Chavez Calls For a Battle of Ideas to Combat U.S. Interference in Latin America

Speaking at the Cultural Encounter for the Integration of the Peoples of Our America, in Buenos Aires on Monday, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez called for increased Latin American integration and a "battle of ideas" to combat United States interference in the region.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez at a meeting with Argentinean businessmen (ABN)

Caracas, December 11,
2007 ( – Speaking at the Cultural Encounter for the Integration of
the Peoples of Our America, in Buenos Aires on Monday, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez called for
increased Latin American integration and a "battle of ideas" in order to combat
United States interference in the region.

The U.S has
launched a colossal media war against the peoples and governments of Latin America
Chavez said, because "We have left behind being the U.S.'s backyard, this is
why they attack us so much."

bombard us without clemency, the minds of children, young people, men and women
to try to convert us into human beings without a past, disconnected from
reality, and into people without a future."

However, he
argued, "We have the right to a future, to have a homeland, to create the great
homeland. I believe that the next 500 years will depend on what happens in
these years, as the panorama of the Conquest [Spanish colonization] changed our
map, imposed on us a course, as what happened 200 years ago marked the course
of the last two centuries, now we are again in a definitive epoch."

his commitment to socialism as "the only path that will permit us to save the
world, because capitalism is the path of the destruction of life and the human
species," Chavez stressed that, "Only the conscious peoples, in organization
and in motion can make history, therefore the consciousness of our peoples, of
our nations, is essential."

This is
precisely why North American imperialism attacks and bombards us using their
"cultural artillery"- to placate and divide the peoples, Chavez argued.

offices, analysts and millions of dollars, the United States carries out a media
war against our peoples and governments. With different intensities and
variants but in exactly the same format," he explained.

Venezuelan people and government have been subjected to a fierce media war for
the past 10 years which was intensified in the last few months, with a dirty
psychological war appealing to peoples fears, aimed neutralising the Venezuelan
people, Chavez said. This was one of the key reasons for the electoral defeat
of the proposed constitutional reforms during the referendum on December 2 he

Chavez also
warned that Venezuela possesses documents to show that "the United States has
plans to invade Venezuela." He also said, "the gringos have plans for a coup
against Evo Morales."

"They aim
for civil wars to then justify the ‘blue helmets' [of the United Nations Peace
Keeping Force] or a national intervention."

While the
major attacks are aimed principally against Venezuela
and Bolivia, Chavez said it
is likely that a rightwing campaign of destabilisation will intensify against
the Constituent Assembly process in Ecuador.

"In Ecuador
the Constituent Assembly is beginning, and it is probable that the conflict
will intensify; as in Bolivia, where they carried it to such extremes with the
manipulation by imperialism and its lackeys through the media war, that is one
of the harshest and toughest confrontations of ideas."

Each government
cannot confront the threat of imperialism on its own, Chavez argued, rather it
is necessary to unite forces and create an "anti-imperialist international of
the peoples," to confront imperialist aggression.

"If the
empire attacks us, we cannot remain limited to separate resistance. We will have to create an international resistance
of workers, of soldiers", he argued.

indicated that he had spoken of the idea with Evo Morales, president of Bolivia, Rafael Correa, president of Ecuador
and Ignacio "Lula" Da Silva, president of Brasil.

the changes and transformations occurring in Latin America are "irreversible,
Chavez assured. The newly created Bank of the South would push forward Latin
American integration he said, and build on previous initiatives such as
Petrosur, a project for regional energy integration and development, and Telesur
a Latin American television network.

projects Chavez pointed to include the University of the South and the ‘social
missions' of the South, initiatives oriented towards combating problems of
social exclusion, illiteracy, malnutrition as well as ensuring access to health
and education for the peoples of the region.

Chavez, who
attended the swearing in of newly elected president of Argentina, Christina Fernández
de Kirchner, and the creation of the Bank of the South on Sunday, also told Argentine
business groups at a meeting at the Hotel Sheraton in Buenos Aries on Monday, that
relations between Venezuela and Argentina would be strengthened, "politically,
socially and economically" under the leadership of Christina Kirchner.