Venezuelan Government hires Cubans to build computer systems Venezuelans are much more capable at

February 28, 2010

(Ramiro Valdes gives speech at UCI’s graduation)

Today, there are a few articles in El Nacional (pages P-1-3) about the fact that databases of Venezuelans are controlled today by Cubans, as all identification systems, property systems (notaries)  and the like are more and more run by Cubans, as a Cuban company Albet has received contracts to manage them and its “Universidad de Ciencias Informaticas” has been hired to write and implement systems for all those databases. Note that Albet’s history is as short as that of the University.

I don’t know enough about the subject to write and article about the penetration of Cubans in Venezuela’s Ministries. But there is one article that really blew my mind, because it represents either an amazing attempt to deceive and lie, or it shows how ignorant these “revolutionaries” are about the country’s reality and capabilities. Or both.

The article is an interview with a Mr. Dante Rivas. who happens to be  the Head of Saime, the service that gives out ID’s and passports in Venezuela. In it, Mr. Rivas says:

“We did not have sufficient experience to create software that would integrate technology for passports and ID’s. While Cuba has a University for Informatic Sciences, we don’t have in Venezuela a university specialized in that area”

Say what?

This is as ignorant and disrespectful as can be to Venezuela and its professional. For a Government that claims to defend “sovereignty” and be concerned about it, this is the most despicable statement about the capability of Venezuela, for many reasons:

1) Venezuela has had extensive educational programs in “Informatic Sciences”, while it may not have a single university devoted to the area, the country’s best universities have had Bachelors, Master and Ph.D. programs for over three decades in Computer Sciences and Systems, with specialists in areas that Cuba would love to have had even a fraction of what Venezuela has enjoyed. Venezuela has (had?) been a leader in Latin America in networks, supercomputing and quite a number of “Informatics” companies have even been successful abroad, such as Galak, just to name one.

2) The “Universidad de Ciencias Informaticas” of Cuba, was created only in 2002, thus I would dare question its capabilities. Moreover, it originates in a military “escuela” and the “esbirro” Ramiro Valdes attends its graduations regularly and gave a speech in its first graduation.

3) Venezuela has more Ph.D. graduates, Ms.Sc. nad Bachelor graduates in the last five years that Cuba in all of its history.

Thus, we are either in the face of a gigantic lie and deceit and these people are selling out Venezuela in front of our own eyes, or these ideologists are dont seem to appreciate and/or understand the capabilities that Venezuela has (had?) in all of these fields.

Chavismo is given away the country’s sovereignty. The reason? It is not that Venezuela does not have the capability. It is not that we don’t have the universities or the programs. It is not that we don’t have the equipment. the problem is simple:

This revolution does not trust or admire Venezuelans. It is not willing to trust our capabilities and our people. They are so unaccomplished and ignorant that they have not been willing to look at the expertise and knowledge that Venezuela has.  The revolution is distrustful of anything and anyone that has not total allegiance to Chavez. Thus, it discriminates against the many talented Venezuelans, some of them underemployed that could design, create and implement systems like those Saime needs. (Much like it destroyed INTEVEP, the country’s former premier center for research and development in oil)

In the end, Chavismo is betraying Venezuela, channeling money that could be used to develop even more capabilities in Venezuela to Cuba, just because they are dazzled and enamored of the aging Dictator Fidel in the same way they are fanatic about Hugo Chavez, refusing to recognize how he is destroying Venezuela and wasting the resources of the “people” in hare brained projects that contribute nothing to our own country.

And indirectly, the revolution is giving away our sovereignty, our data, our information. Cuban intelligence knows more about what is happening in Venezuela than our own. Chavez does not trust Venezuelans to guard him. Cubans are always present in immigration departments in Venezuela’s airports. A Cuban company runs our customs in all major ports. (and did the Cubans tell Chavez to get rid of Luis Correa of intelligence office DISIP and formerly of ONA? More on that tomorrow, he was detained today)

And science and technology, where Venezuela was always ahead of Cuba, is allowed to flounder, as money is funneled to Government controlled universities in that island.

Another remarkable fraud by the Chavez revolution.

30 Responses to “Venezuelan Government hires Cubans to build computer systems Venezuelans are much more capable at”

  1. moctavio Says:

    Off Topic: Today it was pointed out to me that weekly “Quinto Dia” carried a note saying that the US Government was investigating this blog. The note is so ludicrous that it does not deserve a post. I will just note the following: Purportedly the blog is being investigated for “destabilzing” the Venezuelan financial system and is written either from Miami or Panama.

    Well, I am here in Caracas, the US Government knows how to find me, they did it very easily when the White House found me in 2008 for Human Rights Day to talk to the President of the US about the subject, so they can find me readily.

    As to destabilizing the Venezuelan financial system, I have been “light” in my predictions compared to the silly and irresponsible statmenst of Chavez and Giordani.

    It was Chavez that said that he knew “many other abnks” had troubles and he was watching them and then devoted many Sunday programs to threaten just one bank, that I ahve never mentiones in this blog. Similarly Giordani said all brokers were crooks, not precisely what you need at this time.

    Things may be about to get rougher, but at least I am glad it is the US and not the Fiscalia that is investigating me, at least I know I will get a fair hearing, if I believed this apcroyphal note, which I don’t.

  2. Carlos Says:

    THE FACT IS THAT THEY KNOW THAT COMMUNISM IS A FRAUD AND A LIE, SO OBVIOUSLY THEY CAN NOT TRUST ANYONE THAT CAN ACCESS THIS FACT AND MIGHT BELIEVE IT AND ACT ACCORDINGLY. THEY HOPE AND EXPECT THAT THEIR SLAVES WILL SLAVE FOR THEM AND NOT BLOW THE WHISTLE, BECAUSE THEY COULD BE SEVERELY PUNISHED FOR THAT.

    STATISTS WILL DO ANYTHING TO RETAIN THEIR POWER OVER THE MASSES, WITNESS CHAVEZ BEHAVING AS A VULGAR CLOWN ON TV TO DUPE UNEDUCATED VENEZUELANS, ( WELL SOME OTHER CANDIDATES FOR PRESIDENT DID THIS TOO A WHILE BACK …? ES COMO TU, BORRACHO, MUJERIEGO Y LADRON) AND OBAMA, ZAPATERO, LULA AND OTHERS BELONGING TO THE SAO PAULO GROUP DOING SOMETHING MORE SOPHISTICATED IN OTHER DIRECTIONS.

  3. Jorge Arena Says:

    Hi Miguel, long time no see. I recall having written a post when the information accord was signed.

    My reaction was the same as yours. I was appaled. BTW, at the end of the post there were some stats that could be used to underline your point.

    Here’s the link:

    http://arenaspace.blogspot.com/2005/03/two-different-ways-of-sayingnot-saying.html

    Back to my giant tomato plants…

  4. Alejandro Montes Says:

    A dozen years ago I wrote an article in Venezuela Analítica about a project to tap our amazing pool of IT professionals: http://www.analitica.com/va/economia/archivo/6022367.asp. It never got anywhere then and I guess nothing has changed since.

  5. anon.e.mouse Says:

    It’s both better and worse than what you describe. Because the software SAIME uses is from Computer Associates, a U.S. company, the Cubans have no experience at all with it. They have the prime contract, but all the work is done by the same Venezuelans who used to have the contract. In theory the Cubans could use this as a way of stealing CA software and training, but from what I understand, they just take money. The project manager at SAIME has no idea what is going on, and the Venezuelans do all the work. So it’s better, in that Venezuelans have jobs, but worse, in that Cubans are getting money (or in this case, oil) for nothing at all.

  6. Bilis Negra Says:

    What you say is true Miguel, but I think you are missing the crucial point. The issue is not whether Venezuelan IT professionals are per se more or capable than Cuba’s. A tight control of identification and property databases are obviously key strategic aspects for a regime aspiring dictatorial power and, consequently, aspiring to perpetuate itself. There are few people in the world so skilled at running a totalitarian state as the Cubans. SAIME’s portal may suck, but I bet Cubans are doing the dirty job inside the government ruthlessly and efficiently. Don’t underestimate them…

  7. Robert Says:

    Bill is absolutely correct. There is the cuban element of control and there is also the never ending element of corruption.

    Chavez gave Venezuela to Fidel with that first corrupt barrel of oil. Fidel is calling the shots here. It’s not just IT, it’s the reason the gov took CANTV (eavesdropping) and will do a china control on internet and all the while pay Cuba for helping commit these crimes.

    Let us know when you are arrested by the US. I’ll help raise funds to post your bail.

  8. Kepler Says:

    This is sad.

    Now two things:

    1) what are WE going to do? What are the people at the USB, Ucv, Uc, LUZ, etc, etc going to do about this? Are they just going to publish some press release? Go once to the streets? Protest in front of the entrance of the university? Try to do some “action” in twitter? Or are we going to do something more?

    2: You can find a lot of interesting patterns with access to those databases. They are going to use the data against Venezuelans.

  9. An Interested Observer Says:

    What do other countries do when they lack technology, for the ID cards, or perhaps for making currency that is robust against counterfeiting?

    They outsource, and import the goods. Which is just one more way of saying the excuses are bogus.

  10. moctavio Says:

    Of course the idea is to get access, but I have no cue as to how many Cubans work there and the like, I could only write what I know about. Of course it is bogus, these guys are traitors period. These Cubans are inserting themselves more and more in our Government and the thoughts is quite scary.

  11. m_astera Says:

    A couple of nights ago I stopped to chat with the night shift security guard at the little complex where I live. He was in the guard shack watching TV. Chavez was on, wearing headphones. I watched the TV and the guard for a few seconds before he noticed me; the TV cut to the view of a small red-shirted audience to show them clapping , and my friend the guard clapped along with them. Then he noticed me and turned to tell me that “Chavez is broadcasting to the whole world”. yeah right.

    I tried to explain to him that any one of the boats in the nearby marina has short-wave radio and can broadcast to the whole world but that doesn’t mean anyone is listening, but that concept was a bit much for him. He’s a sympatico young fellow in his mid-twenties, married with two young children and building a small home himself. He simply doesn’t have the education or worldly experience to know that he is being taken in by a liar and manipulator. He was actually shocked when I told him Hugo was a thief who together with his criminal cronies had robbed the country of around a trillion dollars, with nothing to show for the money.

    This is all so obvious to me, but how does one get the message through to the profoundly ignorant and naive who have never thought to question? He is a long way from being able to understand that Cubans are being given control over intelligence, surveillance, and security in Venezuela or what the implications are for his future.

  12. Floyd Looney Says:

    Sounds like your country has already been sold out or Hugo has decided that full employment in Cuba is just the thing to improve the Venezuelan economy. lol.

  13. Kepler Says:

    Astera, very good observation.
    I think Venezuelans who know do need to take a minute or two to drop the seed in other people’s minds. Some of those seeds will germinate.

    When our politicians like Borges harps on about the right to property or freedom-freedom, they are not helping: they are talking to the converted.
    Even if property rights concern us all, the themes are less likely to move people like this guachiman…for now.

    We need to talk about how the red barons are stealing shamelessly, how the foreigners are controlling more the petrodollar’s flow, how the government is lagging behind what all other similar Latin American governments are providing (security, education, housing). I think we need to try to understand what they know or think to know and go from there. It is hard.

    In 1990 or so I remember how a young man (also in his twenties) got into the bus I was in (Big Low to Valencia) and started to preach about how great the Soviet Union was. That was in 1990.
    Mind: in El carabobeno, the local newspaper, there was more than enough information about what was going on in the crumbling Soviet Union than in many European newspapers…but most of those in the bus were hardly literate.
    It is much worse now, as a couple of teachers tell me.

  14. GWEH Says:

    well then I have a message for USG: what the hell was Luis Correa doing in Miami two weeks ago? Luis is a time bomb and he got his just desserts. Total amateur work for USG to bring Correa to Miami… those deals are cut in third countries out of prying eyes but letting Correa run loose in Miami? And you think nobody is going to recognize him?

    Another blunder just like the Rosemont financial case which has resulted in zero results for USG. This is what happens when inexperienced amateur agents are assigned cases way over their heads and their supervisors and bosses are also clueless.

    GET A GRIP USA!

  15. Juan Says:

    and still when I say that we need to get rid of Chavez in ANY possible way, people will cry that we need to follow the constitution and democratic principles…

  16. loroferoz Says:

    Ask any Cuban scientist or engineer about the quality of their network connections, about their computer equipment. About the electricity for Pete’s sake.

    Yes, at their informatics centers at their universities. They taught me tricks to make SLOW Intel 86 computers to do work. How to shut down a Windows PC without the monitor, blind. Get it? It’s the stone age, at their best universities.

    Anybody half acquainted with the situation in Cuba will only conclude that this is a racket to siphon some more money to Cuba, or a conspiracy to hand the databases and the networks to the Cubans.

    Now I doubt they will be able to do anything with them, except shutting them down or destroying them. But maybe that’s what Hugo wants.

  17. Adolfo Says:

    In fact the cubans were learning from the USSR long before 1990 and have been very successful in selling their technology abroad.

  18. moses Says:

    For those of you that are not aware, a group of Venzuelan programmers developed a CAD software several years ago and managed to sell it outside Venezuela:

    DENEBA-CAD

    http://www.gpsven.com.ve/p9.asp

    There is also the developer of Daini Software, who invented a Domino Game Program in the early 1980′s but who could not get it protected from pirate copies, and eventually left Venezuela:

    http://www.juegodomino.com/

    http://www.dainisoftware.com/company.aspx

  19. Kepler Says:

    Adolfo, you have really no clue.
    USSR and IT? Don’t make me laugh. How old are you?
    Where have you lived all your life? This reminds me precisely that guy in that bus in Southern Valencia who was praising the Soviet Union back in 1990, when it was crumbling apart. Only those clueless people believed that rubbish.

    I could only laugh at the Soviet Union’s IT back in the eighties. I have several Russian friends who are into IT. They did not get their knowledge from the Soviet Union, mind. And we from time to time discuss about the stone age IT world in the Soviet Union…when we want to joke.

    Apart from their remarkable work in aerospace and weapons, they had very little to show for. There were advances in physics and chemistry and mathematics up to the sixties, but they started to lag behind more and more then. Engineering? Once things started to get more complex, they could not keep up at all.

    The best they could do was trying to reverse engineer some Western products. The same went for Eastern Germany, which was considered in the Soviet Union as THE IT super power for the Eastern Block.

    What a joke, man!

  20. Gringo Says:

    Regarding the USSR and computer technology, the joke back in the 1980s was that the USSR claimed to have built the world’s biggest microchip. As an indication of Soviet status in telecom tech: the capos had many phones on their desk, instead of one phone with multiple extensions.

    In 2007, Cuba had 11.6 Internet users per capita. By contrast, Venezuela had 20.8 Internet users per capita. Haiti, 10.4.

    http://ddp-ext.worldbank.org/ext/DDPQQ/showReport.do?method=showReport

  21. Kepler Says:

    Adolfo, don’t be afraid: can you tell me what age you have and where you grew up more or less? The reason is this: I want to see how widespread your “view” is.
    If you are Venezuelan, then you are among “the privileged”: you speak English and you have Internet access.

    One of my nephews followed a course at the Ince(s). He told me the level was very low and most students came from very humble backgrounds (not that he is rich, but his parents got have a good education).

    His mates were there mostly because of the money they were going to get. Anyway: my nephew told me how their teacher told them how Venezuela was for the first time “exporting cars and lorries” thanks to Iranian technology. All those students but my nephew were believing it all.

    The implications of such ignorance are enormous. A tiny detail is that the “Iranian technology” is very much very old French technology and the “technology transfer” even less effective than the transfer taking place in the early nineties with the companies that started to appear in Valencia around the assemblage factories of Ford and GM. One of those companies, Rualca, was exporting 97% of its production within the caribbean and L.A. Now it is just a sad shadow of itself, as many others.

    Another thing I often hear from commies in Venezuela is that their movement is different from what the Soviets did because, among other things, you are introducing the “consejos”.

    The Russian word for consejo is…”soviet”. Sounds familiar?

    Yep, and those soviety were just a fassade used by Lenin and after 1922 by Stalin to control all organizations – through the party. Not surprisingly, the legislation we are getting down the throat now is very similar to the framework in which the Soviety operated almost 100 years ago, with the PSUV playing a major role.

    You really think you are discovering it all.

  22. Floyd Looney Says:

    You guys are all correct. Hugo is simply shifting some higher tech stuff to Havana. By the way my internet is running at 17Mbps download and I love having wifi at home.

    Just saying.

  23. Edith Says:

    See below some information from Emilio Hernandez, a professor of the IT department, Simon Bolivar University, and great admirer of the “proceso”. Among other things, he fails to mention that only a couple of specialists from this department have been invited to help solve the IT problems of the government:

    El desarrollo de software que después será de código abierto no tiene problemas de seguridad, siempre y cuando después se realice una adecuada inspección del código fuente y se ponga en servidores públicos para que esté expuesto al escrutinio general, incluso de los expertos de la oposición.

    No tenemos problemas de experticia, pero sí tenemos problemas de capacidad para hacer todo el software que requerimos. O sea, no tenemos suficiente gente ante las demandas del país.

    En honor a la verdad, ha habido un cierto forcejeo con los cubanos porque éstos querían reservarse el derecho de propiedad del software (si, si, ya sé, contradictorio). Pero las instituciones venezolanas, como el CNTI, han dado la pelea para que el desarrollo que hagan los cubanos (y cualquier otro ente de desarrollo de software) sea de código abierto, cada vez más. Esa pelea la vamos a ganar fácilmente, software libre es la
    consigna.

  24. m_astera Says:

    I’m not sure there is much point to arguing with or trying to educate Adolfo.

    I have never had the impression that he is stupid enough to believe what he pretends to believe or what he defends. He is a paid shill.

    The only comment I have seen by him that I thought was sincere was his bragging about shutting down the farmacia when the price for his pills went up. Petty, spiteful, shallow, and vindictive. That’s the true essence.

    Ignore the commie rhetoric. He doesn’t believe it any more than you do.

  25. m_astera Says:

    Nota Bene- I was meaning to address Arturo in my post above. Apologies for the confusion.

    Is Adolfo new here?

  26. moctavio Says:

    No, he just had not shown his face for a long time, used to call himself gframe, a Cuban apologist.

  27. deananash Says:

    m_astera, your astute question is why I’ve always known that “El Gran Solucion” isn’t el Metro de Caracas, but rather, EDUCATION.

    And why I’ve said that the opposition doesn’t deserve a return to power. They – and here I’m referring to them as a group – simply don’t care about Venezuela’s poor. If they did, then they would be doing more to educate them (the poor.)

  28. Adolfo Says:

    It appears that there more than one Adolfo posting here(farmacia??). p.s. Have you never heard of the great soviet scientists” U.S. Patoff”

  29. Adolfo Says:

    Perhaps low bidder or not to use US technology, what ever the reason you are stuck with it.


  30. [...] Venezuelan Government hires Cubans to build computer systems Venezuelans are much more capable at [...]


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