International Communications Congress,December 4th 2019
FINAL DECLARATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATIONS CONGRESS
Now the Peoples speak
The delegates gathered in the city of Caracas, capital of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, in the framework of the "International Communications Congress", after due deliberation have reached the following conclusions:
The peoples of the world are subjected to a whirlpool of tensions, conflicts and wars instigated by the capitalist system in its neoliberal phase. The Western powers, allied to the elites of their respective countries, seek to impose capitalism with blood and fire by means of formulas prescribed by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to the detriment of the sovereignty of the world's peoples.
In keeping with these plans, capitalism's cultural industry actively shapes what people think by controlling the production and diffusion of content aimed at imposing the so called civilizing project of corporate capital. It is a modern-colonial logic that pursues social control, inscribes a single way of thinking on a planetary scale and underpins cultural homogenization with the aim of securing the model of unequal North-South exchange, favoring the socio-metabolic system of corporate capital.
The subjectivity of peoples is a zone of conflict. Indeed, communication conceived by the large capitalist consortiums has become a powerful tool that renders invisible the diversity of thought, proscribes dissent, silences peoples and aspires to monopolize public opinion by reducing it exclusively to the ideas held by the dominant elites. This project of global domination that tries to conquer hearts and minds very much in the tradition of Eurocentric colonialism for which today the main attack dog is US imperialism.
The White House seeks to preserve its world hegemony by blocking the liberation of peoples and the emergence of new powers determined to reconfigure a multipolar and pluricentric world. Our America has become an important scenario of great geo-political conflict where the future of the peoples of the continent is at stake. It is also an important battle in which US imperialism intends to consolidate its hegemony against other powers. The reason for this is partly that Latin America and the Caribbean constitute an important reservoir of natural resources, but mainly because in this part of the world there flourishes a different, more humane and sustainable cosmovision of understanding life, one that becomes a reality in countries experiencing important processes of change at the hands of progressive governments.
In the current regional situation, the mass communications media have played an important role in discrediting progressive governments, discrediting social movements, eroding popular support for processes of change. They have done so through disinformation campaigns that manipulate facts and impose post-truth as a constant to shape the population's understanding of the world and thus too their political behavior. Such that these mass media have been used repeatedly in psychological operations aimed at altering the correlation of social forces and class consciousness according to the interests of US imperialism.
The popular insurrections against neoliberalism in Haiti, Ecuador, Chile, Panama and Colombia, together with the electoral triumphs of political alternatives in Argentina and Bolivia formed a new regional scenario aimed at halting the U.S. offensive on the continent. However, the coup d'état in Bolivia is a brutal attempt to halt this advance, aimed at recolonizing the region and, therefore, sets an important precedent because the future of the continent's democratic struggles is at stake in this country. The communicational blockade imposed by private business consortiums, as evidenced in the current situation in the Plurinational State of Bolivia, disguises US interference, legitimizes repeated violation of international public law by the great powers, masks the use of paramilitarism in the region, promotes coups against sovereign governments, "justifies" the use of military and police force, criminalizes the demands of the people and censors those who think differently.
However, Bolivia is no exception to the deliberate use of media and social networks to overthrow governments committed to their national interests. The constant aggression against Venezuela is the best example of the articulation of the large Western media chains with the military objectives of the United States, the use of paramilitarism, diplomatic siege and the economic-commercial blockade programmed to reduce popular support for governments and deny their right to independence and development.
The Bolivarian Revolution is an emblem of anti-imperialist dignity that has resisted the incessant attacks perpetrated by the White House and most governments belonging to the Lima Group. This imperialist offensive is a counter attack to a social-political model marked by social inclusion and participatory democracy as a permanent exercise well beyond the framework of liberal democracy. Genuine political participation of the people is made a reality, along with other spaces, in the organizations of popular power protected by an innovative legal framework promoting the flowering of community and alternative media so as to break the private business monopoly of communications in the country. In Venezuela, the people speak with their own voice and their own media, confronting the world's most powerful communications consortiums.
The unbreakable civic-military union together with the broadest freedoms have promoted alternative communication and the strengthening of People's Power. In Venezuela the dream of Commander Hugo Chávez has been continued, the project towards socialism continues and the popular will expressed in the election of the Constitutional President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro Moros, is defended.
The reactivation of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR) and the proliferation of US military bases in Our America, along with Colombia's accession to NATO, are some instances of the policy of systematic aggression applied against the peoples of the region. This offensive is permanently reinforced using communications media and digital networks that shape public opinion in favor of military action.
In this context, the "International Communication Congress" declares:
We accompany the general outcry of the Bolivian people who demand respect for their self-determination, recognition of their plurinational character and their rich cultural heritage, which already constitutes an alternative to the irrational Western civilizing model. Consequently, we condemn the coup d'état in Bolivia perpetrated under the direction of the White House and with the consent of the OAS.
We denounce the economic-financial blockade against Cuba and Venezuela, which violates fundamental human rights by preventing the population's access to food, medicine and other goods essential to life. The blockade is a genocidal State policy of imperialism aimed at subjugating the peoples.
We salute the victory of the Sandinista National Liberation Front and the people of Nicaragua over the attempted coup d'état orchestrated, promoted and financed by US imperialism and local traitors, whom the General of Free Men and Women Augusto C. Sandino dubbed "Peleles". We recognize and support the firm decision of the FSLN, of the Government and Revolutionary People of Nicaragua to continue advancing along the paths of Independence, Sovereignty, Unity, Reconciliation, Work, Peace and Welfare.
We endorse the just demands of the people of Chile who have risen up against neoliberalism, despite the massive violation of human rights, the communicational blockade and the criminal silence of High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet. They may be able to shoot at the eyes of Chile's youth, but they will never blind their future.
We demand the immediate and unconditional release of journalist Julian Assange, who is being detained in the UK for exercising freedom of expression. We condemn the prosecution of this journalist for fulfilling his duty to inform the public truthfully.
We question the use of State Terrorism in Colombia and Ecuador that curtails the liberties of communicators by intimidating, assaulting and in some cases even murdering those who fulfill their duty to exercise ethical journalism. We support the National Strike that is taking place in Colombia as part of the legitimate struggles of its people.
We express our admiration and solidarity with the resistance and bravery of Syria confronting the aggression of Western imperialist powers and Israeli Zionism in the context of biased news coverage of by Western and allied media.
We reject the media oligopoly's censorship in the service of neoliberal globalization aimed at making popular struggles invisible. The best example can be seen in the information censorship to which the current heroic struggle of the Haitian people is subjected.
We raise our voice against governments that censor alternative, popular and community media. This is a flagrant attack against the free expression of peoples.
We condemn the spurious use of big communications companies and social networks in the service of de facto pwerful elites as an instrument to carry out psychological operations against the peoples of the world within the framework of the Doctrine of Non-Conventional Warfare.
We demand the ethical exercise of journalism from all media and communicators. We call for a commitment to truth regardless of political opinion, religious creed, editorial line, economic condition and/or social position.
We denounce the improper appropriation of our personal information with the use of "big data" in function of communication campaigns that seek to modify the behavior and subjectivity of peoples. We advocate respect for the privacy of users of online platforms. We warn against the use of social networks to persecute those who dissent from neoliberal politics.
We ratify the agreement of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) to declare Latin America and the Caribbean a territory of Peace and, consequently, we demand that the government of the United States immediately cease interfering in the internal affairs of the region's countries.
The "International Communication Congress" approves the following plan of struggle:
- To celebrate each year the "International Communication Congress" with rotating venues at the request of each country. To hold the second meeting of the International Communication Congress in Nicaragua during the month of February 2020.
- To designate a Congressional Commission to create a basic regulatory and operating structure using the proposals of the participating parties and movements. This proposal will be discussed at the next International Communication Congress.
- To articulate an International Network of Communication Networks constituted by all the delegates as well as by all the political parties, social movements and organizations of the People's Power present in this Congress. This International Communication Network will be linked to the different communication platforms created in the framework of the Sao Paulo Forum (FSP) and the similar networks conceived in the International Congresses and Meetings derived from the XXV Meeting of the Foro Sao Paulo, Caracas.
- To create an international multiplatform of international for the exchange and creation of materials, ascribed to the International Congress of Communication for the interaction, generation and diffusion of alternative contents.
- To create the International University of Communication conceived as a community of knowledge through a platform for training, research, production of knowledge and content, to contribute to the process of liberation of peoples, the search for equality, good living and social justice.
- To develop a census of the communicators, media and communication networks of the different political parties, Peoples Power organizations and social movements of the International Congresses and Meetings held in Venezuela during 2019.
- To build, with the agendas of struggle approved in the International Congresses and Meetings held in Venezuela during 2019, communicational campaigns from the Network of Networks approved in this Congress.
- Adopt April 12 as an international day of popular communication.
- To create the Latin American and Caribbean Prize in Recognition of Alternative and Emancipatory Communication on the part of the International Communications Congress.
Finally, the International Communications Congress assumes the Agenda of Struggle adopted in the "1st International Meeting of Workers in Solidarity with the Bolivarian Revolution", endorsed by the "1st International Congress of Women", by the "International Congress of Communes, Social Movements and People's Power", by the "1st International Meeting of Indigenous Peoples" and by the "International Congress of Afrodescendants", held in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela during the year 2019, an Agenda that includes the following:
1. To coordinate, in the capitals of the world, a day for December 9, 2019, the day of the commemoration of the Battle of Ayacucho, in order to condemn the interfering policies of U.S. imperialism in Our America. NO MORE TRUMP!
2. To hold an international day of mobilization in support of the Bolivarian Revolution and against neoliberalism on February 27, 2020, in commemoration of the 31st anniversary of the first insurrection in Caracas against neoliberalism.
3. To call, for the month of April 2020, a world mobilization for peace in Venezuela, in Our America and against the warlike plans of the government of the United States.
4. To develop before June 28, 2020 an International Day of Repudiation of the Monroe Doctrine against the blockade and other unilateral coercive measures.
Approved in the city of Caracas, birthplace of Liberator Simón Bolívar and capital of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela on December 4, 2019.