Social Movements of ALBA : International Solidarity as a Priority to Confront the Empire

By Carlos Aznárez on November 12, 2017

Photo: Resumen Latinoamericano

With the presence of 15 countries of the Latin American and Caribbean continent, the Political Coordination of Social Movements of ALBA met in Panama with the objective of making a balance of the struggle carried on by the peoples during 2017 and to draw new lines of action to face neoliberalism and the capitalist onslaught against the continent as a whole. Here is the report.

“Everyday it is more and more important that internationalist solidarity becomes an inseparable part of people’s movements across the continent.” This phrase was one that was repeated many times, with different variations on style and territorial origin. It is not for nothing that the continental encounter of the Political Coordination of Social Movements of ALBA has in its essence the best traditions of international solidarity that Che left in his legacy: “because solidarity is the tenderness of the people.” Precisely in this area countries like Bolivarian Venezuela, besieged by the United States or the European Union with its stock of sanctions, or socialist Cuba, which is suffering an increase of the longest and most repudiated embargo in the planet due, are priorities to support those dignified causes.

Pedro Franco, the delegate from the Dominican Republic, put emphasis in commenting on how the Caribbean People’s Assembly was created and also at a regional ALBA meeting, where 21 countries deliberated and ratified the idea of giving visibility to a region that, despite the offensive against Venezuela and Cuba, as Caribbean countries, they continue to put up a strong fight. He also talked about the National Day of Creole, “it is not a language just of Haiti, but we hold it up as a language of many countries in the Caribbean.”

Between testimonies, and defining the strategy for new struggles against the right-wing wave and the application of monetary fund strategies, the voices of the Haitian leaders Camille Chalmers and Jean Baptiste Chavannes stood out. Chalmers and Chavannes in addition to having been key in the recent encounter of Caribbean countries in the Dominican Republic, they discussed the continued difficulties that Haiti suffers due to the continuity of the puppet governments of the United States. “Despite this, the resistance of our country will not stop,” and now the workers will not abandon the streets, their demands nor their denunciations of the presence of Minujusth (police entities of some 1,300 men of the UN, that replace the soldiers from the old Minustah).

Another issue of permanent attention to the members of Social Movements of ALBA continues to be Colombia, where the systematic failure of the Government of Juan Manuel Santos to follow through on the peace agreements signed with the FARC in Havana, continues to provoke anguish and pain in a population that has the right to re-emerge from the ashes of war. The continued assassinations of social leaders in Colombia has turned into a dangerous trend due to paramilitarism that wants to break, with full criminal impunity, the good will demonstrated by the insurgency in the moment of following through with the agreements exactly how they were written. The tears of helplessness of a Colombian delegate in regards to the new and repeated news that another comrade was assassinated, this time in Antioquía, made it clear that it is urgent to “do much more than just what is necessary” to put international pressure on those who refuse to abandon warlike practices. In this sense, Social Movements of ALBA is ready to embrace the comrades from Marcha Patriótica and Congreso de los Pueblos, that through their important mobilizations, like the current national peasant strike and the indigenous Minga, are challenging the pro-imperialist regime in Colombia installed over half a century ago.

Delegates from Argentina emphasized the brutal attacks on workers set forth by the Macri government with the labor reform and the rest of the economic measures that in these days are generating reactions in the trade union spaces (more than the behavior of the bureaucratic leaders) and the current position for a plan of struggle from the Confederation of Workers from People’s Economy (CTEP). Of course, not without the condemnation of the Argentine state as responsible for the forced disappearance and assassination of the internationalist militant Santiago Maldonado, whose photo accompanied the “mística” in the first day of the event.

Brazil, represented by the leader of the Landless Rural Workers Movement, Joaquin Pinheiro and Bernardete Esperanca, from the World Women’s March, discussed the outrage caused by the Temer government, but also the responses by the peasants, workers and students who are part of the social movements in Brazil, who have not abandoned the streets and the highways trying to twist the arm of the Brazilian bourgeoisie, or accompanying Lula da Silva on his successful tour throughout the, showing that he is still a charismatic politician.

Pinheiro also dedicated part of his presentation to explain the importance of the International Peoples’ Assembly that will be held in Caracas at the end of February and beginning of March. In this assembly there will be 1,500 militants from social, trade union, and people’s organizations from all over the world, that on one hand will debate strategies to confront the imperialist and capitalist offensive, and will also massively ratify the support to the Bolivarian Revolution and will pay tribute to the Commander Hugo Chávez.

The Cuban delegate Alcides García (responsible for communications for Social Movements of ALBA) gave a detailed report about the work being done in communications in distinct struggles that came before ALBA (like the struggles in the Fifth Centenary or against ALCA) and the new experiences of communications today.

“Throughout this trajectory and history, there has been a systematization with a critical perspective to be able to create a new strategy of communications,” stated García. Amongst the objectives of the Secretary is to contribute to a comprehensive Latin American communication, that operates as an alternative and disputes the apparatus of the hegemonic media.

Another focus of attention of Social Movements of ALBA is in the Continental Event for Democracy and against Neoliberalism, that will take place between the 16 and 18 of this month in Montevideo. In Buenos Aires between December 11 and 13, social organizations of the whole world will participate in the Counter-Summit to denounce the meeting of the World Trade Organization that will meet in the same days. The slogan “Out with WTO” will be heard on the streets of Buenos Aires, especially on Tuesday December 12 in an anti-capitalist march that take the streets of the center of the city and denounce that the presence of economic ministers of the whole planet are not welcome, especially given that all of them are related to the big transnational companies.

Source: Resumen Latinoamericano