Without even a pretense of a reason other than to preven people protesting, chavismo is effectively shutting down all the main routes into Caracas.

Twitter is awash right now with images like:

There are more and more reports of soldiers stopping and harassing people en route to the protest:

Or plain old preventing buses from taking the road to Caracas:

As soldiers block the access points, impromptu little rallies sprout up at the choke-points:

But here’t the mood people are in: if you shut down the highway, we’ll just walk.

And Sebastian de la Nuez closes in resonant form:

Today, there’s a gigantic, 18 kilometer queue to acquire not sugar but freedom.

Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.


  1. This is not surprising. I am encouraged to see that feet are still carrying people forward.

    But the chance of success is dimming by the hour that anything can be done. The military is a willing accomplice in this and have zero interest in protecting anything but the gubmint machine.

    Stay safe. My prayers are with you but reality might not be so generous.

  2. They can try to prevent access but it is already on record the amount of people who made the commitment to go. That will be impossible to deny.

    • I am reading some early news coverage that is suprisingly uncritical of the govetnments efforts to suppress the demonstration and limit international press coverage of the event. The press hasnt figured out who the winner will be and remains on the fence. The other problem is that Maduro is still viewed as a leftist savior of the poor. Some things are slow to change.

  3. I wish it was something like it happened in Ukraine or Egypt: “we are not leaving until you hear us.”

    The whole country at a standstill, then a general strike would follow (it seems that a lot of stores in Caracas are already closed today, right?). The international media would take from there, and an eye-popped Amanpour would report about the “dramatic situation”. And it would be a matter of days until they replace Maduro, making an agreement with MUD to cool things down.

  4. This is what Dictatorships do. They even use the military to stop peaceful protests. All of those crooked cops and military should one day go to jail. Spineless thugs, all of them.

    This proves what I always say: it’s not just Maduro, or Cabello, or Aristobulo or Rodriguez or Delcy. There are literally Millions of Enchufados, spineless crooks, in countless ‘ministries’, in the army, in the police, in sebin, everywhere. Yes, the majority of Venezuelans are honest, and fed up, but over 20% of the population is still for the system, and more than half still love, adore and venerate Chavez.

    Draw your own conclusions..

  5. The way to topple a dictatorship is:
    1. set the demands. check
    2. rally public opinion and mobilize people. check.
    3. call a general strike.
    4. sit down and settle the terms of the transition.
    The GN and the police can’t force the population of Venezuela to work. They want a bridge shutdown? A port shutdown? Buses stopped? Let them have it. All of it. End this agony.

    • Exactly, if ‘phase 2’ of these protests is something like ‘we are no longer playing the game’, given the current economic problems, the army will see no other option than to make an agreement with MUD and depose Maduro. But if things return to normalcy tomorrow, then not much will change indeed.

  6. Good luck to everyone attending this event. You are heroes in my book. Please be safe and don’t fall for the government’s trap of violence.

    As for my personal opinion: If you look at the way the government organized combined police/GNB/military presence then you understand they are getting ready for war on civilians, in case its needed. They would order the jailing and/or murder of every person they consider dangerous to their stay in power. The “bolivarian” armed forces have shown their fiber throughout the years and, I believe, will obey orders without hesitation.

    The narco-military junta knows they will not be able to hide anywhere, so they will see the country burn to ashes before they give up power (if they ever). Yes, this is just a different flavor of the classic military dictatorships we’ve seen over and over again.

    The narco-junta’s long-term plan is probably to make Maduro resign after Jan 2017 so that PSUV can renew leadership without a humiliating RR defeat. They will put there someone smooth with “labia” – at that point most chavistas angry with Maduro will be appeased and go back to their usual “pobrecito dale chance” stance. Thus, the government will maneuver their way back to 40-something% popularity and be able to fix the upcoming gubernatorial elections and beyond.

    What is the MUDs plan? This is harder to predict because the MUD has never had a long-term plan. They will probably retract as their most popular leaders continue to get thrown in jail, while the majority of civilians watch in hopeless silent anger.

  7. The opposition needs to openly speak to the enlisted soldiers, not the corrupt officers. They need to realize that their loyalty needs to be to the people of Venezuela and the Constitution. The soldiers need to realize that they should not follow illegal orders to oppress civilians. Their job is to protect the country from all enemies, foreign and domestic.
    Once the narco-military officers start doubting the blind loyalty of their troops, their power will be gone. Divide and conquer. Just like rats abandoning a sinking ship, the military oppression will dissolve. These criminals will turn on each other. Without the Military to oppress the population, Maduro will flee the country. These criminals will all be trying to steal what they can and hide where they hope they are safe.
    After they are gone and the immediate challenges of food, medicine and a stable currency are addressed, there will be time to hunt them down.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here