Since our February 14 report from Venezuela of the right-wing violence against government infrastructure, institutions, workers and media, the attacks have continued sporadically across the country. In this report we provide a damage assessment, media coverage and the response from the people and international governments.
Leopoldo Lopez who called for the protests and violence once jagain, was in hiding until today when he surrendered to authorities after a warrant was issued for his arrest last week. He has now been publically rejected by MUD, the organization of opposition political parties and it's possible that he surrendered to the government for his own protection. The National Guard took him on an NG tank to the Ministry of Justice today in open view apparently to pre-empt any claims that he might have been abused, beaten or harmed in any way during his arrest. Diosdado Cabello accompanied Lopez to a prison in the interior to ensure his safety.
Lopez had called for massive "protests" in various parts of the country and for an opposition march into Central Caracas. President Maduro issued a statement yesterday that the government did not authorize the march to avoid anything similar to what took place when the opposition changed the route of their march on April 11, 2002, leading them into a Chavista demonstration resulting in 19 dead and the attempted coup.
Last night and today, the government placed 1600 police, NG and military in the streets where the march was planned to prevent any further violence. In accord with the constitutional right to protest, the government however, permitted protests in Chacao and wealthy opposition areas having opposition mayors. Today there were small concentrations of protestors in those areas and no incidents of violence are being reported.
Today, thousands of workers from PDVSA (state petroleum company) led the people in a demonstration for peace at Miraflores, the presidential palace in Central Caracas. President Maduro is currently addressing them, denoucing violence and calling for peace.
Damage Assessment covering the last 5 days
These are a few examples of the more serious damages done by the right-wing opposition over the last 5 days:
More News Today
Yesterday, CNN Espanol in Atlanta, Georgia gave Capriles Radonski a half hour interview in Caracas via Skype. Trying to present himself as the voice of reason Radonski at times burst into frenetic speech with invectives against the government. He stated that he is opposed to violence but supports the student protests. This is the tac taken by the opposition now, including Leopoldo Lopez and Maria Machado - opposing violence while creating it.
The social media networks like Twitter and Facebook has been rampant with deceptive photos and information and some have been adopted by major corporate television, print and website media. Photographs of victims and police brutality taken in Greece, Egypt, Syria, Brasil, Chile and Ukraine are being presented as taking place this month in Venezuela. On CNN English last night, Jim Clancy presented Venezuela as "a country in crisis." He spoke of President Maduro holding onto power by a group of former followers of Hugo Chavez and presented the student opposition, a tiny fraction of Venezuela's the nearly 3 million university students as "the youth in Venezuela."
The US and European media completely ignored the masses of Venezuelan students who have been rallying in support of the government including the amazing parade they produced on National Youth Day in La Victoria on February 12. Instead, the capitalist media has focused on the "peaceful student protests" - and acts of violence to depict the country as "in chaos."
The following photos were collected by "Dr. Dawg" for his blog from the corporate and social media. All these photos were shown as having been taken in Venezuela. The captions are also from Dr. Dawg ... we like his sense of humor :-) ...
The protests in the magical country of “Venezuela” have spread.
ADDED: Well, not Syria, it seems. This pic was constructed by a supporter of the opposition, to send up those of us exposing real fakes. In other words, this is a fake fake. Getting a little meta, aren’t we? ...
International: Friends and Foes
President Maduro expelled three US diplomats accused of instigating student protests. There names were given by Foreign Minister Jaua who listed them as US Embassy officers declared persona-non-grata: Vice-Consul Brent Mary McCusker; Elsen Gordon, and Clark Christopher Lee, Second Secretary. The Foreign Minister gave all three of them 48 hours to leave Venezuela.
The three officials had been under observation by Venezuelan authorities for two months and had been seen to visit several private universities where they offered visas to students to live in the US if they helped to destabilize and cause mayhem in the country.
The decision to expel these diplomats was accelerated by news from Venezuela’s Ambassador to Washington, Roy Chaderton Matos, who on Sunday, received an official phone call from one Alex Lee, sub-secretary of state for Latin America who told Chaderton that the Venezuelan government had to:
Latin American countries and their international organizations such as UNISUR, ALBA, CELAC and MERCOSUR have issued statements in support of the Venezuelan government, sovereignty and independence, denouncing the violence being executed by the opposition.
In diplo-speak, China has requested that Venezuela and US improve dialogue and bilateral relations as “Cooperation with Venezuela is very important for China”, so-stated spokesman, Hua Chunying for the Chinese Foreign ministry.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement lending support to the Venezuelan government in its efforts to defeat fascist violence in the country and preserve law and order as well as the constitutional legality and avoid destabilization.
The government has handled the protests and the violence with skill and intelligence and without repression. One could overlay the template of opposition "protests" in Venezuela this month with those that are currently taking place in Syria and Ukraine and see little difference. The Venezuelan government has deftly separated democratic political protests from the riots, allowing students to protest while gaining control of the fascists without using repression, brutality or torture. As in the attack today on the Textile Cooperative killing one and wounding others, there will probably be more isolated acts of violence. But the government has exemplified for all countries the proper way to calmly protect their independence and sovereignty when suffering internal attacks by US proxies to foment insurrection, civil war and "regime change."
But I have one remaining question: While the government is committing its time, resources, security services, talent and money to defend Venezuela's sovereignty and independence during this onslaught and while millions of Venezuelans are preoccupied with many in the street standing up for their country - - who is in the factories, schools, farms, stores, clinics, hospitals, agencies and bureaucracies for production, services, carrying out the work that must be done in daily life to keep a country productive and running? The attack we have been under since the first of February exacts a cost and impedes the development of the country. If Washington and their lapdog opposition gain nothing else from their fasicism they have at least achieved this much. When this is over, Venezuelans will go back to work and continue to build the country while all the time, warding off the attack dogs who will not go away soon.
Axis of Logic will keep readers informed with facts and analysis in coming days with reports like this one and our earlier report on February 14.