Archive for the 'Requena Files' Category

Response to the Human Rights Seminar (IHRS) statement of Oxford University

October 24, 2002

 


Reference is made to the International Human Rights Seminar (IHRS) statement dated Monday,


14th October, 2002 which was issued in preparation for the visit of President Hugo Chavez Frias


on Thursday, 17th October 2002 to the University of Oxford.


 


The IHRS statement begins as follows:


 


 


 

October 18, 2002

Dr. William F. Pepper
International Human Rights Seminar
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Oxford University

Dear Sir,
         I am still waiting a proper response to a letter I sent on October
16th to Mr Ranty Islam, I presume a spokeman of your Centre, asking to make
public and post on your web site, the apology that Centre for Socio Legal
Studies had sent me. I consider that the private communication issued is
totally insuficient in view of the fact that the Centre for Socio-legal
studies had publicly offended me by posting on your web site an slanderous
statment accusing me of having impersonated the condition of Professor of
Latin American Studies of the University of Cambridge, a post that it is
known I held during the academic year 1994. Thus, once more, I demmand the
satisfaction that I have requested as a matter of justice by copying below
the abovementioned letter.
         Yours sincerely,
         Jaime Requena, Sc.D. (Cantab)
         former Professor of Latin American Studies of Cambridge University

October 18, 2002

Dr. William F. Pepper
International Human Rights Seminar
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Oxford University

Dear Sir,
         I am still waiting a proper response to a letter I sent on October
16th to Mr Ranty Islam, I presume a spokeman of your Centre, asking to make
public and post on your web site, the apology that Centre for Socio Legal
Studies had sent me. I consider that the private communication issued is
totally insuficient in view of the fact that the Centre for Socio-legal
studies had publicly offended me by posting on your web site an slanderous
statment accusing me of having impersonated the condition of Professor of
Latin American Studies of the University of Cambridge, a post that it is
known I held during the academic year 1994. Thus, once more, I demmand the
satisfaction that I have requested as a matter of justice by copying below
the abovementioned letter.
         Yours sincerely,
         Jaime Requena, Sc.D. (Cantab)
         former Professor of Latin American Studies of Cambridge University

October 18, 2002

Dr. William F. Pepper
International Human Rights Seminar
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Oxford University

Dear Sir,
         I am still waiting a proper response to a letter I sent on October
16th to Mr Ranty Islam, I presume a spokeman of your Centre, asking to make
public and post on your web site, the apology that Centre for Socio Legal
Studies had sent me. I consider that the private communication issued is
totally insuficient in view of the fact that the Centre for Socio-legal
studies had publicly offended me by posting on your web site an slanderous
statment accusing me of having impersonated the condition of Professor of
Latin American Studies of the University of Cambridge, a post that it is
known I held during the academic year 1994. Thus, once more, I demmand the
satisfaction that I have requested as a matter of justice by copying below
the abovementioned letter.
         Yours sincerely,
         Jaime Requena, Sc.D. (Cantab)
         former Professor of Latin American Studies of Cambridge University

October 18, 2002

Dr. William F. Pepper
International Human Rights Seminar
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Oxford University

Dear Sir,
         I am still waiting a proper response to a letter I sent on October
16th to Mr Ranty Islam, I presume a spokeman of your Centre, asking to make
public and post on your web site, the apology that Centre for Socio Legal
Studies had sent me. I consider that the private communication issued is
totally insuficient in view of the fact that the Centre for Socio-legal
studies had publicly offended me by posting on your web site an slanderous
statment accusing me of having impersonated the condition of Professor of
Latin American Studies of the University of Cambridge, a post that it is
known I held during the academic year 1994. Thus, once more, I demmand the
satisfaction that I have requested as a matter of justice by copying below
the abovementioned letter.
         Yours sincerely,
         Jaime Requena, Sc.D. (Cantab)
         former Professor of Latin American Studies of Cambridge University

The next Requena reply

October 16, 2002

Mr Ranty Islam
International Human Rights Seminar
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Oxford University

Dear Sir,
         I acknowledge your e-mail extending apologies on behalf of the
Centre of Socio-Legal Studies of the University of Oxford, for the
offensive statement against my person posted on your web site. As you are
aware, the slanderous statement was seen for quite a number of persons. To
mjention only one, I learnt about it, only after Professor Simon Keynes of
Trinity College, Cambridge, alerted me as he complained to the authorities
of Oxford University via e-mail. A copy of its message is attached for your
examination to keep a record of the original text posted in your web page.
         Being this the case and in need of reparation and satisfaction
since the sole email is not sufficient for me, I demand, as it is
customary, that you post in the same web page a proper note of apology,
next to your call for the Statement regarding President Chavez seminar.
Only a gesture like the one requested, that reaches the public that saw
your slanderous statement against my person, could be considered by myself,
sufficient and compensatory to clear my name of any misconception about my
academic qualifications and personal honesty regarding expressions of
beliefs that your statement might have produced in its readers.
         Regarding your technical excuse of confusing IP addresses for
e-mails received at your Centre, as you can imagine it is very little what
I can do to help you explain the blunder since I am not an expert on IP
networking. Whenever I log into forums or send e-mails and to avoid
misunderstandings, I clearly identify myself, as you are aware I did in
dealing with your Centre. I, like very many Venezuelans, use the Internet
service provided by CANTV and I normally log from a computer on a public or
university site. Given the fact that many people in my country share public
Internet connections, you should be more careful when drawing conclusions
based upon the questionable belief that IP addresses are unique in
Venezuela. This mistake that lead you to assume that I was not whom I say I
was, is the best example of how superficially you know issues of my
country. If the factual support for your decision to invite Hugo Chavez
Fras was based upon the same type of superficial analysis shown in my
case, then no wonder that you are bound to blunder with this seminar.

  At 10/16/02 / 12:13 PM, you wrote:
>Dear Professor Requena,
>
>On behalf of the International Human Rights Seminar at the Centre for
>Socio-Legal Studies, I am writing to extend our sincere apologies to you
>for the offence that the statement on our www page may have caused.
>
>You will have noticed that the statement your complaint referred to, has
>been withdrawn from the www page and in fact this was done immediately
>after we had received your email.
>
>Please allow me to explain the context in which this matter has arisen:
>
>On Saturday, 12 October at 3.13 pm we received an email which identifies
>you as the sender. The header of this email states that this email has
>originally been sent from a computer with the IP address (that identifies
>every computer on the global internet, but see below):
>200.84.21.188
>In addition this email carries the identifier ‘requenajaime.cantv.net’
>
>At 4.25 pm the same day a message was posted on the discussion board of
>our www page that quotes you as the author.
>Our www server logged this message as having been sent from a computer
>with the same IP address
>200.84.21.188
>
>The next day we received another series of messages on our discussion
>board, for which again the same IP address was logged: 200.84.21.188
>Among these is one message that was posted at 4.10pm on Sunday 13 October
>that quotes as author “Ambassador ToroHary” (same spelling) together with
>an email address that looks like (but in fact is not) the email address of
>the Venezuelan Ambassador in London.
>
>So then , we saw ourselves confronted with a series of different messages
>from different people that appeared to have all been sent from the same
>computer. In addition at least one of these people (the “ambassador”) is
>certainly not the person they are claiming to be, with several more
>writing as “anonymous”.
>
>Please understand that given these data we had no choice but to doubt the
>true identity of any of these people writing to us, but we appreciate that
>in your case we were wrong.
>
>I am aware that in cases were people use their home computers to log into
>an account they have with an internet provider, they may get issued with a
>temporary IP address. For a large provider (which I guess is the case for
>CANTV), however, it seems rather unlikely (but not impossible of course)
>that several people should get issued with one and the same IP address,
>especially in the time frame within which we received the postings.
>
>We shall be extremely grateful if you could provide us with any more
>information that could help to resolve this confusion regarding the origin
>of these particular messages and emails.
>
>Again we hope you accept our apology.
>
>Yours sincerely,
>
>Ranty Islam [Mr]
>
>IHRS


         Saludos,


                               Jaime Requena, Sc.D.
                                  Acadmico y Profesor Titular

An Oxford reponse (very poor)

October 16, 2002

> > Dear
> >
> > My enquiries have produced little that is new. The basic
> > facts are that the seminar which he is to address is not a
> > University event. The University is unhappy that he is
> > coming here and, like this College, many University
> > institutions have declined to have anything to do with his
> > visit.
> >
> > The University’s briefing to the media is as follows:
> >
> > BEGINS
> > During his visit President Chavez will not be staying as a
> > guest of the University of Oxford.  President Chavez will
> > be on a private visit, following an invitation from Dr
> > William Pepper as Convenor of the International Human
> > Rights Seminar, which is unrelated to the University.
> > Whilst some rooms in University buildings will be used for
> > the conference, it is not an Oxford University event.
> > ENDS
> >
> > All the best -
(the master of Saint Anthonys)

Another Requena Letter

October 16, 2002

Professor Denis Galligan
Centre for Socio-Legal Studies
Wolfson College
Oxford University


Dear Sir,
         Thank you very much for your e-mail in reply to my letter of
protest for the invitation issued to the President of my country to  talk
on Humans Rights by the Centre of Socio Legal Studies of Oxford University.
In no way I am pretending to infringe the right of speech of Hugo Chvez
Fras. Far from that, I am firm believer in responsable free speech.
         For years, I have proudly follow the steps of my father -one of
the founder’s members of our democracy and responsible for ousting the late
dictator Perez Jimenez-  crusading my community -science and technology-
for a better and freer country, sometimes with letters like this. Thus, I
feel free to question the connotation of absolutism that you pretend the
free speech concept has. I trust that it never gets put to a test in
matters that are crucial to your heart or country, such as being asked to
give the floor to a mass murderer, a profligate or an ignorant and, thus,
help to spread among students and Dons highly questionable ideas.
         The main point that I, among others, have raised concerns the
qualifications of President Chavez to dissert about human rights of my
country. Is the opinion of many that he is the less qualified Venezuelan to
address that issue, either in Caracas or Oxford. Perhaps to others, with a
different set of values regarding civil liberties -in places like Havana,
Baghdad or Tripoli- he could please the audience with his actions. If your
Centre is interested to learn about the issue at hand, I would have thought
that you can do much better by looking among other highly qualified
Venezuelans, some of them with degrees from your university, that could
tackle the problem with much more expertise and immemsely higher moral stature.
         Faced with the questionable justifications invoked in your letter
and our objections regarding President Chvez extremely poor record
upholding peace and justice among human beings, I cannot avoid thinking
that his visit to your Centre bears the marks of compliance to high office.
Which happens to be an extremely poor consolation in view of the impending
intellectual discomfort that Oxonians are about to experience.
Sincerely Yours,
         Jaime Requena, Sc.D. (Cantab)



The First Requena Letter

October 16, 2002

Dear sir,
As a graduate and former Professor of Cambridge University I take the
opportunity to express my disgust to learn that the Centre for Socio- Legal
Studies of Oxford University, in its program INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS
SEMINAR is receiving the President of my country, Mr. Hugo Chavez Frias, to
speak and address the students and fellows of Oxford University. President
Chavez record in human rights is less than despicable, starting for its
disdain for human life of the soldiers its commanded during his intent to
overthrow the government, back in February 4, 1992. More recently, from the
presidency of the republic he allowed, if not conducted himself, the
slaughter of civilian during a pacific demonstration on April 11, 2002. If
these acts against humanity were not enough to in validate him to talk
under the umbrella of human rights, Oxford University should know that he
is conducting a deliberate and cruel program against our population, having
increased by 2 million over the past three years the number of our people
living under extreme poverty; isolating our country by siding with
terrorist countries such as Cuba, Libia and Irak. But moreover, Mr. Chavez,
consistently denigrated of academics and intellectuals, doing every thing
under his power to annihilate the Venezuelan academic elite. In fact, we
have in Venezuela a rather small number of people devoted to high sciences,
technologies and humanities and instead of promoting growth and development
Chavez government is making sure that there are ousted out of their jobs
and cutting research funding. I, my self, is a vivid example, having been
ousted of my post at the “Instituto Internationa de Estudios Avanzados”
(IDEA) of Caracas and having been ordered by the tribunal to be restated to
my job, as Professor of Biophysics, I am still waiting, 3 years now, that
its puppet Supreme Court validates the already given sentence. It
happens,  that it directly affects his Minister for Science and Technology,
responsible of running IDEA. At the time of writing over one million people
inundated the streets of Caracas in protest or the repressive and
authoritarian measures taken by Mr. Chavez in the last weeks and asking for
his resignation. I know quite well academic life in Great Britain, not only
for having obtained from Cambridge University my Ph.D. in 1974 but having
being Simn Bolvar Professor of the Centre for Latin American Studies of
Cambridge University (1994-1995), Fellow of Churchill College and been
awarded a Sc.D. degree in 1997 by Cambridge University. Thus, I would be
utterly surprised if my alma mater, Cambridge University, would lend
promote the anti-humanitarian cause of  Mr. Chavez.
Yours very truly
Jaime Requena, Sc.D.
Member of the National Academy of Sciences

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