Thursday, 22 April 2010

There is something very wrong with Chavismo

Updated 2

Now according to Chavismo's Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias, the National Assembly will set up a commission to study the suicide of Valero. They do not seem to investigate the hundreds of murders that take place in Venezuelan prisons year after year. Here we have another proof that for these systems some are more equal than others.

Here you can read (in Spanish) some of the many murders Chavismo does not care about.

Updated 3

Finally I see an article that makes sense in the ABN: the minister for Women Issues declared the media was giving a bad focus on this issue by forgetting Jeniffer Vieira, the victim and that the state, the media and everybody should take seriously the problem of gender violence. The minister is very right in saying that. Still, I have to say El Nacional (oppo) did publish an article precisely about that issue whereas the ABN (state) media was just glorifying the boxer.


I did not want to talk about this, it was too macabre, but it turns out to show just too clearly how many things are going wrong in Venezuela: the case of Edwin Valero.

Valero was a boxer and he was pretty good at that. Venezuelans excel particularly at such sports. A couple of days ago Valero murdered his wife, gave himself to the police and while in custody hanged himself in the cell. Valero had a long history of beating up his wife. She had been in hospital because of that. He had actually an order of restrain but he repeatedly violated it. He was addict to alcohol and cocaine and was supposed to be heavily under drugs when he committed the murder.

Valero was a fan of Hugo Chávez Frías and he had a tattoo on his chest with Venezuela's flag and Chávez face on it. He had repeatedly praised Chávez in his victories in the ring, showing a Chávez puppet to the public. They were friends. Valero lost his visa of entry to the USA because he had been caught there once drunk while driving. He said the USA did not want to give him a visa because of political reasons.

El Nacional managed to interview him shortly after he was detained. In that weird interview, Valero told quite some things. If you read Spanish, you can read it here. There he basically said he had killed his wife, that his life was now completely destroyed, that the worst was that they would take away his children from him. He said he was going to Cuba for a desintoxication treatment and as he had lost his passport, he was going to wait in La Guaira until he could get a new passport. He said he was driving from Mérida to La Guaira via Valencia and that he had been heavily drinking the whole time. It takes hours to go from Mérica to Valencia. He state he had seen a car following him, so he stopped at a military post and told the guys there (who are supposed to help in road security) someone wanted to kidnap him. They knew very well who he was. They told him to go to Valencia and sleep there. Now: how is it possible for a guy under that condition just to go and sleep his rush there?

Today Venezolana de Televisión has a story about the boxer's funeral. The Chavista media says he had died in the cells of the Carabobo police (which is under opposition's jurisdiction) and the cause of death was "mechanic asphyxia". They said he was there because of the "pressumed murder of his wife". He had been found still agonizing and the police took him to a hospital as soon as they were alerted by another prisoner, but Chavistas cast doubts on that version. I wonder if there will ever be a real investigation of the case.

Total number of murders Venezuela-Germany

Population Germany-Venezuela

Venezuela has by far the highest murder rate in South America. It is much higher than in war-torn Colombia. Chávez has repeatedly denied Venezuela's violence is a worse issue than elsewhere. He says things like "in Italy a politician was killed recently" and "Venezuela's crime numbers have improved dramatically" (since he is in power). Venezuela stopped sending the murder rate numbers to United Nations in 2002. Here you have a graph showing the total amount of murders in Venezuela and Germany in the last few years. Venezuela has 28 million inhabitants and Germany 82 million. Chávez came to power in early 1999. The numbers come from Venezuelan NGO Provea and the German Bundeskriminalamt. Chávez's ministers have refused to debate openly about the crime issue in Venezuela and say the opposition just wants to use it for politics. It seems it is a crime to say things have got much worse and someone has to take responsability.

Chile's murder rate is similar to Germany's. Mexico, a country with a huge problem because of the drug murders, still has a murder rate that is several times lower than Venezuela's. You can see a full comparison of murder rates for several countries in an earlier post here.

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