The Rising of Latin America – The Genesis of ‘The War On Democracy’

By John Pilger

13 Jun 2007

In the 1960s, when I first went to Latin America, I travelled up the cone of the continent from Chile across the Altiplano to Peru, mostly in rickety buses and single-carriage trains. Continue reading

The War on Democracy by John Pilger

Set in Latin America and the US, The War on Democracy explores the historic and current relationship of Washington with countries such as Venezuela, Bolivia and Chile. Continue reading

Cuba! Africa! Revolution!

[***Please note: Jihan El-Tahri’s film has been removed and replaced with a short related film***]

“CUBA! AFRICA! REVOLUTION!”

Jihan El Tahri’s 2007 documentary “CUBA! AFRICA! REVOLUTION!” (aka “Cuba, an African Odyssey”) tells the previously untold story of Cuba’s support for African revolutions. This documentary unravels the story of the so-called Cold War,through the prism of its least known arena: Africa. Against colonialism, capitalism, and communism, the newly independent nations attempted for the first time to gain real control of their own countries. From Che Guevara’s military campaign to avenge Lumumba in the Congo, up to the fall of apartheid in South Africa, 300,000 Cubans fought alongside African revolutionaries.

Patrice Lumumba was an African anti-colonial leader, and the first legally elected Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, after he assisted it achieve independence from Belgium in June 1960. Only ten weeks later, Lumumba’s government was deposed in a coup. He was subsequently imprisoned and assassinated. President Colonel Mobutu, the key figure in the coup, supported by the Congo’s former colonial power, Belgium, and the CIA, became the Congo’s ruler. Cuba shared Africa’s revolutionary quest for independence.

Fidel Castro decided that Cuba could not stand idly by, so he sent Che Guevara to Africa to assess how they could aid local liberation movements. In 1965, Guevara went to the Congo in an attempt to spark a revolution against the pro-Western regime, which had emerged after the assassination of Lumumba. The problem was, Guevara was without formal military training, and was up against the Congolese, who were aided by US Army Special Forces. So he returned to Cuba and recruited 120 soldiers, taking them back to the Congo. Still, Guevara’s army was no match, and they eventually withdrew in August, 1965.

From the tragicomic epic of Che Guevara in Congo, to the triumph at the battle of Cuito Carnavale in Angola, Cuba: An African Odyssey attempts to understand the world today through the saga of these internationalists who won every battle, but finally lost the war.

Update: The documentary “Cuba, an African Odyssey” is due for general release on 21/01/2008

 

Chomsky on the current political climate in Latin America

As more than 10,000 protesters take to the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil to vent their anger at the visiting U.S. President and with huge protests anticipated in Colombia & Uruguay, you have to ask – Just why is George W.Bush so desperately trying to shore up support in strategic countries in Latin America?

Answer: “The United States is Terrified”

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Power and Terror: Noam Chomsky in Our Times

The following film premiered in Tokyo on September 11, 2002 on the first anniversary of the 9.11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.

The film chronicles the thinking and activism, at that time, of the noted linguist Noam Chomsky, who since the Vietnam War era has been a vocal and consistent critic of the way the United States exercises state power in the world arena. Continue reading

The Orchestrated Attacks on Chávez are a Travesty

The chilling Oliver Stone film Salvador got a rare airing on television this week. It was a reminder of a time when, for those on the left, little victories were increasingly dwarfed by big defeats – not least in a Latin America which became synonymous with death squads and juntas. How different things seem now. Yesterday US Vice-President Dick Cheney came uncomfortably close to the reality of Afghan resistance to foreign occupation. On the same day Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez delivered a mightier blow to the neocon dream of US domination, announcing an extension of public ownership of his country’s oil fields Continue reading

The People or The White House. You decide.

Political rhetoric vs real people and real life in Venezuela. Has the white house propaganda machine spun one tall tale too many? Views on the street from Caracas. Continue reading