The State’s Wild Mood Swings

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Funcionarios-GNB-PNB-Montalban-III_NACIMA20150727_0006_6Yesterday witnessed another “tiny war” (didn’t we use to call those guerrillas?) in Caracas as the state sent a partly militarized mixed Police/National Guard force to re-establish order over another area that had quietly slipped into total lawlessness: the Misión Vivienda III development in Montalbán, in southwestern Caracas.

It’s a bit like having a state with bipolar disorder, randomly switching between reckless permisiveness and extreme repression in dealing with public order. “Peace zones” where the state effectively retreats from any public order role at all get invaded now and again.

It’s hard to find the rhyme or reason for it, isn’t it?

1 COMMENT

  1. Dont know, but as a wild hypothesis I just throw here to see if any of you with better info can think of ways to prove or refute it…

    … the elections? Maybe they think the benefits of the freedom they gave the gangs is starting to be outweighted by the public perception of lawlessness and chaos and are trying to have some high-profile cleanups before the public goes to vote?

    • My theory is a mix between that and that, with less money to go around to keep everybody happy, something has to give.

    • Maybe they think the benefits of the freedom they gave the gangs is starting to be outweighted by the public perception of lawlessness and chaos and are trying to have some high-profile cleanups before the public goes to vote?

      I am reminded of a phenomena of the Fourth Republic, where there would be massive ID checks around the time of an important event, such as a presidential election or a holiday.

  2. There is yet a further bi-polar dilemma. With oil prices sliding downwards this morning, do they throw the meager future oil revenues at supporting the police/army to keep them in power, or do they throw it at dwindling food shipments to keep the pueblo somewhat fed in order to obtain support in December? I don’t think there will be enough revenue to do both. It’s ‘Alice in Wonderland’ time.

  3. gran guebonaa… asi piensa nuestro jefe:

    El Picure ‏@bandaelpicure 5h5 hours ago
    Por si las moscas: rechazo emboscadas como la de El Cementerio y NO hago sicariato. Soy un malandro serio, no ataco a traición.

    El Picure ‏@bandaelpicure 8h8 hours ago
    No tengo nada que ver con los sucesos de El Cementerio. Yo no ataco si no me provocan.

    El Picure ‏@bandaelpicure 54m54 minutes ago
    .@LaHojillaenTV Tas loco.
    Ni mis hombres ni yo ni ninguno de los jefes de los demás grupos queremos quedarnos sin cerveza Polar o arepas.

  4. My first guess is that some poll is showing that among the general population the opinion is that the country is getting uncomfortably lawless and that the colectivos and zonas de paz are part of the reason why and they want to make it look now as if they are for strict law and order , alternatively that some of the military are getting worried with the law and order situation getting out of hand and Maduro wants to keep them happy .

  5. It’s an election year, make a big show of tanks and helicopters x Sibci = The government is doing something.

    On a sort of different note, I know the revolution is obsessed with trying to make everything fit their different narratives but do people in Venezuela buy the “it’s the Paramilitares Colombianos”, “it’s ExxonMobil”. If insecurity is a problem for you, does it really make you feel better that the guy extorting/killing/raping/kidnapping you is doing it using techniques he learned from somewhere else? Do we have a preference for home grown goons vs. the imported, right wing, paramilitares? I also have a hard time understanding the ExxonMobil/Guyana deal. If they lose the Esequibo but blame it on the corporate devil, then it’s better than if they just lose it to poor old little Guyana? Really?

      • Lo que es curioso para mi es que el que entrena de todos esos grupos mafioso-paramilitares-gangs es el mismo que ahora los esta mandando a reprimir: Gustavo González Lopez

    • I know the revolution is obsessed with trying to make everything fit their different narratives but do people in Venezuela buy the “it’s the Paramilitares Colombianos”, “

      For what it’s worth here is an example of the regime employing that narrative, in Panampost, courtesy of Fausta’s The Indoctrinator Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean.

      The expert referenced events of Monday, July 13, when the military and police deployed over 3,000 agents to combat illegal activity in four areas of the country where large gangs operate. The government called it “Operation for National Liberation and Protection (OLPP),” according to Interior and Justice Minister Gustavo González.

      During the operation, authorities apprehended 247 people, recovered 28 stolen cars, and killed 17 gang members. According to authorities, among those detained were 40 Colombians allegedly linked to paramilitary groups

      Regarding how many actually believe that narrative is another issue. The regime will probably respond to skeptics by saying something like “That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.” Which reminds of posting on some US blog years ago- 2008? – about the increased murder rate in Venezuela, and getting the reply that the increased murder rate was the result of the CIA stirring up trouble.
      Or, the colectivos are our friends, until they’re not. Then they are Colombian paramilitaries.

  6. It’s hard to find the rhyme or reason for it, isn’t it?

    Yes, it is hard to find rhyme or reason to Chavismo’s erratic fluctuations of policy on the issue of crime and “peace zones.” Just as it is hard to find rhyme or reason in Chavista economics, etc. etc. It would appear to me that the only consistency in Chavismo is to be found in the question, “What policy will at this particular moment increase the power of Chavismo?” Currently, it appears that the appearance of lawlessness is perceived to be a bigger problem than in keeping the motorizado/choro allies happy.

    • not even that , consider this….

      this question: “What policy will at this particular moment increase the power of Chavismo?”

      Could only be answered with a rational mindset.

      I think the question they do to themselves is more like this:

      “What policy will at this particular moment make me and others feel that there is a increase in the power of Chavismo?”

      for you see, they feel, but they dont use their minds (the rational ones) to fulfill their needs. They only attempt to fulfill their egos. or boost them.

  7. What we are seeing is the result of the purging of the regime of the ideologues. Previously, Chavismo had some guiding ideological principles. These principles may have been illogical, unworkable, and inherently flawed, but there was, at least, some ideological basis for their decisions. Now, however, the pragmatists without any scruples are completely in charge, and increasingly desperate. They mostly understand that their days in power are numbered. The only remaining principle is to stay in power and keep stealing for as long as possible.

  8. Ah, another fight among gangs.

    How many folks got killed this time? How many of those were actual criminals? And how many were arrested?

    Nothing on that? Yep, nothing out of the normal…

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