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Leading "Progressive" Describes Obama-Chavez Axis

By Cliff Kincaid

A leading member of the “Progressives for Obama” network is speculating, apparently with good reason, that the leftist governments of Barack Obama and Hugo Chavez have come to an understanding that Honduras should be turned over to anti-American forces allied with the Venezuelan communist ruler.

Tom Hayden, once known as Mr. Jane Fonda because of his marriage to the pro-communist actress, has written a piece for the Talking Points Memo website about “new diplomatic collaboration” between Obama, who swore an oath to represent American interests in foreign affairs, and Chavez, who represents the interests of Iran and the Castro brothers.

The destabilization of Honduras and the attempted forced return of exiled leftist president Manuel “Mel” Zelaya could represent “a new era” of friendly U.S. relations with Chavez and other anti-American governments throughout Latin America, Hayden suggests. 

In a July 2 press statement, Senator Jim DeMint, a Republican member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, expressed the hope that Obama “grows in office” and “will eventually turn away from despots like Ahmadinejad, Chavez, Castro, and Zelaya,” who was deported by the military on orders from the Honduran Supreme Court and Congress for his violations of the law and the Constitution.

However, the Hayden article strongly suggests that the Obama policy is not the result of incompetence or inexperience but is deliberate in nature. 

Hayden, once a famous anti-Vietnam War protester in his own right and former official of the Marxist Students for a Democratic Society, claims that “something profoundly new began developing between Obama and Chavez at the hemispheric conference in April in Trinidad.

According to eyewitness sources, under the apparently blind eye of the global media, the two leaders had lengthy conversations. The media covered the friendly photo of the initial handshake between the two leaders, then made much ado about an apparently-impertinent Chavez handing Obama a book in Spanish by Eduardo Galleano. What has not been reported is that Obama, leaving his advisers behind, held lengthy private conversations with Chavez where only an interpreter was present.”

Hayden, who played a role during the anti-Vietnam War protests as a virtual agent of the communist regime in Hanoi, North Vietnam, writes as if he may have some inside information about what is going on. His comrade, Bill Ayers, another member of SDS who became a member of the communist terrorist Weather Underground, is known to have deep contacts with the Chavez regime through his personal appearances in Venezuela. His adopted son, Chesa Boudin, lived in Venezuela and functioned as a foreign policy adviser to Chavez.

Hayden writes that, “The real story is that a gradual rapprochement - not an alliance but a dialogue - is happening between the US and Venezuela, and it began in Trinidad, was pushed by Latin American leaders and welcomed by those like Obama, who prefer diplomacy over a return to US Cold War isolation.”

Hayden says that the Obama-Chavez understanding is “welcome news.”

But I have received dozens of emails from Hondurans disappointed and angry not only with the Obama policy but the media coverage of events on the ground.

In a June 6 Wall Street Journal column, Mary Anastasia O’Grady also writes about receiving complaints from Hondurans and goes on to denounce the Obama/Chavez policy as “insane.” After analyzing previous U.S. policies toward Chavez, she writes, “If Washington does not reverse course, it will be one more act of appeasement toward an ambitious and increasingly dangerous dictator.”

But why would Obama be appeasing Chavez? Could the “appeasement” reflect the fact that Obama and Chavez are ideologically in sync and see events in Latin America through the same Marxist lens? That is what the Hayden article suggests.

Hayden was one of four principal initiators of the “Progressives for Obama” group. We noted in a May 2008 column that “Hayden and Ayers were key members of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), the violence-prone group that laid siege to college campuses in the 1960s. One of their main goals was making sure the communists conquered South Vietnam. Ayers, of course, would go on to plant bombs as a member of the SDS-spawned Weather Underground communist terrorist group. Hayden would win notoriety as Jane Fonda’s husband and become a politician.”

Regarding Hayden, we noted that he was caught in possession of a June 4, 1968, “Dear Col. Lao” letter that ended, “Good fortune! Victory!” This was a letter to a North Vietnamese official. The results of the Hayden/Ayers efforts were a communist victory in Vietnam, hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese escaping as “boat people” or being sent to “re-education” camps, and a genocide in neighboring Cambodia, when the Communist Khmer Rouge took power.

The Progressives for Obama membership includes two names from the Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism, an off-shoot of the old Moscow-controlled Communist Party USA (CPUSA). They are Carl Davidson, formerly of SDS, and Jim Campbell. Two other names come from the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), whose Chicago branch has backed Obama from the start. They are Barbara Ehrenreich and Cornel West.

But the Chavez goal is not just to conquer Latin America. His regime in December 2007 hosted a conference devoted to staging a communist revolution in the United States. The panel discussion on “United States: A possible revolution” was described as the central event at the third Venezuela International Book Fair.

According to an article in The Militant, the newspaper of the Socialist Workers Party, the forum included presentations by “Mary-Alice Waters, a member of the Socialist Workers Party National Committee and president of Pathfinder Press; Eva Golinger, a Venezuelan-American lawyer and author of The Chávez Code; Chris Carlson, a contributor to the website; and Tufara Waller, cultural program coordinator of the Highlander Center in Tennessee.”

Other panelists were identified as “Bernardo Alvarez, Venezuela’s ambassador to the United States; former University of Colorado professor Ward Churchill; August Nimtz, a University of Minnesota political science professor; William Blum, an author who has written a number of books opposing U.S. foreign policy; ex-Maryknoll priest Charles Hardy; and Dada Maheshvarananda, yoga instructor and founder of the Prout Institute.”  

The communist paper reported that, before there could be a revolution in the United States, Marxist forces would have to take control of Latin America. “Another idea frequently expressed by speakers from the floor and by a few panelists was that ‘change has to come from the South,’” referring to Latin America, the paper said.

Almost two years later, that “change” has come to America and is threatening Honduras.


Honduras Outraged by Obama-Chavez Alliance

I continue to receive messages from Honduran citizens upset at the international media for their distorted coverage of the situation in the Central American country. The people support the ouster of Manuel "Mel" Zelaya, who is considered a puppet of Venezuelan Communist ruler Hugo Chavez. They are mystified that an American president would want to return this Chavez puppet to power in Honduras.

One Honduran wrote: "The recent action taken by our Congress is highly supported by several organizations in support of peace and democracy: the State General Attorney, the Supreme Court, the Armed Forces, the private organizations and especially many young people. Mr. Zelaya broke the law on several occasions even after the Supreme Court stated that it was illegal. He had no respect for our laws and our Constitution.

"It's not a new fact to the international media what are Chavez intentions over Central and South America. And we in Honduras don't want that. We don't want to go back to socialism or communism. We still believe very strongly in our democracy and very strongly in our freedom...We should be an example to Central American countries as well as South American countries who have not yet been influenced by Chavez.

"May God bless our small but courageous country. And I hope the international media investigate very deeply. Send your people here and interview people from Congress and Supreme Court. Thank you again for reading our side of the story. We want a democracy, peace, freedom, and a president who doesn't believe he is above the law.

"Many people don't know where Honduras is, but after this, they shall remember that Honduras said no to socialism and communism.

"I'd also like to say that I am shocked by Mr. Obama's comments. Doesn't he know Mr. Zelaya is allied with Chavez? Doesn't he know that Mr. Zelaya wants to do in Honduras what Chavez did in Venezuela, Morales has done in Bolivia, Correa has done in Ecuador, Ortega in Nicaragua, as well as what Castro has done in Cuba?"

Another wrote:

"As you already know we are living in a horrible situation in our country and feel very disappointed and frustrated because we don't have the support of the international community.

"How is it possible that other governments support a liar, a corrupt man, a 'Chavez wannabe,' as he is called in some articles, who also has strong links to the drug dealing business?

"It's amazing. They have made him a martyr. We keep writing and writing and thankfully some people have responded. We now see articles in the Washington Post, Miami Herald, New York Post, Wall Street Journal to name a few, in favor or our actions and understanding it wasn't a coup. And to tell you the truth, they should have done this before! He was out of control.

"I'm asking you, what more can we do? How can we get more people to believe that what we did was the right thing? Have you seen his speeches? Do you notice how incoherent he is? Do you see how he lies? For us it is so obvious, and that is what I wonder... how is it possible that people so well-prepared, so educated like the people in the U.N. and the U.S. government believe him? How come they are now on the same side of Hugo Chavez? Hugo Chavez talking about democracy? It's unbelievable. And it hurts.

"I love Honduras and it hurts to see that we are alone. It hurts because we have witnessed how he has stolen, abused his power and how he has created a huge war between the Hondurans. By paying poor people and promising them false things, he does have their support. He speaks to them about God. It's amazing and sad. And now we see how this people who are badly influenced are vandalizing, destroying businesses when they protest. We had gone to marches, and they are all peaceful.

"We are a poor and small country, but we love our country and we support the Armed Forces as well as the new president.

"We don't want a corrupt puppet of Chavez. What more can we do?"


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