Monday, October 23, 2006

Left trainspotting: Venezuela and Iran

1. I came across this comment from JimJay at a StroppyBlog post on Venezuela.
My understanding is that the [Socialist Action-led Venezuela Information Centre (VIC)] calls for defending democracy in Venezuela and wants to mirror the method of the Cuba Solidarity Campaign (nice music, Tory peer supporter, etc., low level of demands) and the [Socialist Appeal-led Hands of Venezuela (HoV)] call for solidarity with the 'Bolivarian Revolution', the revolutionary union UNT and have a far higher / more left wing set of demands and more international links (including in Venezuela)

HoV has branches and activists, VIC seems to be made up of top brass. Also HoV seem to be willing to criticise Chavez when they think it's due (although they do support Chavez even though they express worries about particular things, eg foreign policy) VIC only want to get their picture taken with him

Personally if I had to choose one it would be HoV, particularly as VIC seem to delight in calling meetings at the same time as their "rival". Having said that I wouldn't advise people NOT to go to VIC stuff...
Great piece of analysis!

(Socialist Action, by the way, support Ken Livingstone, think Israel is a terrorist state, and defend China from capitalist attacks. Socialist Appeal also trade under the name In Defence of Marxism, which would be better named "Radically Distort Marxism by Thinking that Stalinist States, though "Deformed", Remain Workers' States", or "Put People off Marxism by Putting out one of the Most Turgid Websites on the Left".)

2. International Viewpoint, the organ of Reunified Fourth International, actually has some articles worth reading about Iran, Islam, Islamism and Islamophobia:

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