Since this is my 53rd year as a political activist in most of the US social movements, allow me to share a life lesson (one of many) from my experience: never lie in politics. Don’t exaggerate, misrepresent, or make things up to serve your point of view, & always do your homework. Once you start lying, you’re on the well-trodden slippery slope to corruption. You may not always be right & when you are not, you must correct yourself so you are not lying to yourself as well as others. But take my word for it, when you start lying, it becomes politically habitual, even necessary to cover your ass, & in the long-run you lose all credibility even with those who agree with you. If no one can trust your word, it’s time to retire from politics & take up golf. And one more thing: always stand your ground & do not allow yourself to be silenced or bullied in the interests of the oppressed.

It’s true the Maduro government is completely corrupt & represents the interests of Venezuelan capital, not that of working people. It has no rights whatsoever to shoot at unarmed protesters. But it is solely up to the Venezuelan people to settle the score with their government. The US Pentagon (which represents competing American capital) has no legitimate role whatsoever. Those focusing only on the Maduro regime without opposing US military intervention & sanctions are trying to hide their support for war against the Venezuelan people. There’s a political term for such people: war mongers. War mongers have close association with war criminals.

The extreme political aggression of undermining the US Bill of Rights (the foundation of US democracy) to oppose BDS speaks to the importance of Israel as a fortress against democracy in the Middle East. Just as it speaks to the importance of the Palestinian struggle against colonialism, apartheid, & genocide. Their struggle is now inextricable from the struggle for democratic rights in the US.