How’s this for an Orwelian agency title? The Strategic Center for the Security and Protection of the Fatherland (CESPPA) , tha thas been just set up by decree to control all public information.
What are CESPPA’s tasks? To gather, analyse, organize and review relevant information for the nation’s strategic interests.
The thing is… there’s already another State agency doing exactly the same job.
Yeap, the comandante eterno created a pretty similar entity back in 2010: the Center for the Situational Studies of the Nation (CESNA), with the overall mission of “gather, analyse and integrate all relevant information for the Executive, provided by State institutions and other society entities”. These guys are even recycling their creepy Orwellian policy announcements!
Back in 2010, human rights groups denounced that CESNA would serve as an instrument to censor all public information. The very same concerns that have surged with the brand new CESPPA.
However, when you compare the decrees that created them, the nature of both agencies do differ: while CESNA was defined mostly as a support agency for the government, its new counterpart CESPPA is a military-oriented organization, more focused on national security. Its mission statement is crammed full of militaristic jargon (such as domestic/foreign enemy activity).
At least the CESNA tried to keep a civilian image. But the CESPPA doesn’t sugar-coat at all its war mentality or even its true political colors, as its final authority resides with what is called the Political-Military Directorate of the Revolution, a high ranking Chavista group.
But the big loser here is our Constitutional right of access to public information, which was already in deep, deep trouble. Even to get a State official just to say “no comment” is quite an adventure.
[HT: A. Barreda]