Venezuela murder mystery - Le Monde diplomatique - English edition
The Spanish newspaper El País rarely understates its criticism of Hugo Chávez’s “Bolivarian” Venezuela. But on 18 April it said: “Caracas is a bloody city. Rivers of blood flow from its buildings; rivers of blood flow from its mountains; rivers of blood flow from its houses.” Local residents to whom I showed this laughed, but they all agreed violence was a major issue. “We have a very serious problem” (Tulio Jimenez, president of the interior policy commission of Venezuela’s national assembly). “My wife has been attacked twice in two years – under that bridge” (a representative of Brazil’s MST landless workers’ movement). “For people in working class areas, violence is part of everyday life” (a resident in the Petare suburb). “Even policemen wearing bulletproof jackets get killed, so what chance have we got?” (a working class woman from Ocumaré del Tuy, a city south of Caracas). “Almost everyone in our community has lost a relative” (Father Didier Heyraud, a priest in Petare).Miguel Angel Pérez, the executive vice president of the Institut d’Etudes Avancées, complained: “They would like us to believe that insecurity is a product of Chavism. They’re forgetting how terrible it was in the late 80s and early 90s: you couldn’t go out in the street.”The article goes on to state the infiltration of columbian paramilitaries into venezuela may be the destabilizing factor. And apparently columbians are moving in and playing mafioso. What state are the immigration controls in, I wonder. Chavez certainly inherited a broken state....there are no national databases providing figures based on uniform criteria. Anyone can make up a “record death toll” without the risk of being contradicted. And nobody ever considers the causes, only the effects.
Another interesting fact:
I leave the rest up to you.The poverty rate has fallen from around 60% to 23% over the last decade, and extreme poverty from 25% to 5%, but crime has soared.