route the pipeline should take."


Let me also quote OilWatch:

"The Southern Gas Pipe will affect natural ecosystems and water sources. Emerging diseases like dengue fever and malaria will grow stronger due to the interruption of the swamps; and illnesses like leptospirosis will spread due to the increased mobility then expected in the zone.

The gas pipeline breaches will cause fires along its 5700 miles stretch. There will be local weather alterations as a result of deforestation, and an infinity of other impacts in the places through which it will go.

In the Amazon region, besides thousands of indigenous communities living in very vulnerable conditions, there are also indigenous people living in voluntary isolation. Those will see their life brutalized. They will be exposed to illnesses against which they have no resistance.

To serve the gas pipelines, there is a need of roads. Once built, these roads will become open veins and hopeless wounds, as they will be open doors for wood exploitation, land trafficking, mining business, and to steal biodiversity and ancestral knowledge from the indigenous people"


Would a green president promote such a project?

I could also mention, to choose just another of Chavez's command economy projects, his plans to build a new refinery on pristine land at Cabruta rather than on a brownfield site.

You say "So I think it is fair to say that on the whole the Green Party is pretty supportive of solidarity with Venezuela."

So does that mean the whole Green Party is supportive of the Gasoducto del Sur project, even though Friends of the Earth no less calls it "completely foolish" and has such a massive list of concerns?

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