Way back in 1966 when I received an invitation to join the Indian Delegation to Cuba for participating in the first ever Tri-Continental Conference involving only those countries from Latin America, Africa and Asia, I was delighted and agreed immediately. It was a 14-member group under the leadership of Aruna Asaf Ali and endorsed by the Government of India.
More than 1500 delegates were accommodated in the majestic Hotel Havana Libre for two weeks and after the 10-day events we were all given a country-wide tour for two weeks which was indeed very educative and forward-looking for building better human solidarity and world peace. Two specific events can never be erased from my mind.
On Thursday, September 1, Argentina’s Vice President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner narrowly escaped an assassination attempt after a man aimed a handgun at point-blank range at her, but the gun did not fire.
The incident took place outside Fernández de Kirchner’s home in Buenos Aires’ Recoleta neighborhood, where hundreds of protesters have been gathered since last week to express their support for the former president in the face of the judicial and political persecution against her.
Fernández de Kirchner was greeting supporters outside her home, after returning from the senate, when a man emerged from the crowd, raised a handgun to her face, and attempted to shoot, but the gun seemed to misfire. The incident was captured by television cameras that were at the scene.
Ahead of October’s election, with leftist Lula leading the polls, fears are rising of a Bolsonaro coup – meaning it’s the entirety of Brazil’s democracy at stake.
After four years of a right-wing Bolsonaro government, Brazilians will vote for a new president on 2 October 2022. Former president Lula—currently high in the polls—is confronting an increasingly delirious incumbent, who appears to have threatened violent unconstitutional action should he lose.
Bolsonaro’s victory came two years after the impeachment of Workers’ Party president Dilma Rousseff in 2016, the first woman to be president. The Workers’ Party (aka Partido dos Trabalhadores, or PT) had held office since 2003.
The period 2010-2016 was dominated by the ‘credit crunch’ crisis that sent the world into turmoil, with a generalised economic contraction, huge indebtedness in the advanced economies, and a considerable reduction in the consumption of raw materials. Brazil was badly hit. By 2015 GDP had declined by three percent, inflation was high (10 percent), and public debt went through the roof to 63 percent of GDP, making it tough for the government to maintain its poverty-eradication social policies.
During the development of the business forum Border Agreement held in Cúcuta this Thursday, the Colombian ambassador, Armando Benedetti, ratified his government’s decision to return monomers to the Venezuelan government led by Nicolás Maduro Moros and confirmed the collaboration of the head of the Superintendence of Companies, Billy Escobar, to close the registration episode of new directive.
“The Superintendence of Companies, in the company of our superintendent, Billy Escobar, have managed to lift the intervention of Monómeros,” said Benedetti.
“The world must know that there is no legal security in London nor in the Bank of England, because at any moment, any country can have its international reserves stolen. There is no respect for the law!” Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro made this damning statement in a televised address on August 3 following the decision by a British high court to reject the Venezuelan state access to its gold reserves worth $1.8 billion in the Bank of England.
Since 2019, Venezuela has had over $7 billion in foreign assets seized by banks in North America and Europe. Many, including the Bank of England, have used the excuse that since their governments recognize (or recognized) the self-proclaimed, former member of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, as the legal representative of the country, they cannot hand over the money to an entity controlled by Maduro’s government.
This seemingly coordinated international action coupled with the increased sanctions on Venezuela’s financial transactions and oil production, deepened the economic crisis in the country that was already suffering under heavy unilateral coercive measures from the United States and its allies since 2014.
The victory of Gustavo Petro in Colombia and his inauguration as President of the New Granada nation has set off alarms in the United States, where the possible end of the so-called “Washington influence” in Latin America is seen.
“It is time for a new international convention that accepts that the war on drugs has utterly failed, that it has left a million Latin Americans murdered, most of them Colombians, and that it leaves 70.000 North Americans dead from drug overdoses every year; none produced in Latin America”.
These words spoken by Petro During his inauguration speech this Sunday, he directly questions US policy in the neighboring country with the so-called “Plan Colombia”, which could mean the possibility of ending this agreement that has allowed the US to install no less than nine military bases in Colombian territory and guarantee the free action of officials of the DEA, the CIA and its Army, as well as the implementation of the extraterritoriality of its laws in this nation.