October 11, 2002
Narco News '02
So, What Happened
Thursday in Venezuela?
Caracas is Calm:
Narco News Publisher's
Commentary: The shrieking press coverage in recent days by
the commercial media in the United States and Venezuela, and
by other parties invested in that country's conflicts (including
some U.S. "human rights" groups who should know better),
told of an opposition march scheduled for Thursday and painted
grave scenarious of coup d'etat and chaos.
Here at Narco News, we
opted for a calmer, more factual, coverage in our recent special
reports from Venezuela by Ron
2) and by Thierry
5), sticking to the reality of the situation, rather than sensationalize
or overstate the facts.
A day after the march,
all the hysterical shriekers have been proved wrong, and in many
cases intentionally dishonest. The opposition march came and
went. Most news sources said there were hundreds of thousands.
The LA Times said "About a million." The corrupt
Venezuelan press said "more than a million" or "two
million." The Independent of London said "tens
of thousands." In any case, it was no bigger, nor different,
nor did it include a wider base than that of the same old same
old from the upper classes, the same as many a previous opposition
People peaceably assembled.
Sure, they called for the violent overthrow of the government,
but that's speech too. The government, police, and military -
despite all kinds of provocations and threats of violent coups
- remained calm and ensured the right of its opponents to march.
After the march, the supporters of the Chávez government
held parties in the streets because there had been no coup d'etat.
And then everybody went home. Sounds like a healthy democracy
There was nothing sensational
about it. That might not sell newspapers, but it's news.
Here's an eyewitness report
from an authentic journalist in Venezuela who was there...
THURSDAY EVENING, OCTOBER 10,
2002: At 10:20 p.m. in Caracas, the
situation in the capital as well as nationwide is completely
The opposition celebrates the success
of its call for a march, and the sectors that support President
Chávez celebrate that the opposition couldn't succeed
in causing a coup d'etat, something that appears curious in a
democratic and legitimately elected government.
After the mobilization of the opposition
march, many groups of people who favor the national government
mobilized toward the streets near the Miraflores presidential
palace to celebrate, with music and chanting slogans, that the
opposition failed to comply with its coup agenda today and that
they haven't been able to convoke a National Strike, due to not
having sufficient support. Of course, the pictures of these mobilizations
are unlikely to be found in the Venezuelan commercial media and
are only seen in the international media.
Trying to be objective about the situation
- There was a large demonstration against
the National Government and it was not met with repression, which
shows the world that the government sticks to democratic values.
- There was no National Strike begun today,
although there had been intention to start one.
- There was no violence, although it was
part of the hidden agenda.
- There was no coup d'etat, although that
was part of the same agenda.
- Disciplinary measures were taken against
military officers who declared themselves against constitutional
rule (in spite of the fact that some of them are today fugitives).
- There are marked differences and conflicts
between the leaders of the so-called Democratic Coordinator,
the political organization that joins the opposition sectors
and that called for a strike, and this was evident today in various
declarations by the leaders to the media.
- There was a lot of frustration among
the non-militant masses of the opposition when they realized
that they had been tricked by their leaders when they had been
told that Chávez would resign today, and that didn't happen.
This caused a lot of disillusion in those sectors.
- Once more, the biased form in which
the Venezuelan commercial media manages information - contradicting
the most elemental principles of journalistic ethics, and in
a manner that continues to be part of a conspired plan - was
made clear to the national and international public.
- Equally, the institutional obedience
and democratic vocation of the National Armed Forces was clearly
- On Friday, October 11, 2002, the constitutional
president of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela continues to
be Hugo Rafael Chávez Frías, until a majority of
the Venezuelan people decide otherwise.
Thus, according to all the facts previously
expressed: Who came out of today victorious? Definitively, it
was Venezuelan Democracy.
We remain alert. Coup plans continue to
obsess the minds of some people who have turned their backs on
the new era that Venezuela lives.
We will continue informing you.
to the Publisher About This Report:
Why is the journalist
G.G. not identified? Doesn't this go against principles of disclosure?
For all I know, G.G. works in the ministry of information.
Not that I doubt for a
minute that what was written was true, but these are the kinds
of questions that come up when a reporter's identity is hidden.
from the Publisher
I use writers with pseudonyms
infrequently, and only for good reason. I don't use them to publish
press releases by interested parties (i.e. government ministry
employees). Of course I know the writer's identity. Of course
he doesn't work for the government. He works in the Community
Media, whose members in recent weeks have been A., illegally
imprisoned, B. tortured and beaten, C. shot at with rubber bullets.
He is precisely in the catagory of journalists that, when attacked,
the international "press freedom" orgs do nothing.
I think in a situation like that, the use of a pseud is quite
The use of initials, rather
than an invented "real sounding" name also, in my view,
clearly discloses to the reader that the writer is using a pen
The other thing is: I
have been in constant contact this week with various sectors
in Venezuela. This article accurately reflects all the corroborating
and corresponding information available to me.
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