As part of my recent trip to Venezuela I was invited to speak about the world crisis of capitalism and the class struggle in Europe at two meetings of PDVSA oil workers in Monagas, in the east of the country. One of the meetings took place in Maturín, the capital of the state and where the PDVSA management for the Eastern Region is based, and the other one in the PDVSA installations in Punta de Mata, a city built around a massive oil field.

At the end of June I had the opportunity of visiting Venezuela where I attended the national conference of “Class Struggle” (Lucha de Clases), the Venezuelan section of the International Marxist Tendency. What I witnessed is an increased polarisation between left and right, but above all an open clash between the revolutionary wing of the Bolivarian movement and the reformists and bureaucrats. In a series of articles I will attempt to illustrate this.

On Tuesday May 25, the US imposed penalties against Venezuelan state-owned company PDVSA, and another 6 companies from other countries, for conducting business with Iran.  The sanctions are part of an attempt by Washington to step up the pressure against Iran in relation to its nuclear program. They are also an act of blatant bullying directed against Venezuela.

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