Hands Off The Queen

 We’ve got a good one today from i News. They report that the president of Venezuela’s Central Bank says diplomatic letters from The Queen of England…Yes, The Queen, are evidence that Britain recognizes the government of Nicolas Maduro. The letters in question are requests from Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, and the Grenadines for changes in the islands’ representation in Venezuela. The UK government’s position remains unchanged. They recognize interim President, Juan Guaido and the 2015 National Assembly (the last one voted in through free and fair elections) as the legitimate government of Venezuela. So, why am I telling you this? This is a last-ditch effort by the Maduro regime to get their hands on the 31 tons of Venezuela gold being held in BOE (Bank Of England) vaults. All previous court rulings, appeals, etc. have gone against the Chavistas (as most court rulings do). It doesn’t look like it’s going to work and, as far as I’m concerned, leave The Queen out of it.

 Then we have Rio Times reporting that Nicolas Maduro has announced he has prioritized two main objectives (a man’s gotta’ have his priorities). ” …recover the gold that they intend to steal from us…recover the plane that they intend to steal from us.” (Maduro contends that the plane, the Emtrasur “Mystery Plane”, is used for humanitarian flights and that the gold in the BOE vaults would be used to fight the pandemic and other health-related issues…neither of which is true, it you know anything about the Maduro regime) He may want to prioritize something else, although with Maduro apologist, Fernandez, in charge in Argentina, he has a shot at the plane. (not a good shot but a shot nonetheless)

 And we have AFP telling us that there are all kinds of social media posts and stories out there about monkey pox.The latest is that monkey pox may be linked to Covid-19 vaccines since (they claim) there are no cases in countries that haven’t administered the Pfizer-Bio-N- Tech vaccines for Covid-19. I hate to use this term but…Fact Check! …Venezuela, Russia, and India all have monkey pox cases and none of them have administered the Pfizer-Bio-N- Tech vaccines and conversely, most countries that have administered the Pfizer-Bio-N- Tech vaccines have no reported cases.

 Then we have FX Empire reporting that Venezuela’s Defense Minister, General Vladimir Padrino, says he has received instructions from Nicolas Maduro to contact Colombia Defense Minister, Ivan Velasquez, (Where did all these Latinos with Russian names come from?) in order to “re-establish military relations”. Maduro severed all relations with Colombia in 2019 after US-backed opposition leader, interim President Juan Guaido’s attempt to deliver humanitarian aid to Venezuela from Colombia. (Remember that one? The Chavistas were still denying a humanitarian crisis at that point) All indications are that Maduro is putting on “the full-court press” to form an alliance with new leftist (Marxist) Colombia President, Gustavo Petro. Colombia’s Defense Minister did not respond to requests for comment.

 And we have KDRTV telling us that the IEBC (Kenya electoral commission) has blamed it’s struggle to provide kits to prepare election machines on the earlier arrest of three Venezuelan nationals who were found with 17 rolls of stickers thought to be election materials. The arrests led to a confrontation between the IEBC and the DCI (Kenya Directorate of Criminal Investigations). The two sides have reconciled but the IEBC has never addressed the whereabouts of the three Venezuelan nationals (a lot of people have a lot of questions) who have been released.

 Then we have Caracas Chronicles telling us that teachers and other education workers protested (again) at various locations including UCV (Venezuela Central University) demanding that Maduro honor payments to all public employees (not just teachers) and calling for the release of imprisoned union leaders.

 Note: You may wonder why the Maduro regime doesn’t pay all these pubic workers. I mean come on…they get paid in bolivars and the BCV can print all the bolivars they want to…right? We can only speculate but, best guess, the regime has been desperately trying to support the value of (and use of) the bolivar ever since the latest re-denomination of the local currency. In all their previous iterations the Chavistas have seen drastic devaluations of the bolivar each time they did one of these re-denomination moves. The current version of the bolivar has lopped off 14 zeroes fro the original pre- Chavista bolivar.So…the BCV has been using millions of dollars to buy bolivars and keep it’s value from cratering as we’ve seen in the past and at the same time they’ve been avoiding unlimited printing of bolivars, as they’ve done in the past. It seems to be working in that the $30 monthly minimum wage at the time of the re-denomination last fall is still at a little under $24 a month. (In the past it has gone as low as 60 cents a month) So, who gets left out in this equation…the Venezuelan people, who just have to wait for the government to print more bolivars and pay them. (Just to clarify the devaluation of the bolivar, what you could buy with one bolivar when Hugo Chavez took power about 22 years ago you now need about  a trillion bolivars)

 Then we have Colombia President, Gustavo Petro, assuring everyone that while he wants talks to normalize relations with Venezuela to go forward he’s not thinking about holding a meeting with Nicolas Maduro.

 And we have Venezuela opposition’s Unitary Platform asking Petro to join Venezuelan’s in their fight for respect for Human Rights and free and fair elections. They also asked for solidarity with Venezuelan citizens in Colombia, however, 41 NGOs have expressed concern for a potential plan of “voluntary” return to Venezuela by migrants in Colombia. They fear that “voluntary” is a euphemism for collective deportation plans.

 Then we have one of Nicolas Maduro’s ministers (Caracas Chronicles didn’t specify which one) tweeted on Indigenous Peoples Day “…We celebrate the memory and fight of native populations.” This, as four indigenous citizens were murdered with impunity by Venezuela Armed Forces a couple of months ago in a dispute over a WiFi pass code. Chavismo violates their rights often in both action and omission.

 And we have Fe y Alegria member, Luisa Pernalete, explaining that Venezuelans who live in extreme poverty (75% of the population) don’t go to school because of lack of access. The gap between public and private education is worse than ever.

 Then we have NGO- Control Ciudano with an alert of a new problem (as if the world of 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism needed another problem) : Active military officers are being appointed to head regional police forces. That’s a disturbing trend …like private citizens in military prisons and trials in military courts. So now I’m really confused. What kind of government is the Maduro regime? It’s definitely not a democracy. I was thinking more like a military junta but a junta is a takeover by force and this government is staying in power by force although Maduro has ceded control of almost everything to the military. A military dictatorship? Well, that’s close except Maduro isn’t military so I guess we’ll just stick with dictatorship… unless Maduro declares himself a general…why not? Venezuela already has 2,000 of ’em. In case you’re wondering, the US Army has about 230 generals.

 That will do it for the week. See y’all Monday. Have a great weekend everybody!!!


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