“I’m proud and happy because my players have been brave. They’ve played with dignity, pride and self-love,” said national coach Rafael Dudamel, regretting the defeat in the U-20 World Final against England. The crying was heard on surround sound, after Peñaranda failed his shot yesterday morning. It’s impossible not to feel sad, and in Dudamel’s own words: “I dreamt of seeing them as champions. We were unable to offer that joy to our country, but I’m certain that, in our hearts and minds, they’ll be the Vinotinto champions for the rest of our lives,” adding that they’re the symbol of the Venezuela we want, the one that chases its dreams without hurting anyone.
Team captain Yangel Herrera was awarded the Bronze Ball.
Social media became an avalanche of congratulations for the team, thanking them for the beautiful contrast they gave us, the common Hope, and the day when we saw our team play a world final for the first time.
PSUV had an event in the Poliedro de Caracas which prevented Nicolás from broadcasting his fun little dominical show this week, but this certainly didn’t stop him from another fail: He celebrated that Prosecutor General Luisa Ortega Díaz recognized the TSJ’s legitimacy by filing clarification requests and measures against his Constituyente before the tribunal, labeling her as the leader of dissident opinion, telling her to keep up the good work but then demanding her to act “against guarimberos” and regretting that the Prosecutor’s Office has lost efficiency.
For Nicolás, the 52 thousand constituent pre-candidates are proof of the support for his imposition and he asked his audience to honor the National Guard and the PNB for their protection, demanding further joint actions between civilians and militaries (as in La Candelaria, for instance,) later calling himself: the champion of dialogue in Venezuela.
Are they Venezuela?
Nicolás claimed that a member of the resistance arrested in recent days confessed to “everything” and identified several opposition lawmakers as “bosses who recruit young people, and give them drugs and money.” This gave him the idea of addressing Pope Francis in a letter, asking him to be a mediator and help the opposition push violence aside.
It was cute to watch a chavista student talk about how the youth is being manipulated, just as she praised Nicolás. The only thing that’s growing faster than inflation is the carnet de la patria, which closed at 14,527,121 people registered and with them, the Somos Venezuela (We’re Venezuela) movement was born. The movement will cover 24 social programs to keep tending – as well as they’ve done so far – to people’s needs, reinforcing the concept of a centralized higher state, demanding that regions quit their demands and opening the door for anyone who doesn’t accept his central power to leave the PSUV.
Journalist Hernán Lugo Galicia wrote an article for Crónica Uno based on confidential documents of the Armed Forces’ Operational Strategic Command (Ceofanb) summarizing the consequences of protests and the military’s estimations, including the complex conflict they admit in 14 of the country’s states and the risk that violence might escalate in at least six of them. You really should read those documents, they’ll help you understand that the military brass is as cruel to language as they are to citizens.
The key takeway? More and more working-class sectors are joining protests countrywide, warming up to the idea of a national strike and the activation of article 350 of the Constitution, two of the opposition’s most dangerous initiatives. There is a clear assumption that political and social conflict will radicalize in the next few days.
Funny, since they won’t ever solve the food crisis and the shortage of medicines, inflation and recession with 150 new armored vehicles; generalized scorn for repressive forces keeps growing, even with special security measures such as not wearing their uniforms when not in service.
A few days ago I told you about the serious mistakes regime spokespeople have been making; they’ve become not only redundant, but also erratic and hardly inspiring. The biggest mistakes have been made on social media because, aside from the bots, they don’t know how to translate their discourse and possibilities. That’s why Nicolás has been making his absurd videos, and why they post many more tweets seeking to attack opponents than to attract supporters, and why they keep launching Twitter polls on the Constituyente even though they always lose.
Yesterday, Venezolana de Televisión scored one more for his sad record with a tweet:
“What happened with the pain of Neomar Lander’s mother? Does she only show her pain when she’s in front of a TV camera? Reach your own conclusions.”
Reactions poured in and the tweet was erased. Communications Minister Ernesto Villegas said that official accounts were hacked, claiming there was nothing more sacred than a mother’s pain for the loss of her son. Their treatment of Neomar Lander’s case has been political instead of technical, involving vice-president El Aissami, None-budsman Saab and Diosdado Cabello. They’ve been vile enough to prove that the erased tweet was actually their doing, that there was no such “attack”; another example of how good PSUV is at instigating hatred.
“This week should’ve made Maduro realize that the problem is growing, edging closer to Miraflores,” said Freddy Guevara, claiming that the time has come to call for a national strike, involving all businesses at all levels. He cautioned that the coming weeks will be hard but definitive, to hike pressure to the top and use all protest methods. And if perchance pressure isn’t enough to force the government to give in, he added, then the Constituent Assembly must be stopped. Hoping not to get to that point, he summed up PSUV’s possible statement as: “We can’t install the Plan República because we’d have to kill everyone.” He repeated that the only way we’re going to lose is by resorting to violence or quitting the street protests.
We’ve been in recession for the past three years, with a 65% drop in GDP and the highest inflation in the world we are, in fact, already on strike and there are too many people surviving through each day, with no reserves to stand a strike, and no money to provide for what they need. Attacking our dwindling productive capacity will never weaken the government, since this profoundly failing economy’s extremely good for them. The call for this Monday is to take the metro to the TSJ, starting at 7 a.m.Caracas Chronicles is 100% reader-supported. Support independent Venezuelan journalism by making a donation.