A move to outsource the dining halls at Universidad de Los Andes sends pro-government armed groups into a rampage of intimidation and violence, virtually shutting down Mérida's university.

Daily Briefing

Your daily briefing for Saturday, March 25, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

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“So, just to clarify, you’re not an ‘ultra-rightist’ are you?” He laughed. “No, I don’t think so,” he said. And that’s where the interview began.

Mansion's Bakery, blocks away from Miraflores, is the latest casualty in the government's war on bread. It's also proof that people do go out and protest, until repression arrives, of course.

Venezuela is no longer helping out the gringos brave the winter months with subsidized heating oil. Perhaps we can send them expired foodstuffs instead?

In 2011, the United Nations declared internet access a Human Right, but news never made it to Venezuela. Maybe it’s still buffering.

Previous Briefings

Your briefing or Friday, March 24, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Your briefing for Thursday, March 23, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Your briefing for Wednesday, March 22, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Your briefing for for Tuesday, March 21, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Your daily briefing for Thursday, March 16th. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Your daily briefing for Wednesday, March 15, 2017. Translated by Javier Liendo.

Posts

TFW you confidently tell someone "we'll see how this holds up in six months!" And then six months pass. And they were totally right.

Quico argues that it was morally wrong to lead the UNASUR economic policy mission to Venezuela. I believe it would have been morally wrong not to do so.

No Venezuelan economist comes close to stirring the passions FRod does. We work through the reasons why, teasing out the silly from the serious, and the merely serious from the absolutely unacceptable.

Even though it has a completely supine civilian justice system under its control, the regime seems minded to replace it with military tribunals it can straight-up order around.

My mom's spent 20 years trying to teach Venezuelan cops to respect the law and human rights. After a recent close encounter with the PNB, I ask myself: did she waste her time?

After thirteen years of waiting, three victims of political discrimination finally get their day in court. Here's why it amounts to more than just a moral victory.

How does a twitter-happy catholic priest manage to break attendance records for Monday morning mass during a long weekend? In a country in crisis, anything is possible.

You’ve heard the stories about the magnitude of our health crisis . Here's an objective, quantified glimpse of how bad the situation actually is.

Just like tear gas, the Venezuelan government's feminist rhetoric has become harder and harder to swallow.

Our West-Coast correspondent (yes, we have one!) spends the day at Stanford learning the hows, whys and what’s-nexts of Venezuela's future from a panel of experts.

There are more chavistas controlling, restricting, overseeing and threatening other people’s productive work than there are chavistas actually working and producing themselves.

We asked Carlos Hernández to sit and watch Venezuela's all-propaganda-all-the-time flagship state broadcaster for one whole day. He lived to tell the tale. Barely.

Oil-for-loans was supposed to be a win-win proposition. New numbers confirm our fears that it’s turned into a lose-lose nightmare.

A highly unpopular, narco-infused government ruling a country on the brink of starvation with corruption networks spreading in every direction faces an opposition that seems weaker than ever.

First, they knocked the newspapers out of circulation by cutting off their access to newsprint. Now, an outbreak of cyberattacks is taking down one critical website after another.

Counseling the families of those who die violently was never going to be easy. When the perpetrators are the people meant to protect us, it’s that much worse.

State-owned companies in Venezuela report losses that exceed allocated budgets for health, education, housing and social security. Oh, and we don't know how many state-owned companies there are. Iceberg, meet tip.

One more year of revolution, one more annual budget. Where is Maduro getting all his money and how does he plan to spend it? Anabella giddily takes one for the team.

Growing up in Táchira, Cúcuta was no mere border town: it was our field of dreams, the one place dad could afford to spoil us. To us, the history of the revolution is the story of our disastrously deteriorating relationship with the town.

As National Assembly member for PJ José Manuel Olivares calls for new price controls on private health clinics we ask: have we learned nothing? Like, literally, nothing?

Perú has just recalled its ambassador after a war of words that cements Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s role as the leading friend of Venezuelan democracy in the hemisphere.

There's a particular sort of disorientation that comes when the government weaves its own version of truth entirely out of fictions. Venezuelans know all about this.

Miguel Angel Santos and Douglas Barrios get specific on a question we usually answer in airy generalities.

It's come to this: the big controversy racking the Venezuelan public sphere is whether the fake Banesco branch inside Tocuyito really was or wasn't a fast food joint.

MUD has virtually stopped existing. We won't really understand the reasons why until we get a look at SEBIN's archives and learn the true extent of the government's Influence Operation against the opposition.

A new day and a new violation to the Constitution. A typical Friday morning in Venezuela.

Persistent high inflation is a problem every other country in the world has figured out how to solve: that's one key reason why Venezuela stands alone atop Bloomberg's Misery Index.

How do you rebel against the world's most dangerous city and try to have a life? Start with denial, add some bravado, and finish with a hint of criollo BS.

Today, receiving a social benefit depends on luck or connections. If most of us aren’t guaranteed a minimum of social well being, can we even consider ourselves citizens?

In Venezuela, the government no longer makes the results of its official household survey public, so independent researchers have started running their own large survey. What they find for 2016 is distressing.

Graduating as a physician in Venezuela means relinquishing all hope of calling the shots over your job, making a decent living, or, in some cases, not breaking the law.

Is it right for the head the National Journalist’s Guild to join the Opposition Coalition’s leadership team? A lot of journalists don’t think so, and Tinedo Guía’s now been called out.

Our exclusive interview with El Rey Momo. En Spanglish cabilla.

Dirty streets, risky driving, a penetrating stench of urine in the air, terrible music blaring from every corner and thousands of people getting drunk while watching a bull agonize: for four days every February, Mérida becomes the Capital of the Third World.

In Tropico 4, I discovered that life in a ridiculously over the top Eastern European game designer's delirium of a dysfunctional Banana Republic is...pretty much indistinguishable from what goes on outside my window.

Enough has been said about Adrián Solano and his #TropicalMierda take on cross country skiing. Little has been said about the morons who hailed him worthy of defending.
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A week long dive into the 1989 spasm of chaos that changed Venezuela forever.

There are two options when confronting Caracazo: digesting it, or spitting it out. Either we see it as an Estallido Social of shortsightedness and savage chaos, or as the awareness-creating moment of a massive political movement against imperialist neoliberalism. Two readings, two Venezuelas.

We walk you through PROVEA's 1989 report into the Caracazo, underlining the parts that somehow didn't make it into our collective recollection of events.

A few weeks after el Caracazo, Ibsen Martínez went to lunch at Moisés Naím's house. After a 27-year process of digestion, he looks back.

27F filled our homes with ghosts, with espantos. The faces of the dead, which some tried to erase from memory. The sense of what it's like to lose any trace of the rule of law. The voices of the prophets who told us that other tragedies would come. We were never the same after those days in 1989.   

As a lawyer, what strikes me is how much we've forgotten so much since 1989. Like, for example, what a state of emergency is. And what it is for.
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Today, an exclusive: La Vida Bohème created this video as backup visuals for their live shows following their second, Grammy-winning album, Será. It's never been shown outside that context...until today. The piece was curated by Armando Añez, also a Venezuelan musician, currently known as Recordatorio.  

The events of 1989 carry traces of social trauma: it transcends history and lives ambivalently as a portmanteau fantasy, carrying both fears and desires.

I sat down to ask my father about the Caracazo, about what he remembered and why he thought it happened. I was eager for answers...but not as eager as he was.

El Sacudón started in Guarenas and soon spread to Caracas and other cities. By noon of the 28th, the government finally responded, and with extreme force. So the biggest riots in modern Venezuelan history became the biggest exhibition of military and police brutality.

Before we start questioning why a social upheaval has not yet broken out this year, we have to come to terms with Caracazo's political meaning. The similarities are deceiving, and the bets for a second coming are disingenuous, or misguided. The Caracazo, you see, never really left.

After years of policy paralysis, Venezuela simply ran out of money when oil prices failed to recover in time. Sound familiar? Reading about Venezuela’s economic conditions in 1989 is a drawn out exercise in déjà vu. But how real are the parallels, and to what extent do we forget about the differences?

The Caracazo is ingrained in our collective psyche so deeply it’s now more myth than event. There are as many different versions of what happened out there as there are agendas prompting them. But what really happened? In the first of a three-part series, we look at what actually happened in Venezuela betwen February 27th and March 2nd, 1989.