Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Growing Unrest in Venezuela – (But No Film at 11)



We don’t see or hear much about Venezuela in the news – unless “outspoken” Presidente Hugo Chavez happens to be bashing our
President ,and/or ranting about his need to defend against imminent attack by the dreaded norteamericanos.


Sample here from the (UK) Daily Telegraph:


http://www.portal.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml;jsessionid=OLL0GJ4QZJZCTQFIQMFCFGGAVCBQYIV0?xml=/news/2006/03/04/wvenez04.xml



Such announcements are often made in the presence of fatuous American admirers – Harry Belafonte , Cindy Sheehan ,and assorted pols and academics – and they receive full, undivided media attention. ( Hey ! Anyone who bashes “Dubya” can’t be all bad !)


There is so little American media coverage of unrest in Venezuela ,one might easily assume the country has become the “socialist paradise” its Leftist boosters claim–but there is unrest, and it is growing.


Here’s the lede of an article in the(UK) Daily Telegraph

Venezuelan middle class flees Chávez rule of hate
By Sophie Arie in Caracas
(Filed: 05/03/2006)*


Venezuela's once-thriving middle class is packing its bags and fleeing the country, afraid for the future as the socialist president, Hugo Chávez, calls on the slum-dwelling masses to rise up and seize wealth from those better off than themselves.

Growing numbers of professionals, business owners and shopkeepers are fed up with the climate of hostility that the Left-wing president has encouraged in his effort to boost his populist credentials.

* We would show this date as “03/05/2006”.

(Link to full article here:)

http://www.portal.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2006/03/05/wvenez05.xml&sSheet=/news/2006/03/05/ixworld.html



Here is an Internet post from Luis: a hard-working young Venezuelan student, who details the growing unrest in Western Venezuela.


“A group of Venezuelans from Zulia State which is located in western Venezuela, is seeking to hold a referendum in the region to determine if the Zulian people agree with the idea of seeking a higher level of autonomy.


Zulia is Venezuela's richest and most populated State (something like California to the US). Vast oil fields are located in the state. Zulia is also Venezuela's most important agricultural state. Venezuela's 2nd largest city, Maracaibo, is Zulia's capital.


The group that is organizing this movement consider themselves an oposition group to Chavez's authoritarian regime.


Their proposal is to give Zulia greater autonomy over its resource management, and to establish a free market economy to reduce poverty and to bring jobs and education to the Zulia population.


The socialist regime imposed by Chavez is helping increase poverty all around the country despite the higher-than-ever oil income.


The idea is to give Zulia a status similiar of what some regions in Spain currently enjoy (Catalonia, Basque Country, etc...). The movement clearly states that they don't seek independence from Venezuela, they just want to manage their money.


Inmediately after the announcement by this group, the Chavez regime started a criminal prosecution of the leaders of the group accusing them of rebellion and treason.


The Armed Forces which are 110% Chavez loyalists, threatened to “crush and destroy” any rebellious movement in Zulia.


The FARC (Colombian Guerrillas who are receiving overt Chavez support) have announced that they will “fight to the death” against any rebel movement in the region – (a curious statement from a “rebel” group !)


People from Zulia have always sought greater autonomy from the cental govt. Some of them have even proposed seeking full independence.


I have lived in Zulia and half of my family was born there, thus, I feel very Zuliano and would love to see Zulia holding a referendum on the issue.


Zulia deserves to receive the money its natural resources produce. I give my full support to their stance and I hope that, through democratic means, Zulia will be able to achieve its long-wanted autonomy.”



Such “rumblings” do not not appear in our media (CNN had a small “squib” about “separatism in western Venezuela” – which they pretty much got wrong ) but they do not escape the attention of the Radical Left – here and abroad.

Venezuela Solidarity, which is linked closely to the Pro-Castro “ Hands Off Venezuela” organization,published a heavy-handed online response:

http://www.venezuelasolidarity.org.uk/ven/web/2006/articles/zulia_secessionist.html


Here are small samples of the article:


“Authorities and the media had previously alerted about the existence of a secessionist plan for Zulia as part of actions planned against the government of President Chavez.

This state where a great deal of Venezuela’s oil wealth is located, is controlled by opposition governor Manuel Rosales who has been accused of participating in conspiracy meetings with ex military coup mongers and Colombian paramilitaries.”


The article goes on to note because Rosales was able to prove he had never left Venezuela to go conspire with anybody ,this was “proof” he must have gone undercover-(handily “proving” his participation in a conspiracy)- and concludes:


“Reports indicate that the denouncements made, that Zulia is being taken over as “free territory by criminal and terrorist organizations with the cooperation of the Governor. These groups are dedicated to kidnapping, extortion and vehicle theft.

Footnote: Any “declaration of Zulia’s independence” by Governor Rosales could lead to military action to unseat this self-appointed coup monger as President of Zulia. This could trigger a series of events and destabilization in western Venezuela leading to an excuse for the US to send troops or UN Peace Keepers arriving as is the case in Haiti. The obvious intention is to capture the oil supplies. This secessionist adventure in not new and forms part of the overall destabilization plan being hatched in Langley at CIA headquarters. Maximum alert is required by the Venezuelan military and the Venezuelan people, as well as international support from workers and trade unionists worldwide.”



Not long after Luis posted his message, he received this response from-(you guessed it)- an American, who had this “thoughtful” response:


" STOP POSTING BULLSHIT AND LIES !"


If the sheer volume of Chavez-friendly “ Google bombing” is any indicator,
It would appear the Left in general and the Communists in particular are making a major effort to “suffocate” any adverse information coming out of Venezuela.


It took a fairly lengthy search to find the Daily Telegraph material,as I had to wade through hundreds of pro-Chavez stories – most of which were duplicates of material posted elsewhere. It’s an ingenious way of controlling the flow of information without seeming to – and quite effective !


What goes on in Zulia – or elsewhere in Venezuela – is, of course, the business of the Venezuelan people ; and it is hoped they will be able to counteract the machinations of President Chavez before it is too late.


Viva la libertad, Luis !

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