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Breaking News Venezuela: Chavez is back...

By Daniel Duquenal | Venezuela News and Views

... and somehow I am far from being reassured. After a long silence which included a surprise cancellation of the Sunday talk show Alo Presidente, Chavez reappeared today, supposedly on Camuri Chico. Supposedly as the only media as usual was the state media, chavistas being very careful to shield themselves from the inquiring media.

The usual platitudes followed but what was more striking was the opportunity to include yet again a few slogans to defend the revolution. Even as all the work made since 2000 in Vargas was collapsing, demonstrating that either we are in front of an even bigger cataclysm, or it was shoddy work. Of course I am not expecting an independent inquiring commission to check on it and chavismo will find some scapegoat or create yet another scandal to make people forget about the second Vargas wash out. Such is the way these regimes operate.

On other things

Union Radio has just put up its own photo gallery of the disaster.

A little snippet of Globovision on Vargas was fabulous. It showed the avenue in front of the Guipuzcoana in La GŁaria, filled with mud and nearly impassable. And on the walls of the port there was still a painting left from August "Chavez fracasado, Revocalo" (Chavez loser, revoke him). I knew that the politicized of the Vargas disaster, from the refusal of US help to the awarding of reconstruction shoddy contracts to "friends" would come back to bite Chavez in the ass. Probably the reason why he was hiding?

On a personal note. My brother and his family finally had to board a navy ship as the situation had become untenable. They left the car, vacation bags, etc,.. behind though they were planning to tough it out with our advice. Apparently they could not hold it anymore. I only got a text message as his cel battery is running too low and he cannot give us much explanations. Right now we are waiting for the outcome as he must be shipped to La GŁaira, land there and somehow be ferried up to Caracas as we are not allowed to go to that area (understandably I must say, there is little in the chaos there that we could do to find them, not to mention that I am in San Felipe). At least they made it through the most dangerous part which was to go over the rough seas from a small boat off the shore to the larger one at sea. We are worried of course, but confident that it will turn out all OK. It might take hours until we know and we must be patient.

PS: added later. Apparently the army has decided to complete evacuation of 6000 people stranded at diverse points of the shore. This tells us that the damage assesment must be worse than suspected at first. They probably know that restablishing land communication will take at least a few days, if the rains stop today, that is.

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