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Venezuela: Are we Really Losing the Revolution?

By       Message Franz J. T. Lee       (Page 1 of 2 pages)     Permalink

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The Twilight of the 'Wretched of the Earth'

Across the globe, over the last decade, the 'wretched of the earth' have set their hopeful, tearful, proletarian eyes on the Bolivarian Revolution in Latin America, in particular, on Venezuela, on President Hugo Chavez Frias, on the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV). What is happening here in Venezuela doubtlessly has global, transhistoric relevance. Internally and externally, from all over, sincere, solidaric comrades are confused about the character of the Bolivarian Revolution, are concerned about its immediate future, some voice their constructive and some their desperate critique of the current situation, and some are being misled by the ongoing international media war against the Venezuelan government. The following reflections are of a general, theoretical nature which will be followed by more detailed analysis later. The topic is delicate, hence it is imperative to place it in its emancipatory global context.

Surely, it is our historic responsibility to defend all the gains which the Bolivarian Revolution has brought to the impoverished workers. We need not categorize all these gains here; President Hugo Chavez Frias himself repeats them daily in all his national and international programs and interviews. Who wants to verify his statistics and facts should come to Venezuela to investigate the reality of the Bolivarian Revolution here and now.

However, we should recall that bourgeois capitalist history has demonstrated that one of the most complicated things to make is a global revolution. The current mode of production which today is annihilating itself systematically, was born in Miletus nearly three millennia ago: only now it is full grown, or using the words of Immanuel Kant, has transformed itself to full recognizability.

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Who cannot see it now, will not have much time left to learn to see it in the near future. The capitalist revolution has been the formidable weapon of revolutionary capitalism. By careful study we would note, that not socialism but its negation, capitalism, is revolutionary.

Now, concerning the current political moment that the Bolivarian Revolution, its leader Hugo Cha'vez Frias and the United Socialist Party of Venezuela are experiencing, what is going on? What is going wrong? For now and to start with, we can only deal with the concept of revolution, by trying to place it under a macroscopic critique.

Why is it only now, that many a concerned observer would suddenly note that something is going wrong with our Bolivarian Revolution? Why does it go unnoticed that something was going wrong with all the past and current revolutions undertaken in the name of the 'wretched of the earth'? In whose interest have revolutions really materialized? Who benefited or benefits, as the Latin question 'cui bono ' asks? In whose class interest is it to 'radicalize' the Bolivarian Revolution and which class would rather be interested in getting rid of president Chavez and the PSUV? Then, whose interests is the PSUV defending? Why has there been an avalanche of warnings and calls for self-critique and rectification? Who really cares about socialism in Venezuela?

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Well, most certainly I do care, many of us do!

Ever since three decades, I have been living, teaching and fighting for emancipation in this beautiful country among its warm and friendly working population! Over the last decade, I have been completely free to voice my political opinion, always trying to contribute in a scholarly, scientific and philosophic manner without attacking anybody ad hominem , because problems never boil down to the actions of a single individual but rather have to be placed in their historical context.

Now, let us ask some guiding questions.

In history, in the course of the class struggle, which of the revolutions succeeded to definitely defend and globalize itself after its political and military victory? Which revolution definitely materialized its class interests and attained its social, political, economic and cultural goals?

In the answer lies the very quintessence of a revolution and the very clue to detect whether anywhere in our world today a revolution is actually taking place, expressing itself in practice and ideology.

Taking as an example some authentic, great revolutions like the American, French and Industrial Revolutions, we should ask ourselves: What class interests did they have in common? In which way were these Revolutions connected? What was their respective historical tasks? In which point did they all converge? Who really celebrated these revolutions? Did the serfs, slaves, peasants and workers celebrate them? Why, after eons, has the dawn of the 'wretched of the earth' not set on as yet?

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What then was and still is, the social function of a revolution? Venezuela, let us scrutinize the following:

* Revolution - 'rivoluzzione' or 'rivoltura' - was born in a specific, historical era to bring capitalism into power as the dominant mode of global destruction;

* Revolution had the historical task to destroy the feudal mode of production, its class structure, its theological superstructure and absolutist State;

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I, Franz John Tennyson Lee, was born in Ficksburg in 1938. I am a South African then classified as "Coloured" by the racist legislation of my home country. Since 1962, having acquired a scholarship to study overseas, I have been living in the (more...)

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