Thursday, August 13, 2015

Baduelismus

A strange surprise came yesterday. General Baduel, former savior of Chavez (2002), former defense minister of Chavez, one of his personal own first political prisoners has been released from jail. Sure enough he is blocked at home, but he is out of military jail.

That he served most of his jail sentence on trumped up charges (who is not corrupt inside chavismo?) and thus was "released" to complete the rest of his sentence at home is a mere detail. What is important here is that the regime has dared to release who was a seen as one of Chavez very own political prisoners.


The reader must understand one thing about Venezuela: there are two type of political prisoners, those of the revolution and those that are Chavez personal prisoners, such as judge Afiuni, Baduel and even Lopez, though this one is a prisoner of both. The revolution political prisoners can be jailed or released at will, such are the cases of Ceballos, former mayor of San Cristobal or Simonovis of 2002 fame unjustly jailed for revolutionary political need. There are also Chavez very own political exiles, such as Rosales former Zulia governor and Chavez 2006 campaign opponent, or journalist Poleo. In short, those that Chavez has placed on his very own list in theory cannot benefit from any measure of grace. Only Afiuni did get some alleviation to her plight due to the intense international pressure, but her trial is going fast nowhere.

Thus the importance of Baduel's release. For this to happen there must have been a powerful reason, a significant movement inside chavismo to face down a Chavez order. The reader should be immediately reassured: this mean nothing good for the opposition no matter what a portion of Twitterzuela tried to make of it last night.

You can speculate, offer many readings. Here is mine for those still reading.

The jailing of Baduel had created a rift inside the armed forces. For sure, these were not going to oppose Chavez for many reasons, one being that cash was flowing into their pocket. But there was a rift inside because Baduel as a former defense minister was the voice of the army for a while and as such deserved more respect, even from Chavez. Baduel's jail was a direct message to the army to behave and it was understood as such.

But the resentment remained and now that Chavez is gone the army feels the need to come together again and freeing Baduel goes a long way even if the guy now has little power in it. Thus the real question is why is the army coming back together, taking such a stand?

The situation of the country is deteriorating fast. It is clear now with the recent looting and recent polls that the regime is overstaying its welcome and is decided in leaving nothing standing in its wake. Burnt earth they also call it.  The people that will be left behind to try to hold things together, no matter what government comes, are the armed forces that will have to do all the necessary repression.

Thus, for me at least, the army comes together because it not only needs to be united to face coming harder times, but also because it needs to weigh carefully its actions so as not to be blamed for the mess left behind by Chavez. That does not mean the army is good or bad, or that a coup is around the corner. To begin with, a coup is unnecessary as this is already a military regime. What the army is probably doing at this point is getting its act together to intervene as a single voice to dictate to the civilians in the regime what to do, or to rule over a transition regime, or if needs be, to tolerate an opposition government as long as the army goes unscathed of any crime it committed during the Chavez years.

Nothing major happens inside Venezuela without the consent or action of the Army. Releasing Baduel cannot have happened without this one consent as I, for one, am absolutely sure that Maduro would not have released of his own accord a Chavez prisoner, amen of the proven cruelty of Maduro.

That is why Baduel's release is so interesting. All specuatlions maybe allowed, but what this really means is that pieces are moving inside the regime. Perhaps faster than one may surmise.

32 comments:

  1. Anonymous5:44 PM

    Scorched earth. From wiki: A scorched earth policy is a military strategy that involves destroying anything that might be useful to the enemy while advancing through or withdrawing from an area. It is a military strategy where all of the assets that are used or can be used by the enemy are targeted, such as food sources, transportation, communications, industrial resources, and even the people in the area. The practice can be carried out by the military in enemy territory, or in its own home territory. It may overlap with, but is not the same as, punitive destruction of the enemy's resources, which is done for purely strategic/political reasons rather than strategic/operational reasons.

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  2. Anonymous11:40 PM

    You should get out and apply for a political asylum in the US. Make Arepas until you get your work permit.

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  3. Canadian looking in11:42 PM

    Can you explain Anonymous why you post is relevant?

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    Replies
    1. Do not hold your breath. 90% of "anonymous " never bother with followups.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous11:40 PM

      Because maybe I think Daniel is too smart to become just another one of those you know 25k murders a year.

      Delete
    3. I think he meant the 1st anonymous re Scorched Earth!

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  4. I have no idea why anonymous posted but I just read a concern for Daniel's safety now that things seem about to explode (according to the post something is moving). Anonymous thinks that Daniel has a case to obtain political asylum in the US.

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    Replies
    1. Sylvia7:34 AM

      Great then he can marry his adorable boyfriend!!!

      Delete
  5. Charly9:39 AM

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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    Replies
    1. Sorry Charly but this is G rated😊

      Delete
  6. And what about Mr. Deivis Oliveira now?

    He was released after the realized he wasn't the real Davis, a notorious Yankee spy?

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  7. Interesting analysis.

    It was puzzling indeed to see the latest 3 political releases, all very different from one-another:

    Ceballos, the high-profile anti-chavismo politician, but no Leopoldo or even MCM..

    Baduel.. Very intriguing.

    And my favorite, el señol Deivis..

    I tend to agree with Daniel's pertinent suspicions about la rata de Baduel. Something's cooking in the Military. CapoCabello and Masburro might have been given some notice to behave,, or else.

    I can only add my own speculation: that the 3odd characters were release almost at the same time perhaps on purpose, to confuse, divert popular suspicions, to dilute or hide Baduel, an elephant in the room.

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  8. The USA communications seem to chalk all these up to US/Venezuela diplomacy. That now the writing is on the wall in terms of complete failure of the regime the USA is negotiating an exit strategy. Releasing political prisoners is one of the USA first demands, second being a fair election (good luck with that). Likely the majority of the Chavez crew including his daughter will retain their wealth (in the USA at least) which is where most of it is parked. If I was the USA I would negotiate a future for Venezuela with democratic leadership, then once achieve turn around and drill all that was involved. Likely will all then go unheard and USA will end up with a lot of the robbed Venezuelans wealth.

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    Replies
    1. Roberto Carlos10:04 AM

      What are: "USA communications"? Getoutofhere, do you have access to Hillary's emails?

      Can you explain these sentences: "then once achieve turn around and drill all that was involved. Likely will all then go unheard and USA will end up with a lot of the robbed Venezuelans wealth."

      "Releasing political prisoners is one of the USA first demands"
      That worked very well for Cuba's prisoners eh?

      Great post Canadian I tried to have it translated but google does not yet have a bullshit translator.

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    2. Roberto

      I would be careful not to mix issues here.

      Cuba is a long entrenched totalitarian system. Venezuela is on the brink but not quite there. Thus the US or any one else should take different approaches. That is no justification, just a statement of fact.,

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    3. Roberto sorry I seemed to offend yourselicate reading skills. USA communications = articles news etc coming out of the USA networks, publications, internet etc. Will try and speak simplier for you next time. Turn around and drill them would be slang for after making the deal and having a transition gov't in place, break your deal and arrest any you can get your hands on, take the money like the 4.5 billion Chavez daughter has in USA banks etc. As far as Cuba goes it is unclear what the end result of current negotiations will be but was clear what the USA was doing was not working for USA companies or the people of Cuba.

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    4. Roberta as you will not figure it out yourselicate was suppose to be your delicate.

      Delete
    5. Roberto Carlos2:45 PM

      I understand Canadian, I heard it is hard to write with one hand while masturbating with the other.

      Delete
    6. All class Roberto, tells all anyone needs to know about you.

      Delete
    7. Roberto Carlos5:40 PM

      At least my posts don't need translation. Can't wait to read whatever useless prognostication you'll think you need to share with us next.

      Delete
    8. Whats to translate in your posts they have no value, you are one of those people who hover the internet seeking to make rude comments whenever someone makes grammar errors. My posts have you as an audience, whether for humor or such that you can spread your good cheer, I am pleased to entertain you. My guess is the people with IQs above 50 had no problem getting the meaning of my posts.

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    9. Roberto Carlos1:21 PM

      Absolutely agree Canadian, people with IQs of 50 are your target audience.
      By the way, while we are in the subject: "grammar" is a noun and "grammatical" is an adjective so it should be "Grammatical errors" not "grammar errors". Grammatical describes what kind of error it is. Error is a noun...a noun does not describe another noun. CAPICHE?

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    10. Too funny what a zero you are Roberto. Cannot believe you took the time to write that and to think you're so dumb that after spending all the time looking it up you actually thought writing it would bug me. Lmao

      Delete
  9. Anonymous4:46 AM

    I agree with Daniel when he posits that releasing Baduel is a nod to the military, and that it is in preparation for a near to medium term transition.

    As Twitter demonstrated, Baduel does have a certain mystique in broad swathes of the population.

    He will probably be the front man again in the Kabuki To Come.

    RobertoN

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  10. Back when the student protests were truly massive and the constitutional referendum was being debated, Baduel started saying some things that made a lot of sense on RCTV when it was still a television station that could broadcast nationally. He was a vigorous opponent - along with Mariesabel (Chavez's second wife) of that massive power grab by Chavez. When Chavez lost that referendum by a lot (compared to the squeaker that the CNE called) it was brilliant to see him completely lose his head calling it a "shit victory" for the opposition. Poleo's analysis was that the military forced Chavez to swallow that pill. Of course that was the end for Baduel. The guy disappeared with few tears from just about anyone. But he did show that a principled opposition on the part of a Chavista "reformist" was (is?) possible. That continues to be valuable. It may be that Baduel is a necessary release as a preamble to releasing Lopez. Because all of these political prisoners have a moral cost - they only function with your base to the degree that you can keep a straight face and call them traitors - once you start letting the air out of those accusations the air comes out of all your accusations. Climbing down from the overinflated moral certainty of a revolutionary farce is a long distance. Maybe Baduel is a necessary step down that path. I'm not saying that Maduro has seen the light but he may at some point see that he is lost. The American flag waiving in Habana cannot feel right to a True Believer of the Cuban Revolution.

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  11. Anonymous11:37 PM

    Same anonymous. I was actually being serious. Given the content of Daniel's blog and his sexual orientation I would assume he would be a pretty easy candidate for receiving residency under political asylum. As for the elections and the fate of Venezuela well it will come and pass nothing has changed and the people of this country simply aren't willing to risk their lives to do something about it - it's just not in their nature.

    You have a President who is literally mentally retarded and is getting away with murder. The only choice is to leave. Perhaps if Daniel had children he would be more serious about leaving as he would be concerned about their livelihood and future rather than his own.

    If/when they ever decide to release Leopaldo it will be a Mandela moment. Perhaps if/when that happens there will be something to get excited about assuming that you actually have people who are educated still living in the country.

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    Replies
    1. Sylvia12:05 PM

      The question Anonymous is: how do you prove you are gay?
      What if everyone self-declare gay,is everyone going to have express lane processing with the Immigration and Naturalization Service?

      Delete
  12. It would be interesting to see how the Caracas media is covering what is happening in Brazil.

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    Replies
    1. Of course they won't. But what is happening in Big Brazil is extremely important for all of Latin America, and the world.

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    2. Anonymous10:33 PM

      y lo que pasa en minasbriroas

      Delete
  13. Anonymous4:43 PM

    Probably as usual, you let go, to attract or expose more dissident leaders, to have more to put the clamp onto...!!!

    I do not think a population uprising would have much success as such!

    It takes a civil war and many thousands of deaths to make a regime questionable, inside and outside and internationally...!

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  14. I like your perspective, Dano, and the hope it inspires.

    ReplyDelete

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