Venezuela: The marauding motorcyclists
You may recall that last month a swarm of 300 motorcyclists looted a truck, some climbing over the fatally-injured driver,
At that time, Daniel Duquenal pointed out that
the society of motorbikes is a creation of chavismo who has subsidized them heavily in the early years because they were their storm troopers to quickly go around town to crush any anti Chavez protest. Remember Lina Ron? Now they are out of control, a threat to regime itself. One shudders at the idea that suddenly 300 bikes could appear in a neighborhood and start looting while the cops look helpless. Because they are armed, you know, the bikers, better than the cops probably.
Now it looks like things are so out of hand, the government is looking to regain some control:
Venezuela seeks to tame ‘Wild West’ motorcycle chaos. Good luck with that,
[Nicolas] Maduro was handpicked by Chavez, but he only narrowly won the election to succeed him. He faces a huge test to crack down on the lawlessness often associated with the motorizados while still retaining their many working-class votes.
“They’re a problem,” Interior Minister Miguel Torres said, launching a strategy last month to control Venezuela’s hundreds of thousands of bikers. “Not all of them, but there are lots who think they’re in the old Wild West.”
Many behave atrociously, he said, riding on sidewalks, knocking off mirrors as they weave in and out of traffic, and hurling abuse whenever challenged. Some are involved in much more serious offenses, including abductions and drive-by shootings.
In recent months, funeral corteges of dozens of motorcycles have become regular flashpoints, with bikers creating gridlock in order to smash windows and rob drivers at gunpoint.
Things are not much better in the Caracas metro,
Oil revenues dwindle, anarchy reigns.
Tags: Fausta's blog