“The lawmakers destroyed the National Assembly,” said Nicolás at the start of his national campaign for the imposed Constituyente, claiming that it was beginning in the heart of Guayana even though he was in Caruachi. He got there by plane, without parades or open-top cars.

Nicolás danced calipso while repression in Caracas was choking citizens inside shopping centers. The Constituyente’s propaganda includes goals like peace and justice, judicial and social security and perfecting the ‘99 Constitution. But as Nicolás went on, he added a few points better suited to his perspective: more price controls, more political persecution with absolute powers for his Truth Commission and a new Constitution for a new model of State. He reported, as an accomplishment, that the Guri Dam’s spillways are open for the first time in eight years, taking credit, in effect, for rainfall. He signed Sidor’s collective bargaining agreement, demanding every State company to submit employee data, because the Constituyente is one imposition and voting for it is another. On top of all that, he insulted Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos: “He has to ask for my blessing because we’re his fathers, bow and get on your knees before your father, Santos; I am your father, Santos.” A Statesman indeed.

Open the gate

Katherine Haringhton, the official sworn in as Deputy Prosecutor General by the TSJ usurping the authority of both the Prosecutor’s Office and the National Assembly, turned up at fiscalía headquarters this Thursday but she was denied entry.

“We came to create a task force,” she said, “to reason with the Prosecutor General so she cooperates with us for a country in need (…) We’ll keep waiting, I’m certain that she’s going to think this through, calmly, seeing that we come in peace and harmony,” adding that she’s a Prosecutor’s Office retiree, that she’s going to enforce the law, that she’s going to wait until everything’s back in order and that this isn’t an outlaw State, that it has laws, except when she had no issues processing citizens with anonymous testimony, for instance. She left a notification of her attempt to take office and left. The Prosecutor General reported Harrington’s attempts on Twitter and made SEBIN and the National Guard directly responsible for any irregularity against fiscalía headquarters and employees. Last night, the Prosecutor’s Office issued a statement formally arguing why Harrington wasn’t and won’t be recognized in the office the TSJ gave her.

Backward talk

Shortly after Harrington’s gate incident, it was revealed that the TSJ’s Full Chamber would meet later in the day to decide Luisa Ortega’s fate, dispensing with the five-day period to start the preliminary hearing on merits to remove her from office. Hours later, the meeting was canceled.

Minutes after the gate show, website Aporrea reported that lawmaker Germán Ferrer, Ortega Díaz’s husband, denounced that the Court 39 of Control had issued an arrest warrant against the Prosecutor General and hours later, he denied that rumor, cautioning that it would fall on the TSJ to issue that warrant, but denouncing the harassment against her.

Cynicism

Former Prosecutor General Isaías Rodríguez said on state television that nobody has been as damaging for the Prosecutor’s Office as Ortega Díaz, but he focused his greatest efforts in delegitimizing the popular consultation approved this Wednesday by the National Assembly. He had the gall to claim that “the Constitution of 1999 doesn’t mention a plebiscite, but a consultative referendum,” the same one that Nicolás blocked, with the consent of the TSJ and the CNE, ignoring a constitutional process required for the people to decide whether we want his Constituyente or not.

CNE rectora Socorro Hernández also condemned the call for this popular consultation and called it an action outside the Constitution: “That falls within the electoral branch’s authority, therefore, it must be verified by the electoral branch in order to be valid.” She should read professor José Ignacio Hernández’s analysis.

Plebiscite

Yesterday, MUD revealed the questions for the plebiscite that will take place next Sunday, July 16th, remarking that the plan is to hold it using religious temples, that any Venezuelan of legal age and registered in the Electoral Registry may vote, including those living abroad. The remaining details will be announced in the next few days. The questions are:

  1. Do you reject and repudiate holding a National Constituent Assembly proposed by Nicolás Maduro without prior approval from the Venezuelan people?
  2. Do you demand the National Armed Forces and all public authorities to obey and defend the Constitution enacted in 1999 and support the National Assembly’s decisions?
  3. Do you approve the renewal of public powers in compliance with what the Constitution establishes, and the holding of free and transparent elections, as well as the creation of a national unity government to restore the constitutional order?

Reactions

The German government condemned the assault on the National Assembly, demanding the Venezuelan government to punish those responsible. Yesterday, the Office of the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Human Rights urged all Venezuelans to renounce violence as a method for expressing opinions or opposing those who think differently. The European Union demanded the government to guarantee the safety of elected officials and the integrity of democratic institutions, saying that: “A political solution to the crisis will only arise from dialogue and political will. It’s an urgent need for the future of the people of Venezuela who deserve to live safely and peacefully.” OAS head Luis Almagro requested the call for an extraordinary Permanent Council meeting to discuss recent developments in our political crisis, preferably as soon as this Friday, July 7th, if the Permanent Council’s schedule allows.

Yesterday, chavismo’s public relations management was a mess. Aside from the seven explanations for the assault on the National Assembly, including justifications, legitimations and denials; the fact that Diosdado talked about restoring justice while Mario Silva offers to “beat all those coños de su madre down and imprison everyone in this place”; that Saab tried to put the Prosecutor General’s case back under the spotlight again, while he ignored the assault and Parliament and that Nicolás openly promised more political persecution, doing nothing about Wednesday’s violence, is evidence of their strange idea that whatever they don’t talk about, doesn’t exist.

That applies to the humanitarian crisis, to every repressive abuse and to the general disregard for their electoral imposition. The risk of living amid propaganda while the country collapses is the huge gap between their version and reality, making them spiral ever further down into absurdity, far enough as to take credit for rain as a personal achievement, to demand justice while they hide behind their hordes, to pretend popularity in front of hand-picked audiences. We know who should be kneeling before the country.

38 COMMENTS

    • Ha!!!

      or Prosperity or anything. Have you tried this? I only knew a few people who are still chavista at this point and rational discussion is not possible. These are the type of people who would in April 1945 be still saluting their Hitler portrait every morning as the world crumbled around them.

    • You want to have some more fun, just ask the chavista at constituyente assembly to play Russian Roulette with all the barrels loaded. population control (like Stalin did

  1. The German government demanded that the Venezuelan Government punish the people responsible for the attack on the National Assembly.
    I would like to see the government leaders jail themselves.
    I can not believe that the military has not fractured. It seems impossible that these criminals have the ability to control the soldiers that see their friends, neighbors and family members suffering under this tyrannical regime.
    It seems more unbelievable that they can persuade the soldiers to continually increase the violent oppression against protesters.
    How is it that there has been so little motivation for the soldiers to do what they know is right and honorable?
    There have been many reports regarding the morale being very low within the military. That the majority of soldiers oppose the Constitution being replaced. Yet there seems to be unwavering support for the cadre of criminals that hold the country hostage.
    What will it take? It is long past the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back.
    Perhaps the belief that the US will intervene (although the odds of this happening seem low), will make the soldiers abandon Maduro. They may be willing to support him in order to get their extra CLAP bags, but they may not be prepared to die for him. Armed resistance may bring about the same fracture within the ranks, for the same reasons.
    The confidence that no country will involve itself militarily in Venezuela, empowers the regime to continue its brutality and lawlessness.
    The opposition’s continual call for non-violent protests has gained them sympathy and support throughout the world. The support has been lip service that has done nothing to alleviate the humanitarian crisis or sway the criminals from their determination to install a Cuban style totalitarian government.
    Something has to give. If non-violent opposition does not work, armed resistance must be considered and preparations need to be made to stop these criminals from permanently enslaving the Venezuelan people.

    • The higher ranks of the military were effectively purged over the years.

      I don’t have time to comment more, but one aspect so consider: an inlaw is a former military officer (who now lives in Europe) and she an atmosphere of paranoia and fear of spies and moles amongst the ranks. People are scared that whomever they confide in will inform on them, as Cuban intelligence agents or those they’ve trained are embedded in many units. There are hardcore Chavistas and brainwashed young men as well to be scared of. It makes any large scale conspiracy extremely hard to conceivably pull off. Their private communications are also monitored closely.

      • Yup, the cubans and their alta-chavista puppets knew long ago that this day would come and have prepared well for it. Since I don’t think foreign military intervention is on anyone’s table, I believe it will take millions in the streets shutting the country down before this regime even budges.

        We’re hoping for the best but preparing for the worst by stocking extra supplies of rice, pasta, even grain corn which we can process into cornmeal. With the exception of sardines, canned goods are almost non-existant here so that’s a concern. We’ve managed to find powdered milk and even some extra .38 caliber rounds which I’m hoping I’ll not need.

        I think the next few weeks will be historic. I just hope we’re on the right side of history when it’s all said and done.

        • No need to get paranoid before anything happens. It might be over very quickly.
          Just in case, think like a large hurricane is looming. Think about basics (bottled water, canned goods, grains, gas/propane, medicines and hygiene essentials). Top off the gas in cars/motorcycles. Provisions for 1 – 2 weeks should see you through.
          Hopefully the nightmare scenario wont occur, but being responsible is being prepared. And you need to be alive and well, you are on the right side.

          • Thanks FGB. Yeah, we’ve stocked up on diesel as well as we use it heavily in our tractor services. Fortunately there are still locals who refuse to give up under very adverse conditions and continue to produce much-needed food.

        • Thu Jul 6, 2017
          Exclusive: At least 123 Venezuelan soldiers detained since protests – documents

          https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-politics-military-idUSKBN19R0BG

          Here are the few cases I can think of myself:
          – the reckless Óscar Pérez ,
          – Coronel Hidalgo Valero, detained by on this 5th of July Sebin (twitter.com/ReporteYa/status/882663606680203270) , &
          – Giomar Alexander Flores Ortiz, Sargento Primero, Militar Activo de la Fuerza armada nacional Venezolana  (youtube.com/watch?v=laEfxuKNSyo)

          Also…BREAKING NEWS !!!!!!
          Con ponencia del Mag. Maikel Moreno, Sala Penal del TSJ otorga casa por cárcel a Leopoldo López por problemas de salud. Familiares del dirigente de Voluntad Popular confirman que desde las 4 am esta fuera de Ramo Verde.

    • Thu Jul 6, 2017
      Exclusive: At least 123 Venezuelan soldiers detained since protests – documents

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-politics-military-idUSKBN19R0BG

      Here are the few cases I can think of myself:
      the reckless man, Óscar Pérez
      Coronel Hidalgo Valero, detained by on this 5th of July Sebin (https://twitter.com/ReporteYa/status/882663606680203270)
      Giomar Alexander Flores Ortiz, Sargento Primero, Militar Activo de la Fuerza armada nacional Venezolana  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laEfxuKNSyo)

      Also…BREAKING NEWS !!!!!!
      Con ponencia del Mag. Maikel Moreno, Sala Penal del TSJ otorga casa por cárcel a Leopoldo López por problemas de salud. Familiares del dirigente de Voluntad Popular confirman que desde las 4 am esta fuera de Ramo Verde.

    • Thu Jul 6, 2017
      Exclusive: At least 123 Venezuelan soldiers detained since protests – documents

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-politics-military-idUSKBN19R0BG

      Here are the few cases I can think of myself:
      the reckless man, Óscar Pérez
      Coronel Hidalgo Valero, detained by on this 5th of July Sebin (twitter.com/ReporteYa/status/882663606680203270)
      Giomar Alexander Flores Ortiz, Sargento Primero, Militar Activo de la Fuerza armada nacional Venezolana  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laEfxuKNSyo)

    • Thu Jul 6, 2017
      Exclusive: At least 123 Venezuelan soldiers detained since protests – documents

      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-venezuela-politics-military-idUSKBN19R0BG

      Here are the few cases I can think of myself:
      the reckless man, Óscar Pérez
      Coronel Hidalgo Valero, detained by on this 5th of July Sebin (twitter.com/ReporteYa/status/882663606680203270)
      Giomar Alexander Flores Ortiz, Sargento Primero, Militar Activo de la Fuerza armada nacional Venezolana  (youtube.com/watch?v=laEfxuKNSyo)

  2. Is it not quite farcical the Deputy Prosecutor General episode, knocking at those big metal gates at the Prosecutor’s office and a “no one home” response? I imagine she must have left a pinned note with something like came to see you, will be back in a few days.

    • And yes it did¡¡ Just when you thought it could no get more farcical she goes and tries to smugle herself inside a car trunk. I imagine Porfessor Briceño including her in his coming weekly routine, and Chiguire Bipolar sueing for infrigdment of intellectual property

  3. If you want to read something really farcical, take a look at what the Bolivian foreign minister said. “We are a continent of peace. This is not just a statement, it is the product of an millennia-old experience. We come from an ancestral culture that has the capacity to have solved many issues through dialogue, with a profound respect to democracy and peace”

    I just love the way these Bolivians lie about history. The tawantinsuyu (Inca empire) was anything but “peaceful” or “democratic”. It was a brutal militarized tributary EMPIRE that pillaged anything in its path. Conquered peoples were forced to speak aymara, pay tribute to the Inca and worship the inca gods.

    In Latin America, teaching of pre-columbian peoples is a pathetic miasma of white guilt, romanticism and fantastic mythology that ignores the practical considerations of an historical polity that, despite it being an irom age civilization, could very well be compared to the Roman Empire.

    • The continent of peace has the proud distinction of the top 10 most dangerous countries in the world being either Caribbean or Latin American. This is according to the UN.
      That doesn’t seem too peaceful.

    • Conquered peoples were forced to speak aymara, pay tribute to the Inca and worship the inca gods.
      I believe you meant Quechua. BTW, the Incas didn’t force the Aymara to speak Quechua.
      Iman su tiki?

      • Quechua, correct. I had a bit of a lapsus there.

        And the reason as to why the aymara culture survived was a technicality: they were conquered by the Inca Empire in the late 15th century, shortly before the Spanish conquest. In short, they weren’t under Inca influence for too long in order to be completely assimilated by the Empire, language and otherwise.

        Add to this the difficult geography of the altiplano and you have a consistent logic for the aymara’s survival until this day.

  4. The Ven. military hasn’t fractured mainly because of Cuban spying throughout. Pre-Chavez democratic governments were so fat/happy that they allowed heavy Leftist infiltration of the Ven. military in the scant 30 years since Caldera’s “pacification” allowed the absorption of Leftist guerrilla elements into Ven. civilian/military society, all, of course, sponsored behind-the-scenes by Castro; and,this well might happen in the not-too-distant future in Colombia, with the pacification of the FARC. As M Rubio says above, Ven. residents should stock up on canned goods if possible, especially protein, like tuna/sardines. The MUD “consulta” is already being sabotaged by the Govt. calling for a dry run of the ANC voting on the same July 16 day the “consulta” is to be effected. The Govt. is threatening all public employees with dismissal if they don’t vote for the ANC; CLAP recipients are being phoned and ANC voting forms are being taken to their homes for signing; probably, similar tactics are being used for Mision recipients, et.al. And, all this, when the ANC voting parameters already guarantee a pro-Govt. vote, and the CNE will fix the final results, as usual, in any case. So, all depends, once again, in the near term, on the fracturing, or not, of the Military, in response to the coming political/civil conflicts, particularly, as to how bloody these become, and, whether or not a MUD-called general strike is successful. If Oppo resistance fails in the near term, then Venezuela is condemned to a civil war, of greater, or lesser (clandestine armed guerrilla resistance), intensity. It behooves Venezuela’s neighbors, in their own self-interest (avoidance of: massive Venezuelan refugee immigration), and the U. S. (avoidance of a Castro-Communist beachhead on north SA) to take all measures necessary to avert the looming Venezuelan tragedy….

    • They’ve freed 50 or 60 students as well. I’m convinced they’re scared shitless of the opp turnout on 16 july but that doesn’t mean they’re doing any of this in good faith.

      • They were “negociating” with LL only to smear his image, just today I heard someone say that LL sold out his principles and accepted some fat cash to shut up and go home.

        Truly the antipolitics virus runs fast in Venezuela.

  5. Do not mistake any of this as a sign of good faith. This is a sign of weakness and desperation. Stick to the plan. Do not waver. None of this changes anything.

  6. Yup. Even Eva Golinger thinks something fishy. If for health reasons, why is he not in a hospital?

    We have to know what the opposition gave up in negotiations with Delcy and Jorge Rodriguez.

    But why would they do this on the eve of 16J???

    We know this is “pure show.” I think most youtubers and commentators are calling this out and we have to keep calling this out and not leave the streets.

  7. Caricom is demanding to come to Venezuela to see real situation and start process of negotiation.

    ffwd to 3:00 and Vladamir Villegas says this is positive and not sure why they did this and the next Monday (not sure if 9J or 17J) they will open a process of negotiation.

    Probably doing this to avoid 16J. Or they realize that their circus at the AN on 5J totally flopped and it is past the point of no return. I dont trust any of these mainstream centrist former Chavistas.

  8. Good points by all. Most every move by Maduro has been a ploy to stay in power. If the unofficial vote (16J) is allowed to come off, Maduro loses all credibility as a man of the pueblo, and everyone would know it. Ergo it must be a stall tactic to postpone or kill 16J. They can’t, especially now, get derailed by “negotiations” from a band of thugs who are not capable of negotiating. A “we give you Lopez and you scrap 16J” is a sucker’s deal. Fuck that.

  9. We need to take gps receiver off of Leopoldos ankle while under house arrest and smuggle him in the trunk of a car to Miraflores to take over as new President of Venezuela.

    WWCD, what would a Chavista do? Just that, fuck negotiations!! You said it best Juam. Calle!! Calle!! Y mas Calle!!!

  10. As inept as the opposition usually appears, I can’t believe they’d call off the dogs at this point.

    For days now I’ve been asking of the whereabouts of Jorge Rodriguez. Was he involved in this deal to free LL? If he was, I think it’s a significant development because he’s been identified here as one of the few chavistas who believe chavismo should negotiate a transition and live to fight another day like the sandanistas.

    • That’s true Roy though I think with the exception of this regime still standing at the moment, we can agree that “victories” for them have been few and far between of late. Virtually every single day now brings some significant news against them.

      Watching Iris Valera right now trying to pump up the crowd at a constituyente event. Pathetic. This crew is in deeper shit with each passing day.

  11. My sense of this (totally uninformed save by the media) is that Moreno, or the Supreme Court, and maybe several others (Moreno was sanctioned in May by the US for sanctioning allowing the dissolution of the Assembly), forced the issue of LL’s release. Moreno cited “irregularities” in LL’s trial – three years after the fact.

    Thing is, Maduro and his cast of gaffos has always operated with the illusion of infinite impunity, including sentencing LL on the transparently ludicrous charge of inciting violence on the grounds of subliminal cues in his speeches.

    Could it be that Moreno (and who knows about others) are hearing the dogs barking.

    I’m just hoping that the wall keeps crumbling and that my family still in Venezuela will find some relief, as well as everyone else. Over the last few years I’ve seen my wife (Venezuela) die from medical issues and the rest of my family rot and wither under Maduro. Valle – I just want this to be over. Hope cooler heads then my own are going to effect a change there sooner than later.

  12. LL’s “release” is great news, not just for him/family, but because, I believe, it means the Chavista/LOD faction not only has traction, but significant military support (MM, et. al., are simply pawns in the greater game)–maybe Venezuela could luck out after all, at least to avoid a major armed conflict (meanwhile, last month, Venezuelan oil exports to the U.S. fell below 500m bbls/da.–no se come mucho con este nivel)….

  13. Do not buy the “negotiation”, LL all along indicated that he was going to be the last one to leave jail. Obviously he was forcibly removed before sunrise and delivered home with that ankle gps from ToysRus. I would take it to the hot jacuzzi.

    Leopoldo (after much needed personal/family time), HAS TO go out regardless of the BS TSJ “humanitarian” sentence and be seen in public, obviously in good health, and on 7/16, CASTING HIS VOTE. (And be acclaimed by the People as he should)!.

    It is clear to all that Godgiven Hair was not approved or consulted for LL release. If as mentioned somewhere, he found about it by Twitter it would be hilarious (obviosuly, a calculated chess move by the Cubans). My money is with LOD to stay if she barricades herself at the MOJ. The regime is obviously afraid of “centauro mayor” Rodriguez Torres very sensitive information cache. In any event, the knife fight is getting interesting!

  14. If nothing else the entertainment value of watching the chavez-TV talking heads justify the LL news is priceless. Yesterday he was a terrorist responsible for 43 deaths, today he needs his family and the government did the right thing. LOL

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