The Marriage Between Venezuela and Chavismo Failed

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (EFE)

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (EFE)

Generation Y, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 7 December 2015 — This time neither deception nor fear worked. Like a woman long threatened by an abusive husband, Venezuela has slammed the door on Chavismo and done so with determination. From now on, governing will be an ordeal for Nicolas Maduro. With a party at an absolute disadvantage in parliament, Hugo Chavez’s successor can only impose his presidential will by violating his own laws.

The people, the same people that the president of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) invoked from the platform to justify his misdeeds, has said no to 21st Century Socialism and the national project promoted by the ruling party. A flat refusal against a political force under whose management the South American nation has been plunged into insecurity, shortages, corruption and unsustainable polarization.

People are fed up. Tired of so much tense discourse, of fear in the streets, of the constant emigration of the young and of the instability that gnaws at everything and that in the last year has gotten worse. The voters also used their votes to penalize a party that hasn’t known how to govern for everyone, but only for a part of society, which has systematically railed against those who think differently.

With the tool of the polls in their hands, Venezuelans have pushed change in a peaceful way, without stepping into the trap of violence or engaging in an armed revolution. Maduro has reaped, thus, the fruits of his mismanagement. His declarations prior to the elections, among which was the threat of fight from the streets if his party was defeated, only to the determination of a social decision that was already made. With his words, he finished digging the grave of his own executive office.

Because there is a moment when the abused realizes that the abuser is just another frail human being, someone who can be defeated. That moment arrived for the Venezuelan people this December 6, as they demonstrated with their votes that Chavismo is neither eternal nor popular. What happened confirms the loss of the fear with which a 17-year authoritarianism had permeated the country, the sick relationship of dependency and dread with which it wanted to keep its citizens paralyzed.

The election results also go against the Plaza of the Revolution in Havana. In the dark intricacies of that power that has spent more than five decades without calling elections, the figure of Hugo Chavez was molded, and it tried to do the same with Nicolas Maduro. But the move backfired because it came up against a population that reacted, an opposition that knew how to unite despite its differences, and an international community that closed ranks in criticism of the methods of the PSUV.

The axis financed from Miraflores and symbolized by the political bravado of Chavez and the mediocre arrogance of the current president, is beginning to disarm. Venezuela already sees the way out and is dragging behind itself an island that still does not dare to stop the blows of an abusive government, to close the door and leave it outside the national future.

41 thoughts on “The Marriage Between Venezuela and Chavismo Failed

  1. THE WASHINGTON POST: How Cuba is and isn’t changing a year after the thaw with the United States – By Nick Miroff – December 15

    The psychological impact of these events, however, has far outpaced any physical one. So far, U.S. businesses have completed only a handful of new deals. Cuba remains the only closed, one-
    party state in the Americas, and if anything, normalization with Washington has left Communist authorities increasingly anxious about dissent and more determined to stifle it.
    As many as 70,000 Cubans have left for the United States in the past year, in what appears to be the largest wave of migration from the island in decades.

    The changes of the past year have set Cuban authorities on edge, too, bringing an escalating crackdown on public protest and opposition activity.

    Dozens, even hundreds of activists are detained or arrested each Sunday, when the Ladies in White dissident group attempts to march in Havana and another group, the Patriotic Union of Cuba, stages its weekly mobilization in Santiago, the island’s ­second-largest city.

    Though the government generally no longer locks up dissidents for long prison terms, it increasingly relies on short-term arrests to block protests by activists it considers “mercenaries” at the service of foreign interests.

    The illegal but tolerated Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation tallied 1,447 political arrests or arbitrary detentions in November, the highest monthly total in years.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!’

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/how-cuba-is-and-isnt-changing-one-year-after-the-thaw-with-the-us/2015/12/14/941ad178-9dcd-11e5-9ad2-568d814bbf3b_story.html

  2. A dictatorship must pay to be informed, a democracy relies on the peoples power.

    Every country needs its CDRs (Committees for the Defense of the Revolution) to protect itself from the enemy.

    The United States military-industrial complex pays billions for its CDRs, which are there called NSA.

    Cuba protects itself by voluntary activity of the neighbors, ordinary people who own the country. This is CDR: neighbors who watch their property. Less expensive and more effective. So if you are just about making a trip to Varadero, remember: you are a welcomed guest, but better don’t mess with the Revolution.

    LONG LIVE THE CDR !!!

  3. YAHOO PHOTOS: In Cuba, the faces of the leaders are no longer the only artwork on city streets. When you walk down the streets of Havana, the walls and sides of the buildings show how the country is inching toward a freer, very different world. The tool helping this happen? Spray paint. “El Sexto” is the street artist to watch in Cuba: One street artist in particular, Danilo Maldonado Machado, has made major waves internationally for his work, which criticizes the current administration. Known by his tag and moniker “El Sexto” (The Sixth), Machado is a Cuban graffiti artist and human rights activist. According to Sanchez’s reporting, Cuban officials told Machado he’d have a promising career … if he would put his talents to a different use. But Machado views artistic expression as something spontaneous, rebellious, and free of bureaucracy. He’s a street-art purist. (Photo: Translating Cuba)
    https://www.yahoo.com/makers/the-incredible-street-artists-who-1318569628327990/photo-in-cuba-the-faces-of-1450051306532.html

  4. HEY DEAR Mario! CHECK OUT THE PHOTO ON THIS ARTICLE SHOWING OUR DEAR Fidel Castro WITH A TON OF MONEY IN FRONT OF HIM ON A TABLE WHEN HE CAME TO GET MONEY$$ FOR HIS CAUSE IN 1955 FROM THE “IMPERIO”!!

    TAMPA BAY Fidel Castro delivered pivotal speech in Ybor City 60 years ago – By Paul Guzzo – November 26, 2015

    The culmination of that visit to Tampa was Castro’s speech in Ybor City on Nov. 27, 1955 — 60 years ago today.

    While Castro is hardly the type of person who inspires celebrations commemorating his time in Tampa, his appearance is part of the city’s history that shouldn’t be forgotten, said Rodney Kite-Powell, curator of the Tampa Bay History Center.
    “It is yet another interesting connection we have to Cuba that run the full range of good and bad,” Kite-Powell said. “And it was yet another revolution in Cuba that some in Tampa supported.
    Manteiga, the third-generation owner of the La Gaceta newspaper, brought with him a photo of his grandfather and publication founder Victoriano Manteiga sitting with Castro at a Tampa union hall in November 1955 for a fundraiser for the future Cuban president’s revolution.
    http://www.tbo.com/news/cuba/fidel-castro-delivered-pivotal-speech-in-ybor-city-60-years-ago-20151126/

  5. HMM! SO DEAR Mario HOW DO YOU THINK THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA $TAY$ IN POWER DEAR? BY PAYING THOSE Committee$ for the Defen$e of the Revolution (CDR) MEMBER$$$$!!!

    Committee for the Defense of the Revolution

    The best-known Cuban mass organization, the Committee for the Defense of the Revolution (CDR), was established on September 28, 1960. A CDR unit was set up on each square block throughout all urban areas, and equivalent counterparts were located in rural areas. The CDRs act as the eyes and ears of the regime at the most personal level; they are designed as a “neighborhood watch” in which neighbors are both the watching and the watched. The police tap into this network for information on any individual: information on the suspect’s friends, visitors, family background, work history and volunteer activities is readily available, as well as CDR officials’ personal assessments of the revolutionary commitment of each individual within the jurisdiction.

    http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/cuba/cdr.htm

  6. HMMM! IT LOOKS LIKE KING OBAMA’S NEW US-CUBA POLICY IS WORKING SPLENDIDLY! YEAH, WORKING REAL WELL FOR THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA! I HATE TO BREAK IT TO THOSE WITH “MR. HOPE’S” PLAN! PUN INTENDED!

    UNITED NATIONS: UN rights chief urges Cuba to halt harassment of activists and respect human rights

    15 December 2015 – The top United Nations human rights official expressed concern today over the extremely high number of arbitrary arrests and short-term detentions of individuals, including human rights defenders and dissidents, in Cuba in recent weeks.

    “There have been many hundreds of arbitrary arrests and short-term detentions – which in my view amount to harassment – in the past six weeks alone, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said today.

    These often take place without a warrant and ahead of specific meetings or demonstrations, and seem to be aimed at preventing people from exercising their right to freedom of expression and to peaceful assembly, he continued.

    Mr. Zeid was particularly shocked that a number of people, including members of the Ladies in White non-governmental organization, were arrested on 10 December, Human Rights Day.

    “This shows an extraordinary disdain for the importance of human rights on the part of the Cuban authorities,” he said.

    The High Commissioner urged the authorities to respect everyone’s right to freedom of expression, and to peaceful assembly and association, and to stop arbitrarily arresting people, in particular before, during or after peaceful demonstrations.

    “I call for the release of all those arbitrarily arrested who may still be in detention as a consequence of the legitimate exercise of their rights,” Mr. Zeid concluded.
    http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=52820

  7. Does anyone here (a) trust US foreign policy and (b) has a good looking daughter?

    I ask this because Obama just said, that if he travels abroad he wants to be able to meet anyone he wants. He meant his unlikely trip to Cuba 2016 where he would meet in private with the oppo$$$ition.

    So if you have a daughter let me know. I would come to your house, say hello to you, and then proceed directly to the daughter’s bedroom.

  8. THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY HAS KEPT SO MANY FAMILIES AND FRIENDS APART IN THE PAST 56+ YEARS!

    ESPN: Defectors Yasiel Puig, Jose Abreu make triumphant return to Cuba
    HAVANA — A lineup of Cuban-born baseball stars, including some of the most famous defectors in recent memory, made a triumphant return Tuesday as part of the first Major League Baseball trip to the island since 1999.

    Long the object of official disdain in Cuba for leaving the country illegally, Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig, White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu and shortstop Alexei Ramirez and St. Louis Cardinals catcher Brayan Pena were swarmed by star-struck fans and members of the state media in the lobby of Havana’s soaring Hotel Nacional at the start of a three-day mission meant to warm relations between MLB and Cuba.
    The high-profile, official return of baseball defectors earning tens of millions of dollars a year in the Major Leagues was a landmark in Cuba’s relationship with the hundreds of players who have abandoned their country that trained them.

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/14375105/defectors-yasiel-puig-jose-abreu-make-triumphant-return-cuba

  9. MR. KING OBAMA! YOU ARE A LAME DUCK SO CAN DO NOTHING TO CHANGE THE MINDS OF THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA! YOU FAILED TO GET CONCESSIONS FROM THE CASTRO CLAN WHEN YOU HAD THE CHANCE!

    YAHOO NEWS (Video): Obama really wants to go to Cuba, but only if the conditions are right – by Olivier Knox

    President Obama promised in an exclusive interview with Yahoo News that he “very much” hopes to visit Cuba during his last year in office, but only if he can meet with pro-democracy dissidents there.

    “If I go on a visit, then part of the deal is that I get to talk to everybody,” Obama said. “I’ve made very clear in my conversations directly with President [Raul] Castro that we would continue to reach out to those who want to broaden the scope for, you know, free expression inside of Cuba.”

    Speaking in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Obama strongly hinted that he would make a decision “over the next several months.”

    The president said he hopes that “sometime next year” he and his top aides will see enough progress in Cuba that they can say that “now would be a good time to shine a light on progress that’s been made, but also maybe [go] there to nudge the Cuban government in a new direction.”

    White House aides privately describe an Obama visit – under the right circumstances – as the logical culmination of the new policy direction that he announced almost exactly one year ago.

    CLICK LINK FOR FOR ARTICLE AND VIDEO!

    https://www.yahoo.com/politics/obama-really-wants-to-go-to-cuba-but-only-if-the-101913219.html

  10. EL UNIVERSAL: Spain’s Rajoy grants López’s parents Spanish nationality – Spanish President Mariano Rajoy explained that such nationality would allow parents of imprisoned Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López to face their son’s political and judicial prosecution with more democratic guarantees – The Spanish government granted on Friday the Spanish nationality to the parents of Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo López as a guarantee “against the political and judicial prosecution they go through” due to the current situation of their son, sentenced to a 14-year prison term.

    López’s father “is facing a special family and personal situation as a consequence of the political and judicial prosecution his son is involved in,” the Spanish Ministry of Justice said.

    López was served with a subpoena to appear before a Venezuelan court and an arrest warrant for being abroad when he was submitted to a judicial proceeding, which banned him from leaving the country, DPA reported.

    According to Spanish President Mariano Rajoy, such nationality will allow López’s parents “to face this prosecution with more democratic guarantees.”
    http://eluniversal.com/nacional-y-politica/151211/spains-rajoy-grants-lopezs-parents-spanish-nationality

  11. N.Y. TIMES: As Economy Lags, Hugo Chávez’s Movement Fades in Venezuela – By WILLIAM NEUMAN – DEC. 13, 2015

    BARINAS, Venezuela — As president, Hugo Chávez lavished millions from this country’s oil boom on his home state of Barinas. But boom has turned to bust, the economy is in shambles and the love affair is over.

    Last week, in a gut blow for the movement known as Chavismo, Barinas joined the rest of the country in turning raw anger over economic hardship into a landslide victory for the political opposition in crucial legislative elections.

    In direct voting for candidates, every Chavista candidate here lost, including one with the golden Chávez name — another brother of the former president, Argenis. And in proportional voting for parties, the opposition coalition crushed the United Socialist Party that Mr. Chávez founded.

    “Now these guys have to go to work, and if they don’t deliver, we’ll vote them out, too,” Mr. Rivero said.

    Similar sentiments are being heard around the continent, where political dynasties are falling or under intense pressure and where protests and social unrest are on the rise.

    In Brazil, legislators have begun an impeachment proceeding against President Dilma Rousseff, as scores of other political leaders have become embroiled in a huge corruption scandal.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/14/world/americas/as-economy-lags-hugo-chavezs-movement-fades-in-venezuela.html?smid=fb-share&_r=0

  12. YAHOO NEWS: Costa Rica to tell Cuba it cannot keep aiding stalled migrants – By Marc Frank and Daniel Trotta

    HAVANA (Reuters) – Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solis will tell Cuban President Raul Castro his Central American country is unable to continue caring for thousands of Cuban migrants indefinitely, seeking to force a resolution to the month-long crisis.

    Solis arrived in Cuba on Sunday for the first official visit by a Costa Rican president in 72 years with nearly 5,000 Cuban migrants stranded on his country’s northern border with Nicaragua as they seek to reach the United States.

    Solis is due to meet Castro on Tuesday.

    “We cannot maintain this task indefinitely,” Solis said of the effort by national and local officials, churches and private companies to support the Cubans, most of them living in shelters.

    “With all brotherly frankness, I will pose this in meetings to be held with the presidents of the SICA (Central American Integration System) and in Havana with President Raul Castro,” Solis said in an address broadcast in Costa Rica.

    But Nicaragua, a country further to the north that is also a close ally of Cuba’s, refused to follow suit, leaving Costa Rica with an ever growing number of migrants.

    Nearly 5,000 are stuck in shelters on the border and an estimated 1,300 to 1,500 are held up in Panama, one country to the south, attempting to move into Costa Rica.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://news.yahoo.com/costa-rica-tell-cuba-cannot-keep-aiding-stalled-033133903.html

  13. HMM! I WOULD RATHER THAT INSTEAD OF THIS TRIP KING OBAMA PUSH TO GIVE THE CUBAN PEOPLE FREE OR VERY AFFORDABLE INTERNET INSTEAD! GOOGLE OFFERED TO PUT FREE WI-FI IN CUBA BUT THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY SAID NO OF COURSE! THEY WANT DO KEEP THE CUBAN PEOPLE DEAF AND DUMB TO CONTROL!

    YAHOO NEWS: Obama says may visit Cuba in 2016 if citizens enjoy more freedoms — WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama is open to visiting to Cuba in 2016 but first wants to see ordinary citizens there enjoy more personal freedoms, he said in an interview released on Monday.

    In an interview with Yahoo! News, Obama said he has told Havana that without such progress, he is unlikely to visit the Communist island nation before he leaves office, despite the historic re-establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries earlier this year.

    “I am very much interested in going to Cuba, but I think the conditions have to be right,” Obama said. “And what I’ve said to the Cuban government is ‘If, in fact I with confidence can say that we’re seeing some progress in the liberty and freedom and possibilities of ordinary Cubans, I’d love to use a visit as a way of highlighting that progress.'”

    “If I go on a visit, then part of the deal is that I get to talk to everybody,” Obama said. “I’ve made very clear in my conversations directly with President [Raul] Castro that we would continue to reach out to those who want to broaden the scope for, you know, free expression inside of Cuba.”

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://news.yahoo.com/obama-says-may-visit-cuba-2016-citizens-enjoy-140949751.html

  14. Cuba should respect the right of it’s citizens to be repatriated.
    If Costa Rica sends them back, they should be allowed entry.

    The tourist passenger traffic should not be disturbed though. December is top season for travel.
    The best way would be to send them to Guantanamo and to let them enter on dry foot via a checkpoint there.

    Of course, if the USA, Japan or Switzerland will send a fleet of jumbo jets to pick them up. it would be fine, too.

  15. HEY DEAR Omar Fundora! SO THE VENEZUELAN PEOPLE ARE MOSTLY STUPID? SO MAYBE THE ELECTION OF CHAVEZ AND MADURO WAS A MISTAKE TOO?

    THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA ARE PISSED OFF AT THE PRESIDENT OF COSTA RICA Luis Guillermo Solis FOR HIS HELP WITH THE CUBAN IMMIGRANTS SO THEY SENT A MINOR DIPLOMAT TO MEET HIM WITH A LITTLE CUBAN FLAG! THEY ARE SUCH FASCISTS CRY BABIES!

    REUTERS: Migrant crisis hangs over Costa Rican president’s visit to Cuba – By Marc Frank

    Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solis arrived in Cuba on Sunday with plans to increase trade overshadowed by what to do with nearly 5,000 Cuban migrants stranded in his country.

    The Cubans began arriving a month ago on their dangerous 7,000-km (4,400-mile) overland trek from Ecuador to the Mexican-U.S. border, where Cubans are given legal passage into the United States.

    In brief comments to reporters on his arrival, Solis, holding a small Cuban flag, said his trip was meant to complete Costa Rica’s normalization with Cuba, extend his country’s outreach to the Caribbean and promote trade.

    When a reporter asked about the migrants, Solis responded, “That will be one of the topics on the agenda.”

    The visit was planned well before the crisis. Costa Rica re-established relations with Cuba in 2009, the last country in Latin America to do so.

    Nearly 5,000 are stuck in shelters on the border and an estimated 1,300 to 1,500 are held up in Panama, one country to the south, attempting to move into Costa Rica.

    The crisis, now termed a humanitarian one by Solis, is sure to top the agenda when he meets with President Raul Castro on Tuesday.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-costa-rica-idUSKBN0TW0UZ20151213#Mh50TPqskj0FeoQI.97

  16. The problem with the one man one vote is that the voter only cares about himself and don’t really know what they really are voting for. The people don’t have a clue or care about good governance.. This is why they get fooled every time by promises that never materialize for the majority of the citizenry . the people in Venezuela did not vote against socialism. Socialism was not on the ballot for a vote. They voted against hard times. If they would have voted against socialism, the right would have obtained a super majority and remove maduro from power. But, they did not do this. They send a message to Venezuela’s leadership that they want better times. They believe that this can be achieve by having a government that is a hybrid of both the left and the right. This experiment may serve as a model for Cuba. If, however, the right tries to remove maduro, by obtaining a super majority in April of 2016, then, the polarization in the country that will be created can result in running the risk of a coup’ de tat

  17. THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY IS A DEADBEAT STATE LEACH!

    WALL STREET JOURNAL: Cuba Reaches Deal to Pay $2.6 Billion in Arrears to Paris Club – Deal calls for $4 billion of Cuba’s debt to be forgiven.

    PARIS––Cuba has reached a deal with its creditors where the county will pay $2.6 billion in arrears over an 18-year period while $4 billion of its debt will be forgiven. The deal comes after months of negotiations between the Communist nation and the Paris Club, an informal group of developed creditor nations. The talks stem from Cuba’s lingering $16 billion debt which it defaulted in 1986.
    http://www.wsj.com/articles/cuba-reaches-deal-to-pay-2-6-billion-in-arrears-to-paris-club-1449947319

  18. NPR AUDIO STORY: Winning Big, Venezuela’s Opposition Now Plans Push For Prisoner Release – by JOHN OTIS

    Under former president Hugo Chavez and current leader Nicolas Maduro, the government has imprisoned dozens of opponents. But when the new Congress convenes next month, opposition leaders say one of their top priorities will be gaining freedom for these prisoners. Legal experts say Venezuela is holding about 80 political prisoners — mostly student activists and opposition politicians who took part in massive anti-government protests last year. The prisoners are not allowed to speak to journalists. But one detainee, who is being held at the government’s intelligence headquarters in Caracas, agrees to talk by phone if I don’t reveal his name.

    He claims to have been repeatedly beaten by guards. That’s left him with a broken hand and two missing fingernails, but he has yet to see a doctor.

    Former detainees say they were also mistreated.

    Gerardo Resplendor, a graduate student in engineering who helped plan last year’s protests, spent 14 months in jail, but says the first day was the most brutal.

    CLICK LINK FOR ARTICLE AND AUDIO!

    http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2015/12/12/459054144/winning-big-venezuelas-opposition-now-plans-push-for-prisoner-release

  19. Two comments: as Mario says, Chavez remains popular, but the people have been kept in the dark about the source of Chavez’ money: oil prices shot up just as he took over, and remained extremely high until 2014. Even today the price is higher (in real terms) than in 1998. Thus the key to have Chavez buried properly is to graph the income Venezuela received since 1980 in inflation adjusted currency. This is why it’s so important to eliminate the comunicational hegemony and censorship. The people will require 1-2 years of balanced media exposure to what really went on during the bad years.

    Second comment: this story isn’t over. Cabello and Maduro are Cuban trained and mentored. The Castro dictatorship has people in key positions in Caracas. And they are convinced, by Obama’s and other leaders’ slimy coziness with the Castro dinosaur, that a self coup can be executed. They regrouped and are working hard and fast to eviscerate the National Assembly and solidify the dictatorship Fidel prefers.

  20. REUTERS: Cuban dissidents report crackdown on Human Rights Day – BY DANIEL TROTTA AND NELSON ACOSTA

    Cuban police detained at least six protesters shouting “Freedom!” and “Long live human rights!” in Havana on Thursday and dissidents reported 100 detentions nationwide on U.N. Human Rights Day, when some Cubans call unauthorized demonstrations.

    Police and protesters tussled in plain view of journalists as they have each Dec. 10 in recent years. As usual, pro-government counterdemonsrators hurled insults at them as the protesters were shoved into patrol cars and taken away.

    The Ladies in White dissident group organized the demonstration at a busy square near the entrance to the popular Coppelia ice cream parlor, but few of its members arrived on the scene. Dissidents report that they are typically detained at home or en route to protests.

    The Havana clashes briefly interrupted traffic and led to pushing and shouting, but there were no noticeable injuries.

    Reporters witnessed six people detained for what a government spokesman said was the offense of disturbing public order. The Cuban government considers the dissidents paid mercenaries of the U.S. government, and says its critics on human rights overlook Cuba’s guaranteed healthcare and education.

    The dissident Cuban Commission of Human Rights and National Reconciliation estimated 100 detentions on Wednesday and Thursday and expected that number to double, leader Elizardo Sanchez said.
    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-dissidents-idUSKBN0TT2V720151210#ZRTyCTC6m77qRBXm.99

  21. NBC 6 SOUTH FLORIDA NEWS (Video) : Dozens Arrested in Cuba on Human Rights Day — Dozens of arrests were made in Havana on Thursday on International Human Rights Day, and human rights activists said there would likely be more. The Ladies in White and other activists marched the streets of Cuba in support of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The group said they’re also exercising their rights to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression. They called for opposition groups to join together in the “We’re All Marching” initiative.

    At the protest site, dissidents shouted “Long live human rights” and “Freedom for the Cuban people,” but many were arrested shortly after.

    The leader of the Ladies in White, her husband and six other members of the group were reportedly arrested by police as they were heading to the protest site.

    http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Dozens-Arrested-in-Cuba-on-Human-Rights-Day-361494701.html

  22. LOOKS LIKE KING OBAMA’S NEW US-CUBA POLICY IS WORKING REAL GOOD! REAL WELL FOR THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA!

    AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: Cuba: Human Rights Day crackdown on dissidents likely after month of mass arrests – 10 December 2015

    Cuban human rights activists are at increased risk of detention or harassment from the authorities amid demonstrations on International Human Rights Day, 10 December, said Amnesty International following a wave of almost 1,500 arbitrary arrests in just over a month.

    Yesterday, police in the capital Havana arbitrarily restricted the movement of members of the prominent Ladies in White (Damas de Blanco) group of activists as they prepared for today’s demonstrations. This came after at least 1,477 politically motivated detentions in November 2015, the highest monthly total in many years, according to the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation (CCDHRN).
    “For weeks on end, the Cuban authorities have used a spike in arrests and harassment to prevent human rights activists and dissidents from protesting peacefully. This is a systematic problem that silences Cuban activists in their own streets. For years, harassment on Human Rights Day has been the rule rather than the exception, and is absolutely unacceptable,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.
    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE REPORT!
    https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2015/12/cuba-human-rights-day-crackdown-on-dissidents-likely-after-month-of-mass-arrests/

  23. THE U.S. JUSTICE DEPARTMENT GRAND JURY INDICTMENTS AGAINST NICOLAS MADURO’S NEPHEWS (via his wife) Efraín Campo Flores & Franqui Francisco Flores de Freitas.

    Manhattan U.S. Attorney Announces The Arrest Of Two Venezuelan Nationals For Conspiring To Import
    Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and Mark Hamlet, Special Agent in Charge of the Special Operations Division of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), today announced that EFRAIN ANTONIO CAMPO FLORES and FRANQUI FRANCISCO FLORES DE FREITAS were arrested in the Republic of Haiti on Tuesday and brought to the United States based on a charge that they conspired to import cocaine into the United States. CAMPO FLORES and FLORES DE FREITAS will be presented before U.S. Magistrate Judge James L. Cott later today.

    According to the allegations in the Indictment[1], which was unsealed today in Manhattan federal court, CAMPO FLORES, 29, and FLORES DE FREITAS, 30, conspired with others between October 2015 and the present to violate U.S. narcotics laws prohibiting the importation of cocaine. Specifically, the Indictment charges CAMPO FLORES and FLORES DE FREITAS with conspiring to (i) import five or more kilograms of cocaine into the United States from a foreign country; and (ii) distribute five or more kilograms of cocaine knowing and intending that it would be imported into the United States. The charge in the Indictment carries a maximum penalty of life in prison. The maximum potential sentence in this case is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be determined by a judge.

    Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the DEA’s Special Operations Division, Bilateral Investigations Unit, and New York Strike Force. Mr. Bharara also thanked the DEA’s Port-au-Prince Country Office, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol’s National Targeting Center, DEA’s Airwing, the Government of the Republic of Haiti and the Haitian National Police, and the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of International Affairs for their ongoing assistance.

    This prosecution is being handled by the Office’s Terrorism and International Narcotics Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Emil J. Bove III, Mathew J. Laroche, Michael D. Lockard, and Brendan F. Quigley are in charge of the prosecution.

    The charge contained in the Indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
    http://www.justice.gov/usao-sdny/file/792936/download

  24. THE NY TIMES SURE LETS THE MADURO DICTATORSHIP HAVE IT! BUT HANDLES THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA WITH KIT GLOVES!
    N.Y. TIMES EDITORIAL: In Venezuela, a Triumph for the Opposition

    On Sunday, voters in Venezuela delivered a stinging rebuke to Nicolás Maduro and his ruling party by electing a coalition of opposition lawmakers to Parliament that is large enough to challenge his socialist policies and could conceivably cut short his term in office.

    The opposition’s landslide victory underscored how strongly many Venezuelans yearn for an alternative to Mr. Maduro’s abysmal leadership. Opposition politicians showed remarkable faith in the country’s democratic process — the turnout was a remarkable 74 percent of eligible voters — even as the government jailed their leaders, kept others off the ballot, and sought to limit press coverage of rival parties.

    Mr. Maduro has accepted the results, but has vowed to fight his opponents, whom he disparaged as “bad guys.” The opposition exceeded expectations by securing 112 seats in the 167-seat body, a margin that in theory gives it considerable oversight over the executive branch.

    Even so, there are well-grounded fears among opposition leaders that Mr. Maduro could take steps to weaken the authority of the legislative branch before the new Parliament convenes in January. Like his predecessor, Mr. Chávez, Mr. Maduro has packed the courts and virtually all other powerful institutions with loyalists.

    One big question facing the opposition is what to do with its new majority. One alternative is to try to govern jointly with Mr. Maduro’s party. The other is to try to unseat him by using its two-thirds majority to order a referendum on Mr. Maduro’s leadership.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/10/opinion/in-venezuela-a-triumph-for-the-opposition.html?_r=1

  25. THE FASCIST COMMUNISTS ARE THE WORST LOSERS!

    THE INDEPENDENT: Venezuela turmoil as Nicolas Maduro remains defiant after electoral defeat – by David Usborne

    A defiant President Nicolas Maduro said he would give no quarter to the Venezuelan opposition in spite of his own party’s crushing defeat in last weekend’s mid-term parliamentary elections. Mr Maduro vowed to block “the counter-revolutionary right” from taking over the country. “We won’t let it,” he said. The Maduro government seems instead to be digging in, a stance that could spell a period of political struggle and inaction on the economy. To shore up the socialist “revolution”, the government has already moved to force most of the Supreme Court justices to resign so that Mr Maduro can appoint new ones whose terms will extend beyond the life of the new assembly.

    As part of its propaganda burst the government tweeted images of Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin and told supporters to “stop whining” about the election outcome. When a Russian visitor appeared on the set of the TV show on Tuesday, Mr Maduro blurted “viva Trotsky” and “viva Lenin”

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/venezuela-turmoil-as-nicolas-maduro-remains-defiant-after-electoral-defeat-a6766981.html

  26. HEY! KING OBAMA! LETS BRING BACK TO THE USA THE BIG TIME FUGITIVES FROM CUBA NOT THESE SMALL POTATOES! POTATOES, WHICH ARE A SCARCITY IN THE ISLAND! PUN INTENDED!

    MIAMI HERALD: Cuba turns over U.S. fugitive who fled to island – By Jay Weaver — An Indiana man wanted on firearms charges was brought back from Cuba to South Florida by federal marshals on Tuesday, marking the first fugitive to be turned over to the U.S. government since it established diplomatic relations with the island nation this year. Shawn Wegmann, an alleged enforcer for a Midwestern motorcycle gang, was detained by Cuban authorities on Oct. 31 after he ripped off his GPS ankle monitor, stole a 13-foot boat in Key West and crossed the Florida Straits, authorities said Tuesday.

    In early November, the U.S. Marshals Service was notified that the 38-year-old Wegmann had been detained while attempting to enter Cuba, authorities said.
    http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/community/miami-dade/article48627325.html

  27. TELEGRAPH UK: Venezuela’s triumphant opposition to free opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez – Leopoldo Lopez, the imprisoned opposition leader, is likely to be freed in January after the government lost control of the National Assembly for the first time in 16 years – By Harriet Alexander, New York

    Venezuela’s jubilant opposition leaders vowed on Monday to free jailed politician Leopoldo Lopez, after their coalition swept to power in the national assembly and signalled the end of 16 years of Chavez domination.

    The opposition victory means that they can begin to issue amnesties from January 5, when the new assembly takes over. They can also potentially remove some ministers, and even start seeking a recall vote to oust Mr Maduro, if they can obtain enough signatures.

    Mr Maduro’s party, however, still controls much of the judiciary, hundreds of mayors and dozens of states – meaning that the opposition will have a tough time implementing their much-vaunted change.

    Mr Lopez, from behind bars, has turned into an emblem for the opposition. He was sentenced last year to 14 years on charges of inciting violence, which were widely seen as politically motivated.

    His wife Lilian Tintori has been campaigning for the opposition on his behalf, despite rallies marred by gunshots and even the murder of one opposition candidate.

    “I always remember the words of Leopoldo, who said: ‘The people will free me from these hand cuffs,’” she said, after the results were announced. “Leopoldo, your people freed you.”

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/southamerica/venezuela/12037957/Venezuelas-triumphant-opposition-to-free-opposition-leader-Leopoldo-Lopez.html

  28. NOW THAT THE COMMUNIST CHAVISTAS HAVE LOST POWER IN VENEZUELA, THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA IS TRYING TO WOO ALL THOSE WHO THEY LABELED AS “TRAITORS”, “GUSANOS (worms)”. THEY HAVE PREVENTED ALL THESE YEARS MANY FROM RETURNING TO THE ISLAND TO VISIT, BUT NOW WANT THEM TO BRING ALL THOSE BAD “CAPITALI$T” DOLLAR$$$$$$$$$$!!!!!!!!!!

    N.Y. TIMES: M.L.B.’s Cuba Trip to Include Jose Abreu, Star Who Defected – By MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT and DAVID WALDSTEIN

    A good-will tour of Cuba next week by Major League Baseball and its players’ union will include a prominent Cuban player who defected in 2013, a rare concession by a Cuban government that typically denounces such individuals as traitors and bars them from its national team.
    The player, Jose Abreu, has established himself as one of baseball’s premier sluggers in his two seasons as the first baseman of the Chicago White Sox. He will be joined on the good-will tour by at least two other Cuban major leaguers: shortstop Alexei Ramirez, who left Cuba in 2007 but has said he does not consider himself a defector, and the journeyman catcher and first baseman Brayan Pena, who left Cuba as a teenager in 1999.
    A fourth Cuban major leaguer, Yasiel Puig, the Los Angeles Dodgers slugger who defected in 2012, has also been mentioned as a participant in the tour, but it was unclear if he would join the group. He is under investigation by Major League Baseball after an altercation last month at a Miami nightclub.
    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/08/sports/baseball/mlb-cuba-jose-abreu-white-sox-defector-good-will-trip.html?_r=0

  29. What typical fascist crap from the BBC

    Going to the polls and voting for Maduro with a gun to your head doesn’t mean you support Maduro. It means you’re scared of dying.

    Modern electronic voting systems deliver results within minutes of closing.

    In Venezuela it takes hours and days for their super electronic “transparent voting system” to deliver final results, as the “party faithful”, which means the Socialist gangsters who run the election commissions, “review the results”, which means commit massive voter fraud.

    Maduro has almost little support among poor or rich, except for the drug-fueled gangsters who terrorize the barrios and deliver him his fake votes.

    Like I predicted below, Maduro committed enough fraud to prevent the needed two-thirds majority for the opposition

    This refusal to listen to the wish of Venezuelans will just fuel the chaos and violence

  30. BBC NEWS: Venezuela elections: Why did Maduro’s Socialists lose? – by Wyre Davies

    Nicolas Maduro still enjoyed the support of the party faithful and Venezuela’s working classes who had benefited from the Socialist Party’s giveaways. But others in the wider Venezuelan society were no longer unquestioning. Some on the left despised the corruption that was allowed to proliferate as, after 16 years, the PSUV (United Socialist Party of Venezuela) began to believe too much in its own invincibility. Facing an opposition alliance that now presented a united front, the governing party must have known it was in trouble.
    Too little, too late

    To its credit, Venezuela’s electronic voting system is still one of the most efficient and transparent in the region and until the last hour of voting there were precious few irregularities.

    It was only in an extended hour of voting that it became apparent the governing party was cajoling and persuading its supporters into the polling booths.

    There were also allegations of voters in some instances being forcibly taken to the voting stations.

    Too little, too late.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-35025941

  31. EL UNIVERSAL: Venezuelan dissent scores 112 seats at the National Assembly – ELECTION 2015 | Opposition amassed 7,707,422 votes -Tuesday December – 08, 2015 – 07:36 AM
    Venezuelan dissent scores 112 seats at the National Assembly
    The Venezuelan National Electoral Council (CNE) posted on its website around 7:00 p.m. on Monday the results accounting for 107 deputies for the Unified Democratic Panel (MUD), 55 deputies for ruling United Socialist Party of Venezuela (Psuv) and other three for indigenous representatives. – Based on the information supplied by CNE to political parties, MUD amassed a total of 7,707,422 votes (56,5%) vs. 5,599,025 votes (41,0%) for Psuv.

    http://www.eluniversal.com/nacional-y-politica/151208/venezuelan-dissent-scores-112-seats-at-the-national-assembly

  32. @yngso

    Yes, it’s a start, let’s hope it doesn’t end in violence, which is what Maduro wants.

  33. Can you imagine if this was a free and fair election?

    Chavez and Maduro banned all independent observers from Venezuelan elections.

    Chavez and Maduro imprisoned opposition politicians for being too popular.

    Chavez and Maduro assassinated opposition politicians.

    Chavez and Maduro bragged about knowing how each Venezuelan voted.

    Chavez and Maduro ordered the firing of all public servants who didn’t vote for them.

    Chavez and Maduro’s death squads murdered countless thousands of opposition voters.

    If Venezuela was a free country, Chavez and Maduro and their death squad and drug cartel relatives would have been imprisoned years ago.

  34. Maduro is still fixing to stay in power as dictator of Venezuela.

    Was there enough vote-rigging to prevent two-thirds majority by opposition?

    If this was a free election, Maduro would have trouble winning 4 seats, much less 46.

    Chavez turned his election system over to the Cuban secret police to manage and Venezuelan narco-gangs for enforcement.

    And he took all power into the presidency.

    I hope Maduro does the right thing, the people hate him and Chavez Socialism by a huge majority.

  35. DEBT RESTRUCTURE IS UNDER WAY
    Paris Club of 15 nations (does not include USA) will likely forget 11 billion interest in the next days.
    This paves the way to new investments on the island.

    Forget Uncle Sam, they may come as tourists to spend the buck, but business is only possible with countries who respect the right of Cuban people to determine their system of government: one party socialist republic.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cuba-debt-idUSKBN0TQ1XX20151207

  36. What a title!
    “The Marriage Between Venezuela and Chavismo Failed”

    Did the marriage between the USA and the Washingtonismo failed in Vietnam? Not at all, just some ignorant generals and politicians lost the war.

    Did the marriage between the Soviet Union and the Leninismo failed in 1990? Not at all, just the ignorant bureaucrats under Gorbachev failed.

    Maduro and his people just made too many mistakes. The glory of Chavez remains unaffected.

    The author of this blog, an American with Cuban passport who traveled as far as Poland and Switzerland, not to mention Washington, of course, may not know this, because she never walked a street in Caracas. The working people of Venezuela, who know the benefits of socialism, may reject some leaders but will always stay on the side of Chavismo.

  37. El Ilegitimo- the Illegitimate One – or “the President” said that the Chavistas will accept the election results, but also that they’ll hold on to power, even create a “junta” if need be. The world knows that word, junta. Latin America used to be ruled by those, and that was by no means democratic rule.
    Yes, the people has spoken as expected. That isn’t a victory, only the beginning of an epic battle.
    Its going to get a lot worse before it starts to get better, and we won’t have to wait very long to see it start to happen happen.Vzla is running on fumes, its economy on the ropes. Something’s gotta give.
    Also, the connection to the FARC and Colombia is important in this context. The Chavista narco gang moves cocaine northwards for FARC, and FARC is preparing to get political power in Colombia. There are two important events coming up, the signing of the peace accord between the Col. govt and FARC in March 2016 and the Col. Presidential election in 2018.
    So no, Chavismo isn’t finished yet. It can be defeated, but it won’t go quietly…

  38. BBC NEWS: Venezuela election: Maduro’s Socialists trounced
    The opposition in Venezuela has won a majority of seats in the National Assembly, overturning nearly two decades of dominance by the Socialists of President Nicolas Maduro.

    Five hours after polling ended, the National Electoral Council announced the opposition had won 99 seats.

    President Maduro has admitted defeat, recognising “these adverse results”.

    It is the worst-ever defeat for the leftist movement founded by former leader Hugo Chavez in 1999.

    The Socialists have gained 46 seats, with another 22 yet to be declared.

    Results arrived much later than expected, five hours after polls closed. Fireworks erupted over the capital, Caracas, soon after.

    What happens now?

    The opposition alliance, made up of centrist and conservative parties, is confident of ultimately taking at least 112 seats after 16 years of socialist control.

    According to senior figures in the alliance, that would allow them to pass laws allowing the release of political prisoners and to reverse, for example, appointments to senior legal positions made by the current government, says the BBC’s Wyre Davies, in Caracas.
    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-35019111

  39. Even the Chavez drug gangs and death squads who rigged elections in the past are getting fed up with all the killing and chaos under Maduro.

    Maduro and his secret police and narco-gang loyalists still rigged the results, but is it enough to prevent the opposition from getting the needed large majority for change?

    Let’s see if the un-elected dictator of Venezuela peacefully allows himself to be defeated in presidential elections. Or will the vote riggers abandon him? Will the Cubans abandon him for a new puppet?

    The presidency is where Chavez pulled out all the stops in fixing his elections.

    Venezuela is so corrupt now, it’s hard to imagine a happy ending in the near future, no matter who wins the elections.

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