Archive for December 30th, 2002

Attorney General tries to explain his unexplainable negligence

December 30, 2002

One of the most dishonorable members of Chavez’ inner circle, the Attorney General Isaias Rodriguez attempted to justify the detention of general Martinez today and failed miserably. Said Mr. Rodriguez: “The Intelligence police will place the General under house arrest, and within 12 hours place him under the custody of the Attorney General’s office who will have 36 hours to present to the Supreme Court the details of the aprehension”. Huh? How does this compare to arresting him using twenty vehicles, beating him in the process ,taking him to the intelligence police, denying he is there and later taking him to a military facility?

In fact, what the law says is that it can only place him under house arrest (has not been done yet!), and turned over within 12 hours to the Attorney General’s office. So what the hell is Isaias Rodriguez talking about? The law has been violated, he is in charge of preserving the law, but in the same manner of the last two and a half years, when he changed Chavez’ Vice-Presidency for the Attorney Genral’s office, Mr. Rodriguez has simply not condenmed those that have violated the rights, the law and the dignity of the highest ranking member of the Venezuelan Armed Forces. He should place the members of the intelligence police under arrest for violating the law. That’s what his job is, as simple as that!

Prediction: General Martinez will be freed before Thursday and none of his illegal captors will be prosecuted.

Things are indeed excessively normal

December 30, 2002

Normal to play domino while you wait for gas      To go in a bike and the sign says “No gas”

Hey! I love the normalcy of riding my horse in the highway           Me too! But I don’t feel normal passing cars

We don’t feel normal, we hate the strike!          We normally don’t visit gas stations, but we are not normal.

A Digression at last!! New New Delhi Subway such a sucess: Stay Away!

December 30, 2002

For quite a while I have been posting only about Venezuela, thus I am happy do digress and  note that in New Delhi the <A href=’A picture named Caballos,-Sin-Gasolina-075.jpg‘>new subway is such a success that they are asking people to stay away from it! (via Blogdett):

National Guard General detained, lawyers gassed…..

December 30, 2002

This man seen on the ground Dec. 3d. in Chuao when he was gassed by his own mates (see picture that day before he was gassed), General Carlos Martinez of the National Guard, was detained today by the Intelligence police. His lawyers and reporters were outside the intelligence police headquarters when the intelligence police began throwing tear gas at them. The head of the intelligence police had threatened the lawyers which Chavez’ “Bolivarian Circles” who have now shown up to throw stones at the laywers, reporters and by now, protesters. Gral. Martinez has been denied the right to have a lawyer or prosecutor present in violation of the law, his civil and human rights. A small battle between the opposition and the circles has now developed. No police anywhere in sight. There is at least one person injured so far and three four vehicles damaged by Chavez’ supporters, including a wagon from one of the TV stations. (Globovision is showing a video in which someone from the inside of the intelligence police waves at the Bolivarian circles to come down)

According to the new Chavez-promoted  Constitution (Art. 266, #3) and ratified by decisions by the current Supreme Court, a high ranking officer of the Venezuelan military can not be tried, investigated or jailed by a military Court, unless the Venezuelan Supreme Court establishes in a pre-trial that there is evidence against him. No such a pre-trial has taken place against General Martinez, thus, he can not be detained, least of all without the presence of a prosecutor and his lawyer.

The Tyromaniac says this is not a detention but a kidnapping, he is right!

Phrase of the month by Hugo Chavez

December 30, 2002

“We will bankrupt the oligarchs before they bankrupt Venezuela” –Hugo Chavez in Alo Presidente on Sunday

Now what a great strategy for prosperity……

From Caracas Chronicles: The Government’s view of return to normal

December 30, 2002

From Caracas Chronicles a blow by blow account of statements by the Government about the oil Industry going back to normal:

Credibility Gap
…or: the broken record defense

December 5th
Inter-Press Service
In a nationally broadcast message Thursday, Chavez stated emphatically that “I will not allow our leading industry to be brought to a halt.”

December 8th
“They are not going to break PDVSA, they are not going to stop it,” the president said on Sunday, threatening to replace striking staff and use troops to run oil operations

December 11th
EFE (Spanish news agency)
“The dispatch of crude to the world, especially to the
United States has resumed,” Energy and Mining Minister Rafael Ramirez announced during a news conference at Miraflores presidential palace in downtown Caracas. “We already broke the blockade they forced on us in the east and in the west and we’re now dispatching crude to the world,” the minister reiterated.

Knight Ridder/Tribune News Service
“This violent strike is being defeated,” Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez said. “We are breaking the blockade and are exporting oil to the whole world.”

December 12th
El Nacional
Energy Minister Rafael Ramírez assured that the government has “long ago managed to stop the planned sabotage, which has been planned for violence and a coup.”

Venezuela’s embattled President Hugo Chavez has declared that oil production and distribution are restarting as a general strike prepared to go into its 11th day. “The most important thing is we are getting out of this crisis,” he said. “The situation is progressively impoving. The supply of petrol is flowing.”

December 14th
BBC Monitoring
PDVSA president Ali Rodriguez stressed that “we are taking all necessary steps to resume production”. When asked about
Venezuela‘s foreign customers, Ali Rodriguez Araque said: “We are in a situation of force majeure”, and added, “we are already restoring production and we are already able to meet commitments.”

December 16th
El Nacional
Ali Rodriguez said that “difficulties are being overcome”, that production has recouperated, and that soon Venezuela will be able to meet its trade obligations.

December 18th
BBC Monitoring
In statements to a radio and television station, Ali Rodriguez Araque, the president of PDVSA said that as from
midnight on 17 December, he is taking the necessary measures to regain control of the company and to guarantee the supply of fuel for the country.

December 21st
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
State oil company president Ali Rodrmguez insists the government is working to guarantee gasoline supplies for “many days.”

December 23rd
“Now we are in the process of returning to normal.”
Energy and Mines Minister Rafael Ramírez.

December 25th
Dow Jones Business News
PDVSA president Alí Rodríguez said he expects export operations should be back to normal by Jan. 15. “We’ve had difficulties, but we are overcoming them,” he said.

December 28th
Union Radio
“The situation is excessively normal.”
Vicepresident J.V. Rangel

“We are over the most critical situation and, today, things are frankly improving.”
Hugo Chávez.

Ricardo Haussman on Brazil, Venezuela, Lula and Chavez

December 30, 2002

Ricardo Hausmann, Economist and former Venezuelan Minister of Planning and Professor of of the School
of Government at Harvard University on Lula and Chavez, in today’s interview
in El Nacional, page B-2:

“I think the backing Lula has just given to Chávez will be costly for
Brazil. I am sure that his economic and foreign relations team is going to
complain to him”


“Brazil’s economic situation is very fragile. If good things don´t happen ,
even those that nonbody is expecting, Brazil is going to explode in the
sense that the exchange rate and interest rates will stay where they are,
thus they are going towards a financial crisis. Financial markets see Lula
and they perceive that he has all the incentives of the world to say what
they all want to hear, but they don’t belive what he says and are awaiting
his actions. Nevertheless, the lackluster mission of his international
advisor, Marco Aurelio García, in Venezuela, and the reaction when he
arrived in Brazil, indicate to international  financial markets that perhaps
Lula is more like Chávez than what he claims to be and what he has said
abroad. I think that Lula’s association with Chávez will be costly to his
Government in term of loss of confidence, at a time of financial fragility
in Brazil. Moreover, if Chávez ends up not being sustainable in Venezuela,
Lula will leave a vacuum in its bilateral relations with Venezuela, which is
not in the national interest of Brazil.”