Category Archives: Atlantic Gateway / Atlantica

Maritime strategy of the Quebec Liberals: Serving the interests of the United States of North American monopolies

For your information: two articles on the Maritime Strategy of Quebec – the latest plan of the ruling circles to build infrastructure and establish Gateways and Trade Corridors across Canada to facilitate the transportation of energy resources and manufactured goods to North America, Europe and Asia.

The Couillard government promotes its Maritime Strategy.

By LOUIS LANG

The statements of the Couillard Liberals promise economic growth and thousands of jobs all over Quebec. In fact, it would seem that what is being proposed is a new version of the Security Prosperity Partnership (SPP). The SPP, in which the Paul Martin government was involved, was a plan integrating the Canadian, U.S. and Mexican economies into the United States of North American Monopolies. This was to form a trade and military bloc in the inter-imperialist striving over control of world markets, spheres of influence, cheap labour and resources and zones for the export of capital. The Maritime Strategy being put forward by the Quebec Couillard government as a “pivotal project“ to develop the economy of Quebec is not a plan to build an independent national economy for the benefit of the people of Quebec but rather it is to put the resources and transportation infrastructure of Quebec in the service of North American monopolies. Continue reading

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War criminals are not welcome in Halifax

First in a series by TONY SEED*

HALIFAX, the principal NATO port on the North Atlantic and the headquarters of Maritime Command, is hosting yet another “Halifax International Security Forum” (HISF) on November 18-20. For the third year in a row, three hundred hand-picked militarists will be occupying the luxurious Halifax Westin Hotel at the expense of the Canadian taxpayer.

The Harper government has advanced $7.5 million of public funds to a private Washington-based organization comprised of five individuals — four of them American citizens — in an unsourced contract to organize the “Halifax” conference over the next three years. Participation in the HISF is by invitation only; the Canadian people are excluded. Many of the sessions are classified as “off-the-record.” Continue reading

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Harper, military monopolies sell arms & Innu land in Paris; Newfoundlanders organize Mayday rally against cratering search and rescue sub-centre

Merchants of Death – Lithograph by Mabel Dwight

HALIFAX (June 22, revised June 25, 2011) – WHILE CANADA keeps bombing Libya and killing civilians in the name of “humanitarianism” and the Harper Government has announced a $56 million budget cut to the Department of Fisheries and Oceans, eliminating the Marine Rescue Centre in St. John’s and putting the lives of civilians at sea in peril, it is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars to send arms manufacturers to the International Paris Air Show. Continue reading

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Second Halifax War Conference: Get Canada Out of NATO! Dismantle NATO!

November 21, 2009: Haligonians mount a vigorous protest against the First Halifax International Security Forum.

TML calls on everyone to support and participate in the actions to oppose the Second Halifax International Security Forum (HISF) to be held at the Westin Hotel from November 5-7. Last year’s inaugural event at the same Halifax hotel was opposed by many groups across the Maritimes. Continue reading

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Halifax War Conference: Warmongers are not welcome in Halifax

All Out to Oppose the Second Annual Halifax International Security Forum

Picket at Forum Opening
Friday, November  5 – 3:00 pm

Westin Hotel, Hollis & South Streets.



Anti-War Rally – Saturday, November 6, 2010 – 1:00 pm

Halifax Peace & Freedom Park (formerly Cornwallis Park) Hollis & South Sts

Family-friendly event

Organized by: Ad Hoc Committee Against the Halifax War Conference, Halifax Peace Coalition, NSPIRG, CUPW, Food Not Bombs, and others Continue reading

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Canada participates in Panamax 2010 with U.S. 4th Fleet

Remilitarization of the Panama Canal: U.S. leads 18-nation war exercise, including two warships from Canada, against ‘liberation brigade

By Timothy J. Gibbons, Florida Times-Union

(August 25, 2010) – FOR A ragtag sort of group, the Brigada de los Martis de la Liberacion seemed to have a decent amount of assets at its disposal. Continue reading

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Vigorously oppose ‘Halifax International Security Forum’; All out to build the people’s movement against Imperialist war and aggression!

Nova Scotia Committee, Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist)

THE Government of Canada has provided an astonishing budget of $2.5-million to fund the two-and-a-half-day “Halifax International Security Forum” to be held November 20-22. The organizing of the Forum is directly linked to promotion of the Atlantic Gateway, a project designed to facilitate rapid transport and military links between South Asia, the Middle East and the U.S. It is thus no accident that this “security forum” is to be held in the port of Halifax, headquarters of Maritime Command and the most important NATO military base in the North Atlantic. Continue reading

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All out to oppose ‘Halifax International Security Forum’! No Harbour for War!

Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist)

The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) calls on all the peace-loving and anti-war forces of Halifax and the entire region – workers, youth, students and women – to go into action to oppose the so-called Halifax International Security Forum. Organized by the Canadian Department of National Defence and the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the Forum will be held from November 20-22 at the Westin Hotel in Halifax. The official website of the conference states that although “serious conferences about regional and global security have traditionally been held outside of the United States and Canada … [t]oday’s new dangers require new thinking and new solutions, and the Halifax International Security Forum is the new venue to explore serious policy alternatives.” Continue reading

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All out to oppose the ‘Halifax International Security Forum’!

Halifax, December 1, 2004: Demonstration against visit to Halifax of war criminal U.S. President George W. Bush.

Call of the Nova Scotia Committee of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada, 4 October 2009

FROM NOVEMBER 20-22, the Canadian Department of National Defence and the US-based German Marshall Fund are convening the “Halifax International Security Forum” at the Westin Hotel in Halifax. We call on all the peace-loving and anti-war forces of this city and the entire region – workers, youth, students and women – to go into action to oppose this event and the dangerous preparations for imperialist war, which it serves. Continue reading

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All out to oppose the Halifax War Conference!

By TONY SEED on behalf of Ad Hoc Committee of Haligonians to Oppose the Halifax War Conference

Endorsed by Halifax Peace Coalition • Student Coalition Against War • Nova Scotia Public Interest Group • Canada Palestine Association • Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) • Food Not Bombs Continue reading

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Atlantic Gateway: The politics of pragmatism and the elephant in the room

Second in a series of articles on the Nova Scotian elections by TONY SEED*

THE Nova Scotia NDP has won unprecedented accolades in the 2009 provincial election from the private and public monopoly media for its “pragmatism” and “measured policies.” Pragmatism worships the absence of principles. If something works in the interests of the status quo, it must be applauded, applied and fought for. The Nova Scotia NDP has taken the vow that “the end justifies the means.” Continue reading

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Nova Scotia elections 2009 – There is an alternative!

First of a series on the Nova Scotia elections by TONY SEED

Nova Scotia Elections 2009
Nova Scotia elections 2009 – There is an alternative!
• Atlantic Gateway: the politics of pragmatism and the elephant in the room
‘Real Life’: Democracy 251 and the ‘devotion’ to ‘a mature democracy’
• The Nova Scotia election and the bard Dan Alec MacDonald — ‘tonight, she walks the streets with Yankees’
• The Michelin File: No more deals — Nova Scotians must reject the politics of ‘pragmatism’
The Michelin File: Michelin’s ‘exemplary citizenship’
• The Michelin File: Drive to empire

top of the page

ON MAY 4, Nova Scotia’s opposition parties defeated the MacDonald government’s finance bill. The defeat was quickly followed by the fall of the minority Conservative government, and the setting of a provincial election date for June 9. The bill proposed an amendment to the Provincial Finance Act which would have allowed a portion of the $830 million dollars from the so-called Atlantic Accord to be used for purposes other than financing the province’s $12 billion dollar debt, the highest per capita debt in Canada (much of which is held by private Wall Street financial interests), on which Nova Scotians now pay an annual interest of nine hundred million dollars. Both the NDP and Liberal parties accused the MacDonald government – which forecast a surplus of $4 million for 2009-10 – of using money from the Atlantic Accord to cover up the deficit. For its part, the MacDonald government claimed that no alternative source of funding was available to live up to the cost of the programs and services tabled in the bill. His cabinet then exercised special spending powers through orders-in-council to expend $130 million for paving and building projects under the pretext of “stimulus.” Continue reading

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Atlantica: Harper, MacKay and the man from Portland

By TONY SEED, Editorial, Shunpiking Magazine

AT a conference in Halifax in June, a new six-person body called the Atlantica Council was introduced: three Atlantic Canadian corporate executives, one state trade manager from Portland, Maine, the president of the Atlantica Center for Energy and the president of Memorial University. At the same conference, Peter MacKay, Minister for ACOA, handed over $548,000 to the Atlantic Provinces Chamber of Commerce to fund this Council. Continue reading

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Premeditated merger

Canada preparing ports for NAFTA superhighway; Building ‘free trade gateway’ between Asia, North America

By JEROME B. CORSI

CANADA is developing Pacific ports to compete with the U.S. ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles, as well as with the Mexican ports of Manzanillo and Lazaro Cardenas, in an attempt to draw a substantial market share of the millions of containers expected to flow into North America in the coming decades from China and the Far East. Continue reading

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As ‘Atlantica’ drumbeats continue to echo, people want to know: What is the trouble and who are the trouble-makers?

By GARY ZATZMAN

HALIFAX (July 1, 2007) – DURING JUNE 13-16, business and political leaders gathered in a conference Halifax convened under the rubric of “Atlantica the International Northeast Economic Region” (AINER). They came from western and northern New York State, the New England states of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, the Gaspé region of Quebec and the four Atlantic provinces. The topic of discussion: increased political and economic “integration”, i.e., annexation of these parts of Canada to the U.S. Continue reading

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‘Ports security’ scare

Fear-mongering propaganda with a disastrous anti-people aim

By NATHAN J. FREEMAN

HALIFAX (24 March 2007) – THE following news item (“Senate panel calls for tougher security at Canadian ports”, reproduced below) suppresses crucial facts of the ongoing actual context in which the Canadian Senate’s “security and defence” committee has been addressing the issues of ports security. Continue reading

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‘Ports security’ – fear-mongering propaganda with a disastrous anti-people aim

By NATHAN J. FREEMAN

HALIFAX (24 March 2007) – THE following news item (“Senate panel calls for tougher security at Canadian ports”, reproduced below) suppresses crucial facts of the ongoing actual context in which the Canadian Senate’s “security and defence” committee has been addressing the issues of ports security. Continue reading

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Canada joins US-led Caribbean war exercises

By TONY SEED, along with three related news commentaries

HALIFAX (6 June 2006) – CANADA will join aggressive U.S.-led military manoeuvres in the Caribbean between May 23 and June 15, news agencies are reporting.

Canadian forces will be part of manoeuvres ominously dubbed Joint Caribbean Lion in Curaçao and the French island of Guadeloupe.

Some 4,000 soldiers from the United States, the Netherlands, Belgium, Canada and France are to participate in the operation which will have its main base on the U.S. base Hato Rey in Curaçao, known under the name “location for cooperative security.”

The massive war games, the largest in over twenty years, includes the participation of forces from the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and countries in the hemisphere (Chile, for instance, sent observers), except for Cuba and Venezuela, which could be the targets of that show of force, according to news agencies.

USS Bataan amphibious assault ship

Although Holland claims to be the training leader, regional social and political groups and governments have called attention to the exceptionally strong US military presence, and attribute threatening objectives to it.

After ordering departure of three military ships from Norfolk, Virginia, the US Southern Command reported that actions will be conducted by Amphibious Squadron Commodore Donna Looney of the Second Amphibious Squadron 2 on board the multi-functional landing ship USS Bataan. Bataan is one of 24 ships that comprise Commander, Amphibious Group 2, based at NAB Little Creek, Va.

USS Washington

The nuclear aircraft carrier USS George Washington is leading the sea/air forces in the manoeuvres already taking place, dubbed “Operation Partnership of the Americas,” and the strike group includes the guided-missile destroyer Stout, the guided-missile frigate Underwood, the amphibious landing ship USS Fort McHenry and the frigate USS Taylor with about 6,500 sailors and – if necessary – two nuclear submarines.

Fostering “goodwill”? Repelling a Belgian boarding party

The fictitious objective is to “foster goodwill” in military relations between the U.S. Navy and countries in the region, and to intensify efforts in the fake fight against drug-trafficking and terrorism.

For the Netherlands, this is an exercise of the utmost importance; its three branches are conducting an unprecedented exercise of this magnitude never before carried out in cooperation with other NATO countries. It is the largest naval exercise the Netherlands with its NATO allies in the Caribbean has ever held, using a U.S. aircraft carrier and naval fleet.

Amphibious landing exercise

The scenario of the maneouvres include an amphibious landing operation on the island of Curaçao. For Venezuela, which is represented by observers in the exercises, the maneouvres look like a provocation. They concern the establishment of permanent U.S. military bases in the Netherlands Antilles islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curaçao, which lie only 40 kilometres from the Venezuelan coast. With air reconnaissance flights, depth measurements and land analysis, the United States could be evaluating its possibilities of success for an invasion against a country in the area, regional analysts say.

The scenario of a separate simulated exercise, reminiscent of the failed coup d’état in Venezuela in 2002, involves “Samba” President “Leo Flexible,” who is to be held hostage by the militia at one of the old apartments of Mullet Bay Resort. The marines are unable to rescue or take over the hostage, because the militia moves him to “Arie Galore.” Special Forces teams of the Maritime Taskforce are sent to that island to set him free or, reading between the lines, take him into U.S. custody.

The London Observer reported “the failed coup (of 2002) was closely tied to senior officials in the US government” with “long histories in the “dirty wars’’ of the 1980s, and links to death squads working in Central America at that time.” The Bush administration has made a number of hostile remarks in the past and taken measures which many fear could precede to future interventions. In April, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called for an “international united front” against Chávez.

Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has called the Dutch Defense Minister a “Washington stooge” for allowing U.S. navy vessels to be deployed to the Antilles. Speaking in Alo Presidente, the weekly television program he uses to addresses the nation, Chavez suggested the U.S. may want to use the Antilles Islands to invade Venezuela. Chavez has dismissed the suggestion by right-wing Dutch hawks that his country has territorial ambitions on the Antilles. The Dutch have said they are satisfied with this response, according to AP.

Once the centre of the Caribbean slave trade, the island of Curaçao was hard hit by the abolition of slavery in 1863. Its prosperity (and that of neighbouring Aruba) was restored in the early 20th century with the construction of oil refineries to service the newly-discovered Venezuelan oil fields. The island of Saint Martin is shared with France; its southern portion is named Saint Maarten and is part of the Netherlands Antilles; its northern portion is called Saint-Martin and is part of Guadeloupe (France).

The Canadian government is keeping its military participation in Joint Caribbean Lion quiet. 

The Canadian government is keeping its military participation in Joint Caribbean Lion quiet. There is no mention of its involvement on the Department of National Defence website, although Canada’s participation is extensively reported in the Latin American and Caribbean press, as well as U.S. Navy website. This is in line with the fiction that Canada is free of any imperialist or neo-colonial interests in that region.

Canadian banks are amongst the most powerful and profitable operations in the Caribbean. Their penetration of the region arose historically from the involvement of the rich strata in the Nova Scotia colony in provisioning the West Indies slave trade as the basis for accumulation of capital. Both the Bank of Nova Scotia and the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) were founded in Halifax, NS.

Historically, the first intrusion of Canadian naval forces in the Caribbean, under the command of the British Royal Navy, was as part of the gunboat policy against the Mexican Revolution in 1915, a role repeated in 1932 when a Canadian warship was deployed against the uprising of the landless peasants of El Salvador.

The Canadian navy successively participated in the illegal maritime “quarantine” of Cuba in October, 1962 under direct orders from the U.S. Navy and without reference to or the approval of the Diefenbaker cabinet, which had incensed the Kennedy administration with its “failure to obey” the CIA-organized Bay of Pigs invasion in April, 1961; the invasion of the Dominican Republic in 1964; the gunboat policy against Trinidad and Tobago in 1970; the massive Exercise Ocean Venture in 1982, which rehearsed the U.S. invasion of Grenada in 1983; the gunboat policy against Nicaragua in the mid-1980s; and U.S. interventions in Haiti in the mid-1990s and the invasion and occupation of Haiti in 2004 by the U.S., France and Canada.

During the 1980s the anti-war movement in Halifax, under the banner of No Harbour for War, held annual protests against the deployment of Canadian warships to participate in Caribops military exercises on Vieques Island, Puerto Rico. Caribops 83 involved 11 Canadian destroyers and 2,500 troops, and was condemned as part of the offensive of the Reagan administration against the just struggles os the peoples of Central America.

In August, 2005 Canadian Forces participated in annual US exercises aimed at remilitarizing the Panama Canal zone code-named Panamax 2005. The exercises were initiated in 2003, a year after the unsuccessful coup attempt in Venezuela.

With files from Prensa Latina, TML Daily, and news agencies. Updated by the author from Shunpiking Online, Shunpiking Magazine 

* * *

Venezuela Stages Mock Foreign Invasion

(June 5, 2006) – VENEZUELA recently conducted a simulation of a foreign military invasion called Operation Patriot 2006. It was part of a military exercise to train troops and communities to repel a foreign invader. The Venezuelan government said it is preparing citizens to fight a guerrilla war to repel a possible Iraq-style invasion by U.S. troops.

During the exercise, a naval landing craft made landfall on the shores of Western Falcon state carrying troops and over a dozen camouflaged tanks, Reuters reported. The “invading” army then took over the massive Paraguana Refining Complex, a key asset of Venezuela’s crude exporter.

“They’ve already invaded us, now the invading forces are controlling certain strategic objectives,” said Rear Admiral Zahin Quintana, a squadron commander, after disembarking from a warship as part of the exercise. “Now begins the resistance by our troops together with our people.”

“The tanks began circulating through the streets, and units of mock invading soldiers launched smoke bombs to clear the way. But local residents, organized and trained by military authorities, resisted the assault by blocking roads with rusting cars and burning tires,” Reuters reported.

Community organizations called Local Defence Councils have been established to provide support during a potential invasion by hiding weapons deposits, relaying messages or sabotaging water and power services. “We’re willing to go anywhere to defend our homeland,” Rosmery Trujillo, a participant in the operation, said.

Quintana said the mock attack involved nine warships, three combat planes and four helicopters. The exercise included Venezuelans trained to defend the nation’s strategic assets including oil terminals, fuel filling stations and tanker trucks.

Source: TML Daily, June 5, 2006 – No. 93

* * *

The United States Wants to Create Conditions to Attack Venezuela

Ali Rodriguez Araque, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela

(May 15, 2006) – THE government of the United States climbs to new heights of cynicism and shamelessness when it tries to tie Venezuela to its particular vision of international terrorism. It affirms that Venezuela is not “collaborating sufficiently” with the fight against terrorism.

If “not collaborating” means not supporting the virtual genocide that it practices against the people of Iraq and failing to condemn it with all might before all the possible forums, then under no concept or pretext can it be said that Venezuela is not willing to “collaborate.” If “not collaborating” means condemning the pretense of imposing upon the people of Iran the need to resign from its legitimate right to develop nuclear technology for peaceful ends, under the extreme threat of military attacks against it, Venezuela is proud to respond that it shall never lend itself to demands of such nature, no matter what pressures are brought to bear against it.

Public opinion knows the emphasis that the present Administration, with President Bush at the helm places on the principle that “a terrorist is not only he who engages in acts of terrorism, but also those who harbor them.” This principle permits us to affirm without fear of being mistaken that current U.S. authorities are terrorists. By the same token, public opinion is well aware of the shelter that the U.S. is providing the most criminal of terrorists in the Western Hemisphere, Luis Posada Carriles, a well known assassin on the payroll of the CIA. Public opinion also knows of the order given by U.S. authorities to release two persons accused of terrorism by Venezuelan courts of justice: Antonio Colina and Germán Varela, who placed bombs in the diplomatic missions of Spain and Colombia, allied countries of the United States of America. The Bush Administration has simply not responded to the request made by Venezuela for their extradition, under treaties and international law, to answer for their crimes. Instead, the U.S. shields behind miserable accusations such as the danger that these criminals will be tortured.

What are they trying to hide behind these accusations against Venezuela?

The essence of the problem is not its false fight against terrorism. Behind its despicable accusations is a useless campaign of shame designed to isolate Venezuela, destabilize its democratic government and prepare the political conditions for an attack. To that end, along with other actions, it wants to handicap our defenses. That is the reason why it prohibits the sale of arms and corresponding services. That is the reason why it brings pressure to bear to prevent it from acquiring the means to defend itself, including simple border vigilance, or what has happened with the negotiations to acquire aircraft from Spain and Brazil. That is the reason behind the accusations that Venezuela has launched an arms race. There is too much clarity to obscure it with accusations and shameless acts. They have tried to separate Venezuela from its other friendly nations on the continent and the world. They have failed and will continue to do so.

The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela denounces to the world this new stage in the U.S. strategy of defeating our democratic government in order to impose, as it has done so many times on the continent and in the world, an obedient dictatorship. We ratify that Venezuela will not succumb to any kind of pressure. It will firmly resist the attacks of this nature and counsels not to confuse the cowardly and opportunistic expressions of some, with the will of the people. This is an error that they have committed recently with other people that pay dearly with their dignity, but who also must pay with the price of aggression.

Our country extends its hand of friendship to the people of the U.S., but it does not hesitate to close its fist to respond to an aggression, may it be verbal as well as material, as undertaken by an immoral government with an aggressive nature. Our people have confidence in the wisdom of the people of the U.S. and we are confident that they will know to impose their will before those who not only assassinate the people of other countries, but also those who sacrifice their own children for their worthless cause.

* * *

U.S. Embargo Against Venezuela: State Department’s Mock Indignation Gives the U.S. a Bad Name

Council on Hemispheric Affairs

(May 18, 2006) – FOLLOWING the announcement by the State Department that it was imposing an arms sale sanction against Venezuela, a Chávez advisor infuriated Washington when he responded with an apparently retaliatory announcement that Caracas would consider selling its American-made F-16’s to Iran. The proposed sale irritated U.S. policymakers, whose initial imposition of the embargo was rationalized by the vague, if not totally contrived, accusations involving Hugo Chávez’s friendship with the leaders of U.S. classified rogue states of Cuba and Iran. Caracas’ threat of selling off the F-16 is somewhat logical, as the U.S. earlier had denied Venezuela the parts necessary to maintain its fleet of 21 F-16’s, rendering those aircraft – which are in need of upgrading and repair – little better than scrap metal.

In a certain sense, Washington’s new round of bluster can be properly seen as merely part of an ongoing war of words and spleen against Caracas, in which Chávez more than holds his own, much to the joy of the average Latin American. Venezuela and the U.S. have exchanged countless salvos of sharp rhetoric at each other, with Chávez describing the U.S. as a “pig” whose appointment at the slaughterhouse is imminent, and Secretary of State Rice portraying the Chávez administration as unconstructive and as being “a negative force in the region.” Venezuela’s gonzo response to the new U.S. embargo fits into the milieu of bounteous hot air that has become increasingly typical between the two countries, though it has not yet ended up with the CIA ultimately being called in to settle matters.

Bringing in Goebbels

There is some reason to believe, however, that the State Department actually does have a plan, and that these verbal jabs on Washington’s part have a calculated purpose, as they seem to represent a concerted attempt to undermine the legitimacy of Chávez’s constitutional government. This effort already has included backing a failed coup against him in April 2002 – which has resulted in unremitting hostility ever since. It is also worth commenting that Chávez’s own reaction has been only slightly less confrontational. The big difference is that Chavez is being the playful, irascible, confounding and confrontational wunderkind that he always has been.

As for the State Department, with Secretary Condoleezza Rice as its author, its Venezuela policy continues to be bovine, hypocritically cynical and grossly unprofessional in promoting a heavy handed policy against Venezuela, as much based on inventions and gross exaggeration as on facts. This strategy, after it condemns all other peaceful options and decides to turn to a CIA deployment or negotiates an agreement with a contract killer to eliminate Chávez in order to safeguard the U.S.’ oil supply from the regime, would cost Washington dearly.

Taking the high road that should strike a responsive chord with most Latin Americans, the Venezuelan leader observed that the United States “tramples on small and weak nations.” Yet at this point, Chávez neither has threatened nor halted supplies of oil to the United States. Nor did he seem particularly distressed by the sanctions. An official Venezuelan foreign ministry communiqué was issued stating that the U.S. accusation was “despicable” and was “based on a futile campaign to discredit and isolate Venezuela, to destabilize its democratic government and prepare the political conditions for attack.”

One can only hope that somewhere in the Bush administration, a concentration of fast disappearing wisdom remains, and that it can bring to a halt the State Department’s precarious – if not suicidal – descent into reckless arrogance and sprawling self-indulgence. As of now, the administration’s game plan is primitively simple and grossly offensive. Inspired by Nazi-era propaganda czar, Joseph Goebbels, the model is to keep on relentlessly denouncing Chávez as a “dictator” until the public begins to automatically accept the connections between the word and the man.

Of course, standing in the way of the administration’s success in convincingly making its case is the fact that Chávez’s political movement has won twice the number of highly attended elections than President Bush has, and by consistently far larger majorities – around 60 per cent better. Furthermore, the TV networks are overwhelmingly dominated by the Chávez-hating middle-class opposition, and the same is true for the print media. To describe today’s Venezuela as a dictatorship is an unmitigated lie, and despite the adamant pleas of Rice and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld, it is subscribed to only by a questionable sector of the U.S. media, led by Washington Post columnist Jackson Diehl and the extraordinary science fiction editorial page of the Wall Street Journal.

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Extension of Panama Canal project: More than an apple of discord

By NIDIA DIAZ, Granma International

Remilitarizing the Panama Canal. U.S. warship in Panama Canal, part of Panamax 2005 military exercises, in which the Canadian Forces also participated

HAVANA (May 12, 2006) – ON APRIL 24, Martín Torrijos, president of Panama, announced the official proposal for the extension of the Canal, consisting of the construction of a third lock with a view to the so-called Panamax boats, superior in depth to the current Panamax, transiting that inter-ocean route. From that point and even long before, voices have been raised to renege on that decision, approval of which is to go before Parliament and a national referendum.

Viability studies on the project were undertaken by the ACP (Panama Canal Authority) and its executive, while the president has made the green light conditional on – in the first place – the amplification being self-financing, meaning that the investment would have to be recouped from progressive increases in tolls and not via taxes on the population. Continue reading

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Attacks mount against annexationist accord

By TONY SEED

HALIFAX (16 April 2005) – DESPITE a virtual silence in the Parliament and the media amidst all the fuss about the sponsorship scandal, opposition has begun to be more widely voiced more at the agreements struck on 23 March by Prime Minister Paul Martin, US President George W. Bush and Mexican President Vincente Fox in Texas behind the backs of the peoples of the three countries. Continue reading

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Monopolies hail North American ‘partnership’

Forging a United States of North American Monopolies

By TONY SEED

HALIFAX (16 April 2005) – REPRESENTATIVES of the monopolies in Canada and the United States are strongly backing the March 23rd summit held between Prime Minister Martin, US President Bush and Mexican President Fox, the executive decree on North American partnership, and the plans to hold regular summits.

Nancy Hughes Anthony, president of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, said the partnership decree is “a very positive step in moving forward on key economic and trade issues that will ensure a more competitive and prosperous North America.” Continue reading

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No harbour for ‘military zones’

By TONY SEED*

First of a series on Canada’s involvement in the Iraq war

HALIFAX (17 January 2003) – IT IS A dangerous situation indeed when the Canadian government and major media make themselves instruments of war preparations, repeating outright lies as if they were facts. One of these is that the Canadian government designated by Order-in-Council on 31 October 2002 the harbour of Halifax and the British Columbia naval bases at Nanoose and Esquimalt “military security zones” as a measure to “fight terrorism.” In fact, these zones give extraordinary and unlimited powers to the Minister of Defence and are a prelude towards establishing martial law to protect American warships and troops in Canadian harbours and waters. All the laws of the country and provisions of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms are suspended in these zones. They do not even have to be pubicly announced. Continue reading

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Filed under Atlantic Gateway / Atlantica, No Harbour for War (Halifax)