A United States institution linked to security and
defense agencies in Washington, D.C. has established a program in Venezuela to
train youth in the principles of "individual liberty, free markets, and limited
Called the "El Cato-CEDICE University" (see: http://www.elcato.org/special/cato-univ-venezuela/lunes.html),
it is a combined initiative of the Cato Institute in Washington, D.C. and the
Venezuelan organization, Center for the Dissemination of Economic Knowledge for
Freedom (CEDICE). It also has the support of Venezuelan organizations including
the Future Present Foundation, which was created by Yon Goicochea, a leader of
the Justice First political party; National Unity, the coalition of opposition
political parties created in 2008; and New Bases, the opposition student
movement of the Metropolitan University.
The El Cato-CEDICE University is planning a seminar
that will last three days, from Sunday May 24 to Tuesday May 26, 2009. The headquarters of this
subversive event is the La Escondida ranch, one hour from Caracas. The participation fee is 150BsF (US$
70). According to the material published by the Cato Institute, the event will
cover themes such as "the new global agenda, the world financial crisis,
populism in Latin America, youth as defenders
of freedom, poverty and violence, rights to property, the challenges of
institutions in the 21st century, among others."
The "teachers" at the El Cato-CEDICE University
include Gabriela Calderon, editor of the website ‘elcato.org' and columnist for
the rightwing newspaper El Universo in Ecuador; Daniel Cordova, dean of the Economics
Department at the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences and also director of Pro-Capital
Investment Project, an NGO financed by the United States; Otto Guevara, a Costa
Rican politician and president of the party Free Movement and the Liberal
Network of Latin America (RELIAL); Martin Krause, lecturer in the Higher School
of Economics and Business Administration in Buenos Aires; Carlos Sabino from
the Center for Global Prosperity of the Independent Institute in the U.S.; Jose
Toro Hardy, Venezuelan economist for CEDICE; Alvaro Vargas Llosa from the
Center for Global Prosperity of the Independent Institute in the U.S and a
columnist for the Washington Post; and Yon Goicochea, a leader of the Justice
First party and founder of the Future Present Foundation, an organization
dedicated to training youth in the tactics of "gradual coup" and subversion.
The seminar has scheduled conferences by the guest
lecturers around themes such as "Economic Freedom and Human Progress", given by
Jose Toro Hardy, "Promoting Ideas in Non-Free Countries" by the Ecuadorian
Gabriela Calderon, and "Liberalism in the Political Arena" by the Costa Rican
Otto Guevara, among others.
The Cato Institute is the entity which granted the
"Milton Friedman Prize" to the leader of Justice First, Yon Goicochea, in 2008.
As part of this recognition by one of the most ultra-conservative and
neo-fascist institutions of the United
States, Goicochea received US$ 500,000, part
of which he used to create his Future Present Foundation. The Cato Institute
was founded on the economic theories of the ultra-liberal Milton Friedman of
the U.S., who was economic advisor to the Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet.
This institute also served to promote the conservative ideology of the 80s
promoted by Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and the group of the "Chicago
Boys" who later implemented these policies in Latin American, causing a lot of
misery and poverty and less progress and human prosperity. The Cato Institute
is closely linked with the Military Industrial Complex and the security and
defense agencies in Washington.
CEDICE is one of the organizations that have received
the most financing from the agencies in Washington over the last 8 years, like
[National Endowment for Democracy] NED, [U.S. Agency for International
Development] USAID, and the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE),
an entity of the State Department. Its director, Rocio Guijarra, signed the
infamous Carmona Decree during the coup d'etat of April 2002 against the
Venezuelan government, which resulted in the dissolution of the democratic
institutions of Venezuela.
The fact that this "university" is opening its doors
within Venezuelan territory is an indication of the destabilizing and
subversive actions that the radical sectors of the opposition in Venezuela
continue to conduct. The general population and the state security bodies
should be alarmed that these foreign actors have come to this country to train
a group of 50 young people in neoliberal doctrines and strategies of
subversion. These organizations aren't filled with good intentions, but rather
they are groups and political figures who have shown over the last few years
that their principal objective is to other throw the revolutionary socialist
government of President Hugo Chavez and implement a neoliberal-capitalist
system in the country, subordinated to the interests of Washington.
In the past, leaders of the opposition like Yon
Goicochea, have traveled overseas, financed by Washington agencies, to receive
training and indoctrination in strategies of subversion and "gradual coup"
tactics. Now, they want to give these workshops on Venezuelan soil, with the
intention of capturing and recruiting Venezuelan youth to execute their
undemocratic and ill-fated plans. This initiative is in addition to the dozen
United States and European organizations and foundations such as USAID, NED,
Freedom House, the International Republic Institute (IRI), the National
Democratic Institute (NDI), the Konrad Adenauer Foundation (German), the
Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation (German), FOCAL (Canadian), that have
financed political parties and NGOs of the opposition with over $50 million
over the last 8 years, promoting their actions of destabilization. The state
security bodies should take appropriate actions to impede these foreign
agencies from continuing to threaten the stability and progress of the country.
And even less should they allow them to act in this manner on Venezuelan
 Gradual coup, or golpe suave in Spanish, is the idea of incremental acts of
sabotage, fear mongering, and media warfare to obstruct the government's
by Tamara Pearson