Archive for the ‘Venezuela’ Category
“Let me tell you what the Cubans are really good at, because they don’t know how to run their economy, they don’t know how to build, they don’t know how to govern a people. What they are really good at is repression. What they are really good at is shutting off information to the Internet and to radio and television and social media. That’s what they’re really good at. And they’re not just good at it domestically, they’re good exporters of these things. And you want to see exhibit A, B, C and D? I’m going to show them to you right now. They have exported repression in real-time, in our hemisphere, right now.”
I posted the YouTube here, but this is worth reading in full while listening:
Tonight at 8PM EST in Silvio Canto’s podcast, we’ll talk to Victor Triay, author PLUS US-Latin America this week, including my article, Venezuela: “Don’t you get weary!”
VIDEO Ted Cruz: To Save Venezuela, Sanction Iran and Starve the Castros
Last November Secretary of State John Kerry declared the Monroe Doctrine dead; Putin was listening:
Russia Seeks Several Military Bases Abroad – Defense Minister (emphasis added)
Russia is planning to expand its permanent military presence outside its borders by placing military bases in a number of foreign countries, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Wednesday.
Shoigu said the list includes Vietnam, Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, the Seychelles, Singapore and several other countries.
“The talks are under way, and we are close to signing the relevant documents,” Shoigu told reporters in Moscow.
The minister added that the negotiations cover not only military bases but also visits to ports in such countries on favorable conditions as well as the opening of refueling sites for Russian strategic bombers on patrol.
Earlier this week, US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced plans to shrink army to pre-World War II levels. His timing could not have been more perfect.
There you have it:
The Optimistic Conservative:
The timing of SSV-175’s patrol is presumably no coincidence. We don’t know exactly when she left her Northern Fleet home port on the Barents Sea, but since she was in Curacao on the 30th, we do know it was at least before 10 January (and probably before that. At an overall speed of 12 knots, the ship would have needed to leave the Barents around 2 or 3 January). It’s unlikely that the AGI is in Central America just for the excitement of popular unrest in Venezuela, however. The more interesting event could well be the deployment of the Iranian navy task force.
John Kerry was on TV just now saying “This is not Rocky IV.” No, it’s not: this is real.
Fernando del Rincón de CNNEE entrevistó al General Ángel Vivas,
El exgeneral Ángel Vivas, que tiene una orden de captura en su contra por incitar la violencia, le dijo a Fernando del Rincón que “debemos rescatar la república democrática” libre de los poderes extranjeros que buscan “dirigir el destino de los venezolanos”.
“Los cubanos están en todas las estructuras del Estado venezolano”, dijo.
Más en el enlace.
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Without a doubt, the week’s top story is the opposition’s continuing demonstrations in Venezuela, eclipsing even the capture in Mexico of Chapo Guzmán, the most-wanted criminal of the hemisphere (and who will face charges in at least three US federal courts), . You can click on #LaSalida for all my posts covering the story.
. . . three deep-lying explanations help to illuminate the country’s diminishment. Firstly, Argentina may have been rich 100 years ago but it was not modern. That made adjustment hard when external shocks hit. The second theory stresses the role of trade policy. Third, when it needed to change, Argentina lacked the institutions to create successful policies.
“We have spent 50 years thinking about maintaining government spending, not about investing to grow,” says Fernando de la Rúa, a former president who resigned during the 2001 crisis.
This short-termism distinguishes Argentina from other Latin American countries that have suffered institutional breakdowns. Chile’s military dictatorship was a catastrophic fracture with democracy but it introduced long-lasting reforms. Mexico’s Institutional Revolutionary Party governed steadily for most of the 20th century. “In Argentina institution-building has taken the form of very quick and clientilist redistribution,” says Daron Acemoglu of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Bolivia under water: Why no national disaster declared amid floods?
The Bolivian government says its massive aid operation, which includes food and tents, is well underway, but not everyone is satisfied with the response.
Optics? THE ROUSSEFF TWO STEP
Brazil Sidestepping to the Right via Instapundit.
Haitians will not be stripped of Dominican Republic citizenship
Stalled Spending Chokes Mexico’s Growth
Mexico posted its worst economic performance in 2013 since the global recession of 2009, thanks in part to massive government spending delays that businesses struggled to overcome.
A canal across Nicaragua: Is this for real? Here’s a hint: “The price tag alone is nearly four times Nicaragua’s economic output.”
Puerto Rico Plans $2.86 Billion Offering for 16 Months of Cash, supposedly “to regain financial footing” until June 2015. And then what?
Venezuela: chaos and thuggery take the place of the pretty revolution
Hugo Chávez’s dream world has become a nightmare of shot-down protesters, jailed oppositionists, economic meltdown and a brutal war waged against a defiant middle class
The week’s posts, radio, and podcast:
Venezuela: #24F Barricading the country
At Da Tech Guy: Venezuela: “We must become the media”
This week’s podcast had to be cancelled due to software difficulties at Blog Talk Radio.
The opposition strategy today is to barricade every street and road in the country, on Twitter #24FGranBarricadaNacional (#24FGreatNationalBarricade), video in Spanish:
The video advises the resistance to stay united. I didn’t have time to translate with subtitles, but here are a few highlights:
- Do not confront – wait until they leave, and close up the streets again
- (1:47) There’ll be no transport, banking, or commerce
- (2:29) Care for your life
- (2:35) Don’t get closer than 50 meters
- (2:39) Don’t go far from home
- (3:10) Venezuela (3:12) will shake off (3:20) its tyrant!
- (3:46) From the poster “in every road, in every town, form your own group of five and close a point”, in red: “YOU ARE THE LEADER!”
Brigadier General Ángel Vivas has issued an appeal on YouTube to the Venezuelan military to fight against the dictatorship, and now the government is after him.
Vivas opened and ended his YouTube with, “I am Ángel Vivas, General of the Venezuelan Army, the old Army, the one that threw out Fidel Castro from Venezuela in the 1960s.” As Mary O’Grady points out, Cuba is worried about losing 100,000 barrels of oil per day if its man in Caracas falls.
Caracas Gringo writes about Vivas, One Man Against Tyranny
Maduro’s Sebin, DIM and National Guard goons tried to arrest General Vivas today (Sunday) at his residence. But General Vivas declined to surrender. Instead, General Vivas and his family have now barricaded inside their home.
General Vivas also took up his assault rifle and sidearm, donned his bulletproof vest, climbed out on his roof with all weapons hot and declared to Maduro and goons:
“(You) can have my body but you won’t have General Angel Vivas. I will remain calmly where I have always been, In Venezuela, in my home, with my wife and my daughters, beside whom I want to live and die. The Cuban pro-consul in Venezuela, complying with orders by Fidel Castro, has ordered my detention and then they intend to kill me. I will not surrender. I will not surrender to Fidel Castro and I recommend everyone do the same.”
Perhaps Maduro’s goons would have stormed the general Vivas home, or else a sniper might have shot him from a distance, but a standoff ensued when defiant officer’s neighbors poured into the street with their smartphones to oppose the regime’s heavily armed goons. Maduro’s goons finally appeared to withdraw – for now.
Update: Vivas requests that the opposition allow his lawyer to reach his home,
Le pido, por favor, a la #RESISTENCIA que le permita el paso a mi abogado, el Dr José María Zaa hasta mi residencia.
— Angel Vivas (@Gral_Vivas_P) February 24, 2014
I’ll post updates today as time allows.
Venezuelan officials talked ongoing anti-government protests in the country, including the ousting of three U.S. diplomats, and discussed the prospects for democracy there. Former U.S. Ambassador to Venezuela Otto Reich criticized the Obama administration for not taking a strong stand against the government.
Video at the link.
iPads de oro. . .
Both the government and the opposition have demonstrations scheduled today. From prison, Leopoldo López Venezuela protest leader, urges resistance [while] Government minister warns of cut in fuel supply to areas under ‘fascist attack
WSJ: Venezuela Youth Drive Protests Against ‘Chavismo’
Students and recent graduates form the backbone of an increasingly raucous movement that has become the most formidable challenge President Nicolás Maduro has faced since taking office last April.
Six people have been shot dead since Feb. 12 from the ranks of a surging opposition movement.
Telegraph: Venezuelan President blames media for broadcasting hate
President Nicolas Maduro accuses the international media of distorting the situation in Venezuela, making it seem it is on the verge of civil war
BBC: Venezuela’s Maduro seeks Obama talks
Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro invites US President Barack Obama to join him in talks aimed at resolving the problems between the two countries. That’s after he expelled consular workers, that is.
Caracas Chronicles: Gocho Uprising Update
San Cristóbal, where the protest movement started, remains an extreme outlier in the current crisis, with many residential neighborhoods essentially out of the control of the government.
Capitol Hill Cubans: Answering The Economist’s Question on Venezuela
Hot Air: Quotes of the day
I’ll be on Da Tech Guy’s radio show at noon today talking about Venezuela.
Alek Boyd writes,
As our glorious student movement stays out in the street, to be joined today by hundreds of thousands, I would like to ask for your attention. Today is a significant day in the road to recover a semblance of democracy in Venezuela. Maduro, ill advised and desperate as he is, could well be in a double-down-let’s-wrap-this-thing-today mood. It is crucial, to those working the diplomatic lines today, to make him and his faction understand that a retreat with safety guarantees is always more appealing than jail. Ditto with Diosdado Cabello and his lot. They fear, naturally, the cost of not having power and the immunity that provides, and so amnesty must be part of the bargain. They are cornered and they know it, but let cool heads prevail at this time. Venezuela does not deserve another death, nor another day of mismanagement in the name of an utterly failed model.
Instapundit: IN ROME, MARCHING IN SYMPATHY WITH VENEZUELANS
Maduro backtracks, maybe: Venezuela says CNN can stay, a day after saying ‘get out’
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