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Friday, December 02, 2005

Venezuela: Pre-election round-up
Imagine having a Senate election and all the opossition parties not show up:
NYT/Reuters Chavez Charges U.S. Plot Before Venezuela Vote

BBC Venezuela elections one-horse race
What privately really worries hardened "Chavistas" - the name given to Chavez supporters - is that the abstention rate could be so high that the international spotlight could fall on the election process in Venezuela and that the results could be called into question around the world.
Hugo's having fits: El Nuevo Herald reports his words, which are not available in the English version of the Miami Herald, but which sound unhinged (link in Spanish, my translation.)
Por su parte, el presidente venezolano Hugo Chávez llamó ayer a sus seguidores a enfrentar el ''golpe electoral'', como calificó al retiro de candidatos de la oposición de la elección legislativa del domingo, medida que consideró auspiciada por Estados Unidos.Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez called for his followers to confront "the electoral coup", as he called the opossition candidates' withdrawal from Sunday's legislative election, a measure he considers sponsored by the United States.

Chávez, que convocó para ayer en la noche una reunión de emergencia con su gabinete y jefes militares para analizar la situación, volvió a acusar a Washington de querer asesinarlo.
Chávez, who called an emergency cabinet and military chiefs meeting last night to analyze the situation, acussed Washington again of wanting to kill him.

''Si a alguien se le ocurre inventar o lanzar una aventura violenta nos tendrá aquí firmes como soldados'' advirtió.
"If anyone thinks of inventing or launching a violent adventure, he'll find us here firm like soldiers", he warned.

Para el día de las elecciones, el próximo domingo, Chávez llamó a su seguidores a desplegarse ''todos como en el 12 de abril y como en el 13 de abril'', días en que manifestaciones a su favor y apoyo de tropas leales lo devolvieron al poder luego de 47 horas de un golpe de Estado que lo derrocó en 2002.
For next Sunday, election day, Chávez asked his followers to mobilize "all like on April 12 and April 13", days on which public manifestations in his favor and loyal troops returned him to power after a 47-hour coup d’etat in 2002.

Indicó que el ''nuevo golpe electoral'' realmente busca impedir su reelección en diciembre del 2006, cuando aspira conseguir un nuevo periodo de 6 años.
He indicated that "the new electoral coup" actually seeks to prevent his reelection on December 2005, when he seeks to attain a new 6-year term.

El mandatario afirmó tener ''pruebas'' de que la agencia de inteligencia estadounidense CIA ``se está moviendo en Venezuela, en el Caribe, y en otros países de América Latina alentando esta nueva conspiración, donde no está descartado una vez más el magnicidio''.
The head of state insisted he has "proofs" that the CIA "is moving in on Venezuela, in the Caribbean, and in other Latin American countries encouraging this new conspiracy, in which magnicide is not ruled out" [note: magnicidio is a word that's new to me. I suppose it means the murder of a head of state]

Dijo que fueron detectadas llamadas telefónicas a los cuarteles para que se levanten, pero reafirmó su confianza en los militares venezolanos ``que no se dejarán manipular por el imperio''.
He said that telephone calls were made to headquarters for them to rise up, but he reaffirmed his confidence on the Venezuelan military, "who won't allow themselves to be manipulated by the empire".

Advirtió a dos televisoras privadas opositoras, a las que acusó de haber alentado la subversión en el pasado, a no hacerlo en esta ocasión.
He warned two private TV stations from the opposition, which he accused of having encourage subversion in the past, to not do so this time.

''El Chávez permisivo quedó en el 2002 [con el golpe de Estado del 12 de abril] quedó en la historia'', decretó, al señalar que impedirá que promuevan hechos violentos ``diga lo que diga el mundo, no me importa''.
"The permissive Chávez remained back in 2002 (with the April 12 coup), remained in history", and pointed out that he'll forbid voilence, "no matter what the world says, I don't care".

''Lo que ha hecho la oposición es lanzar un nuevo golpe, por mandato de los Estados Unidos, y esta es una de las primeras consecuencias de la Cumbre de las Américas en Mar del Plata'', donde, afirmó Chávez, su país junto a los que conforman el Mercosur le asestaron un golpe a Washington.
"What the opposition's done is a new coup, ordered by the United States, and this is one of the first consequences of the Summit of the Americas in Mar del Plate", where, according to Chávez, his country and others belonging to Mercosur cast a blow against Washington.

``Yo lo dije regresando de Mar del Plata: esto no se va a quedar así''.
"I said on the way back from Mar del Plata: this doens't end here"

''¿Qué es lo que está pasando en este mismo instante? Se ha activado una nueva conspiración contra Venezuela y no voy a acusar aquí a los perros, sino al amo de los perros: El gobierno de los Estados Unidos'', señaló Chávez en un acto de cancelación de deudas a pensionados en Caracas.
"What's happening this very moment" A new conspiracy against Venezuela has been activated and I'm not going to blame the dogs, but the dogs' master: the government of the United States", Chávez stated at a function cancelling retiree debts.

Acusó a los principales partidos de oposición que renunciaron a participar en las elecciones legislativas del 4 de diciembre de ''vasallos del imperio'' y auguró que ``progresivamente seguirán desapareciendo del mapa político''.
He acussed the main political opposition parties that refused to participate in the December 4 legislative elections as being "serfs of the empire", and predicted that "they'll continually disappear from the political map".
To put some of Hugo's rantings in context, The Economist explains,
Much is at stake. Mr. Chávez's supporters held a slim majority (of 86 to 79) in the outgoing assembly. Opinion polls show that the president still has the support of around half of Venezuelans, though that is down from 70% earlier this year. A complicated electoral system means that even a bare majority of the popular vote could translate inot four-fifths of the seats in the assembly. With that kind of majority, Mr. Chávez would have removed the last remaining constitutional restraint to the socialist system he now espouses.
Bloggers:
PMBComments Venezuela's electoral meltdown: a sort of primer for those trying to understand it

Publius Pundit On OAS flawed hypothesis: Venezuela’s electoral boycott explained

Venezuela News and Views Grado 33 and the vice

VCrisis has several excellent posts.

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