Saturday, 4 July 2015


How powerful is the military honcho Diosdado Cabello really?

He obviously has a lot of support from the military. The military caste is the one that tells Maduro to give Diosdado his share of power.  Diosdado heads the National Assembly, his brother is the minister of Industries and his wife is the minister of tourism and he is said to be behind the Soles Cartel. He obviously has a lot of clout. Still, we know the vast majority of Venezuelans dislike him a lot.

For how long is his current position going to last?

I will be analysing this character in upcoming posts.

Monday, 22 June 2015

La Guerre au Vénézuéla aux temps du Chavismo

If you speak French, you should listen to this. If you don't but you know French speakers  who want to know about Venezuela, send them the link, please.

Thanks to Alexandra for tweeting that and to Julien, in the first place, for that excellent report.

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Venezuela auf Deutsch, Gabriela Montero und die Kollaborateure

Ein Leser (R.) hat mich auf einen Artikel im Spiegel der letzten Woche aufmerksam gemacht. Da spricht Gabriela Montero, eine sehr begabte venezolanische Pianistin, über die Lage in unserer südamerikanischen Heimat. Sie vergleicht El Sistema mit dem Fußball der FIFA: man hat lange blinde Kuh gespielt und das Verdorbene dahinter nicht diskutiert. Im Fall Venezuelas haben die meisten Menschen die Musik dieser seit je vom Staat (nicht seit Chávez) unterstützten Institution gelobt, ohne zu diskutieren, warum die leitenden Figuren - zum Beispiel José Antonio Abreu und Gustavo Dudamel - keine Stellungnahme zur Korruption und zur Verschlechterung der Demokratie in Venezuela gezeigt haben. Montero betrachtet Musiker wie Dudamel als Kollaborateure. Ich gebe ihr recht. Dudamel hat mich oft an Mephisto, von Klaus Mann, denken lassen. Der Text vom Spiegel ist nicht frei zugänglich. Sie können aber den Anfang hier lesen. 

Monteros Worte sind schon mehrmals auf Deutsch veröffentlicht worden. Zum Beispiel hier oder hier.

Meinen Dank an R.
Gustavo Dudamel: ein Kollaborateur, der Leibwächter in Venezuela nötig hat

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Parliamentary elections in Venezuela: it doesn't get shoddier than this

The head of the very Chavista National Electoral Council just said the parliamentary elections will take place some time in the last 3 months of 2015. It couldn't be fuzzier than that. The elections had to take place this year, they have to be announced 3 months in advance and the "primaries" of the different parties, obviously, had to take place before that. Last but not least, even the parliament of our big neighbour Brazil, had already warned Venezuela's government should set the date for the elections.

The CNE already "reduced" the population of six electoral districts where the opposition had the clear majority and increase more than expected population in very Chavista areas of the same states in order to reduce the amount of deputies the opposition could get and increase those of the regime. Gerrymandering as in 2010 is not enough anymore.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Venezuelan food in Europe - Comida venezolana en Europa

If you know of a Venezuelan restaurant in Europe, could you put its name and address on the comments' section, please? Thank you!

Si conoces un restaurante venezolano en Europa: ¿podrías escribir su nombre y dirección en los comentarios, por favor? ¡Gracias!

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Luis Vásquez Corro: Just another prisoner of Chavismo

The president of the Engineering Association of Lara state said two days ago that if the Nino-related drought continued, the government will have to close down one of the turbines of the Tui Dam in Southern Venezuela and (extra) electricity rationing will have to be implemented.

Today he was detained by the Chavista secret police SEBIN. The previous head of SEBIN and current interior minister of Venezuela is Gustavo González López, whose assets in the USA have been frozen by the Obama administration because of the human right violations committed during his repression of the 2014 protests.

You cannot report about this

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Yanomami, their guts, your guts

Newspapers are reporting about fascinating scientific findings coming from Venezuela and the United States. The news are about how the First Nation group of the Yanomami seem to have the most varied microbiome known up to now in humans and this seems to bring special resistance to antibiotics. Exceptionally, US American and Venezuelan scientists could work together on this.

You can read about it here (in English) and here (in Spanish, different details). I am still not sure about the conclusions people are drawing on this case but then I am an absolute layman when it comes to biology

On a somewhat related note - guts and nations-, I recently read in German a book by young physician Giulia Enders: Darm mit Charm. It will appear in English next month with the title "Gut".

There is some food for thought in all these sources.

And I ask myself: what is in here for the sustainable development of the Yanomami? Their region is being invaded by countless illegal miners and smugglers.