At the opening session of the PSUV congress Chavez made a very radical left-wing speech, calling for the setting up of a new international, explaining that it was necessary to destroy the bourgeois state and replace it with a revolutionary state, but also referring to the bureaucracy within the Bolivarian movement itself. It was clearly a speech that reflects the enormous pressure from the masses below who are getting tired of talk about socialism, while real progress towards genuine change appears to be frustratingly slow.
On Saturday November 21, the First Extraordinary Congress of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) commenced its sessions with the attendance of 772 red-shirted delegates. The majority were workers, peasants and students, elected by around 2.5 million voters (the total membership on paper is seven million!). The atmosphere was one of enthusiasm and expectation.
After a warming up session of revolutionary songs and a couple of opening speeches from visiting dignitaries from Nicaragua and El Salvador, Hugo Chavez opened the proceedings with a five hour speech that finished shortly after midnight.
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