Torture, Rape and Ransom

Plaza Altamira, February 15
Plaza Altamira, February 15

As the student protests continue, shocking stories of the detained are hitting social media and some news outlets. Detainees are not allowed to see their family members, some students have been beaten, shocked with electricity, doused with gasoline and threatened to be set on fire. There are personal accounts of detained students being stripped of their clothing and forced to sing Cuban folk songs while being detained in Caracas. One family member had to pay ransom in dollars in exchange for a student’s freedom, and there are reports from Carabobo  that one of the young detainees was anally raped with an assault rifle.

It’s not only students who are suffering from the repression of security forces. Provea’s Media Coordinator Inti Rodríguez was kidnapped and beaten by Sebin personnel. Reporters from various media outlets have been detained, some beaten, and some even mugged by security forces.

Since this wednesday 120 persons have been detained, as of right now, 14 remain in the custody of the police. No word if they will suffer the same fate as the other detainees.

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    • Fat chance. If the Latin American presidents are willing to go to Cuba in a show of acceptance of totalitarianism just to listen to Maduro repeat his Chavez and anti-imperialism bullshit, we should expect no help from them.
      The region wants its free/bartered oil, and anything that seriously compromises the regime will deprive them of that temporarily. Por ende, “viva Maduro” is what they´ll say.

    • we should talk about the oil. The United States is the regime’s primary source of hard currency if I’m not mistaken. What the hell is the U.S. doing paying for the bullets that kill unarmed pro-democracy civilians? Why the hell isn’t the U.S. financing the opposition? The U.S. has no problem financing terrorist and guerilla groups around the globe! Cut off the oil now.

      • Just wanna add that North Dakota and Texas are well on their way to replacing the 900K barrels per day the U.S. buys from Venezuela. Not to mention Canada. Then there’s all that oil coming online from Iraq and Iran. If U.S. refineries are the only ones that can process this Venezuelancrude, then it should be stopped. The U.S. should not buy Venezuelan petroleum products directly or indirectly until this mess is solved. Lets see how long the regime lasts without a client for its oil.

        • Problem with cutting off oil deliveries from Venezuela is that in the international oil market all supplies are interconnected so that if you cut the flow of oil from Venez to the US , oil which formerly went somewhere else will go replace the cut oil and the resulting dislocation will cause prices to go up which will be unfavourable to consumer countries in general including the US . Do remember that the US is not yet self sufficient . What might help, is to allow the US producers to export their surplus crude oil ( something the US doesnt allow ) thus probably causing a fall in world oil prices which in Venezuelas straitened financial situation might is bound to cause the regime serious problems !!.

          • I’ve read some argue that if the US could export their surplus crude oil Saudi Arabia and others would just decrease production to offset it. It will be interesting to see what happens to the price of oil, several are expecting a significant drop in world prices by 2020. Knowing our luck, it will probably happen right after the Chavernment finally falls and thus cripple the new government trying to pick up the pieces.

          • That will be years, if ever, away. I doubt we will see the U.S. Congress bestir itself on this when it can’t manage a pillowfight in a brothel.

            There’s a public perception problem with oil exports in a country that has had to import for such a long time and suffered at OPEC’s hands in the 70’s (and which gave rise to Congress passing EPCA in the first place). This is especially true when gasoline is $3.30/gallon now when it was $3.07/gallon in mid-2007 when oil was $150/barrel.

          • Bill, I’m not an oilman but we did force Iran to take its oil the market and store it in tankers off the Chinese and Iranian coast. Where there’s a will there’s a way. If our refineries are the only ones that can process that crude, then we (USA) have another leg up on the regime yet we (USA) dont exercise any options.

          • By “we”, do you mean the UN sanctions imposed on Iran for its litany of abuses with the capstone of development of nuclear weapons? I can’t see the UN looking at Venezuela with the same degree of lensing despite the human rights issues. That’s about the only thing the UN can complain about at this juncture, and given that Venezuela sits (ironically enough, along with such HR stars as Congo, Russia, China, Kazakhstan and yes, the US) on the UN Human Rights Council until 2015, well, you can see how much the UN really cares about that. They’ll release a report or something.

            The US could unilaterally act, but given that PDVSA, through a subsidiary, owns three heavy oil refining complexes in the US with about 750k/day refining capacity, the US would have to dictate that they couldn’t use their capital assets as they see fit, which would be tantamount to interference/expropriation that so raises the ire of gringos in the first place. Besides, China, that steady Venezuelan ally (or steady as the flow of oil goes, anyway) has been busy building refining assets through CNOOC and CNPC that could upgrade and process the heavy crude Venezuela produces ever since Chavez started sending them crude in lieu of cash.

            The fungible nature of oil makes it such that, without a broad coalition of nations that buy the stuff acting, one or two countries will have no impact on interfering in the marketplace.

    • He does that because Maduro called him a coward , Maduro by refusing to debate Capriles on national tv then opens himself to be called a coward , just an example of venezuelan macho political gamemanship!!

  1. At the risk of sounding callous, the world will not pay attention until the number of deaths are higher or the regime goes all out without fear. The marches and demonstrations is Egypt were huge and the number of victims high. Only when raising the bar to the level of Egypt would the international community pay attention. As I see it there are only three choices here: the people take out massively to the streets without fear of personal injury; the military finally awakens and takes the government down; or everyone just waits it out until 2020 and hopes there is a country left. We’re not known to be successful with the first choice. The second has happened in the past but this time the military is totally f….d up. The third choice is the most likely path.

  2. Canucklehead is so right. Forget about the oil. If there are no Human Rights for Venezuelans, then how are there to be Human Rights for the rest of South America. Damn it, South America has got to come together on this.

    • I agree with you on this one Stuart, but is not likely to happen as long as LA still gives respect to Fidel.I think it is a Latin pride thing…I think it goes way beyond the favors any of them might receive.What many do not recognize is that the old truism is actually true for once that ” Pride goeth before the fall”

      But how long can that take is the question?

  3. Thank you for posting this. I am spreading as far and wide as I can.
    Please keep up your excellent work. The World must know the truth about the regime.
    I have family in VZ and they are telling me some truly horrible things about the current situation. We need people like you! Thank you again! Love from the UK!

  4. I know numbers count, in terms of suffering, of disregard for human rights. But I also think that internationally, people are very interested in Venezuela, have followed the Chavez years and his death, the challanges of daily life, the recent Maduro election. And many care about her. Venezuela’s own youth roughly detained, incidents of touture and rape? No. It’s too terrible, on top of the other problems everyone knows are occuring. Capriles must not be the man I thought he was if he’s not going full on, livid, against this brutality.

  5. Although I appreciate your posts very much I cannot bring myself to “like” this post…simply for the things you write. Gosh, all of this is heartbreaking and words are failing me…

  6. Whatever happens is anybody’s guess. There is no single person who is going to decide the future. It’s going to be up to the pueblo, and it will be spontaneous, and it will be up to each of us to decide when and how to fit in. My wife told me this morning that she no longer cares about her safety or her life. She says she cares most about saving her country. If she is anything like the rest of the country, then Maduro is going down!

    • Gordo,

      We’ve seen elite uprisings in 2002, and then again in 2007. As Juan Cristobal correctly points out, this will not make the government fall and instead realistic goals have to be put in place, such as freeing all students.

      What is needed is ‘que baje el cerro’. When you have such disturbances in La Redoma de Petare, or Plaza Catia, or el 23 de Enero opposed to Plaza Francia and Plaza Alfredo Sadel, then you know this is new and then you have a popular uprising. Do remember that 70% of venezuelans are poor.

      I can see how the Chavista in their deformed view of the world having just won a popular election cum ‘referendum’ on December 8, can see this as a decadent elite trying to impose, yet again its will.

      The most depressing part of the whole conflict is that with a very clear and contrasting opposition and the economic disaster the people (and I speak here of ‘el cerro’) are suffering, They still are not willing to cross over. Some bourgeois soul searching is warranted ( I am using the put down word of ‘el cerro’, mea culpa).

      Finally, when this is tamped down the macro economic realities are stewing unabated in Venezuela, the gas subsidies are unsustainable. That will be a brutal second punch to Maduro only weeks away.

      Brave are those that are going to ‘barricades’, but really, the middle class has too much to lose as to put their life on the line against these thugs. May God keep them safe.

  7. I think the opposition should address the Latin American countries in a much more direct and urgent way and call them to respond whether they are so interested in Venezuelan oil AND they think the shared hypothetical ideological “colour” allows them to turn a blind eye on this.

  8. The U. S. supposedly, as per Maduro last night, talked to chameleon Chaderton about the inadvisability of jailing Lopez (interpreted by Maduro as an “ultimatum”), which resulted in the expelling of 3 “subversive” U. S. embassy personnel for meeting with Venezuelan students and offering them coveted visas for studying in the U. S. There are 2 million university students (plus 10 million other primary/secondary students) in Venezuela, who literally have no employment future (Venezuela is actually losing workers to better-paying Colombia) under this Regime, and these are the ones protesting, under the inspiration of Leopoldo Lopez Jr. whose jailing, as threatened again by Maduro last night, will cause much grater student protests.

  9. What does anal rape have to say about the perpetrator? The offender is probably home at this minute sniffing the barrel of his rifle and masturbating. It doesn’t impress or intimidate anyone. They will get theirs tenfold. And watch these cowards run crying to their mothers. This is a Government that was created with the Communist Government of Romania as their example. We know what happened to Ceausescu. He was taken by his own people into the street with his family and shot. History will repeat itself here and the trials for those who followed Maduro will be short. How can they not be when they are killing and treating their own people this way? It is as certain as mold.

  10. The international condenmation has finally come from Russia and China today – against the violent rioters. So……………you yankee lovers can now think about the change in the scenario. This is not Syria or Libya.

    The Foro Penal has not denounced any cases of rape, anal or otherwise, before the Venezuelan Attorney Generals office for investigation. It is just making media noise to discredit the government and play its part in a posible coup.

    No international Human Rights Court will investigate these claims unless they have been dealt with locally first.

    Finally – if you believe what NTN24 says you must be “duneerheads”. This channel is run by Ibeyise Pacheco – one of the main media protagonists of the 2002 coup and 2003 oil industry sabotaje.

    Get ready for more disappointment as your ex leader Quico has pointed out.

    • International condemnation has also come in the form of USA and UK, what’s your point?
      As for the rest of your inane babble, may I just say that indoctrination is bad, my dear boy. Get help.

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  12. I think, my friends it is time to big or go home. You have right and moral on your side. Ukraine is fading from the front pages and every day there is less coverage of your struggle.

    I wish you Godspeed, but hope you all understand that the time for change us either now…or never. 🙁


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