“Leave Venezuela alone,” the man on the street told the reporter. In Spanish. I glanced over at the microphone vector and saw it was a teleSUR TV (teleSUR) employee doing the interview. I guarantee that interview was part of a story that portrayed the United States in a negative light.
Never heard of teleSUR? Probably not, but if you’re interested in U.S. politics you should know a little more about them. teleSUR is the Russia TV or the RT of Latin America. While their U.S. audience is unknown, teleSUR is broadcast throughout Latin America for the express purpose of undermining the United States.
I’ve done my fair share of foreign media television interviews in Washington, D.C. There are news outlets here from the world over; however, I’ve never sat down, nor ever will, with RT or its Latin America cousin teleSUR. As with RT, teleSUR is a propaganda organization. They are not journalists.
The governments of Cuba, Venezuela, and many other Latin American governments, possibly with the egging on of Russia, use teleSUR outlets to undermine U.S. interests throughout the world.
teleSUR is a creature of the Bolivarian Revolution, created, owned, and operated by the Venezuelan government with the help of propaganda advisors from Communist Cuba. Therefore the U.S. affiliates are agents of the Venezuelan government who acts under the direction of its masters in Havana and Caracas.
They are not a news organization, but an entity of a foreign government masquerading as a new organization. The day-to-day management is done by the Ministry of Popular Power for Communication and Information, an agency of the Venezuela regime that, according to its website promotes the interests of the Venezuelan government.
Access to the U.S. market is a privilege, not a right. The American taxpayer deserves to know if teleSUR affiliates in the United States are acting as foreign agents of a foreign government such as Venezuela. I think they are and, just as with RT, they must obey the law and register under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA).
Created in 2005, teleSUR initially received 70% of its funding from the Venezuelan government and the balance from the governments of Cuba, Argentina, Uruguay, Nicaragua, and Brazil. Among other things, Latin America’s left used the station to evangelize in favor of an anti-American political and economic union of Latin American nations. Established by Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez in 2004, that political union was called the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America.
The first broadcast I believe was done in Cuba, with a special program featuring Chavez and Castro extolling, the virtues of socialism and the evils of capitalism. As the dictators railed against American imperialism, U.S. policymakers shrugged it off calling the teleSUR concept a nuisance that would never last. Thirteen years later and teleSUR is still going and growing.
In addition to ascertaining the presence of teleSUR affiliates in the United States as well as its various funding sources, policymakers should also investigate if teleSUR officials and donors are using teleSUR corporate structures to evade U.S. economic sanctions that have been imposed to help the people of Venezuela.
Every hardline leftist leader of the region has been featured or interviewed on teleSUR, and it is usually for an anti-American, anti-free market story. To give you a flavor of its programming, I’ve embedded a few teleSUR videos at the end of this blog post.
Much like its state-owned oil company, PDVSA, teleSUR ownership, and financial information are not known. Its dealings are shady by design. Venezuela regime officials, or people connected to them, could also be using teleSUR entities to evade U.S. economic sanctions.
Considering the lack of freedom of expression in Venezuela, it is ironic that teleSUR is allowed to operate freely in the United States. As evidenced by numerous U.S. government reports, there is no freedom of the press in Venezuela. Those with opposing points of view in politics or the media are crushed.
The Maduro-Al Aissimi regime has suppressed information in many ways including, but not limited to, closure of media companies, confiscation of assets, and using violent tactics against owners and reporters of news organizations that do not tow Cuba-Venezuela Bolivarian revolutionary line.
As officials with the Trump administration and the Congress consider ways to address Cuban-backed adventurism in the Americas, they should start by requiring teleSUR TV to register under FARA. teleSUR is propaganda outfit masquerading as a legitimate news organization. It is time for some sunshine. Let’s see whose backing these folks.
teleSUR should be tossed out of the United States. Start with FARA. Let’s see where that goes.