Hugo Chávez Frías ¡Presente!

Taken from a March 5, 2013, audio recording from prisonradio.org.

He came from humble beginnings from among the teeming millions in Venezuelan poverty and joined the army as much to make a living as to serve the people.  He and a group of mid-level military officers staged an unsuccessful coup in February, 1992 against the corrupt regime of President Carlos Andrés Pérez. Within eight years, the man that led the coup would be elected president and Hugo Chávez would proclaim Venezuela as home of the revolutionary liberator, Simón Bolívar, who fought and prevailed against Spanish colonialists for Latin American independence early in the 19th century.

For Chávez, Venezuelan independence meant economic independence to use the vast national wealth of the nation to better the crippling poverty experienced by millions in the barrios.  He did so to the howls of the rich elites and foreign investors.

In 2002, rich elites with U.S. support staged a coup against Chávez but it was short-lived for within three days Chávez was once again in control, buoyed by the support of the teeming masses of Caracas, who saved his life, his presidency and his vision.  The people saved Chávez and he worked to save and better their lives.  Having escaped death, Comandante Presidente Hugo Chávez gave his life to the socialist cause and devoted the revenues from Venezuela’s oil wealth to creating a more egalitarian society.

For 13 years, he worked to deepen the Bolivarian Revolution and he saw a leftist tide sweep Latin America.  Hugo Chávez, who survived coups and countercoups, lost his final battle to cancer.  Hugo Chávez was 58.  From imprisoned nation, this is Mumia Abu-Jamal.