Unwitting victims

Chao chigüire
Chao chigüire

Yesterday Nicolás Maduro expelled three diplomats from the US Embassy. This was all a temper tantrum, a diversion based on false accusations as we all know. But you know what rarely gets mentioned when these incidents occur? The toll it takes on families and livelihoods.

The people that got expelled for simply being American had been in Venezuela for quite some time. They probably have friends, people working in their homes, social relations, even rental agreements. Their kids are in school. They have bank accounts, personal belongings, and even stuff they are attached to. All of the sudden … poof! Out you go! You must leave in 48 hours.

I have a feeling some of these diplomats’ kids or their friends read this blog, and I’m sure they’re saddened to hear that one of their own (a friend, a compañera de curso) is having to simply get up and leave just because of a political temper tantrum. All the plans for the school year, all the social connections – they’re taken away from you out of the blue, without any chance of preparing for it.

To them, and to all those left scrambling in the wake of Maduro’s whims, my sympathies.

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  1. I wouldn’t be surprised if these folks are just ELATED to get the hell out of Dodge. I don’t think Caracas was ever a desirable post, but now? The real unhappy people are going to be the Venezuelans living in Washington that will be kicked out reciprocally.

  2. if i come to your house and the rules are dont smoke then i would expect you to throw me out if i lit up a belmont.

    diplomats are based in countries on certain conditions one condition being that they do not get involved in internal affairs.

    i knew devlin personally (us air force attache that got kicked out) 6 months ago and he predicted that the bolivar was going to devalue three or four times three months before chavez died

    If you want to blame someone for those three families getting kicked out then blame the people at the embassy or washington who made them attend the meeting in bolivar in the first place.

    the embassy people get very well looked after during their stay in foreign countries and i am sure they will be well compensated for the repatriation so dont be tu upset for them juanito

    • Nothing happened at those meetings that merits expelling them. Unless, that is, the person doing the expelling is insane, which is the case here.

    • The thing is, these people weren’t even caught smoking in the house. They were kicked out because someone thought they may have been carrying a pack of cigarettes in their pocket, which they never bothered to check before doing the kicking.

    • But if the rules say “don’t smoke” and I don’t smoke, why should you throw me out in a sudden tantrum. Who’s to blame, you or me? Justifying the unustifiable is a little weird game many people in the U. S. and Europe play. It’s also called “Knife in your own throat”

  3. Juan, I understand you were in the USA as a child when someone in your family was working for the Venezuelan embassy there and you might remember from this some personal stuff and feel particularly sorry. I’s a pity that children of diplomats have to “go through that”.

    this seems like priority number 20000000000 in Venezuela.

    I used to do hill climbing and I know these are not the best times for hill climbing in Venezuela and I am sorry for the kids who want to do hill climbing there, but I think there are, as I said, 20000000000 things that might be more relevant of focus now, even if they might not be as related to my immediate experiences.

    • They way I understood it, it’s not that Juan is saying that it’s the most important issue, but rather that he wants to send a message of support and solidarity to those affected, since pretty much nobody else would do so.

    • The only “hill climbing” I did as a kid in Ccs, was in fear of my life when the “niches” where chasing me to steal my “patineta” or chain or wallet. I could climb near vertical cerros in the Campitos-Cumbres area skateboard in hand.

  4. Previous Government weren’t joyitas. But since when did it become customary in our country to accuse someone without proof of any illegal wrongdoings? It’s just depresing.

    Also, I don’t worry so much about the employees themselves, I also worry that some day Maduro will shut down the embassy completely. What’s going to happen to future (and current, myself included) students? Are they going to be forced to go to Colombia or T&T to get their visas? This is BS

  5. I can’t help but wonder what the so-called expert on Venezuelan-US relations must be thinking today. Where is Eva Golinger? She helped create this monster; she embraced it with open arms. Has she no sense of shame? Venezuela is collapsing diplomatically, socially and economically. It’s in an economic free fall. Whose fault is it? What are Eva’s thoughts on the matter? Why doesn’t she consider living in Caracas instead of New York? Walk the streets. Live with the society she helped create. Live behind shuttered doors when the sun goes down. Does she really believe the loons in Miraflores claiming an economic war on Venezuela declared by the opposition? Really? Must be nice living in New York, eh?

      • Roy, have to disagree with you here. Sean is his own man and he gets the last laugh. HCh donated to Sean’s causes every time. Sean got results in Haiti. What can I say?

    • personally, I don’t give a rat’s a$$ for what phony Eva thinks, or rather postures as thinking. I’m talkin’ about Eva-I-adore-red-Vzla-but-wouldn’t-be-caught-dead-delivering-my-child-in-any-of-its-hospitals-or-raising-him-in-that-country.

    • If you took time out to do some research then you might just find what Eva has said about this. But instead you start hitting your keyboard writing a complete load of crap about things you know nothing about.

      It’s up to her where she lives. She does not have to give any explanation to anyone. New York is just a biigger shot hole as Caracas and all federal employees can now enjoy a few weelsd with no pay due to the govt shutdown.

      You are the sort or person who will believe what they want even if solid evidence is presented to teh contrary. You know NOTHING about Venezuela or what is happening here so go take a hike.

      • You really want to compare NYC to Caracas?

        And you want to compare a governmental shutdown due to lack of adequate funding by the legislature because two parties in opposition to each other can’t come to an agreement instead of the virtual dictatorship that exists in Venezuela wherein they STILL can’t address their fiscal woes?

        Irony. Look it up when saying someone knows nothing about someplace.

        As far as taking a hike… which would you rather go to, by yourself, at midnight? El Avila? Or Central Park?

        • So who rattled your cage, yanqui?

          Reading between the lines of your ingenious comment you are admitting that the US has no money – except that created out iof thin air by the Fed. No surprise when its debt to GDP ratio is almost 100% – trying to emulate Greece. The shutdown is about taking on more debt which seems a fanstic way to solve a debt problem – create norte debt. This is why capitalism is deteriorating fast and perhaps Marx will be proven correct when he said that capitalism constains the sedes of its own destruction.

          New York is a shit hole. Go and walk in Brooklyn in the small hours or in Tabrini Green in Chicago which is a biiger one than New York.

          The whole world has fiscal woes but some are much. mcuh bigger than others and the biggest one is where? In Venezuela? I don’t think so yanqui and you with your moniker should know better than anyone the name of that country. No clues..

          • No one rattled it. Why would you think that?

            GDP/debt ratios are not nearly as critical an indicator as you think. Look at Japan. Look at their growth rate in the past 20 years. Yet they seem to be doing better than Greece. The funny thing about US debt is that the government also holds a number of assets that can be used to offset this debt, which results in a far lower debt ratio than you might surmise. Holding the world’s reserve currency, no matter how frothy it makes a chavista to think about it, is a rather great advantage as well, and that won’t be going away anytime in the next 5 decades. So, kvetch how you see fit about the US. Its apples and oranges. Marx was rather wrong simply because he had no insight whatsoever into the human mind and human nature.

            Since you don’t want to answer the question vis-a-vis El Avila and Central Park: When was the last time you were in NYC? I have meetings there pretty regularly and despite what you think, it isn’t nearly as bad as you declaim. Brooklyn has quite a bit of gentrification. Harlem? I spent a lot of time there when an ex-girlfriend was attending Columbia. I have no great love for NYC, since it is too crowded and grey for my tastes, but I’d take it in a heartbeat over Caracas in its current condition. Sadly, too many caraquenos tend to take what people such as yourself ooze as truth about the other cities of the world. They, too, are unwitting victims of the communicational hegemony that obscures the light of truth.

            Incidentally, Arturo, how much must it piss you off that if the US, were for any reason to default, it would have an absolutely catastrophic effect on Venezuela’s economy? Oh, and I know you believe otherwise…but alas, the bolo is pegged to the dollar. Which person is the most idiotic? He who drives borracho or the person who knowingly gets in the car with him?

          • Arturo’s comment is amusingly puzzling, and shows some of the same ignorance that he decries in pitiyanqui. New York is a pretty nice city to spend time in, even if you’re not in Central Park or Williamsburg or wherever. It sure isn’t Caracas, and it isn’t the ’70s anymore, either. The comments about debt seem to betray some fundamental ignorance of economics; among other things, US debt is denominated in its own currency, a fact that fundamentally changes the implications of debt. This is, of course, not the case for countries like Venezuela and Greece. And as for Cabrini-Green in Chicago, where I live, perhaps Arturo ought to pay a visit – that project was torn down years ago and the area is gentrifying rapidly.

      • It is actually a very disconcerting fact about boludos sin fronteras, that is, people who support revolutionary processes, but always from a safe distance. In my lifetime, I have seen radical support migrate from the USSR to North Korea, to China, to Vietnam, to Cuba, to Zimbabwe, to Ethiopia, to Nicaragua, and then to Venezuela. As each one of these experiments turns disastrous, the BSF won’t re-examine the principles of his religion, but simply moves on to its next embodiment. . Today, it’s no longer Venezuela, it’s Bolivia.

      • Funny how you say it’s completely fine for Eva Golinger to live in NY and opine all she wants about Venezuela, while at the same time shunning actual venezuelans on this blog who speak with much more knowledge and propiedad about this country than her.
        I suppose irony is something that is quickly lost once you abandon reason. That is, if you ever had any reason at all to begin with.

    • She’s raising her child in NYC… conceived in vitro with sperm from HCh. 94 perfect clones of HCh have been born and sent to different parts of the world for adoption!

  6. Nikki Ripe’s expulsion of US Embassy personnel reminds me of his mentor’s Yanqui de Mierda rant. I wonder if Nikki Ripe will then expel French Embassy personnel as a consequence of the recent cocaine haul.

    If Nikki Ripe were to morph into a Country and Western singer, his take on 16 Tons might go like this:

    A ton of cocaine, and what do you get
    A bust in Paris and more Chinese debt
    There’s sulfur in New York so I won’t go
    I owe my soul to the Castro bros.

    Bad government provides good opportunity for bad jokes.

    • No, the French embassy staff will not be expelled for teh cocaine haul as it was Air france staff who are among the 22 being held in the SEBIN cells.

      On the other hand, meeting with political opposition and being filmed is a guarantee to bee xpelled from Venezuela. Well done Maduro. The fewer gringos hee, the better for us all.

      • So, any foreign diplomat who meets with a politician in the U.S. from the Republican party should be expelled by the Democratic Administration?

        If you believe this, you have no idea what democracy is, Arturo.

        • His logic dictates… YES, Obama should expel anyone who meets with Republicans.

          Arturo, you are a piece of work. I bet your momma is real proud of you.

      • A humorless apparatchik-wannabe responds in a serious tone to satire.

        [To complete the satire- I would not imagine that French Embassy employees would be expelled for actually having been implicated in the attempt to smuggle the cocaine, but to punish the government of France for having interdicted the 1.3 tons of cocaine. Which come to think of it isn’t that absurd. Chavezuela, after all, is a Narcostate. Satire potentially intersects reality.]

      • I sincerely hope, then, that that computer on which you are typing away is not a Mac or an HP. I also hope it doesn’t run on Windows software. I hope you are not a consumer of any clothing, technology or automobile that is even remotely associated with American businesses.
        Es mas, tell us more how everything you own was hand-crafted by the honest, hardworking marxist comunas of …whatever mythical country you believe in.
        And, as a matter of interest since you’re so anti-US, why is it that you know English?
        Alas, even the Chavez family doesn’t adhere to their dear leader’s stances on capitalism and imperialism, so why should we expect the same from you? I seem to remember seeing pictures of them having a blast in that shit-hole city you mentioned….Any comments on that?

  7. embassies are there to promote inter country business relations look after their own citizens and provide visas to citizens that want to go to their country but as we know embassies are spy bases and safe houses

    yes it is a badge of honor to get expelled from venezuela as a diplomat i believe.

    get jesse jackson here to smooth it all over

  8. Quico, the situation is worth a mention. But honestly … people who have been kidnapped, those who have lost their livelihoods due to government mismanagement, corruption or theft, or the people in the US embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979, are not going to think that having to move on 48 hours notice and with full pay is really such a bad deal.

    • You forgot to mention the people who had their life savings embezzled by unscrupulous property developers as well as those embassy employees of the US who were off limits as a strip joint / sauna whore house in Bello Campo and got shot at 4am one morning. 🙂

  9. JC – no one could expect anything less from you. Support the yanquis is your expert area in life.

    Of course Kelly Keiderling is not doing anything to further US interests or destabbilize the government. She has not passed money from the diplomatic bag to the opposition. Never in a million years. I guess that the fact she is a CIA agent has no bearing on this situation either.

    If you want to know about her find out about her career in the US Interests offcie in La Habana.

    Personally I hope that this conflicto with the US spirals so that Maduro shuts down the embassy in Valle Arriba. Sell the oil elsewhere. The only people that need the US here are the fascist opposition.

    • I love how loons like you, Artuerto, have the CIA personnel files at your disposal, as well as the knowledge of what is contained in diplomatic pouches.

      You must be a graduate of the Maduro/Jaua School of Foreign relations to assert what you just did.

      Sure, let’s cut off the one customer that pays market price, and cash on the barrel head, for our oil.

      You are such a twit, although reading your inane commentary does bring some comic relief.

      • There are plenty of customers out there to buy oil. And it’s only 900,000 barrels/day. And don’tforget, that it is not the US that buys our oil but private refineries – such as Citgo. It’s easy to trade oil on the high seas so there is no prooblem.

        You appear to labor under the misapprehension that all the diplomats from US here are just bureaucrats. If you were not si bone idle you could easily find the “prontuario” of CIA Agent Kelly Keiderling and explode the myth in your head that she and her helpers were just aking an “innocent walf in Bolívar state”.

        Close the Embassy now! Chavez did it to Israel as a terrorist state and the US is little different.

        • Really, Arturo, in all these years, the Chávez government and now Maduro’s, hasn’t found an alternate buyer for the US? You are a loon!

    • I don’t understand why do you despise the US so much but are fine with Russia and China.

      Yes, the US has a long history of intervention and human right infringements, but so do the other two?

      A healthy relationship with the US and Russia and China is good for Venezuela, I don’t understand what the big fuss about the US is here.

      • The difference is Rodrigo is that China and Russia have not attempted to overthrow the Venezuelan government as the US has done in the recent past. Is that not a good enough reason for you?

        • Right, China has simply imposed colonialist policies upon us and Russia has sold us Billions of dollars of weapons that are second rate and which we don’t really need.

          But other than that, all is peachy

        • We have spent or got as loan in total 11 billion dollars in Russian weapons.
          Venezuela has imported more weapons than any Latin American country, including Brazil.

          • Kepler – why do you lie when you know that in terms of arms imports in the last ten years Venezuela is 6th or 6th on the list on South American countries.

            I hope we do import more weapons for the miuilitias. It’s an error of the government not to buy more arms as far as I am concerned.

            It does not matter how much money we have borrowed Kepler. Our debt is far more manageable than almost all countries in the EU and they need to follow our example. It’s debt as a ratio of GDP that matters not the absolute amount owed since it is the size of the GDP that conditions a country to pay tyhe debt. At least we owe nothing to ther IMF or World Bank but to China. No problema with that as we are paying with oil and not dollars.

        • Let’s apply that fledgling logic of yours to a similar situation then. Cuba sent militias back in the 50’s to overthrow the Venezuelan government, yet we’re on the best of terms with them now. Why the problem with the US, if we’re going to worship our invaders so unabashedly?

        • That is an allegation that you can’t back. The US did recognize Carmona’s government.

          Probably the Chinese and Russians would have done the same after a little while.

          Cuba did attempt to do what you just said and failed.

  10. My submission for what the U.S. response should be is… nothing.

    They should hold a press conference and announce that after consideration of the options for responding to this absurd and groundless expulsion of U.S. diplomats, we have determined that nothing we can do will hurt the Venezuelan government more than it is already doing to itself. Therefore, the U.S., while protesting this action as groundless, will take no punitive action, and wishes the people of Venezuela well.

    • Groundless expulsion? I await the next batch of evidence against Ms CIA Agent Keiderling and Hoffman and Moo.

      You see Roy, for you who is a totally disociated person, brainwashed by the “greatness of the US”, it is imposible for the Venezuelan government to do anything that is not wrong, stupid, unjustified or foolish in your eyes.

      Now if you are right please explain to us all why PSUV / Chavismo or whatever you want to call it is in power, and holds all the levers of power and will win the 8 D elections by a huge number of alcaldías?

      If the government is so bad, as you always profess on this blog, then why does it continue to win elections?

      You see this is your problema and it is you who continues to foam at the mouth in dire frustration at being a continual and above all bad loser.

      Maybe you need to reevealuate your values and yourself so that you might be a happier person. That is what a good shrink would tell you.

          • Evo no, güevón sí.
            In early 1983 there were Copeyanos sure everything was fine. Back then the country was by far not as weak as it is now. It’s a ticking bomb, man, and it will blow up in your face, not ours.

          • I encourage Arturo to make more and more triumphalist announcements, delusion increases alongside desperation.

            What was that about inflation that he or another PSF sock puppet claimed, it would drop and return to it’s historical level? It’s still at 3% monthly for August (and that’s the official number). To even return to the level it was on the eve of Chavez’s election on an annualized basis would require deflation for the rest of the year!

      • ” . . . explain to us all why PSUV / Chavismo or whatever you want to call it is in power, and holds all the levers of power and will win the 8 D elections by a huge number of alcaldías?”

        Uuuuh…. I know, because democracy as we know it is a lie and the PSUV / Chavismo (whatever you want to call it) is an artist as an institution at highlighting that fact?

        Or, simpler, because they are going to cheat the ball hairs off of the 8D “elections”?

      • “Ms CIA Agent Keiderling”

        The Deputy Chief of Mission would never be the CIA Station Chief. The official duties of that position take up too much time for the Station Chief to do his/her real job. The same is true of David Moo, the Consular Officer. The third one, Elizabeth Hoffman, cited as “an official in the embassy’s political section”, is a possible candidate, but the chances are that Maduro missed all CIA officers in this sweep.

  11. “The only people that need the US here are the facist opposition” One has to laugh not only at the overused “facist” expression so popular with clueless government supporters but who the hell is buying Venezuela oil? Seems the US is needed for that eh?

    • The US government does not buy the oil your idiot. It is private refineries that buy it – such as Citgo. You know nothing. Go and do some studying.

      • Paul said nothing about the US government buying Vz oil. Learn to read, Arturo. Or camouflage your muddle with the New Bolivarian Thought so that your confusion doesn’t seep through your writing. Remember their latest memo on “How to Rationalize Oil Sales to the US”!

        (…and don’t forget our talking points on actions that indirectly benefit the US government and economy, actions that must be obfuscated and rationalized at all costs: (1) selling to US-based refineries is good. (2) Buying Florida properties is good. (3) Visiting Disneyworld with a plane-load of family members and friends is good. (4) Having anchor babies in the US is good …)

        Go to a dictionary, Arturo, and look up HYPOCRISY, HYPOCRITE, PHARISEE.

  12. No one has profited more from the existence of the US embassy in CCS than the government itself. Imagine when you have no one to blame, no one to kick out… no opportunity to externalize all your fears and downfalls. I believe that closing the US embassy serves no one, least of all Venezuela.

    As to selling oil in the high seas… pirating they call it… although many fishermen have resorted to just that in light of it being much more profitable than actually fishing something.

    If these “diplomats” were conspiring, show us the proof. Otherwise it is simply another hot air balloon trying to pin anything to the Americans, and we are getting bloody tired of it.

  13. Repeat : Maduro is trying to pick a fight with the US since some time ago , Its the old old game of switcharoo, when things are going bad for you, find someone else to blame for your own failures , so that you can present yourself in superhero vestment as the valiant revolutionary fighting the fiendish forces of imperialism and hope that by doing so ,people will forget for a while how inept you have been at managing things . The thing is that after repeating the same old game several times people stop believing it. Plots , conspiracies , assesination plans , at a certain stage it all seems so silly and childish that to be believed you have to offer some solid proof or people will either yawn or laugh at you. Poor Maduro he is so puerile and insignificant and yet he thinks that the whole world is secretly plotting his assesination because he is so crucial to the fate of the world !! He clearly suffers from delusions of grandeur!!

  14. Really Arturo? Venezuelan oil is purchased by US based companies with the exception of Venezuelan owned Citgo.So when you speak of not needing the US I guess you are not referring to all the entities that comprise the US marketplace. Do some studying yourself and learn to express your thoughts more coherently if using the English language.

  15. I guess we have found the one thing that makes arturito go into tantrum mode. Funny that he only talks about Venezuela not needing to export oil to the US and forgets about all the other imports the Venezuela needs to get from the US in order to simply stay functional.

    If you’re the US, why would you want this to stop? The same with Brazil. Both Obama and Roussef probably said HELL YEAH! in secret when Maduro won, knowing how he was just going to continue his predecessor genius economic plan of importing everything.


    • Right on hal. Why even bother to reply about the total imports from the US to a fanatical supporter of a failed regime. His time would be best spent waiting in line for powdered milk and chickens.

      • Venezuela can keep importing products from the US and they can keep exporting Oil to the US.

        The USA and The United Kingdom have the worst foreign policy in the world and are not to be trusted its a very unfortunate situation!

        • The worst foreign policy? You basically get a neighbor who throws tantrums and makes vain threats but deep down you know will never do a anything stupid because he knows you can hand him his ass 6 different ways from Sunday, all the while begs you to sell him your stuff and buy his oil just to keep him afloat. Thats a good deal if you ask me.

  16. Let’s see if Maduro and Celia settle down in Petare after they retire from Miraflores? You know, con el pueblo…Seriously, it is not US policy that ruins VNZA…It is the million and millions if not billions in corruption that is stolen from the state…With all that oil the streets should be paved in gold…VNZA should have a living standard close to Saudi Arabia, not Somalia or Bolivia. Too many hands in the cookie jar and unfortunately all the lies they tell people to get their votes. Let’s wait and see how many of the Boliborgueses settle down in Casalta, Petare, o Antimino after they retire from politics…

  17. There may be a more omnious reading to the frenzied effort Maduro is putting in making believe that there is a sinister US plot backed by the forces of the opposition to wage an Economic War against Venezuela , by announcing a radicalization of the regimes actions in response to it , by raising the pay of the military , by giving officers fancy cars, by the recent threats , by creating a mise d scene moment next tuesday when he aks the Assembly for extraordinary powers to legislate on matters relating to that fictitous Economic war, He may be preparing for an institutional coup , one which will take away whats left of the half surviving freedoms Venezuelans still have , the 99th vote in the National Assembly is going to raise a ruckus and he is preparing to meet it with an institutional coup d etat , with possible imprisonment of main opposition leaders and a total silencing of independent media . He may sound mad but there is a method to his madness . What has suggested the above conjectural reading to me ??, the reading of laureano marquez latest piece , where he appears to write in very abstract and confusing terms abut being brave in difficult times and standing your ground while confronting your own fear . its as if his sending a message that a moment of great fear is coming and its manifestation is that he writes in a laboured difficult to read style showing us his fear of speaking plainly. !! I have an imaginative mind and all of the above is probably wrong !! its just conjecture or maybe the current diffuse collective and pervasive feeling of expecting something unknown to happen is making me paranoid. But I smell stink coming from all that crazy talk !! Someone read the headlines with Maduros latest announcements and tell me my imagination is running wild . Hope it is !!


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