Archive for January 20th, 2004

Another one from Goebbel’s playbook

January 20, 2004

 


I was obviously quite outraged when I wrote the post yesterday about the violence at the floral offering by the leaders of Movimiento Al Socialismo (MAS). So, imagine how I felt today when I saw Jesse “Goebbels” Chacon , the so-called Minister of Information and Communication giving a press conference to express the “concern of the Government over the signs of violence, which are being promoted by the opposition”.


 


First some background. Mr. Chacon is best known for posing, when he was a soldier, with his leg over the dead body of a civilian guard at one of the TV channels during one of the coups in 1992 (Nov. 27th,  1992)seen right here on the left with the Minister today on the right


 



 so if someone knows about violence and has a background of violence it is him. So today, despite the videos and the pictures, showing pro-Chavez groups attacking the police, or attacking some respected politicians from the opposition or shooting at and attacking TV reporters, the Minister says today that this violence is caused by the opposition, upset over the fact that Chávez is going up in the polls and is now over 50% in popularity. (Yes, there are polls showing Chavez is going up, but none show him with more than 40%). He continued by saying: “It would seem illogical that a Government that is going towards an electoral process would be the one trying to generate instability”. I agree, the question I ask is very simple: Who does the National Guardsmen shown on Sunday talking to the hooded hoodlums who were armed report to? The opposition? I also would like to ask: When is the Government going to investigate one of these attacks? Who is in charge of the security of the citizens? The Government or the opposition? In fact, Vice-President Rangel gave on Sunday similarly statements in which he expressed his outrage at the threats against the foreign embassies and claimed the Government would “investigate them to its final consequences”. Well, on Monday Colombia’s major newspaper El Tiempo claimed that a source within one of the Embassies said that the group claiming to have made the threats was the same one attacking the police on Saturday. These groups claim to support Chavez, take their name after Peru’s Tupac Amaru guerrilla movement, which somehow would appear to be hard to connect to the opposition. So where is the investigation? Obviously, there is none, impunity is the name of the game for Chavez’ supporters.


 


Goebbels would have been proud of all of them.

Are we stupid or…?

January 20, 2004

 


…..we choose what…….


 


Yes, we are not stupid. We choose to be civilized, to believe in the law, to hope for a better country, to believe that good wins over evil and to believe that a Government has respect for its citizens. Of course, sometimes it would seem as if we are indeed stupid, like yesterday. Compare these:


 


-A little over one year ago, peaceful demonstrators in the Chuao area were gassed because the Government had issued a decree declaring the area near Chuao a security zone. Thus, the opposition could not demonstrate within that area, even if the decree had bee issued the previous day just to stop us. The National Guard came in and without even an attempt at mediation began gassing the peaceful demonstrators, armed with flags, whistles and posters. A National Guard General, one of the dissident Generals, came to mediate with those repressing the demonstrators. He was gassed by his own mates, together with women, children and everyone still remembers the priest fighting with the guardsmen who was attempting to take away his flag.


 


-Switch to yesterday. Authorities from Movimiento al Socialismo (MAS) which can be translated as Movement towards Socialism and thus does not represent a right wing movement as the international media sometimes makes out the opposition to be, attempt to go to Bolivar Square to present a flower arrangement to Simon Bolivar, our Liberator. Understand this is also a restricted zone, its half a block from the office of the Vice-Presidency and was included in the now infamous decree. The MAS authorities approach the square, hooded hoodlums, claiming to support the Government (I can’t prove it, this is what they say) begin blocking the path of the people carrying the floral arrangement. Some are hurt by pipes, shots are fired. Reporters are also attacked with bullets, pipes and whatever is available. The National Guard intervenes, however, rather than using tear gas, National Guard officials are seeing talking to the hooded figures, most of which are armed. It does not matter, it is impossible for the officials from MAS to present their floral arrangement. The National Guard will not use tear gas to make the attackers go away. If you don’t sympathize with the Government you can not even pretend to visit Bolivar Square. If you don’t support Chavez there are certain rights you no longer enjoy, you no longer have. If you do, you can attack opposition figures with impunity. You can attack the police with impunity. You are guaranteed there will be no investigation. You are guaranteed that you will be able to go in and out, be violent, hurt people and nobody will look into it. In fact, the next day Chavez’ MVR will even blame all of it on the opposition.


 


Are we stupid or what?…My answer is what! We are not stupid; we are just civilized citizens that want a better country. We will continue using flags and whistles, revive pot banging like tonight, to ask for justice, to ask for our rights. To ask that we are allowed to exercise our right to vote. To ask that we are allowed to share the country equally with everyone. The stupid Opinion piece in today’s USA today had it wrong, we are the ones defending the legacy of Martin Luther King in Venezuela, not a Government that laughs at all its citizens, denies them rights at will and allows them to get impoverished further fed only by populist propaganda. In the end we will win.



 


(P.S. Where are the Chavez defenders today? Show  your face! Explain to us why this is justified. Tell us with your contorted logic, why it is that this can happen. Tell us why the opposition deserves to be shot at and human beings hit by pipes under the passive observation of the country’s National Guard. I am waiting)

Are we stupid or…?

January 20, 2004

 


…..we choose what…….


 


Yes, we are not stupid. We choose to be civilized, to believe in the law, to hope for a better country, to believe that good wins over evil and to believe that a Government has respect for its citizens. Of course, sometimes it would seem as if we are indeed stupid, like yesterday. Compare these:


 


-A little over one year ago, peaceful demonstrators in the Chuao area were gassed because the Government had issued a decree declaring the area near Chuao a security zone. Thus, the opposition could not demonstrate within that area, even if the decree had bee issued the previous day just to stop us. The National Guard came in and without even an attempt at mediation began gassing the peaceful demonstrators, armed with flags, whistles and posters. A National Guard General, one of the dissident Generals, came to mediate with those repressing the demonstrators. He was gassed by his own mates, together with women, children and everyone still remembers the priest fighting with the guardsmen who was attempting to take away his flag.


 


-Switch to yesterday. Authorities from Movimiento al Socialismo (MAS) which can be translated as Movement towards Socialism and thus does not represent a right wing movement as the international media sometimes makes out the opposition to be, attempt to go to Bolivar Square to present a flower arrangement to Simon Bolivar, our Liberator. Understand this is also a restricted zone, its half a block from the office of the Vice-Presidency and was included in the now infamous decree. The MAS authorities approach the square, hooded hoodlums, claiming to support the Government (I can’t prove it, this is what they say) begin blocking the path of the people carrying the floral arrangement. Some are hurt by pipes, shots are fired. Reporters are also attacked with bullets, pipes and whatever is available. The National Guard intervenes, however, rather than using tear gas, National Guard officials are seeing talking to the hooded figures, most of which are armed. It does not matter, it is impossible for the officials from MAS to present their floral arrangement. The National Guard will not use tear gas to make the attackers go away. If you don’t sympathize with the Government you can not even pretend to visit Bolivar Square. If you don’t support Chavez there are certain rights you no longer enjoy, you no longer have. If you do, you can attack opposition figures with impunity. You can attack the police with impunity. You are guaranteed there will be no investigation. You are guaranteed that you will be able to go in and out, be violent, hurt people and nobody will look into it. In fact, the next day Chavez’ MVR will even blame all of it on the opposition.


 


Are we stupid or what?…My answer is what! We are not stupid; we are just civilized citizens that want a better country. We will continue using flags and whistles, revive pot banging like tonight, to ask for justice, to ask for our rights. To ask that we are allowed to exercise our right to vote. To ask that we are allowed to share the country equally with everyone. The stupid Opinion piece in today’s USA today had it wrong, we are the ones defending the legacy of Martin Luther King in Venezuela, not a Government that laughs at all its citizens, denies them rights at will and allows them to get impoverished further fed only by populist propaganda. In the end we will win.



 


(P.S. Where are the Chavez defenders today? Show  your face! Explain to us why this is justified. Tell us with your contorted logic, why it is that this can happen. Tell us why the opposition deserves to be shot at and human beings hit by pipes under the passive observation of the country’s National Guard. I am waiting)

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