The Bolivarian regime is imploding, coming apart at the seams, snarling in circles, launching internal wars and purges, and blaming “external factors” and the “right-wing” political opposition for orchestrating the recent violence perpetrated by armed PSUV gunmen and armed “social collectives” (i.e. criminal gangs).
The spectacle reminds me of a coyote caught in a trap, so panicked and desperate to flee that it chews off its leg to escape. But coyotes are nobler creatures than anyone in the Chavez regime.
And to think that as of today only 32 days have passed since the MUD’s open primaries on 12 February in which over 64% of more than 3 million voters chose Miranda state governor Henrique Capriles Radonski as the opposition’s presidential candidate.
Just a few developments since the 12 February MUD primaries that confirm that the Bolivarian revolution is in the early stages of a massive meltdown:
• Chavez went ballistic on national television for a week, calling Capriles a “pig” and bombarding him with insults and threats. The president’s hysterical rage and wild charges transformed him into the pitiless aggressor preying on the weak underdog. Chavez, who declared on live national television that an Eagle never hunts flies, showed the country that in truth he is a foul-mouthed bully.
• Senior regime capos like Diosdado Cabello accused the MUD of committing electoral fraud, but were promptly refuted by the regime-controlled CNE, which certified the accuracy of the MUD’s results.
• The Supreme Court’s chief justice illegally tried (but failed) to seize the registries containing the names of all of the voters; clearly, the intent was to compile another “list” of voters that would be subjected to political harassment and physical intimidation ahead of the 7 October presidential elections.
• PSUV officials provided weapons and gave cash to individuals in Cotiza, with orders to fire those weapons towards Capriles Radonsky. The shooters were identified by name. The PSUV officials who armed and paid the gunmen also were identified by name. As of today, no one has been arrested, and the regime’s official position is that Capriles “provoked” the shooters by going into Cotiza where he will never be welcome because he is not a chavista.
• Cabello, Vice President Elias Jaua, Interior & Justice Minister Tarek al-Assaimi and Energy Minister Rafael Ramirez, among other senior regime gangsters, have appeared at different PSUV rallies organized nationally to show support for Chavez, the PSUV’s now-and-forever only Supreme Leader and presidential candidate. Their remarks at these rallies have threatened the opposition, and hence the country at large, with violence and more violence.
• During the past weekend, two members of the La Piedrita “social collective” (i.e. organized crime gang armed and funded by the regime) were shot dead by members of a rival gang in the 23 de Enero “barrio.” La Piedrita’s immediate retaliation left a half-dozen motorcycles and a nearby tow truck in ashes, and generously perforated surrounding homes and parked cars with bullets. La Piedrita blamed the opposition for instigating the gunfight, and specifically threatened actions against Globovision.
• Today Vice President Elias Jaua called a press conference to announce that the PSUV has decided to suspend from its ranks Monagas Governor José Gregorio Briceño due to the governor’s lack of party discipline and his repeated attacks against other party members (in particular, Cabello, one of the biggest gangsters in the regime).
But this is just the beginning, the early stages of the revolution’s meltdown.
Venezuelans everywhere in the country, but particularly in Caracas, should brace for a significant increase in all kinds of violence ahead of the 7 October presidential elections.
Political violence, street violence, criminal violence – it’s going to worsen at every level nationally.
The violence will spike even higher after 7 October if President Chavez isn’t re-elected.
Chavez has made it very clear that 23 years of Bolivarian revolution – dated by regime “historians” from the Caracazo of February 1989 – will not surrender power peacefully under any circumstances. The revolution has come too far to give it all up just because of an inconvenient technicality like democratic elections.
Another ominous truth is that too many Venezuelans are armed with too many weapons. The Interior & Justice Ministry estimates that there are between 15 million and 16 million unlicensed weapons in Venezuela, a country of about 28.5 million inhabitants.
All of my friends in the Venezuelan Army, active and retired, are heavily armed. It’s one of the lifelong perks enjoyed by graduates of the Military Academy. They have some very cool weapons, if you like that sort of thing.
I know one retired Division General who has several loaded handguns and a loaded Uzi placed atop coffee tables in his living room and home library, like my sainted mother places expensive crystal ashtrays and decanters on tabletops in her home.
But it’s not my Army friends that I’m worried about. I’m also not concerned about the many decent, law-abiding Venezuelans who have weapons in their homes.
What does worry me, indeed scares me, is the thousands of armed irregulars and professional criminals (the two often are indistinguishable from each other) that are traipsing freely throughout Caracas and other cities, completely certain of their absolute immunity from police pursuit, arrest, judicial prosecution and imprisonment.
It’s impossible to say with any accuracy how many irregular armed gunmen are available to do the Chavez regime’s wet work against its foes.
But in Caracas alone there are over 50 “social collectives,” according to spokesmen for something called the National Secretariat of Collectives – a group that surfaced publicly to support Bolivarian “social collectives” in the aftermath of the gunplay in 23 de Enero that put two La Piedrita thugs six feet underground forever.
Some of these groups clearly have links to senior regime figures like Cabello and Jaua. In fact, the vice president’s Francisco Miranda Front has about 6,000 armed members, of which perhaps 3,000 are trained in urban guerrilla violence.
But it’s also obvious that many of these groups are not controlled by anyone in the regime including the president. These Bolivarian gangbangers are independent actors, able and willing to execute tactical actions against targets of their choosing. These thugs can ride in packs of motorcycles through any neighborhood they choose at will, openly sporting weapons and intimidating everyone while the cops stand down.
We’ll be seeing much more of these gunmen in the weeks and months to come. Count on it.