[QODLink]
Archive
Viva la revolucion!
George W Bush is the world's greatest terrorist and millions of Americans support the ideals of Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan president, according to Harry Belafonte, the singer and rights activist.
Last Modified: 09 Jan 2006 04:03 GMT
Belafonte said he came to learn about Chavez's "Bolivarian Revolution"
George W Bush is the world's greatest terrorist and millions of Americans support the ideals of Hugo Chavez, the Venezuelan president, according to Harry Belafonte, the singer and rights activist.

Belafonte led a delegation of Americans that met President Chavez for more than six hours on Saturday. Some in the group, which included Danny Glover, the actor, and Cornel West, the Princeton scholar, attended the president's television and radio broadcast on Sunday.

"No matter what the greatest tyrant in the world, the greatest terrorist in the world, George W Bush says, we're here to tell you: Not hundreds, not thousands, but millions of the American people ... support your revolution," Belafonte told Chavez during the broadcast.

"We respect you, admire you, and we are expressing our full solidarity with the Venezuelan people and your revolution."

Anti-imperialism

Chavez accuses Bush of trying to overthrow him, pointing to intelligence documents released by the US indicating that the CIA knew beforehand that dissident officers planned a short-lived 2002 coup. The US denies involvement, but Chavez says Venezuela must be on guard.

"No matter what the greatest tyrant in the world, the greatest terrorist in the world, George W Bush says, we're here to tell you: Not hundreds, not thousands, but millions of the American people ... support your revolution"

Harry Belafonte, the singer and rights activist

"We have to defeat imperialism to save ourselves - and not only ourselves, to save the world," Chavez said. He called Bush "Mr Danger".

Belafonte, now 78 and famous for his calypso-inspired music, including the "Day-O" song, was a close collaborator of Martin Luther King and is now a Unicef goodwill ambassador. He has also criticised the US embargo of Cuba.

Bolivarian Revolution

Attending the "Hello President" programme, broadcast live from a farming co-operative southwest of Caracas, Belafonte said he had come to learn about Chavez's "Bolivarian Revolution", which includes a wide range of social programmes for the poor and is named after Simon Bolivar, the South American independence hero.

He said US news media portray Chavez as a "dictator", whereas Venezuela is a democracy and Venezuelans are "optimistic about their future".

Chavez called Bush "Mr Danger"

During the delegates' visit, they toured a prison and talked to people in the street - hearing criticisms as well as praise for the government. To be able to criticise, Belafonte said, "is the greatest truth of a democracy".

Chavez called Belafonte "my brother" and said he believes deeply in the struggle for justice by blacks in America - north and south.

"Although we may not believe it, there continues to be great discrimination here against black people," Chavez said, urging his government to redouble its efforts to eliminate it.

Belafonte suggested setting up a youth exchange for Venezuelans and Americans to learn from each other. He finished by shouting: "Viva la revolucion!"

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
Your chance to be an investigative journalist in Al Jazeera’s new interactive game.
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Featured
Private citizens take initiative to help 'irregular' migrants, accusing governments of excessive focus on security.
Indonesia's cassava plantations are being killed by mealybugs, and thousands of wasps have been released to stop them.
Violence in Ain al-Arab has prompted many Kurdish Syrians to flee to Turkey, but others are returning to battle ISIL.
Unelected representatives quietly iron out logistics of massive TPP and TTIP deals among US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific.
Led by students concerned for their future with 'nothing to lose', it remains to be seen who will blink first.