Venezuela & ALBA Weekly 7.24.2020: Nicaragua and Cuba Celebrate July 19 and 26; COVID rampant in non-ALBA Latin America

PeoplesDispatch: Coronavirus and Economic Crisis in Latin America and the Caribbean will deepen in coming monthsThis area is emerging as the new epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic. The acceleration is driven by the easing of quarantine measures and the lifting of restrictions on economic activities. The governments have rushed workers to return to work without enforcing strong sanitary measures. As of July 15, the region has registered over 3,497,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 149,769 deaths from the disease. Brazil is the most affected country by the pandemic in the region, and the second in the world. Peru is the second hardest-hit country in the region and the fifth worldwide. Chile follows as the third worst-hit country in the region and the sixth globally. It is followed by Mexico, which is the fourth severely hit country in the region and the seventh in the world. 



Video: Cuba, Chernobyl, “The Translator” (available through July 27; Password: Translator #1) Real story movie about a Cuban professor who was a translator working with Chernobyl children.

Peoples World (Tom Whitney): U.S. blockade, domestic supply system inefficiencies bring food insecurity for Cubans Cuba’s food supply system is presently unstable, due in part to a fragile Cuban economy. Cuba’s food supply problem manifests in the perennial need to import 60-80% of what Cubans eat, at an annual cost of $2 billion. Private farmers produce almost 80% of Cuba’s domestically-produced food. This article presents a thorough study of Cuba’s struggle to attain food self-sufficiency.

San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approved Resolution calling for Medical and Scientific Collaboration with Cuba to fight the COVID-19 pandemic On July 21, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approved “Resolution promoting medical and scientific collaboration between the City and County of San Francisco and Cuba to address the COVID-19 pandemic and urging the United States Congress to remove restrictions on collaboration by suspending economic and travel sanctions against Cuba.”San Francisco joins a growing array of municipal resolutions, initiatives in state legislatures, and labor organizations calling for this respectful mutually beneficial collaboration.

Cleveland City Council says: End U.S. blockade of Cuba The City Council of Cleveland in the state of Ohio unanimously adopted a resolution calling for “an end to the U.S. economic, commercial and financial embargo against Cuba.” This is the 14th such municipal resolution. Cleveland joins Richmond, Berkeley, Oakland and Sacramento, Calif.; Seattle; Helena, Mont.; Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minn.; Detroit and Meridian Township, Mich.; Pittsburgh; Brookline, Mass.; and Hartford, Conn.



Nicaragua President Daniel Ortega speech on July 19 anniversary of Revolution  “The worst epidemic is the one that causes hunger, the epidemic of savage capitalism, which was fully imposed in the world until this epidemic came and shook it. It has shaken savage capitalism and is telling them, ‘that is not the way to go’” Daniel Ortega stressed in his speech how important it is for countries to create universal, not-for-profit health systems. He emphasized that the Sandinista government has invested vast resources creating a free, socialized health program that serves “the poor, the humble, the workers, the people.”

Grayzone: An Inside Look at Nicaragua’s Sandinista Revolution on its 41st Anniversary President Daniel Ortega condemned “savage capitalism” and US interference in his country’s affairs, trumpeted the gains of his nation’s free socialized health system, and said the failure of rich developed countries in the Global North to protect their own citizens during the pandemic was a “wake-up call” that a new global economic model is needed.In the past 13 years of Sandinista rule, overall poverty in Nicaragua has been reduced from 48.3 percent to 24.9 percent, and extreme poverty from 17.2 percent to 6.9 percent. Illiteracy has fallen from 35 percent to 3 percent.Nicaragua has the fifth-highest gender-equality rating in the world, and the smallest gender gap in all of the Americas.



Reuters: U.S. seeking arrest of Venezuela chief justice, offers reward for info A new outlandish attack on Venezuela. “The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions on Venezuelan Chief Justice Maikel Moreno and announced a $5 million reward for information leading to his arrest or conviction for allegedly participating in transnational organized crime.”

CNN: In Venezuela, US sanctions are only hurting A statement that is not so bad for a US corporate media outlet. “There is a humanitarian disaster developing today in Venezuela, driven in part by failed economic sanctions imposed by the United States…It is time for the United States to stop being part of the problem and be part of an international effort to address ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.”


Former ALBA Countries

Popular Resistance: Bolivia at the Gates of an Electoral and Political-Military Coup d’état The MAS candidate, Arce, is leading in the polls,and the government seeks to ban them from running. The coup government is also working on the creation of an “indigenous-independence” guerrilla group that aims to commit violent acts (fires, looting and even murder) against the civilian population, in order to blame MAS for them. All this with the support of the CIA station of the US Embassy in La Paz. 

PeoplesDispatch: Bolivian right attempts to disqualify Evo Morales’ MAS party from upcoming elections Bolivia’s coup-installed government, on July 20, filed a lawsuit in the Supreme Electoral Court (TSE) to disqualify the presidential candidate of the Movement Towards Socialism (MAS), Luis Arce. The alliance that supports the coup regime, Juntos, requested that Arce be banned from running in the general elections scheduled for September 6, over an alleged violation of electoral laws.

Sputnik News: Court Issues 8-Year Prison Sentence for Former President of Ecuador Correa New “lawfare” maneuver to block democracy. he criminal court said in April that the former president of Ecuador, former Vice President Jorge Glas, and 16 others were found guilty of “aggravated passive bribery”. Several others were given reduced terms for cooperating with the authorities.The court of appeal has issued an 8-year prison sentence for former President Rafael Correa for the alleged crime of bribery in the so-called “Caso Sobornos 2012-2016”. The sentence was also issued for all the accused.

TeleSur: Rafael Correa’s Party is Barred from Running in Ecuador Elections Ecuador’s National Electoral Council (CNE) on Sunday suspended four political movements for the 2021 elections, including the Social Commitment Force Party, an organization led by former president Rafael Correa. The other political movements banned from the upcoming elections are Podemos, Libertad es Pueblo, and Social Justice.



Nicaragua Friends of the ATC Ben Linder Solidarity School online class

July 26 Los Angeles (not a webinar): Celebrate  26 de Julio​, and Why We Must End the US blockade on Cuba, and Get the USmo Out of Guantanamo

July 26 webinar Canadian Network on Cuba: Celebrate Cuba’s Moncada Day with Josefina Vidal, Cuban Ambassador to Canada

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