About this blog

Venezuela: translating the revolution aims to promote solidarity with Venezuela's Bolivarian revolution by providing translations of interesting and important Venezuelan news articles and opinion pieces. It welcomes genuine discussion and debate on the posted articles.

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Socialist militants and party membership

The following is a continuation of my translation of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela's 'Statutes'. See previous posts for the rest of the PSUV's Red Book to date.

Chapter 2.  On militants

Translated by Owen Richards
Article 6: Characteristics of militants
Every militant of the United Socialist Party Of Venezuela (PSUV) is a socialist, Bolivarian, anti-imperialist, anti-capitalist, internationalist, humanist, environmentalist and feminist; and should accept and practice the principles, programme and statutes of the party, and is therefore a militant of the hopes and dreams of the great majority, and guides his or her conduct by the following values:
• Socialist ethics and morality.
• Socialist education and self-education.
• Conscious discipline based on criticism and self-criticism.
• The practice of solidarity and love.
• The consciousness of social duty.
• The struggle against corruption and bureaucratism.

Article 7: A militant of the United Socialist Party Of Venezuela:
Is any person above 15 years of age who voluntarily joins the PSUV and is admitted by the appropriate body, and who accepts and defends the statutes, declaration of principles, and the program of the party.

Article 8: The rights of militants
Every militant has the right to:
1.  Participate in the Socialist Patrols and any other party-defined base unit of organisation with full speaking and voting rights.
2.  Nominate and be nominated to the various leadership bodies of the party and to positions of popular election.
3.  Raise ideas, projects and programmes with the various leadership bodies of the party.
4.  Make reasonable criticisms only within party bodies.
5.  Activate and participate with communities in the strengthening of popular power and in social movements or fronts.
6.  To take—alongside the people—social control of the various organs of popular power and the revolutionary government.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

How much socialism?

A good rebuttal of those who argue Venezuela's socialist revolution hasn't moved fast enough in nationalising all sectors of big capital.

How much socialism?

Translated by Owen Richards

The question orbits every revolution. Processes are defined in the amount and speed of changes.

The reformists, the social democrats, often appear to be close to Socialism. At least, they don't combat it openly. They have their Socialist International and don't hesitate to call themselves socialists - take the MAS for example. They accept that capitalism is malignant, they admit the need to change it, but, when the time comes for action, they start slinking off.

They say: "Changes must be made bit by bit so as not to disrupt the economy", "the changes should not be extended too far, certain areas are sufficient", "private enterprises have a right to subsist, society needs them". With such parsimony, the Consciousness of Social Duty is not formed, and the changes get absorbed by the capitalist system. They thus derail the possibility of building socialism.

The revolutionary position is clear: as much and as rapid a socialism as the Consciousness of Social Duty requires, and at the speed necessary to prevent capitalist restoration. This is the formula for building and defending Socialism. There is no other.

The changes can be material ones: those related to Social Ownership administered by the National State, the only form of ownership that is entwined with the Consciousness of Social Duty.

Regarding social organisation: those who make up the national fabric, from the capillary units up to the national level, from the base to the national leadership bodies. This scheme applies to all forms of social and political organisation.

Changes of consciousness: here the message of our means of communication is fundamental - the example of leaders, and the signals they send to the population.  These messages should translate the steps of the Revolution, in ideology, in consciousness, in ethical and moral values. It's important to emphasise that these changes in consciousness and culture are the main aims of socialist construction and the Revolution's measure of success.

The level of consciousness is measured by mobilisation: a defenseless, sedentary mass is an unconscious mass. A combative mass - organised and mobilised, defending the revolution and the Commander [Hugo Chavez] on any terrain - is a conscious mass.

Isolated advances get diluted; they should be achieved in unity, and at the different speeds imposed by circumstance, but always with the same tendency, the same spirit.

Socialism is not built by proposals for advance in one area, while simultaneously taking  actions of retreat in another; or, as Che [Guevara] would say, by using socialist tools in one area and blunt tools in another. The masses will end up confused, the lines that separate us from the oligarchs blurred, and the life will be sucked out of the socialist idea.

Capitalism will never be good: be it small, medium or big, it will always exploit and damage the planet. There is no possible third way - the third way ends up sooner or later in capitalism. The dilemma is Socialism or capitalism.

Spanish original: 'Un Grano de Maiz'

Friday, 18 February 2011

Organisational principles and internal democracy

The following continues my translation of the PSUV Red Book’s ‘Statutes’ (i.e. constitution). Here are articles 3, 4 and 5 from chapter 1:

Fundamental positions (continued)

Translated by Owen Richards

Article 3: values and principles
The party builds itself as a socialist party and affirms the socialist society as the only alternative to supersede the capitalist system. It takes the thoery and practice of Simon Bolivar, Simon Rodriguez and Ezequiel Zamora as its creative source.  Likewise, it adopts the principles of scientific socialism, of Christianity, of liberation theology, of all critical, universal and humanist thought, gender equity and equality and the ethical obligation to build a model that respects life and mother Earth and guarantees the survival of humanity.
Simon Bolivar
As a diverse and multi-ethnic party, it nourishes its roots in the Afro-Indian legacy of Guaicaipuro and Jose Leonardo Chirino, everthing inspired in the fundamental leadership and revolutionary ideas of Commander Hugo Chavez, directed towards creating a new man and woman in the crucible of hopes and dreams that makes our new socialism a racially-mixed socialism, loaded with African identity, with the identity of our indigenous peoples, and with the international vision whose chief exponent has been Francisco de Miranda.
We assume civic-military unity as the principle to guarantee national and popular defence and sovereignty.
Article 4: On organisational principles
The United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), as a revolutionary party representing the interests of the urban and rural proletariat, of the campesinos and the other exploited social sectors, must be organized and work according to the principles of socialist democracy. That is to say:
• Political-ideological cohesion.
• Democratic centralism—understood as the subordination of the whole organisation to the leadership; the subordination of all militants to their organisations; the subordination of all lesser bodies to superior bodies; the subordination of the minority to the majority; top down and bottom up control of the implementation of party decisions; that all leadership bodies be elected, and the principle of collective leadership (collective and individual responsibilities) —all of which is based on the conscious discipline arising from the political line, programme and statutes governing the life of the party.
• Collective leadership of all bodies.
• Accountability before leadership bodies and before the people.
• Recallability, based upon a democratic evaluation of management.
• Constant exercise of criticism and self-criticism regarding one's own errors and those of others, in the correct way with the aim of overcoming areas.
• The exercise of socialist emulation—understood as the recognition of the political practice and revolutionary integrity of party militants.
Article 5: Methods of internal democracy
The party may use various methods when making decisions and conducting internal elections, which will be decided by the various leadership bodies according to the political conditions: direct,universal and secret election; cooptation; first, second or third grade elections; discussion and consensus.

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

PSUV Red Book—Statutes

The following is the second section from the PSUV's Libro Rojo, or Red Book, the statutes or constitution of the party. My translation of Section One was serialised in previous posts.

PSUV Red Book—Statutes
Translated by Owen Richards
We, delegates to the First Extraordinary Congress Of The United Socialist Party Of Venezuela (PSUV), militants all, under the leadership of President Commander Hugo Rafael Chavez Frias, having studied and considered the events and political dynamics of recent years, in which new and varied forms of organization, political foundations and elements of action arose, agree with the definitive approval of the statutes of the United Socialist Party Of Venezuela in the following terms:

Chapter 1  Fundamental dispositions

Article 1: Name
The name of the United Socialist Party Of Venezuela is adopted and allows the use of the initials PSUV as well as the flag, anthem and slogans that are set out in the respective regulations.  The party arises as an expression of the struggles and the revolutionary will of the people; it will be the political tool to unite revolutionary and socialist action and to carry out strategic tasks in order to achieve social happiness.
The party advocates unity and ethics in its policy and in the permanent activity that characterises revolutionary anti-imperialist and socialist action.
Article 2: Aims or objectives
The fundamental aims of the United Socialist Party Of Venezuela (PSUV) are the construction of Bolivarian socialism, the anti-capitalist, anti-imperialist struggle, and the consolidation of Bolivarian, participatory and activist democracy, through the recognition and strengthening of Popular Power.  In its anti-imperialist essence, it has an internationalist vocation and therefore the unity and alliance of the exploited peoples of the world and their popular and progressive movements, with the aim of putting an end to capitalism.  The party takes up the task of strengthening south-south relations with the peoples of Our America, the Caribbean, Africa and Asia.
As a party of the masses and of cadres, it has the responsibility to educate itself in history and in human experiences in order to take up the task of permanently creating and inventing socialism, using its own criteria.

Monday, 14 February 2011

Differences between February 4, 1992 and February 27, 1989

The following is an excerpt from Hugo Chavez’s February 4, 2011 speech commemorating “4F” – the February 4 military rebellion he led in 1992. It touches on the “Un Grano de Maiz1” column I translated in the previous post. 

Differences between February 4, 1992 and February 27, 1989

Translated by Owen Richards
“Those that die for life cannot be said to be dead”. The army and I would like to emphasize this quote, 19 years after that patriotic day, a day which we should call the revolution of the 4th of February, it was within the national army where that force was nurtured ...
Yesterday I was reading, as I do almost every day, the "A grain of corn" column that an old comrade,Toby Valderrama, publishes in the Diario Vea [newspaper], and he makes a very interesting point there, as far as I understand it. He clearly establishes the differences that there was and are in history, for the lessons that history offers us, between that tremendous jolt, that tremendous rebellion of the 27th of February, that of the 28th of February, the Caracazo, and the revolution of the 4th of February.
Nobody planned the Caracazo. The Caracazo exploded in a spontaneous way, but it had no leadership, it had no political project, the people did not go towards the centre of power, no, they dispersed, they were massacred.
The 4th of February on the other hand obeyed a thought-out project, planned for several years. Right here in Valencia there were many meetings, near the hippodrome, this hippodrome that I know so well. There we frequently met with young officers—I'm talking about 1978. The first cells existed of what later would become the Revolutionary Bolivarian Movement 200.
Chavez (standing, left) and his MBR-200 comrades

It was the end of the seventies and the eighties passed by in the same way. And within the National Army a force was amassing, growing in the Army. Meanwhile, nearly all the revolutionary political forces dispersed, dissolved, extinguished. And I remembered last night one of Simon Bolivar's phrases, in some document that Bolivar wrote: “the Army is the people that can”. That's how it happened here. This expression of Bolivar has its context, but I think that it was perfectly applicable to the context of Venezuela in the seventies, in the eighties and in the nineties – “the people that couldn't”, “the people that had no way”. That was shown perfectly by the Caracazo, the people couldn't, they didn't have power to influence the situation neither via the fixed, faked, manipulated elections, nor via other ways. The people could not through guerrilla war, the people could not in the factories, the working class could not, the campesinos could not, the students could not, in spite of their immense sacrifice.
The people could not. They kept bashing themselves against the wall, falling, picking themselves up and bashing against the wall again. And then the Bolivarian phrase - “the army is the people that can” - became a reality, and that was shown on the 4th of February, 1992.
But today the phrase has been transformed. We're no longer in 1992. It was the army, “the people that could”, because we are the children of the people that were in the army and we constitute a vanguard movement. It was a vanguard that set out at midnight on that 3rd of February, and that is another of the ideas that Toby Valderrama yesterday touched on in his "A Grain of Corn" column, and I think it’s really timely for the debate that we are having on the Strategic Lines of Political Action, because a vanguard is always needed.
There are those that proclaim anarchist ideas, that deny the need for organization, that deny the role of the vanguard. But in reality, Venezuelan history shows that the people without a vanguard is manipulated. A people without a conscious and committed vanguard tends to get lost in the spaces of the struggle.
The vanguard must be maintained, it must be strengthened. Today the vanguard is the party, it has to be a coherent organisation, with an ideological, political project. The Socialist Party must become a great vanguard. And, I’m going to say as well, the Army. The Army. And when I say the Army, I’m of course also referring to the Navy, the Air Force, the National Guard, and the Militia.  The Army has to continue to be a revolutionary vanguard of the people. 

Sourced from : Debate Socialista 
1 The “Un Grano de Maiz ("A grain of corn") blogsite by Toby Valderrama (Antonio Aponte) takes its name from a quote by 19th century Cuban independence hero, Jose Marti. Warning revolutionaries against striving for personal glory, Marti wrote: “All the glory in the world fits into a grain of corn”.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

The 4th is not the child of the 27th

This article from the 'Grano de Maiz' blogsite discusses the relationship between the spontaneous mass uprising of February 27, 1989 - known as the Caracazo - and the Chavez-led military rebellion of February 4, 1992.
President Chavez discussed the issues raised by this blog post in his recent speech commemorating the February 4 rebellion. I will translate some excerpts of his speech in subsequent posts.

The 4th is not the child of the 27th, on the contrary, it refutes it
Un grano de maiz, Wednesday January 2, 2011
Translated by Owen Richards
Continuing to comment on the first of the Five Strategic Lines in the document proposed by the PSUV leadership for discussion, it's timely to refer to a paragraph that without doubt influences the rest of the document, determines its vision. 
The document says: "after the civic-military rebellions of the 4th of February and the 27th of November 1992, daughters of the popular rebellion of the 27th of February of 1989…"
Consideration of this point is of vital importance for the progress of the revolution, because the positions we take, the ideologies we have, will determine the function of the party – as either a vanguard or a mere electoral machine.
Let's analyse what happened.
The Caracazo, Feb 27, 1989
February 27 was a "popular revolt", without any political aim or organisation.  It revealed the failure of a left wing leadership that was defeated, exhausted, and had succumbed to the comfort of the oligarchy's table, or taken refuge in anarchistic positions denying the role of leadership, the role of political and social organization, leaving the masses without a compass, without a vanguard. That formidable explosion did not go beyond being a "jacquerie", a riot, when it could and should have been the seizure of government, the start of the revolutionary road.
By contrast, the 4th of February was an eminently political action, an action of the vanguard aimed at raising the awareness of the people, at leading them.  It was a return to being, and leading, a defeat of  the renunciation of leadership, a victory over the anarchistic ideology that failed on the 27th of February.
The tank smashing through the doors of Miraflores is symbolic, a clearly political action, seizing power, and its defence.
Tank smashing through the doors of Miraflores Palace, Feb 4 , 1992
So to say, as the document does, that today we analyse the 4th of February as the child of the 27th, is to agree with the anarchistic current - that it's not necessary to organise and politicise the masses, and worse still, that a vanguard is not necessary. On the contrary they combat it because it could become a "church".
It is to endorse this anarchistic petit-bourgeois current, and add obstacles to the further strengthening of the party.  If the 27th is the way to go...  then what good is the party?  It will be at best a "transmission belt".  This position obscures the strong need for a vanguard party to lead the people in combat.
It's revolutionary to think that the 4th of February surpasses the 27th's dispersion and lack of leadership.  It demonsatrates the need for a vanguard.
A crucial issue thus emerges in the discussion: Is a vanguard necessary? What is the party for?
We think it is [necessary].  Without a vanguard party leading the battle the people won't be able to advance. It is possible to build it without privileges, without it being turned into a church - that is the challenge.  To strengthen it we need to defeat the anarchistic ideology that impedes its concretion. Our flaws are firstly ideological; and then organisational.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Hugo Chavez - letter from prison

Here is a letter from Hugo Chavez just ten days after leading his failed military rebellion against Venezuela's then-president Carlos Andres Perez on February 4, 1992.

According to Richard Gott's book, 'Hugo - The Hugo Chavez Story', Chavez and some other rebel leaders were first detained in the basement of military intelligence headquarters for 17 days before they were transfered to San Carlos military stockade. That would indicate this letter was sent from military HQ, according to its date of February 14.

The letter is sourced from the collection, 'Oculto en mi pecho bravo - cartas de amor y de combate', ('Hidden in my brave heart - letters of love and combat'), 2005.

To his daughter Maria Gabriela, from prison

Translated by Owen Richards

Caracas, February 14, 1992

Maria Gabriela

My love:

Hello, my heart!

I want you to know that day and night I carry you in my heart and in my mind.

I'm so happy that you are well.  As always, I am proud to have a daughter like you, pretty, intelligent and brave.

Maria, I'm in good physical health and above all have a tranquil conscience. I did what I had to do, with the hope that things would change, with the Bolivarian hope that there will be a better world for you in the future, a world where there is not so much injustice and such corruption, were children have food, shelter, medicine, toys, schools.  All of Venezuela's children.

You are already a young lady so I'm sure you understand me.

The only thing, my baby girl, is that now I will not be very close to you [...] as before.  But my heart and my spirit are always there in the "Maisantera"1 and wherever they [the family] go.

Remember to apply yourself to your studies and to your reading, as well as to art and music. It will cultivate a noble and libertarian spirit that you will carry within.

Likewise with sport, to have "a healthy mind in a healthy body". Keep going to the pool (be very careful).

I entrust the boy2 to you.  Encourage him to learn to play the cuatro3, to write stories and to draw, and to keep going to swimming and to baseball. But please take care of him.

I must go now, my Maria, with the hope of seeing you soon and with the greatest love from,


1 The Chavez family home from 1989-1992.
2 Presumably Chavez's son, Huguito.
3 The Venezuelan four-string guitar.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Fundamental and general principles

Here is the final installment of the 'Declaration of Principles' from the PSUV's Red Book:

Fundamental principles
Translated by Owen Richards
The party holds to the Bolivarian ideal, the contributions of  Ezekiel Zamora and Simon Rodriguez, as well as the contributions of struggle and organisation of the Indo-African-American peoples; it takes inspiration from the origins of Christianity, from the theory of liberation; it draws nourishment from scientific socialism and the experiences of its men and women who have fought for the revolution and the construction of socialism.

General principles
The party declares itself as:
* Anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist
* Anti-corruption
* Socialist
* Marxist
* Bolivarian
* Committed to the interests of the working class and the people
* Humanist
* Internationalist
* Patriotic
* Centralist
* Ethical and with revolutionary morality
* Defender of the rights of mother earth
* Defender of gender equality and equity
* Defender of the rights of the disabled
* Defender of participatory and protagonist democracy in society
* Political vanguard of the revolutionary process
* Original and creative
* Defender, driver and promoter of Popular Power
* Promoter of endogenous development
* Defender of equality in the heart of the organisation
* Critical and self-critical
* Based on the principles of democratic centralism and collective leadership
* Disciplined
* Practitioner of internal democracy in the party
The militants of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) must validate, with daily practice, all these principles, holding to Che Guevara's maxim when he said "the revolution is held in the heart to die for, not on the lips to live for", in this way, it will be completely honest and sincere when we say:
Socialist Homeland or death... We will triumph

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Building Bolivarian socialism – the only way out

More from the PSUV’s Libro Rojo - the party’s 2010 party program:

9.  Building Bolivarian socialism – the only way out
Translated by Owen Richards
In any society, the private ownership of the means of production determines the relations of work, human relations and all aspects of life. It denies the aims of a humanist, solidarity-based and socialist society.  But it's no less certain that the transition at the current stage of humanity demands the careful evaluation of each step, to guarantee at every stage the conscious participation of the majority and the necessary efficiency.
The exploitation of man by man contradicts the sentiments of solidarity and mutilates the links of fraternity.  Capitalism wages war on the human condition and on the preservation of the species.  The irrational imperative of growth and accumulation provokes the global destruction of ecosystems and threatens to extinguish the sources of life.  This catastrophic dynamic is caused by a socio-economic system that dispenses with human needs and acts according to its own logic, compelled towards constant growth in pursuit of profit.  In such a frantic race, periodic crises are provoked that the system "resolves" with the massive destruction of human life, material goods and natural resources.  Socialism is the only way out that ensures the existence of humanity.
Since the division of society into classes, there has been resistance to oppression and exploitation. Beginning with the victory of capitalism over feudalism and the predominance of the capitalist mode of production at the global level, the social struggles of the nascent industrial workers movement fused with the most advanced thought of its epoch and gave rise to the struggle for socialism based on science and on the deepest sentiments of human beings.
On our continent, Simon Bolivar established the bases of national and social liberation with his libertarian example and his humanist and revolutionary vision, which are now fundamental to the union of our peoples and to social transformation in our time.
Before the crisis of the system and the grave threats that are entailed therein, the contemporary challenge consists in directing action in a way so that the exploited and oppressed masses of Venezuela absorb as much knowledge of history, economics and political theory as possible, so as to ground them in the immense task of responding in an original way, grounded in concrete reality, in the roots of Venezuelan identity, in the cultural particulars, including those of each region and social group, faced with each daily requirement, and each difficulty raised in the transition from capitalism to socialism.

This context opens up the perspective of promoting an international anti-imperialist bloc on a large scale, with the participation of national, provincial and local governments, social movements of different kinds, and political forces of a broad ideological spectrum.  It is about uniting in action hundreds of millions of people around the world against imperialism and its wars.
The possibility likewise arises of making a qualitative transformationin the politico-organisational reality of the tens of millions of exploited and oppressed in our America.  The party therefore assumes the need to forge tools that both recover and bring together universal revolutionary thought, as the vanguard in an era of immense challenges and great victories.  Capitalism is international; the revolution is international; theory and the action it inspires must too be international.
Activity based on the idea of a worldwide anti-imperialist bloc and the revolutionary and socialist convergence of the people of our American will guide the steps of the party, in the certainty that the concretion of these aims will change the balance of forces on the international scale and inaugurate a new historical era.
Finally, we reclaim the building of socialism as the only way out of imperialist capitalism and to achieve the redemption of our people.  Venezuela has begun to build socialism.  The crisis of imperialism is clearly evident.  The party is born to defend the homeland, to take forward the revolution towards its emancipatory goal, as the instrument to take the people and exploited to power, to put itself at the service of the transition from capitalism to socialism, progressively transforming the relations of production, of exchange, and of ownership into a means of production for the liberation of the working class, ending the bourgeoisise's control and monopolization of the means of production, transferring them to the power of the workers, to the communities, and to unite with all the other peoples of the world in the task of burying capitalism and building a new world, in accordance with a free and full humanity.  This implies the socialisation of the means of production, the rational distribution of the land and wealth, combating corruption and bureaucratism.  It means changing the rentier, single commodity export, and consumerist economic model for a productive and diversified model, aimed at the full satisfaction of human needs.
Socialism is the true way of reclaiming the deeper meaning of democracy, with the maximum development of popular power, as the most developed form of participatory and protagonist democracy, of the participation of the popular masses in the building of a new society, where the power of the organised people legitimates and empowers actions towards a united human society, in loving coexistence and in peace, in the search for and continuance of a world in which justice and social equality prevail as the basic principles for the distribution of wealth and the benefits of society, of ethics and socialist morality as the fundamental axes motivating the self-sacrificing behaviour of the members of society, for the total happiness of being.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Bolivarian Socialism - original and creative

Part 8 of the PSUV Red Book's 'Declaration of Principles', on the party's particular brand of socialism:

8.  Original and creative 

Translated by Owen Richards

Following Simon Rodriguez's maxim, "we invent or we err", the Bolivarian socialism for which the party struggles will be original, homegrown, creative and have a deeply collectivist approach to the exercise of power. It will aim to build a superstructure that serves to support the socialist economic model, orienting and directing suitable policies corresponding to our people's sense of identity and history in order to preserve of our unique nature.
The party will strive to educate its militants in the Tree Of Three Roots—the theory and practice of Simon Bolivar, Simon Rodriguez and Ezequiel Zamora—and will critically rescue the historic experiences of socialism, adopting as a guide the theory and practice of revolutionaries and socialists of Latin America and the world, such as Jose Marti, Ernesto Che Guevara, Jose Carlos Mariategui, Rosa Luxemburg, Karl Marx, Frederick Engels, Lenin, Trotsky, Gramsci, Mao Tse-Tung and others who have contributed to the struggle for social transformation, for a world of equity and social justice, in a human experience that has ancient forebears, such as the Amerindian and African American cosmologies, Christianity and liberation theology.  It will base itself on the contributions of scientific socialism, of Marxism, which is a philosophy of praxis, a tool for the critical analysis of reality and a guide to revolutionary action.
Simon Bolivar
Bolivarian socialism will respond to creative practice, to the free exercise of the will and yearnings of the Venezuelan people.  It will not be a "copy or a tracing", to use the expression of Jose Carlos Mariategui, but a "heroic creation".
Our socialism recognizes the diversity of our origins, and values the Indigenous, European and African roots that gave rise to our great South American nation.  It incorporates the doctrine of Simon Bolivar - particularly its anti-imperialist vision and its explanation of the need to unify the nations of Our America; the doctrine of Simon Rodriguez and his struggle for a popular education of liberation; and the doctrine of Ezequiel Zamora and his struggle for social ownership of the land, his confrontation with the oligarchic powers and his programme of social protections.  Likewise, it holds civic-military union as one of its fundamental characteristics.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011


Section 7 of the PSUV Red Book's 'Declaration of Principles':

7. Unity
Translated by Owen Richards
The party emerges as an expression of the people's revolutionary will and represents a higher synthesis of all the revolutionary struggles and forces in Venezuela, and of all the aspects of revolutionary and socialist thought.  It proclaims its oneness with with the exploited and oppressed working class, and likewise with all the men and women who embrace the Bolivarian and socialist ideal. It is a product of the revolutionary unity of the multifaceted majority, including those of diverse ethnic, ideological and political origins.  The party will popularise organic, political, ideological and programmatic unity as the fundamental forms of revolutionary unity.
 Oscar Figuera, Secretary General of the Communist Party of Venezuela (PCV)
The party conceives of unity as a cohesion around collectively-accepted values and principles, which are reflected in the party's program, its statutes, its ideological foundations and its political activity, and which is destined to eradicate the fracturing dynamic of particular interests and anarchy, and to replace them with the common interest and social wellbeing.
The party considers that the most basic unity is the unity of the people. Nevertheless, it will try to form alliances with all the social movements and political organizations of the revolution, within the established limits of our revolutionary principles: the need for a party engine in the battle against injustice and class inequality; a party that respects ideological, ethnic and cultural diversity; a party that permanently and democratically debates ideas about how to make a  revolution and build a socialist society; a party that vigilantly attends to the ethical and moral values of its militants.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

The defence of the revolution

6. The defence of the revolution
Translated by Owen Richards
The defence of the Bolivarian revolution implies the defence of national sovereignty, a task that is the fundamental responsibility of the party and the people combining all forms of struggle in preventing imperialism and its allies from carrying out their bellicose, annexationist, devisive, subjugationist and environmentally destructive dynamics.