Citizen Action Monitor

Damning indictment of Ottawa’s recent steps to overturn Venezuela’s elected government

Science for Peace: “Our Ministry of Foreign Affairs has openly worked for rejection of the authority of the elected Maduro government.”

No 2430 Posted by fw, February 9, 2019

Science for Peace

“Science for Peace deplores the steps taken in recent days by the Government of Canada to overturn the elected government of Venezuela.  Through the Lima Group and in direct communication with anti-government leaders in Venezuela, our Ministry of Foreign Affairs has openly worked for rejection of the authority of the elected Maduro government. This is not only a violation of the principles of the United Nations, it is contrary to the spirit of peace-making efforts. An indispensable precondition for world peace is non-interference in others’ internal affairs.  Our diplomats should be working with those of Mexico and many Caribbean states in a neutral effort to find a Venezuelan solution to that country’s current economic and political travails.”Science for Peace

Science for Peace, based in the Dept of Physics of the University of Toronto, “works to achieve a world free of deadly and structural violence, a world in which citizens strive to attain the civil, political, economic, and social rights recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights through non-violent political action.”

In its brief statement, reposted below, Science for Peace: deplores steps taken by Government of Canada to overturn elected government of Venezuela; declares that Ottawa’s alignment with Washington and right-wing Lima Group is alarming and profoundly unacceptable; asserts that Ottawa provides a financial base and legal haven for exploitative Canadian business practices; and contends that the Trudeau government’s unethical political and economic interests are shaping its intervention in Venezuela.

My repost includes my subheadings and text highlighting. Alternatively, read the piece on the website of the Science for Peace by clicking on the following linked title.

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Let Venezuelans Solve Venezuela’s Problems by Science for Peace, February 5, 2019

Science for Peace deplores steps taken by Government of Canada to overturn elected government of Venezuela 

Science for Peace deplores the steps taken in recent days by the Government of Canada to overturn the elected government of Venezuela.  Through the Lima Group and in direct communication with anti-government leaders in Venezuela, our Ministry of Foreign Affairs has openly worked for rejection of the authority of the elected Maduro government. This is not only a violation of the principles of the United Nations, it is contrary to the spirit of peace-making efforts. An indispensable precondition for world peace is non-interference in others’ internal affairs.  Our diplomats should be working with those of Mexico and many Caribbean states in a neutral effort to find a Venezuelan solution to that country’s current economic and political travails.

Ottawa’s alignment with Washington and right-wing Lima Group is alarming and profoundly unacceptable

Canadian political alignment on this issue with the right-wing governments of Latin America and with the Trump administration is alarming and profoundly unacceptable.  There is a well-documented history, beginning in the early twentieth century, of American support for authoritarian regimes in Latin America. This involvement has included military training, provision of weapons, military interventions, collaboration in the planning of coups, and acquiescence in the imprisonment and even torture of the political opposition to pro-American governments. In Venezuela itself, the US government supported an unsuccessful coup against the duly elected Chávez government in 2002. Canada has, in recent years, supported the replacement of elected governments in Honduras, Guatemala, Haiti and now in Venezuela.

Ottawa provides a financial base and legal haven for exploitative Canadian business practices

Canada’s relations with Latin America are problematical in broader terms. Canada provides a financial and legal haven for businesses that exploit labour and decimate the forests, agriculture, and watersheds in these countries. Canadian banks mire these countries in debt and buy up public utilities. Protests against Canadian mining companies in Mexico, Peru, Bolivia and Guatemala are met with police and military brutality.  In addition, Canada needs to maintain a distance from the far-right government of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil. Bolsonaro, [through his] policies, threatens our common future by opening up the Amazon, the lungs of the planet, to deforestation for profit.

Ottawa’s unethical political and economic interests are shaping its deceitful intervention in Venezuela

It appears that the political and economic interests pursued by the Trudeau government are shaping its interventionist stance toward Venezuela and its more general policy orientations in Latin America. If Canada is concerned about brutal authoritarian regimes that wreak havoc, it might turn its attention to Saudi Arabia and the war in Yemen. It is surely hypocritical to sell military hardware to Saudi Arabia while condemning the Maduro regime for lesser crimes than those practiced by Saudi Arabia.

People need to solve their own problems to build a democracy that is meaningful

People need to solve their own problems to build a democracy that is meaningful. Foreign interference is not only unethical in the case of Venezuela today, but ultimately will make matters worse – the usual outcome of Western interventions in the global south yesterday and today.

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