Twenty years of that


Few people alive in Venezuela twenty years ago will forget November 27th, 1992. That day, we woke up to another coup d’etat attempt, only this one was happening right above our rooftops.

Watching this video, I have to wonder – who are these guys? They don’t look like high-ranking chavista officials. Where is the gordito de la franela rosada? Is he a Minister? An Ambassador?

The 27N coup was always seen as the dumpy half-brother of the 4F coup, a living testament to the old cliché that history repeats itself as farce. Perhaps that accounts for the fact that its visible heads play only a small role in the Revolution.

Still, it didn’t seem like small potatoes back then. And while militarily it may have been less severe than the 4F, it sort of sealed the fate of the teetering Pérez administration.

After all, when a President couldn’t prevent a coupster from launching another coup from his jail cell, you pretty much knew the guy had lost complete control.

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  1. No clue about who the guy is in the pink shirt, but one pertinent fact I would like to mention here is that the Chavez government is one that should be properly seen as an International one.

    It’s tentacles extend to worldwide Narco -Trafficking, rogue governments,CUBA Russia, China, Belarus etc.; thus making it far more difficult to bring down than former dictatorships.I don’t think it really matters who the individual players are, past or present, what matters are the larger tentacles Chavismo has joined with in order to extract money from the country, and intoa power a mechanism for nefarious goals, while keeping the country embroiled in its substantiation as a legitimate or semi- legitimate government.The fig leaf continues in all its glory, and now that it has become more entrenched Chavez can afford to retire a bit.As it says in his beloved book ” El Oraculo del Guerrero” :

    Luego de vencer, retirate en silencio”

  2. I remember that day. I was in a friend house in Cabudare. As we were playing outside, we saw the jet fighters from the local air base going to Caracas and returning. Very Top Gun-like stuff.

    At the same time, the images from Caracas were really jaw-dropping. The bomb thrown to Miraflores while a RCTV crew was taping a report left a big impact in me. I remember that day more vividly that the 4-F or the 27-F three years earlier.

  3. My understanding is that in the 27N there were others than those from 27F behind it. They used a Chavez tape to portrait it as the same, but apparently had nothing to do with Chavez. This is what I remember reading about it.

  4. We woke up at around 5:30 am with some guys yelling out the window “Viva Chavez!”, so we quickly turned on the TV. There was a recorded video of Chavez talking to take down the corrupt country, they were showing it over and over. Then the other guys live, along with the pink shirt guy and the big FAL’s.
    Just a little bit after, we saw the broncos flying over our heads going to La Carlota, ana a little bit after, the F-16. Then the gordito with the pick shirt, and the same guy talking.
    Then Sergio Novelli almost got killed live on TV in front of Miraflores with the bomb from the plane. It was surreal.
    The image that hunts me the most was the one of the doorman of VTV, killed cold blooded on the spot by these guys. He was an innocent man just doing his job.

    • The Broncos flew over La Carlota and fired 6, maybe 8 missiles at some armoured personnel carriers full of young soldiers parked at La Carlota’s almost unguarded rear entrance in the industrial zone of Los Ruices. 2 or 3 them were duds (some even boring their way into the pavement, never to be found again), another 2 or 3 found their way through the roof of an automobile repair shop, destroying about a dozen cars that were waiting to be returned to their owners and who knows what else in the ensuing blaze. The rest blew up at street level causing people to be hurt by the explosions and the shrapnel.

      From where my position that day, watching the smoke billowing from the rear of the missiles, it looked for a short while as if the missiles were coming straight at me. Guess it was my lucky day.

  5. Chavez: ‘We exhausted all peaceful means …. ‘.

    Yeah, right. Except forming a political party, standing for office and getting elected. Then as now, the man can barely open his mouth without lying through his teeth. And now they’ve turned 4F and 27N into public celebrations. Whilst simultaneously branding the peaceful, democratic opposition as ‘golpista’. Alice through the looking-glass.

  6. We heard not a word from you brave ‘democrats” when the US supported coup against Chavez happened, or the oil coup or the economic coup of the last 10 years till today by the leaders of capital in Venezuela.

    Wonder why?!!!

    • Cort,
      The blog didn’t exist on April 11th. Our apologies for not posting about it right then and there. Rest assured – the next coup we organize, you’ll hear about it here first.

    • Why would someone denounce a coup against a coupster? Judging by Chavez’s actions in 1992, he enjoys a coup d’etat. All those involved in the 2002 Coup were just attempting to give Chavez a good show for his enjoyment, celebrating ten years from the first attempt. Sadly, he misunderstood this.

    • Guess you just weren’t paying attention then. The Carmona coup collapsed because it had no support outside a handful of opposition extremists. And no one in the opposition has ever suggested it was a heroic act on a par with the independence struggle – unlike Chavez, who not only defends his attempt to overthrow an elected government by force of arms, but wants the entire nation, and the armed forces, to celebrate it every year. Bizarrely, he denies it was even a coup – apparently a coup is when hundreds of thousands of unarmed civilians march on the presidential palace to demand the president’s resignation. So long as the president is a chavista. Otherwise, of course, that’s a popular uprising too.

  7. 12 years old. I had walkie talkies and could listen to the conversations of the planes and the choppers flying above. For me, unconscious of the coup´s consequences, it was a pretty cool event, watching all those planes dog-fighting and bombing the city. I remember it like if it were yesterday.

    • Really, what is wrong with Hugo Chavez? (Besides the cancer). What kind of tasteless fool celebrates two coup attempts while he himself claims to worry about a potential coup. Doesn’t it enter the Chavista’s pea brains that they will give their opponents ideas?

      Ancient Roman and Chinese emperors were brutal, but they at least had enough sense to kill the assassins of the previous emperor, to make it clear that assassins of emperors, even if they end up on the winning side, will suffer a painful death. To fete such people sets a bad example and encourages copycats. I’d say, given Chavez’s rhetoric about coups, and celebration of past coups, he enjoys instilling in people the omnipresent fear of such a thing happening again.

      • It’s a throwback to old school militarism. I think most of us that comment here are probably too imbued with the spirit of liberal democracy to really get caught up in the authoritarian mindset. However, if you’re a militarist gorilla who thinks olive green is always in, there’s no contradiction between claiming to rule a democratic government and celebrating coup attempts as heroic actions. I’ll never claim to understand how someone can claim they’re all for democracy with a straight face and then celebrate a failed attempt at overthrowing a legitimate government but hey, I’m not with el comandante so what do I know.

  8. Neither I nor my family have heard a truthful word from those who have sold the patria’s patrimony to Cuba and Iran using the public weal as a stalking horse in fourteen years. Where is the president elect? Why is Cuba holding him hostage? With him or loyally opposed, don’t we deserve to know his status and to receive communication direct from him? My relative DF O’Leary is turning in the grave, and Bolivar The US is not our enemy, but the Castros, Achmedinijad and all the other sycophants consuming our patrimony taking it from the mouths of our poor are our enemies.


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