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US Maoists Tour Venezuela, Walk Right Into Counter-Revolution

As Venezuela teeters on the brink of counter-revolution, an influential delegation of U.S. Maoists from the Freedom Road Socialist Organization–Fight Back! group (FRSO-FB) is in the country building solidarity with the communist leaders of the embattled regime.

FRSO-FB (not to be confused with the similarly named Freedom Road Socialist Organization/Organizacion Socialista del Camino para la Libertad) is a Midwest-based Maoist group that supports China, North Korea, Iran, Russia, Cuba, and Venezuela.

The four Americans arrived in the country on April 28 in time to celebrate May Day with their revolutionary hosts. They probably didn’t anticipate that on April 30, Venezuela’s U.S.-recognized interim President Juan Guaidó, an opponent of the country’s Marxist government, would take to the streets. Surrounded by anti-government armed troops, Guaidó issued a call for the “military to rise up and oust socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro.”

According to an internet plea for funding for the revolutionary tourists:

“The Freedom Road Socialist Organization is sending a delegation to Venezuela for May Day, and the delegates need your help to get there.

“Four labor and anti-war activists will participate in the FRSO delegation to do eyewitness reporting for [FRSO publication] Fight Back! News. Sean Orr, Tracy Molm, Tom Burke and Mark Burton will write articles, conduct interviews and produce videos. They need your support and donations to make this a success.

“We are asking all comrades and allies who support the Bolivarian Revolution and believe in international solidarity to help us cover our travel costs.”

The members of the U.S. delegation currently in Venezuela are the following:

Tom Burke: Delegation leader Burke is a longtime FRSO-FB member based in Michigan. Burke has been active in Venezuela Solidarity work and has supported revolution in Colombia through the Colombia Action Network. In 2016, he was one of the lead organizers for the Coalition to Stop Trump and March on the Republican National Convention.

Mark Burton: A Denver, Colorado-based lawyer and activist, Burton is a member of the Denver Peace Council, which is affiliated to the World Peace Council, a still-existing Soviet-era international communist front. Burton is also a member of the Hands-Off Syria Coalition, which supports pro-Moscow dictator Bashar al-Assad. He also serves as legal counsel for former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) leader Simon Trinidad, who is now serving 60 years in a Colorado prison for involvement in the kidnapping of three U.S. intelligence contractors.

Tracy Molm: A longtime Minneapolis FRSO-FB member, Molm traveled to the Palestinian Territories in 2004 where she observed the terrorist Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. She is also a prominent “peace” activist and anti-Trump protester.

Sean Orr: A younger FRSO-FB activist based in Milwaukee, Orr serves as the Venezuela correspondent for the Fight Back! newspaper. Orr is also active in the FRSO-controlled Milwaukee Anti-War Committee and is a leader of the Milwaukee Coalition Against Trump.

On their first day in Venezuela, the U.S. delegation “held a two-hour meeting with members of the Communist Party of Venezuela (PCV) Central Committee and leaders of the Communist Youth of Venezuela.”

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