Struggle-La Lucha newspaper and the Socialist Unity Party/Partido de Socialismo Unido send our heartfelt condolences to Kevin Zeese’s family, loved ones and friends, especially his life partner Margaret Flowers. His sudden death on Sept. 6 is a loss for the entire anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist movement.
Zeese and Flowers co-founded Popular Resistance. Zeese will be also remembered for his sacrifices and the role he played in the Embassy Protection Collective in 2019.
When the U.S. government under Donald Trump was poised to illegally seize the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington, D.C., and hand it over to its puppet Juan Guaido, who declared himself president of Venezuela, Zeese put his body on the line and became a protector of the embassy and international law. This was in the immediate aftermath of a failed U.S. coup against democratically-elected President Nicolás Maduro.
For 37 days, Zeese, along with other protectors both inside the embassy and in the streets, faced off with the Department of Homeland Security and all sorts of other vile, racist, homophobic, violent right-wing Guaido supporters and police agencies. The state tried to starve the protectors, then turned off electricity and, at one point, even water. But it took the forcible removal and arrests of the four protectors who remained inside, including Zeese, to end the standoff.
The Embassy Protectors faced heavy federal charges. After a major defense campaign was mounted, the U.S. government was forced to drop the charges on all four defendants.
This became a pivotal part of the struggle in the United States to defend the sovereignty of Venezuela and to fight against imperialist war.
Before his sudden death, Zeese was working on a program around the case of imprisoned journalist Julian Assange, whose extradition trial begins this week.
We can best remember him by redoubling our efforts to end capitalist exploitation and imperialist war.
Kevin Zeese, rest in power!