Monday, December 29, 2014


The killing of two police officers in New York has received an incredible amount of media attention as well as unanimous condemnation, just as it should have. It was a horrendous act. But why didn’t the media react in similar fashion to the murder of 10 security officers including 7 National Guardsmen by opposition protesters in Venezuela earlier this year? Instead the corporate media harped on alleged violation of human rights while playing down the unbridled violence perpetrated by the protesters in Venezuela and the anarchy they attempted to create. The media’s warped version of events was used by the Obama administration in December to justify sanctions against Venezuelan government officials. Double standards? A hidden agenda? Intentional distortion of the facts?

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


In the following article “After Chavez: The Maduro Government and the “Economic War” in Venezuela, I present a balanced view of the government of Nicolas Maduro from a leftist perspective. On the one hand, I criticize Maduro for not acting decisively in getting the system of exchange controls under control, while recognizing that the situation he inherited from Chavez in 2013 was complex. In addition, the article criticizes the Chavista leadership for not providing space for those who support the process of change but formulate critical positions. On the other hand, the article argues that those who deny President Maduro’s leftist credentials and claim that the process of change is completely in reverse gear ignore that he has upheld and extended Chávez’s policy toward the private sector which envisions responsibilities and threatens punishment and, in ultimate instance, expropriation if those obligations are not fulfilled. Furthermore, the whole issue of exchange controls and devaluation is largely devoid of ideological implications.

The article was originally written for the printed version of a magazine which had accepted publication but at a future date. I decided instead to publish it with the on-line “New Left Project.” I would very much appreciate feedback and comments of all type:

Monday, December 22, 2014

Reflexiones sobre mi libro "El fenómeno Chávez"

Algunas reflexiones sobre mi ultimo libro “El fenómeno Chávez: sus orígenes y su impacto (hasta 2013)” escritas por Evaristo Marcano

Saturday, December 20, 2014


One of the assumptions in Obama’s justification of his decision to reestablish diplomatic relations with Cuba is that the liberalization of the Cuban economy is part of the process of democratization. The assumption is also part of the narrative of the corporate media. This line of thinking implies that Washington is only concerned about democracy when, in fact, its main interest is that the Cuban economy has moved sufficiently in the direction of capitalism as to allow U.S. investors to reap handsome profits, as in pre-1959 days. Another implication is that socialism and democracy are incompatible. It may be argued that the opposite is true, that true democracy and capitalism are incompatible. Considering the enormous influence that monopoly corporation lobbies wield in Washington and how they distort democracy, the latter assertion would appear to contain more than a small element of truth.


Thursday, December 18, 2014


Just one more example of the corporate media’s blatant slants. An article in today’s New York Times on the reaction in Miami to the resumption of diplomatic relations with Cuba, states that the Cuban Five “had infiltrated Brothers to the Rescue, a group of pilots who would scan the sea for Cuban immigrants.” No mention at all was made of the fact that the Cuban government had uncovered plans of a terrorist plot against Cuba and s...hared the information with the FBI in the form of a 230 page report along with five videocassettes and 8 cassettes. The FBI recognized the seriousness and credibility of the allegations and promised to respond in two weeks. Instead of responding they arrested the Cuban Five who had been sent to Florida to get information that would help thwart the plot. Given the countless well-documented terrorist activity carried out in Cuba perpetrated by Cubans in Miami, the official Cuban version would appear much more credible than the one presented in today’s N.Y. Times. Why is the corporate media so afraid of presenting both sides of the story? Isn’t it their professional responsibility to do so?

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


The CIA’s torture program goes way back to the height of the Cold War and was institutionally linked. The argument that it was the work of a few operatives doesn’t cut ice. Today’s “Democracy Now” show of Amy Goodman’s debunks that myth. When the scandal around the torture committed in Abu Ghraib, Iraq broke in 2003, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld (whose lying habits over the years have been well documented) attributed the actions to a few “bad apples.” That was the same excuse that some CIA defenders used following the release of the recent Senate committee document. However, the fact of the matter is that the intelligence community developed sensory deprivation techniques during the Cold War. And the fact of the matter is that institutions such as the American Psychology Association have been at least informally linked to the torture program. Furthermore, the fact of the matter is that the ten-year delay in the U.S. ratification in 1994 of the U.N. Convention against torture and the reservations that it formulated is another demonstration of Washington’s failure to renounce the use of torture in no uncertain terms. Finally, as the Democracy Now program demonstrates “"Psychological torture is enshrined in U.S. law."




Monday, December 15, 2014


CNN’s feature on Venezuelans who have fled the misery that allegedly characterizes life in Venezuela left out important details. For instance, they provided statistics of how many Venezuelans have emigrated to the U.S. and now have resident or citizen status. They left out the percentage of those ex-patriots who, without any basis in fact whatsoever, claim they are political refugees and are given asylum status and eventually citizenship. The thousands of Central American children fleeing the violence in their country who have been thrown in detention centers should be so lucky!

Then the report went on to briefly interview a Chavista who presented his version. The reporter then refuted point by point everything the Chavista said. Is this principled journalism? That the interviewer knocks everything that the interviewee states? Then, rather than giving the Chavista the opportunity of rebuttal, the program interviewed a TV personality, Luis Chataing, who was given considerable time to talk about how difficult life is in Venezuela. No mention was made of the fact that Chataing is a well-known bitter critic of the government.

It can’t be a coincidence that all these details just happen to bolster the case for getting rid of the government of Nicolás Maduro!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

CIA heads Need to be Brought to Trial

If ex-CIA chiefs George Tenet and Porter Goss are not brought to trial for the torture recently documented by the U.S. Senate, than Adolf Eichmann should be exonerated. The pseudo doctors of the Nazi concentration camps didn’t do anything worse.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014


If what the report demonstrates is not torture than the word doesn’t mean anything. The Senate’s 6,000 page report on CIA torture documents such horrific acts as rectal feeding (or what they call “rectal hydration”) designed as a way to gain, in the words of the CIA’s chief of interrogations, “total control over the detainee.” The report points out that the torture techniques were so horrific that CIA agents at times attempted to terminate the sessions, but were given orders by senior CIA officials to continue. The report also suggests that the CIA lied about having carried out waterboarding and other harsh interrogation techniques on a limited number of prisoners. Only the 524 page “executive summary” was declassified. Why wasn’t more of the text (perhaps excluding only the names of the CIA agents) published? Is there more in the way of gory details we need to know?
If prosecutions do not follow the publication of this document, in the U.S. and at the international level, than the system of justice is nothing but a mockery. Remember, Milosevic was jailed by the International Court of Justice and actually died in prison in the Hague during his five-year trial. Will anybody be brought to trial for these criminal acts?  

Wednesday, December 3, 2014


Today (December 3) CNN reported on the FBI’s investigation into statements by Michael Brown’s stepfather that may have incited the violence in Ferguson following the announcement of the Grand Jury’s verdict. That news item followed another on the Venezuelan government’s judicial actions against Maria Corina Machado and Leopoldo López. CNN interviewed Machado while failing to present the government’s version. The government’s version is that Lopez, Machado and their ilk were responsible for doing exactly the same that the FBI is accusing Michael Brown’s father of doing: inciting violence. The difference is that in the case of Venezuela – unlike the U.S. – seven National Guardsman and three other security forces were killed at the same time that the opposition was basically calling for the overthrow of the government. Does the corporate media realize how obviously one-sided their reporting is?