We Lost!

 First up we have the Ottawa Citizen with an OP-ED piece from John Ivison asking,”Remember the fight against Venezuela’s dictator? We lost!” That’s it in a nutshell. One person involved with the founding of “The Lima Group”, an organization formed to restore democracy in Venezuela, of which Canada (and not the US) was a member, said “We thought change was imminent. There was a lot of solidarity on the importance of democracy.” Ivison summed it up like this, “Not many people would have bet on Maduro surviving in office…yet few would now bet on his demise.”

 He maintains that Maduro’s survival was enabled by a shift in global priorities with Canada focusing more on domestic issues. He also says the US (Biden administration) is enabling Maduro through moves like sanctions relief for the Maduro regime to allow oil shipments to Europe in return for debt relief.

 To add insult to injury he cites a statement by Alberta Premier, Jason Kennedy, when he testified before a US Senate committee this spring. He was recalling a conversation with the US Ambassador to Canada regarding energy links between the two countries. The ambassador said “There may be interest in expanding the relationship but given climate change imperatives the US is not really in the market for expanding it’s dependence on fossil fuels.” The response was along the lines of… “That is, except when they’re supplied by socialist dictators.” The US (Biden administration) cancelled the Keystone XL Pipeline and isn’t buying oil from Canada at the level it did in the past. (Most people don’t know that more US oil imports come from Canada than any other country) This, while the Biden administration was asking Saudi Arabia and Venezuela to produce more oil.

 Maduro is now further entrenched as he is surrounded by a recent wave of leftist leaders winning elections in South American countries. The article was right. We may be stuck with this guy for a while. The restoration of democracy in Venezuela simply isn’t a priority. The starvation of the Venezuelan people and the systematic violation of their human rights simply isn’t a priority.

 Then, on the lighter side we have Reuters reporting that in Maracaibo, Venezuela, once the hub of Venezuela’s oil industry, electrical technician, Jose Cintron, introduced a small solar-powered electric vehicle, built on a golf cart frame, capable of traveling up to 40 KPH (kilometers per hour) with a 10 hour recharge time. He said he was told by Nicolas Maduro, “I’ll buy it from you.” to which he replied, “It would be necessary to manufacture them, Mr. President, and for that an industry, an assembly is needed.” Good point.

 And we have PR Newswire reporting that The Simon Bolivar Foundation announced a grant to support liver transplants for vulnerable populations in Venezuela such as mothers and children which, according to a Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health study,haven’t occurred since 2017.

 Then we have Caracas Chronicles telling us that Venezuelan economist, Asdrubal Oliveres, says inflation in September will continue to increase in some sectors unlike the food sector which responds immediately.There is no confidence in the bolivar (local currency). PDVSA (Venezuela government-owned oil company) keeps failing to provide currency delivery on schedule to the BCV (Venezuela Central Bank) and BCV needs to stop injecting money into the system as well as revising it’s exchange policy (it’s rate is lower than the ‘black’ open market) Maybe then we could get an accurate read on the economy and the stability of the currency.

 And we have Bloomberg Linea reporting that the wife of Alex Saab (the guy extradited to the US and architect of Maduro’s fraudulent CLAP food program), Camilla Fabri, was included as part of the delegation to the negotiations in Mexico between the Maduro regime and the opposition…Uhh…didn’t the regime say they wouldn’t participate in the talks until Alex Saab was free? …Uhh…and after backsliding on that one didn’t they say they wouldn’t participate in the talks until the Emtrasur “Mystery Flight” Boeing 747 cargo plane was returned to them and the crew allowed to return home? Why are they talking about this now?

 Then we have Fontur (Venezuela National Foundation for Urban Transportation) VP, Elroy Sulbaran, saying 85% of the fleet has been recovered thanks to the work by the Transportation Ministry and themselves. The numbers don’t add up so we’ll have to wait for some third party information to confirm (as is always the case with Chavista numbers).

 And we have Venezuela Armed Forces saying they have dismantled more IEDs (improvised explosive devices) in Apure state. I hope it’s true as many people have been killed accidentally triggering them. The question is, what is their motivation behind this initiative? Is it concern for the citizens or to provide a safer passage for drug traffickers who use the same routes?

 Then we have more NGOs have requested the UN Human Rights Council renew the mandate of the FFM (Fact Finding Mission) which provides critical information to both the UNHCHR (United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) and, by extension, the ICC (International Criminal Court) investigations. Other organizations and agencies have requested the mandate be renewed as it is due to expire this month.

 And we have Espacio Publico reporting that the cases of harassment and intimidation of citizens has reached the highest level since March.

 Then we have Venezuela being currently ranked in last place in the International Property Rights Index, 2022 presented by Property Rights Alliance. Sounds about right…no property rights, no legal rights, no Human Rights…that’s Venezuela under the Maduro regime.

 And we have Clima 21 warning that Venezuela is the Amazonian country with the highest loss of natural forest in the region…and yet the environmentalists don’t seem that upset about Nicolas Maduro’s “Mining Arc”.

 Then we have Colombian President, Gustavo Petro, and Nicolas Maduro’s ambassador, Felix Plasencia, announcing the restart of “judicial cooperation” between the two countries. We can only hope this doesn’t signal a change in posture by Petro, who has said that he will not extradite  Venezuelans that have fled to Colombia to escape the Maduro regime and 21st Century Bolivarian Socialism.

 And speaking of Colombian Presidents, Gustavo Petro’s predecessor, Ivan Duque, says his worst frustration was “not seeing the ousting of Maduro in Venezuela”. We can add him to the long list of people who feel that way.

 Then we have Dissident Voice saying that, according to Dissident Voice’s Roger D Harris, pressure is building on the Biden administration to do a prisoner swap deal with Alex Saab for some Americans currently detained in Venezuela. We hope this is just wishful thinking on the part of Harris, who is a recognized Maduro apologist and part of the “#Free Alex Saab” movement. As we’ve previously stated, Alex Saab is at the center of Maduro’s fraudulent CLAP food program which has starved millions of Venezuelans. he should not be part of any “deal” with the Maduro regime.

 More tomorrow….

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