Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez Launches Campaign for Regional Elections

At the main national launch of the United Socialist Party of
Venezuela's (PSUV) electoral campaign on Sunday Venezuelan president
Hugo Chavez declared that it would be possible to win all the governor
positions but warned against complacency and betrayal and also looked
at the tasks of the revolution beyond the elections.

By Tamara Pearson - Venezuelanalysis.com

chavez_psuv.jpg

Hugo Chavez gives speech to PSUV members on Sunday (PSUV)
Hugo Chavez gives speech to PSUV members on Sunday (PSUV)
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Mérida, September 29, 2008 (venezuelanalysis.com)-- At the main national launch of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela's (PSUV) electoral campaign on Sunday Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez declared that it would be possible to win all the governor positions but warned against complacency and betrayal and also looked at the tasks of the revolution beyond the elections.

PSUV candidates and members from across the country attended the event in the Poliedro stadium in Caracas.

Chavez said that the upcoming regional elections in November are very important for Latin America and the world, as they are not just about winning mayoral and governmental positions but also about planting consciousness.

He expressed satisfaction that Venezuela now has a socialist and revolutionary party that is united and that the impact of this party transcends borders, even though it was created only a year ago.

"It was time to have a party with adequate political cadre, a true party of the masses," said Chavez.

He contended that with hard work there wasn't a single position of governor out of 22 up for election that the patriotic alliance (of pro-Chavez parties) can't objectively win. He said the same was true of the mayoral and legislative council positions and that the way to win was through organization, mobilization and socialist and revolutionary consciousness.

"We need a lot of knowledge, study, [and] I'm not talking about doing doctorates, [I mean] the study of the reality that surrounds us, the realization through observation, analysis, debate, reading, ideological work... only like that can we increase knowledge, revolutionary consciousness, socialist consciousness. We don't forget that this revolution has a path: socialism, the only path that allows us to consolidate Venezuelan independence."

Hence, he argued, the objective of the elections isn't just to win, but to win in organization, ability to mobilize, and increased consciousness though a battle of ideas because the country "isn't totally awake and at the level that we require."

"It's necessary to take the willingness to battle everywhere, because a sleeping people will never win victory, and because the electoral campaign has to be an opportunity and a scenario for the continued awakening of the people...because consciousness never finishes growing, we should feed it with debate, knowledge, self criticism, [for it is a] powerful instrument and necessary to make a true revolution."

Directing his speech to the candidates he warned them not to convert into small bourgeoisie and said, "Enough of the betrayals, we want true revolutionary governors, socialists, honest, socialist, and revolutionary mayors, you [all] have the say after 23 November, but enough already."

Chavez explained that betrayal of the people for personal ambition and wealth has occurred far too often over the last 200 years.

"[I'm] talking about those cities where a group of supposed comrades, alleged revolutionaries from other times jumped to other political tendencies, like the governor of Carabobo, or the one in Guarico, the current mayor in Barinas, the governor of Aragua, the governor of Sucre. I said, and I'm going to say again, the problem, the central cause of these desertions which have happened to us so many times...is ideology."

He also warned against "triumphalism," which he said was one of the factors that contributed to the loss of the vote for reforming the constitution last year.

"We shouldn't sing victory in any state or municipality."

After the elections

Chavez reminded the audience that the nation should prepare to commemorate in 2009 60 years of the Chinese revolution, 50 years of the Cuban revolution and 10 years of the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela and likewise in 2010, 200 years since April 19 and the first rebellious movement that overthrew the Spanish government in Caracas.

 "[It was] the first successful movement in the entire continent. As well in 2011, we'll celebrate 200 years of the first constitution of July 5th, and we'll be celebrating in a big way, the full independence revolution."

He explained that the Bolivarian Revolution isn't more than the continuation of the same process of independence, a second historical phase of the Venezuelan and South American independence process.

"What should occur [in the regional elections] is a resounding triumph...in order to accelerate the revolution and move on to a period of construction of a new country with socialist values," said Chavez.

Threat of coup and assassination

"My days are numbered because they are hunting me," Chavez also said in his speech, referring to the coup plans that were denounced this month and in which 12 people have so far been detained.

He warned of a possible attack by the Venezuelan oligarchy and the "Yankee sympathisers" in October and recommended that in the face of such threats it would be indispensable to put in place networks of popular intelligence, connected with the National Government and police bodies.

However, he assured that "Yes, October will be red, but red with happiness, red in the streets, the red of passion and homeland, red not for violence but for peace, red not for the hate of the opposition but for the love of the people and the PSUV. November will be the red of victory and socialism. We won't be the foolish country but the red country."

Chavez took the opportunity to congratulate the new Minister for Justice and Interior Relations, Tarek El Aissami, who he said has a hard battle ahead against drug trafficking and insecurity.