All attention is now centred on the forthcoming August 15th recall referendum. The "opposition" has all kinds of tricks it can play, but one thing is sure: the masses are gearing up to defend the revolution. Unfortunately there are elements within the leadership of the movement who are trying to hold back the masses. Jorge Martin and William Sanabria, in Caracas, report on what is happening and look at the possible developments.

Genuine Marxists oppose the attempts of the Venezuelan oligarchy, backed by imperialism, to overthrow President Chavez. Why do we take this position? Because a defeat for Chavez in the referendum would be a heavy blow against the workers and peasants of all Latin America. It would be a victory for imperialism and the forces of reaction everywhere. The barricades have been drawn in this class war and it is necessary to take sides clearly and unambiguously.

Venezuela's National Electoral Council released the result of yesterday's recall referendum on the government of President Hugo Chávez Frias. It was revealed that the opposition failed to obtain more votes than those who wanted Chavez to stay on as President. Even so, the opposition has refused to recognize the result and has charged that the "no" victory was based on electoral fraud. But does the result mean the opposition has suffered a decisive defeat? The internal and external enemies of the Venezuelan revolution cannot be reconciled by elections, referendums and negotiations. They will only be satisfied when the revolution is defeated.

We have just received the following declaration of the comrades of the Venezuelan Revolutionary Marxist Current (CMR), which we are pleased to republish in English and Spanish for our readers’ information. It is, in effect, a transitional programme that, taking its starting point from the concrete conditions of the Venezuelan revolution, explains what steps are necessary to build upon the victory in the referendum, carry the revolution forward and pose the question of workers’ power and socialism.

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