A Medley of Developments

March 7, 2004


Many things going on, but little time to write in detail about all of them. So here is a medley:


-From Daniel, I also saw it on TV:

Amusing note in closing: as I am watching the news I heard the story of Emiliano Chavez. Chavez, the president, in his cadena to the diplomatic corps yesterday mentioned Emiliano has a proof of the megafraude. According to Chavez, Mr. Emiliano Chavez does not exist. TV tonight is showing a live and kicking Emiliano, a nice country man.

Really Hugo, if there is indeed such a megafraud by the opposition, can’t your guys get you a more convincing and definitive proof? I know, I know, one cannot get good help these days! Tell me about that!


-Read in Caracas Chronicles about Carlos Izcaray, or in El Universal about Pedro Valera. Both abused and tortured. It is a pity El Universal online does not have the same pictures as the paper version, you can see Pedro, kneeling down, hands up, later see how they shot him at point blank range with plastic bullets, left him bleeding for four hours. Now he needs major surgery. But both the Vice-President and the Minister of Defense deny there were abuses. The numbers are staggering. Eleven dead. Nine tortured. 450 jailed. 1758 are injured. The Fiscal and the People’s Ombudsman are still silent.


-The ex-Ambassador to the United Nations is threatened with having no pension by the Government. He worked for 33 years for the Government. The ex-Ambassador says he will fight it in Court, Good Luck Mr. Alvalay! 18,000 people fired from PDVSA a year ago have received no severance pay as required by law, pensions have been withheld and individual contributions to pension funds have not bee returned to the any of them. Not one case has been heard by Labor Courts. Such a caring and humane revolution!


-Five days after formally announcing that the signatures are supposedly not there the CNE finally handed over the data as analyzed by the CNE to the opposition. The data is not complete. Why did it take so long? Where they trying to fir the data to the problem? If they made the announcement, why wasn’t the data ready?


-CTV, the Federation of Unions, says their members are being pressured to retract their signatures by Government officials.


-Super prosecutor and favorite hatchet man of Attorney General Isaias Rodríguez, Danilo Anderson (read here F. Toro’s article on him) makes a surprising appearance to jail a dissident General who is stopped and the serial numbers on his car are found not to match the paperwork. Super-prosecutor or Superman, he is everywhere!


-El Universal has an article about the weapons being used by the Special Forces to maintain order during the last week. From pictures gathered in the media, they show SIG 552’s, M-16’s, Gail SAR’s, Steyr’s and HK’s. All of these war weapons, none of them are weapons either approved for use by security forces in civilian situations or used anywhere for that.


-From a very good source I hear that the Electoral Hall of the Supreme Court is ready to say the forms with the same calligraphy are valid. Thus, the Constitutional Hall will decide that the matter is so important that they have to decide it and they will say that they are not valid.


-The Venezuelan Government formally protested to UN Secretary General Koffi Anan that its UN Ambassador was allowed to use UN facilities to announce his resignation. It turns out that the press room is rented by the media form the UN.


-The opposition Coordinadora Democratica held a meeting with the Diplomatic Corps in Caracas to present their version of the impasse over the signatures, the violence of the last few days and the lies by the President on his meeting with them on Friday.

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