Abby Martin-2018-03-28-19h49m56s121

US Sanctions Venezuela and Shuts Down Abby Martin’s “The Empire Files” – Front Lines + Insurgency

(Dandelion Salad) The Empire Files is temporarily appealing for donations on a one-time and monthly basis to continue production in the midst of US attacks on the TeleSUR Network.
As a result of US sanctions against Venezuela, The Empire Files has been forced to completely shut down operations.
The Empire Files, which airs on TeleSUR throughout Latin America and on Free Speech TV and The Real News Network in the United States, has been funded through a contract with the TeleSUR network. As Abby Martin’s primary broadcast, it has released over 100 documentaries, interviews and on-the-ground exposés from battlefields in Palestine, Venezuela and beyond.
As a result of financial attacks by the US government on the primary source of TeleSUR’s funding, production was halted before the completion of Empire Files Season Two.
Season Three, contracted for 26 episodes, was scheduled to begin on July 1. But with the US government blocking wire transfers that originate in Venezuela, the ability to receive funding has not been possible.
For over a year, funding has been sporadic and often delayed. The Empire Files has been operating by alternating between waiting for late payments and funding production out-of-pocket.
However, with US attacks and sanctions intensifying, the ability to receive funds appears to have been cut-off completely.
Contract TeleSUR journalists elsewhere, including at Empire Files, have had funding blocked by the US government for over 6 months. Even wire transfers not originating in Venezuela, but ally countries which also fund TeleSUR, have been severed.
There appears to be no solution, and no end in sight, to this ongoing financial attack.
The Empire Files officially halted all production on May 27, and had to cut all staff prior to that. But we have been holding-off on an official announcement in hopes that the wall put in place by the Trump Administration would be overcome.
We are making this announcement now because, after numerous attempts and constant rejections of all types of fund transfers, we do not believe this barrier will be removed in the near future.

The depth of US attacks

The US State Department has been involved in regime-change projects in Venezuela since the election of the late President Hugo Chavez, first expressed by a violent coup in 2002. During that coup, Venezuela’s state media and pro-government media were shut-down by the US-backed junta. Yet economic sanctions on Venezuela were not implemented until the Obama Administration, in 2015.
The Trump Administration has taken these sanctions to new heights. The most recent escalation came on May 21, 2018, the day after President Maduro democratically won reelection—apparently to punish the Venezuelan people for electing the “wrong” candidate.
Today, the US sanctions on Venezuela are the worst sanctions on any country in the region since those against Nicaragua in the 1980s, according to Mark Weisbrot of the Center for Economic and Policy Research—a time when the Reagan Administration was waging a full-blown, bloody war against the Nicaraguan people. Similarly it is Venezuela’s poor and working class who are, by design, suffering most from the sanctions today.
These economic attacks cannot be viewed on their own, but part-in-parcel of a regime-change operation—while this is just one front in the US strategy, the sanctions are coupled with violent US-backed coup attempts in Venezuela, including the August 4 assassination attempt on President Maduro.

Please continue reading full blog at Dandelion Salad

with Abby Martin
Media Roots
Ariyana Love is a researcher/writer with The Liberty Beacon Project. She is Directing Middle East Rising & Occupy Palestine TV news channels. Ariyana is a human rights defender and Goodwill Ambassador to Palestine. She is also Chairman of an international foundation promoting humanitarian projects in the occupied Palestinian territory.

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