Alan Woods recently participated in the II International Meeting of Solidarity with the Revolution in Caracas, Venezuela. For this occasion El Topo Obrero, the journal of the Revolutionary Marxist Current in Venezuela, took the opportunity to interview Alan Woods about the revolutionary situation in Venezuela, the validity of Marxism, and the world situation today.

Last week Alan Woods visited Caracas to attend the Second International Gathering in Solidarity with the Venezuelan Revolution. He spoke at several meetings, putting the Marxist case, mainly to audiences of workers and poor people – activists of the Bolivarian Movement and the main protagonists of the Venezuelan Revolution. "I also had the opportunity to meet and talk with the President of the Bolivarian Republic, Hugo Chavez. As a writer and Marxist historian I am used to writing about men and women who have made history. But it is not every day that one has the opportunity to observe a protagonist of the historical process at close quarters, to ask questions and to form an impression, not from newspaper reports but from personal experience."

A diplomatic crisis has opened up between Mexico and Cuba. Mexico's Vicente Fox government has demanded the recall of the Mexican ambassador from Havana and ordered the Cuban diplomats to leave. The response of the masses was anything but favourable. Thousands demonstrated in Mexico, while a million marched through Havana. This has deepened the political crisis in Mexico and further undermined Fox and his right wing PAN government.

An appeal, drafted by the Hands Off Venezuela Campaign  and signed by the national leadership of the new trade union confederation UNT.  Use it to raise the issue of recognizing the UNT within the trade union movement internationally. Move resolutions at your trade union branches and congresses. You can use as a model the resolution passed at the Congress of the FIOM-CGIL Lombardia.

In spite of the blatant fraud of the opposition, the decision has been taken to go ahead with the recall referendum in Venezuela. This has disappointed some layers of the Bolivarian movement and enraged others. Many have gone along with it out of their loyalty to Chavez. The decision is a serious mistake. Jorge Martin looks at the what the movement should do now.

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