1 COMMENT

  1. That’s fine if we want to compare it with Iraq but to me the most shocking thing is when we show what the murder rate was in the nineties. In 1998 the murder rate was 19 x 100 000 in Venezuela and that of Colombia around 60. In 2002 Venezuela’s murder rate was already 34 murders per 100 000 according to data provided to UNODC.

  2. On page 486 of UNODC Seventh Report:
    Venezuela’s murder rate in
    1998: 19.61 x 100000
    1999: 25.21 x 100000
    2000: 33.15 x 100000
    Colombia: 56.59, 58.69, 62.74 x 100 000 respectively.
    Now Colombia’s half of what it had in 2000.

  3. I have to say that the only thing this says to me is that Venezuela has massively more accurate statistics than Iraq.

    Is Iraq really safer than Venezuela? Every reputable security outlet that I know of says it isn’t, this certainly seems to be a case of more accurate reporting than actual prevalence.

    If you look closely, the OVV (who apparently are a reliable source according to a lot of people [questionable, read on]) have fudged the murder rate upwards in recent years by including deaths under investigation. It doesn’t say what these deaths are, it merely says that they’re being investigated and they haven’t concluded what the cause is. This is just bad science so the OVV can’t be considered credible either.

    You have an inflated Venezuelan stat versus a hugely de-flated Iraqi stat. In fact you can’t logically use Iraq “stats” at all, there aren’t any valid ones in existence. Probably because it’s too dangerous to compile.

    I’ve noticed a lot of people using this comparison and I’m not having a go at this particular author, but it’s being disrespectful to Iraqi’s.

    It’s like people saying Colombia’s much safer than Venezuela. This is contentious for obvious reasons. Why is it that Colombia doesn’t have a Venezuelan refugee problem, yet Venezuela has one with Colombian refugees? Hmm. Venezuelans aren’t fleeing for their lives to Colombia it’s the other way around and this has to put a big question mark over the murder gap for those two countries. I make Venezuela 63 per 100,000 (‘homicidios’ and ‘resistencia’ deaths) for 2012 and Colombia 34, but these are official numbers, it doesn’t give you the conditions on the ground.

    Significant chunks of rural Colombia (unlike rural Venezuela) remain lawless and can’t be policed conventionally, disappearances are a much bigger problem in urban and rural Colombia than in Venezuela etc.

    Basically, murder statistics for some countries are iffy.

    Good blog though and tragic murder of poor Monica. Awful. RIP Thomas as well, sounded like a nice guy and best of luck to the little girl.

    • Glaber – for once the voice of reason amongst the blinded-by-I- I hate-the-Venezuelan government-and-Chavismo bloggers.
      Of cpourse OVV is iffy and even the people who run this blog know it but it suits their aganda.
      You ask the right question as to why there are so many Colombian refugees in Venezuela and not the other way round. And most Colombians live in the varrios where violence is most prevalent.
      Regqrding the dabte spearked by the assassination of Monica and her husband. According to NBC she had been robbed six rimes in Venezuela and her husband had been wounded once by gunfire but survuved..

      • Thank you for the support Arturo, I’d like to think it was an unbiased and logical comment.

        Certainly I’m not free of bias, I am a flawed man. But I thought it was a pretty good posting.

    • Ok… one at a time.

      Quote: “You have an inflated Venezuelan stat versus a hugely de-flated Iraqi stat. In fact you can’t logically use Iraq “stats” at all, there aren’t any valid ones in existence. Probably because it’s too dangerous to compile”

      Answer: The article has TWO Venezuelan stats. One from OVV and one from the government. Both those stats are higher than Iraq’s. Do you have any credible source of violent deaths is Iraq that isn’t “deflated”? Or are you saying that any stat on Iraq is wrong if the number is lower than Venezuela’s?

      Quote: “Why is it that Colombia doesn’t have a Venezuelan refugee problem, yet Venezuela has one with Colombian refugees?”

      Answer: Venezuelan refugees are middle class immigrants and investors. They were the largest group of immigrants by citizenship in 2013: over 7,000. And they’re not a problem for Colombia because they’re usually professionals who are developing the Colombian oil industry, the Colombian IT industry, they’re exporting Harina PAN and Cocosete from Colombia instead of Venezuela, they’re investing in convenience stores like Farmatodo and Locatel and so on.

      Quote: “Significant chunks of rural Colombia (unlike rural Venezuela) remain lawless and can’t be policed conventionally, disappearances are a much bigger problem in urban and rural Colombia than in Venezuela etc.”

      Anwer: You seem to be oblivious to whole Venezuelan towns in the border being under control from FARC, ELN and paramilitary organizations. The main difference is that Venezuela isn’t even trying to police there.

      Quote: “Basically, murder statistics for some countries are iffy.”

      Answer: Can you explain succinctly how is the Venezuelan government’s official murder stats iffy in “inflated” way? Because standard Venezuelan practice right now is using official government number’s as the best case scenario (with tweaks) and using the independent number as closer to the worst case scenario. What possible mistake can the Venezuelan government be making that would lead them to overstate the murder stats?

      • http://www.controlrisks.com/RiskMap/Pages/Security.aspx

        “The article has TWO Venezuelan stats. One from OVV and one from the government. Both those stats are higher than Iraq’s. Do you have any credible source of violent deaths is Iraq that isn’t “deflated”? Or are you saying that any stat on Iraq is wrong if the number is lower than Venezuela’s?”

        Apparently you don’t realise that war zones are unable to count properly – they’re war zones. Have you seen Control Risks’ security map? I have said that Iraq doesn’t have accurate death stats, you’re forgetting to put your brains in if you believe those numbers. Look at Control Risks’ map, which is the more dangerous country?

        “Venezuelan refugees are middle class immigrants and investors”

        Refugees though? Contentious. In Venezuela there’s a refugee problem and they’re not at all alike.

        “You seem to be oblivious to whole Venezuelan towns in the border being under control from FARC, ELN and paramilitary organizations. The main difference is that Venezuela isn’t even trying to police there.”

        On the border, not inland. Nowhere else in Venezuela has those conditions. Far bigger chunks of Colombia are lawless and when I say ‘lawless’ I mean lawless. Almost war-torn like some African, or Middle East/AFPAK failed states’ level (though much safer than quite a few of them). Where are their murder rates? None of them are up there, no surprise there! 😉

        Not many full-scale military operations take place in Venezuela. You don’t need them. It’s likely that many more bodies fall out of the system in Colombia than in Venezuela due to the conditions. They’re not the same.

        “Can you explain succinctly how is the Venezuelan government’s official murder stats iffy in “inflated” way?”

        Not the government the OVV. To save you reading back as you seem to have missed it they include deaths under investigation. It’s not on, regardless of what the gov. are coming out with. Not good science. What they’re saying is: “We don’t know how they died, who cares? Put them in anyway!”

        The guy who runs the OVV is surprisingly careless which again is suspicious on some level. Good scientific data is normally released soberly often to a small audience, he comes across like a headline whore to me. He’s made some weird comments regarding Honduras, he wants that murder capital of the world title for Venezuela that’s for sure. There’s something not right about him.

        • Quote: “I have said that Iraq doesn’t have accurate death stats, you’re forgetting to put your brains in if you believe those numbers.”

          Answer: Iraq has armed groups terrorizing the population and attempting to overthrow the government. Sometimes these groups commit atrocities to intimidate population, the police and the military. Sometimes these violent groups take control of small towns or rural areas.

          It’s also the situation in Mexico and Colombia. Yet those countries publish violent death rates that are rather credible. Why should Iraq’s be so unreliable? Do you have a source questioning the Iraqi methodology?

          Quote: “Have you seen Control Risks’ security map?”
          Answer: What source do they use to asses that risk? Those numbers might prove useful to settle the violent rate differential between Iraq and Venezuela.

          I can’t rely on their coloring scheme, unless I know what they mean by security. Are measuring all violent deaths? Are they putting more weight on suicide bombings? Are they using multinationals perceived risks of being targeted as agents of the great Satan?

          On the other hand, they seem to put Venezuela and Iraq on the same basket when it comes to kidnappings: http://www.controlrisks.com/RiskMap/Pages/Kidnap.aspx . So it’s not all peachy in Venezuela, according to the source you provided. Whatever their colors mean.

          Quote: “Refugees though? Contentious. In Venezuela there’s a refugee problem and they’re not at all alike.”

          Answer: People are leaving Venezuela mainly due to crime rates, political prosecution and the economy. People running away from crime, violence and political prosecution are definitely refugees. It’s just that since they’ve been able to emigrate as professionals or investors or students, people aren’t playing the “international refugee” card, yet.

          Quote: “Not many full-scale military operations take place in Venezuela. You don’t need them”

          Answer: I DO think we need them, though I agree they’re not taking place. But the government should crack down on colectivos, on Pranes, on kidnappers, on gangs like the one that killed Monica Spear, on the pirates that hold fishermen’s boats or engines for ransom, on the pirates that raid tourist ships in Venezuelan waters. Lack of police manpower (and a firepower disadvantage) means that, like Mexico or Colombia, Venezuela should involve the military in those operations.

          Quote: “Not the government[‘s] the OVV.[‘s violent death rate]”

          Answer: But I specifically chose the government’s rate (deflated for political reasons, in my opinion), because even using THAT rate (the lowest possible) Venezuela has a higher violent death rate than Iraq. And you have been unable to provide a credible violent death rate for Iraq that is higher than both the government’s and OVV’s rates, or just higher than the government’s.

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