Today: ‘Mother of All Marches’ in VZ


President Nicolas Maduro in front of painting of Simon Bolivar

The Guardian, April 19: ‘Deaths and injuries reported amid ‘mother of all marches’ in Venezuela,  17-year old boy was fatally shot in Caracas, a woman was killed in gunfire during a rally in the Andean state of Tachira and one legislator had to be hospitalised’

”Fears of bloodshed had been stoked after Nicolás Maduro put troops on the streets, supplied guns to sympathetic civil militias and called for a simultaneous rally of his supporters against what he said was a United States-backed coup.

State TV images showed thousands of red-shirted government loyalists on the rival march “to defend the homeland”.

But their numbers were far exceeded by the vast throng that gathered in the Baruta district to express their anger and frustration at an administration that has led the country with the planet’s biggest oil supplies into the world’s deepest economic recession.”

Their 33 second video claims that ‘tens of thousands took to the street…”

Many targeted the Venezuelan president, who is blamed for high inflation and the chronic shortages of food, medicine and other basic goods. The chant “Esta es la ruta para salir del hijueputa” (“This is the way to oust the son of a bitch”) echoed repeatedly around the downtown district.”…and so on.

From RT, April 19; the journalists were a little bit more even-handed:

“The ‘mother of all marches’ is underway in Venezuela’s capital, Caracas, to protest President Nicolas Maduro, as demonstrators call for his resignation amid the country’s ongoing economic crisis. One person has reportedly been killed in the protests.

The massive rally is the culmination of weeks of violent demonstrations that left five people dead and resulted in clashes between anti-government demonstrators and security forces.”  [snip]

“Maduro said the US government has simply given the green light for a coup in Venezuela.

A young man was reportedly shot at the rally and taken to the hospital, according to a member of the center-right Primero Justicia party, Jorge Millan. According to security sources cited by Reuters, the student died as a result of a shot to the head.”

Here’s the video they showed:

“Wednesday’s rally was organized by the opposition coalition – the Democratic Unity Roundtable. Despite calls for the military to turn on the president, Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez has pledged the army’s loyalty to Maduro.

The US House Foreign Affairs Committee has tweeted a warning to the Venezuelan government, saying it must respect the people’s right to protest.”

(click for stand-alone to see the vicious attacks below)

But let’s go look at #HandsOffVenezuela on Twitter just for fun (backwards in time, sorry):

and for a second time from March:

8 responses to “Today: ‘Mother of All Marches’ in VZ

  1. Small wonder that “#NicolasMaduroASESINO is at the top of the now trending list.

  2. I have no expertise in South American political discussions, but gained some enlightenment, (besides what you are reporting above) from the following:

    http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2017/04/venezuela-happening-170412114045595.html

    I’d suggest looking at comments there as well. Several point to the low price of oil as being the culprit for Maduro’s inability to provide for the general welfare, which made me think of the situation in Russia who are, or were, under similar embargo and oil based economy – admittedly a far different set of conditions but once these restrictions came about, the government did set about creating diversification within the country, and support for Putin only grew as a result. How does Maduro compare to Chavez in this respect? Or did Chavez not have to make such adjustments when oil was doing it all for him?

  3. larry pilt’s long comment looked worthy, but far too long to read it all for now. but yes, the slow-mo diversification from oil was one culprit, but maduro’s been strengthening the ag sector immeasurably, but msm essays, including AJE, continue to (shall we say?) dissemble to the Imperium as far as spin goes. this round-up i did in april may provide more context, including michael hudson’s anger, gollinger’s ‘a coup in real time’, and the wikileaks on VZ i’d included.

    thing is, the police may have tear-gassed protestors, but they were hooded opposition protestors starting fires in stores, schools, and setting up burning roadblocks to keep out supporters; some even admitted to having been paid to behave so.

    even further back, the charges were that colombians were sneaking across the border and unloading warehouses of basic commodities, which of course left less and less for availability, setting colleges on fire, blaming it on maduro’s allies, well…you know how it goes. but in the end, i’d say it’ all a down-and-dirty class war supported by the US, NED, now the OAS and its chief. a very fraught situation once again. for now…for now…the military’s supporting maduro; who knows what other pressures will be brought to bear? tillerson’s is pretty much channeling obama’s threats.

    On Edit: may i amend that? yes, VZ is still called a direct threat to US national security, but tillerson’s Exxon has a long and troubled history with VZ, starting w/ standard oil (before the big merger) in the 1960s, iirc. VZ has loads of oil reserves, even if oil’s cheap just now.

    thanks for caring, juliania. but socialism must have a stake driven thru it’s heart, lest others get uppity ideas, no? truth is, i fear the worst.

    • “… socialism must have a stake driven thru it’s heart, lest others get uppity ideas, no?”

      This is what I was getting from some of the comments, and of course we cannot entirely trust any news media these days, any more than we can trust our politicians, simply because only those who have compromised in small or large ways are permitted to speak publicly. I appreciate very much your greater awareness of better sources, and the links above and below, which I shall advisedly peruse. Thank you.

      We are all members of the same family.

      • the deep state USA has been knockin’ the socialist and semi-socialist governments one by one over the past few years, because: bidness. yeah, dilma’d apparently gone a bit neoliberal, but those who replaced her administration are being discovered as corrupt, dark, etc. we’ll see. so far only ecuador has survived, maybe because lenin’s deep corruption and off-shore banking became generally known. and it’s nigh on to impossible to completely trust any media, even alternative sources, isn’t it? i’ll add:

        eric london at wsws.org finally weighed in today, and while he knows a lot of deeper background, also writes:
        “But support for the chavista government has evaporated in the midst of an unprecedented collapse in living standards for the Venezuelan working class.

        The pro-capitalist, nationalist policies of the Chavez-Maduro governments, based almost entirely on oil exports, left the economy vulnerable to the drop in the international price of oil. The government responded by orchestrating a massive transfer of wealth from the working class to the pockets of international finance capital, slashing social programs to make interest payments to its creditors.

        As a result of these policies, 75 percent of the population—some 22 million people—lost an average of 19 pounds of body weight in 2016 alone due to lack of food. A recent university study shows that 93 percent of the country has insufficient income to purchase basic food, while a third of the population eats fewer than three meals per day, nearly triple the figure from 2015.”

        who knows but what he’s at east partially drunk the Kool-aid, but part of michael hudson’s ‘ire at bloomberg’ (wasn’t it?) was that yes, he believes the only way out for many nations crippled by odious debt was to…default. but he did note that tillerson’s interest in VZ has become acute cuz Exxon’s involvement since 1921.

        the guardian is up w/ more smears, including that ‘VZ may well become the next zimbabwe’. ouch. the opposition is always conflated w/ “freedom fighters’, of course. no mention of this from yesterday via telesur: “Venezuela’s Foreign Minister Delcy Rodriguez announced on her Twitter account that “armed gangs hired by the opposition attacked a maternal and children’s hospital with 54 children (inside).”

        “”We were attacked by violent groups that showered us with stones and sharp objects (and) then burned a large amount of garbage from the hospital – the smoke penetrated inside the premises,” said hospital manager Dr. Rosalinda Prieto, adding that there were newborn babies in the emergency area.

        Patients were seen being evacuated in ambulances where, according to the local fire department, 28 newborn babies were transferred to another hospital in the capital. Six babies had to be stabilized before they were transferred.”

        and given their past performances, i sincerely believe the report.

  4. and for anyone caring to look at the venzuelanalysis.com website for titles to articles, that’s the hyperlink.

  5. The fact that one has large oil reserves does not obligate them to sell at low prices like the US operates its Strategic Petroleum Reserves. (Sell low, buy high.) The hazard or a mono-commodity boom-bust industrial base.

    It goes well before socialism. Prior to the US Civil War, the nascent imperium was putting the pressure on Venezuela because it had abolished slavery. That’s sort of the same reason that the US is putting pressure today.

    Thanks for this research, wd.

    • thank you for both your first observation and your second history. that i’d never known. so glad you’re such a student of history was an epic memory. maduro’s made plenty of errors that i just went searching for, one was a weird sort of three-tiered currency manipulation. i couldn’t locate mark weisbrot’s (Cepr) take on whether or not the newish ag manager ever achieved much in the way of exports post-2106. but of course the financial brain sites called the program forced labor, forced slavery etc. ‘let the market prices rule!’ apparently, depending on whose take it is, maduro’s scheme subsidized agriculture so much some growers quit growing because their costs were higher than the capped distribution prices.

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