Ignore The Trump Lies - Jon Pilger's Truth About Venezuela

John Pilger is a respected, multi-award winning, Australian journalist and film maker who has been named Journalist of the Year numerous times.

He has also visited Venezuela numerous times, and is as close to an expert you'll find in the English-speaking media.

His truth on the situation in Venezuela is completely at odds to the tropes and myths pushed out by journalists who pop in and pop out ... or in many cases, have never been there, ever.

Here's his rather more informed view on the situation in Venezuela.

In this analysis, John Pilger looks back over the Chavez years in Venezuela, including his own travels with Hugo Chavez, and the current US and European campaign to overthrow Nicolas Maduro in a 'coup by media' and to return Latin America to the 19th and 20th centuries.

John Pilger: The War On Venezuela Is Built On Lies

On the achievements of recent Venezuelan Governments :

Under the last Washington-controlled government in Caracas, poverty reached historic proportions. There was no healthcare for those who could not pay. There was no universal education; Mavis Mendez, and millions like her, could not read or write.

For all their [The current government] faults — such as allowing the Venezuelan economy to become hostage to the fortunes of oil and never seriously challenging big capital and corruption — they brought social justice and pride to millions of people and they did it with unprecedented democracy.

On Democracy :

"Of the 92 elections that we've monitored," said the Carter Centre, a respected monitor of elections around the world, "I would say the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world."

In eight years, Hugo Chavez won eight elections and referendums: a world record. He was electorally the most popular head of state in the Western Hemisphere - probably in the world.

71% of the people approved each of the 396 articles - that enshrined unheard of freedoms.

On the Economy :

The media do not report the collapse of oil prices since 2014 - largely the result of criminal machinations by Wall Street.

The media do not report the blocking of Venezuela's access to the US-dominated international financial system - as sabotage.

The media do not report Washington's [probably illegal] sanctions against Venezuela, which have caused the loss of at least US$6 billion in Venezuela's revenue since 2017, including US$2 billion worth of imported medicines.

The media do not the Bank of England's refusal to return Venezuela's gold reserves.

On Food Supply :

As journalist and film maker Pablo Navarrete reported this week, "Venezuela is not the catastrophe it has been painted. There is food everywhere, I have filmed lots of videos of food in markets all over Caracas, it's Friday night and the restaurants are full."

On Nicolás Maduro and the most recent Election :

Nicolás Maduro was re-elected President. A section of the opposition boycotted the election, a tactic tried against Chavez. The boycott failed: 9,389,056 people voted; sixteen parties participated and six candidates stood for the presidency. Maduro won 6,248,864 votes, or 67.84%.

On election day, I spoke to one of the 150 foreign election observers. "It was entirely fair," he said. "There was no fraud; none of the lurid media claims stood up. Zero. Amazing really."

On the American Response :

Like a page from Alice's tea party, the Trump Administration has presented Juan Guaido, a pop-up creation of the CIA-front National Endowment for Democracy, as the "legitimate President of Venezuela". Unheard of by 81% of the Venezuelan people, according to The Nation, Guaido has been elected by no one.

Maduro is "illegitimate", says Trump - who won the US presidency with three million fewer votes than his opponent, a "dictator", says vice president Mike Pence and "an oil trophy-in-waiting", says National Security Adviser John Bolton (who when I interviewed him in 2003 said, "Hey, are you a communist, maybe even Labour ?").

The former United Nations Rapporteur, Alfred de Zayas, has likened this to a "medieval siege" designed "to bring countries to their knees".

Should Guaido and his White Supremacists grab power, it will be the 68th overthrow of a sovereign government by the United States. Most of them democracies.

A fire sale of Venezuela's utilities and mineral wealth will surely follow, along with the theft of the country's oil.

On the media coverage :

For the media, Venezuela's democratic record, human rights legislation, food programmes, healthcare initiatives and poverty reduction ... did not happen.

The greatest literacy programme in human history did not happen, just as the millions who march in support of Maduro and in memory of Chavez ... do not exist.

When asked why she filmed only an opposition march, the BBC reporter Orla Guerin tweeted that it was "too difficult" to be on two marches in one day.

A war has been declared on Venezuela, of which the truth is "too difficult" to report.

One of the many events in favour of Maduro, which the Western Media failed to note

The story seems a bit different, doesn't it, when you listen to someone who's actually familiar with the country?