The War on Democracy

The War on Democracy

2007, Politics  -   41 Comments
Ratings: 8.59/10 from 131 users.

The War on DemocracyPresident Bush has promised to rid the world of evil and to lead the great mission to build free societies on every continent. To understand such an epic lie is to understand history. Hidden history. Suppressed history. History that explains why we in the West know a lot about the crimes of others, but almost nothing about our own. The missing word is Empire. The existence of an American Empire is rarely acknowledged. In his second inauguration address, President Bush pledged to "bring democracy to the world”. In a speech lasting 23 minutes, he mentioned the words ‘democracy’ and ‘liberty’ 21 times. Most of the world, it is fair to say, will have recoiled, many in fear...

Bush’s speech was significant because it finally emptied noble concepts like ‘democracy’ of their true meaning – government, for, by and of the people. Never before have people in the west shown such disenchantment with the democracy they vote for and the version they get. Never before has most of humanity registered such alarm at the ambitions of a great power. The War on Democracy demonstrates the brutal reality of the America’s notion of 'spreading democracy'; that, in fact, America is actually conducting a war on democracy, and that true popular democracy is now more likely to be found among the poorest of Latin America whose grassroots movements are often ignored in the west.

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Mark G
5 years ago

It's fun to laugh at all of the paranoid useful idiots in love Chavez gushing over this communist propaganda documentary considering the state of Venezuela now after he nationalized everything and demonized private enterprise. Now everyone is equal...equally destitute that is! That's socialism for ya.

Gus Brunson
6 years ago

I find it funny some of the Venezuelans comments here. This is a country that once had a man named Pedro Estrada, described by historian Hubert Herring as "as vicious a man hunter as Hitler ever employed," headed the vast National Security Police (Seguridad Nacional--SN) network that rounded up any opposition, including military officers, unable to escape. Hundreds, if not thousands, were brutally tortured or simply murdered at the notorious Guasina Island concentration camp in the Orinoco jungle region.

This is a country that once a presidente built a replica of New York's Rockefeller Center, a luxurious mountaintop hotel, and the world's most expensive officers' club all while the people was starving in the slums.

This is a country where a president cancelled the planned elections and then scheduled a plebescite. Only two hours after the polls had closed on December 15, the government announced an incredible 85 percent vote in favor of the president continuing in office.

In one of the past presidencies, when the Central University of Venezuela became a center of opposition to the regime, it was simply shut down for over a year.

Or how about former president Perez?
When the early election results made it clear that the URD , was far ahead of the government party, Pérez ordered the count halted and declared himself president.

And then the Venezuelans come here complain about Maduro??? Give me a break, this is a country that until recently the power was shared by two political parties that alternated in power in the most obscene example of crony capitalism.

Christopher Wingate
7 years ago

USA foreign policy has been all about economic gain not for the US administration but for various powerful interests who dictate via 'Think Tanks'. We are entering times that are extremely worrying because their greed knows no limit and the assets are slowly being gobbled up with just a few to fight over. WW3 is just waiting for the next black flag.

7 years ago

Excellent Documentary. Touches upon a brutal pattern showing the US government's self interest trumping their rhetoric and the lack of substance behind their claims of improving the lot of the poor and destitute even if they have to kill them to do it. This is an incomplete list and if you're interested you should copy down or take a screen shot of those country's listed and read the accounts of each case separately. Start with changing the term of 'collateral damage' back to the killing of innocents, and reclaim 'genocide' for what it is. Calling it 'ethnic cleansing' removes us one step further from recognizing it's total evil. The word 'cleansing', has no place here.
True democracy cannot co-exist with capitalism. Your representatives must be held accountable for what they promised you and a system put in place to recall and replace them with people who will when they don't, instead of waiting for another election. This can be put in place before your next state elections and serve as a deterrent to those who promise one thing then do another. Only then will your vote approach the true worth of its value.

7 years ago

This is to Tesg, their is absolutley nothing we can do......only when it personally affects at least 100 million Americans in a very bad way, will something be done, if that happens it will be swift. But the people in power are too smart for that to happen. I'm not sure if you believe in God or not, but I do and he is the only one that can save the world from all the greedy people in it. Don't discount the power of him. People that have Billions of Dollars and want more no matter who they kill for it are Demons living right here on earth. They always mask themselves with bullshit words that their doing it to protect are interests. Nobody asked the CIA for anything. Were did they come from anyway?

Derrick Boyes
9 years ago

It all goes back to kings and queens fighting for land and wealth there is no honorable war. And the war is on the everyday people vs the bloodlines of the past who feel they have some kind of claim over everything.

9 years ago

In the Middle Ages, the West fought wars in the names of God.
In Modern Age, the West fought wars in the names of Freedom and Democracy.
They always fought for similar things, just different names.
Who wants to tell the people they fought wars under real names of oil, money, strategic dominance, geopolitical influence, etc?

Fabien L'Amour
9 years ago

It's an interesting documentary especially when you watch it a few years after Chavez.

Sadly, Venezuela is nowadays plagued with violent crime with about 25 000 homicides last year in a population of 30.5 millions. A soap opera/beauty queen and her family got attacked recently.

The oil production of the country is also rapidly decreasing from 3.5 million barrels/day in the late 90s to under 2.5 million barrels/day nowadays. Systematic underinvestment by the government is the cause of that decrease.

Chavez did good for part of his country, but Venezuela has not turned into the paradise some would like to make believe. As the 5th largest exporter of petrol with a nationalized industry, one would think that socialist country would generate enough revenues to feed, care for, protect and decently lodge 30.5 million people. As of November 2013, Venezuela's inflation has greatly increased to 54%.

10 years ago

To Venezuelan Manuel:

Another exercise.
By your position I guess you are satisfied with everything that represents the opposite shown by the author in this film.
Well, if so, why don't you just take your questions and make them on the contrary.
Once you have always lived in Venezuela I suppose you have never lived in the USA, for instance.

Allright, take the United States of America for start.

"Anybody that watches this film needs to ask themselves:
1. Do I live there?
2. Do I know the history about how it all came to be besides what I learn in foreign documentaries?
3. What type of governments control television channels and newspapers?
4. When has the concentration of all the powers under one person or party has been beneficial to any country?"
Do your best, Manuel. The first one is easy. You do't live there.
What about the others? Do you think they're unanswerable?

10 years ago

To Venezuelan Manuel:

Manuel, let me congratulate you for posting such a post when everybody who has seen this film seems to have got a diferente idea from the author.

Why is that? Is it because everybody else is a foreigner, sicken of its own domestic policies and have never putted foot in Venezuela? Is because everybody else is a communist? An idealist?
Or, instead, maybe all this comments just come from people who live in the "other side of the World", the "first world", the "non-venezuelan-revolution world", the "non-chávez supporters world", the "world from where Chávez wanted to keep Venezuela from"? The capital rulling world?!?

And you know what? This world in which "we" live on is a lie. An unfair and deceiving lie.
Do you know who saw this big lie on which the world relies on?
Men like Hugo Chávez.

Now, how old are you? Where were you until 1998? What do you do for a living?
I guess all this answers would tend to give fundaments to your opinions on the matter...
By the way, to all those questions:
"1. Do I live there?
2. Do I know the history about how it all came to be besides what I learn in foreign documentaries?
3. What type of governments control television channels and newspapers?
4. When has the concentration of all the powers under one person or party has been beneficial to any country?"
Why don't you enlighten us? The first one is easy. You leave there.

Or, by a philosophical exercise I would might find the answers, even not having been in Venezuela:
You are responsible for a 10 healthy class-room students at a school.
The school has 4 class-rooms with 10 students each.
Each class-room has at least 6/7 students with flu influenza vírus.
The vírus is spreading.
The school is blocked and there is no way to get out.
No help in sight.
What will you do to prevent the vírus to spread into your class-room and infect your healthy students?

The Khazar Hunter
10 years ago

Remember fellows the pseudo republic, pseudo nation, pseudo country geographically located between Mexico and Canada was founded on these four elements even from its beginnings in 1607: KHAZAR+ASHKENAZI+TEMPLAR+FREEMASON = ZIONISM. Yes, USA folks you are a Zionist creation. A little insignificant inbreed group of hook noses owns you completely. No wonder you do the dirty work for these impostors and thieves. You were manufactured in full by them. Yes the USA. The most vulgar criminal organization in the face of the planet.

Eko J
10 years ago

fck.. this and the doc about new world order.. and other docs.. really scare me out..

11 years ago

Great doc. Fan of John Pilger. I am a Scandinavian who grew up in South America, Brasil and Chile (during and after military rule/dictatorship). Went to school with the rich elite, at least one of them in Chile was the son of one of these murderous generals. There were pictures on their mansion walls of his dad shaking hands with Reagan in the White House. Also hung out with the kids of the U.S. ambassador. But I was brought up in a normal middle class family who were against these coups. It's time for truth right now. Wikileaks, Occupy... Government spin and corporate rule and exploitation is still happening and so we got to keep the pressure up, everywhere. By the way, I recommend reading Life Inc. by Douglas Rushkoff. Gives interesting historical background and perspective.

11 years ago

typical of the U.S. Tryin to bully and control some of the poorest countries in the world. Shame on u. P.S id love give that yank with the glasses and plastic cup a slap lol. good documentary. well woeth watchin

12 years ago

The U.S is the most corrupt nation on earth......but it's greed has been it's undoing as it will destroy itself from within!
$14.5 trillion in debt and growing!!

12 years ago

This is an immensely important documentary that should be watched by ALL US. Citizens (!!!!)...more so today than when it was made, for it helps put into context the current actions of the US Global Empire this very moment (using the end of a Gun to enforce it).
Pilger as always is excellent in his analysis using undeniable facts.
As a US citizen, my entire life time I have witnessed the symbol of our national freedom (the Flag) become drenched and stained with the Blood of innocents around the world defending so called "freedom" from Communism (the old-tired excuse for such they say "Terrorism") but in reality it is the "freedom" to plunder that they actually want.
As One who served in the US Army at the time struggles were occurring in Nicaragua and El need to attempt to understand my following message with an open mind while withholding scorn or judgment (I'm asking you to actually think using your Brain for a moment).
The US Gov't is directed into these conflicts not at the behest of the Citizens due to some looming external Military threat, but rather Corporate interests seeking to maintain the Iron grip on their personal fiefdoms- and for YOU the Citizenry to PAY FOR IT from the National treasury with your Taxes and the blood of naive Citizens whom merely possess (manipulated) National pride.
Privatizing the Profits, Socializing the Costs.
These are the real "Socialists" we should all be concerned about...they will steal your Country so they can plunder with impunity from you by Hook or by Crook, and when that fails, from the end of a Gun...!
Today we call this type of influence gripping Washington: is the most dangerous type of Fascism.
Corporate interests imbued with the power and lethal authority of Government .

The most misunderstood word in the U.S. by it's Citizens is "Democracy".
We claim to be fighting to "bring them Democracy"...or "Freedom" "Liberate them from...(name that "isim)".
Much was the case with the El Salvador and Nicaragua we were told by "Officials" in Washington. (Remember...Dick Cheny was at that time part of this foul core in the Administration, as was Donald Rumsfeld, George Bush, Henry Kissinger, and John Negroponte).
But the point in fact is this folks: (Capitalist) Democracy is the worst form of Gov't for a country desiring self determination and the Constitutional rule of Law (rather than a Progressive Socialist Democracy).
(Hold on...) Why...?
Tyranny of the Wealthy in a nut shell (read that: undue influence of monied Wall Street backed powers). In fact, the US is NOT a (Social) Democracy...the word itself IS NOT mentioned in the Constitution, nor in the Bill of Rights, nor the Declaration of Independence. (Look it up)
The form of Gov't enshrined in those documents is called a Constitutional Republic...! The difference...? Guaranteed protections to the Citizenry (whom possess inalienable rights) from abuses of power by the of the "Minority" from the "Majority...elected Representatives (accountable by the People).
The documents embody what is the essence of a Social Democracy...a Gov't of, by, and for the People.
The claim by my Gov't to be bringing "Democracy" to these Nations is a bold face LIE...and is in fact a disguised methodology to continue to advance & tighten the agenda of Capital where ever it sees fit upon the Globe....all in the name and interest of "National Security".
It is actually Global EMPIRE.
It is a "Stealth" attack of Tyranny upon all the people of the World by the few, concentrated Money Power Elites..!
It has no relation to an actual Democracy of, by and for the people it pretends to serve.
The people it actually serves are the wealthiest 2% of the World.
(See also "Nicaragua: A Nation’s Right To Survive" to understand the issues...also found on this Documentary site).
The interview with the CIA "Spy"in this film is chilling and brazen, whose words openly admits as well as can be seen-proven by the long bloody history from US Administration to Administration through out my country's history, the ugly face of Fascism.
General Smedly Butler's impressive book "War is a Racket" blows the cover off the real agenda for all to see and understand...which is still playing out to this very day in Country after Country.
Witness the current events in Iraq and Afghanistan.
We are continually being lied into these foreign campaigns solely for the enrichment of the few within the Plutocracy at the expense of the many.
Take a moment and reflect to yourself...exactly WHY would such dirt poor Countries (like Nicaragua, El Salvador, Bolivia, etc.) be of any threat to the US ???
They are not a military threat, but represent a political threat to the owners of the of large Multi National Corporations.- whose sole interest is to continue their immensely profitable ruthless plunder any way they can without hindrance nor answering to anyone (read that: the populace and rightful owners of those lands).
People using self determination to throw out the US installed Dictators (remember the Shah of Iran..?)...eventually organizing (reordering the National priorities of THEIR Country) and (Gasp..!) actually feeding themselves, educating the illiterate, providing meager health care, creating their own possible future on a National path of their own without fear & intimidation from outsiders.
That is the real threat to these Corporate overloads.!!!
For no longer will these people tolerate living under fear nor the thumb of this Neo-Colonial style of rule....NOR WOULD YOU or I in their shoes.

This Film IS MUST see for all Americans who might still possess today any remaining questions or doubts as to "WHY" the U.S. insists that great National treasure and Blood is expended for the sole benefit of the Wealthy Global Plutocracy.

As always...TopDocumentaryFilms brings the best to enrich our understanding of the World around us....and I am deeply Thankful to You Vlatko (Sp.?) for a great site...!

12 years ago

Obedecer no es vivir!!!!

12 years ago


Lohn Pilger, the documentary maker is one of the greatest. You have not argued with the points he raised about improving the lives of the impoverished, just spouted the usual "Communism = Socialism = bad leaders " mantras that your types expect others to take as an article of faith. He challenges the revolutionaries on some of the accusations made against them and they hold their own. He challenges the former plutocracy and their arguments are downright pathetic. They all mention another Cuba. Well with all of Americas wealth it still cant avoid working people losing their homes while the rest of the country subsidises the corporate elite. Cuba has managed to ride tough isolation and economic espionage and still provide education and healthcare for its citizens. "But people are watched by a secret police." Would Castro have needed such a security structure if the CIA hadn't been out to get him for 45 years?

12 years ago

typical US bulls*&t caring on the european traditon of develishment on the planet.

12 years ago

Why Europeans and especially Americans feel repelled when they hear about a single guy running a country? This type of political regime is something normal for human nature and especially in Latin America and the Muslim World. It is not unworthy compared to a democratic regime. Sometimes a team has to have a strong figure to manage the affairs. Or take the management in an economy. There is a director, a single person whom the rest trust and who knows best because of his/her experience and expertise.

Now take this into politics and you have the so-called authoritarian regime. These kinds of regimes are not necessarily wrong or ineffective. They are no worse than a democracy. Every type of regime has its pros and cons. The problem with each one of them is the morality of the people. If they are corrupt, no matter what type of regime they are under, the things will not be good. That's the reality and all the rest is just bullshit and propaganda.

And actually even the US have such tradition. There the president has always been a major figure in the decision-making process and a respected man. So even a democracy has to have in one way or another, a single figure together with some kind of board of directors (a Congress or a Parliament). It is in the human nature for people to gather around a single authority. That is the reality in so many human endeavors. The democratic model is also much represented and as ancient as humanity itself. It is when many people gather to discuss issues and by voting reach a decision.

If we make an analogy with the human body, the authoritarian regime is like the head, the center and the democratic regime is like the rest of the body, the periphery. In order to have an organism you need both a head and a body.

12 years ago


Your English is excellent. My hat's off to you.

Tell me! How much money did your education cost your family? Where were you privileged to have studied?

Should you care to relate to us how the Chavez government is impacting well-to-do families, such as your own, then fine.

I for one am listening.

Might I however float the suggestion, Manuel, that you keep to what you know and refrain from speaking on behalf of people of whose lot you know nothing?

12 years ago

@ MANUEL -So, communist China has been forgotten?!?!?!? Put down the crack pipe and think before you type. Chavez's reforms have considerably benefited the poor of Venezuela, and it is only those of a limited right-wing political vision who could try and demonise a man who has done so much for his people. Viva Chavez!

12 years ago

Another superficial documentary. It is easy for foreigners to fall in love with the idea of Robin Hood. No information regarding the concentration all of the powers under the President and his political party (united socialist party of Venezuela -PSUV in spanish-).

Anybody that watches this film needs to ask themselves:
1. Do I live there?
2. Do I know the history about how it all came to be besides what I learn in foreign documentaries?
3. What type of governments control television channels and newspapers?
4. When has the concentration of all the powers under one person or party has been beneficial to any country?

I have lived in Venezuela my entire life. Time will only show to the world what we see everyday in Venezuela. Sadly, it is going to cost us our beautiful country to write down another chapter of socialist failure. Another chapter than like Cuba, Soviet Union, North Korea, and Communist China will be forgotten.

Carlos Andrés Pérez
13 years ago

This is so funny! Have you noticed that RCTV lost their broadcasting licence just recently? Have you noticed that Mr. Chavez has openly declared that he is a Marxist? What do you think of Chavez's "Patria, Socialismo o Muerte"? Death? Whose "death" is he talking about?

My guess is that this is the death of freedom that he is talking about. This documentary is a monument to obsolescence, as events in Venezuela have so quickly shown the true colors of the Marxist dictatorship that is now taking over the country.

This guy is no pink-o-lefty a la Scandinavia, he is a hardened dictator spending billions of $$$ in weapons. Weapons? In Venezuela? For what purpose? Perhaps... bringing about death, yes, the death that comes right after socialism.

13 years ago

A must see! Yet another revealing documentary by Pilger. Excellent!

Mr. Balls
13 years ago

Since 9/11, Latin America has fallen off the American consciousness but Pilger's film provides an excellent survey of modern Latin American countries that represent a growing opposition to the muscle of American Empire. A good recounting of the more shameful episodes in U.S. foreign covert intervention over the last 50 years- Guatemala, Chile, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Bolivia.
Pilger's foil in this film is an ex-CIA agent whose callous reactions and denials of atrocities are quite chilling, as he justifies it all with "National Security Interest".

13 years ago

Good doc.

13 years ago

A masterpiece of reportage by a master journalist. The truth has its unique flavor. Once you've tasted it, it spoils you for anything else. OGT