You may recall that last July I posted that
By all appearances, Foreign Policy mag has published a sponsored, long-on-words-short-on-evidence piece which struggles to obscure the facts.
Roberto Lovato’s lengthy article in Foreign Policy, The Making of Leopoldo López
A closer look at the democratic bona fides of the rock star of Venezuela’s opposition had a number of allegations, which I questioned:
- I don’t understand Lovato’s point. Is he saying that Leopoldo Lopez is in jail because of the [alleged] actions of members of his party which took place 13 years ago?
- What do the “fresh government allegations” regarding the emails have to do with the case?
- What did LL say in Burelli’s tapes? Is he in the conversation at all, since he was in jail? If not, what exactly was said about him that may affect the case? Why, indeed, are Burelli’s tapes pertinent to LL’s prosecution and defense at all ?
- Of what exactly is LL currently charged? Since the prosecution changed the charges since LL’s detention, will the current charges be changed again?
Two months, seven corrections later. Erik Wemple posts,
Foreign Policy magazine runs seven correction/clarification/update things on piece about Venezuelan politico
Rather than explain how Lovato links López and Burelli, let’s just recite the ways in which Lovato failed to link López and Burelli. They are listed at the bottom of the story:
* Clarification, Aug. 12, 2015: Pedro Burelli was not involved in hiring Leopoldo López at PDVSA.
** Clarification, Sept. 3, 2015: Leopoldo López’s mother was originally hired by a subsidiary of PDVSA in 1980, and transferred to the head office in 1994.
*** Clarification, Aug. 12, 2015: Burelli did not specifically advise López on the 2014 clashes with the Venezuelan government.
And those are only the first three. Burelli didn’t turn the other cheek, either:
In an Aug. 19 e-mail to Stephen Kiehl of the law firm Covington & Burling LLP, Burelli listed 51 bullet points as to why he didn’t belong in the story. A little taste:
11. I have not been accused or mentioned in the 100% political case against Mr. Lopez and his mother related to the above mentioned grant.
12. I have never been a paid advisor to Mr. Lopez.
13. I have never been a formal advisor to Mr. Lopez.
14. I have not been a regular advisor to Mr. Lopez.
15. I have never been a representative of Mr. Lopez.
16. I have never attended an event on Mr. Lopez’s behalf.
17. I have never spoken in Mr. Lopez’s place.
18. I have never pretended to be a representative or a formal advisor of Mr. Lopez.
19. I have never been a member of Primero Justicia or Voluntad Popular.
20. I have never attended an event of Primero Justicia or Voluntad Popular.
And to top it off,
The objections posed by Burelli look narrow alongside the 23-page docket against “The Making of Leopoldo López” written up by Jared Genser, international counsel for the opposition leader. It breaks down Lovato’s story paragraph by paragraph, alleging factual mistakes, omissions and biases of all kinds.
One thing Wemple points out of which I was unaware until now: Lovato’s ties to Telesur, Venezuela’s state-run media outlet.
Objectivity when dealing with rogue regime is a doomed farce.
Lovato is sticking to his guns; Foreign Policy has egg on its face; lawyers are involved; Juan Carlos Gutierrez and Jared Genser published an article in FP, The Other Side of Leopoldo López: Roberto Lovato’s article claiming to be about the bona fides of our client’s democratic credentials wasn’t that at all; Lovato was given space at the bottom of that article to defend himself.
Lopez is in jail.