Last week, Venezuela hosted the first Congress of Indian and Anti-Imperialist Warriors of the Americas (Congreso Indoamerica Joven de Guerreros Contra la Miseria y el Imperialismo).
Sure, the title is a mouthful, but the focus of the congress was clear: to bring together Indigenous leaders throughout the region who are committed to equality and justice.
18 different Indigenous delegations from the Americas were present in Venezuela. Three of those hailed from the United States. Present to represent their people were Chairman Joseph Brings Plenty of the Cheyenne River Sioux, Carl Wassilie of the Alaska Intertribal Council, and Heather Thompson of the National Congress of American Indian. Venezuela alone was represented by 1,500 delegates from diverse native groups.
The events coincided with World Indigenous Peoples Day. President Chavez spoke at the closing ceremony of the Congress last Monday at the Municipal Theater in Caracas. He announced: “A peaceful revolution is developing in South America; a peaceful, moral, and indigenous revolution.”
President Chavez even suggested that South America should change its name to Indian America! Thoughts? Comments are open.