Reports on failure of Ven. "general strike"

Fred Feldman ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Wed Dec 4 15:03:48 MST 2002


(The following report by Ron Kohn was sent to CubaNews today. Fred)
Today is the third day of the anti-Chavez strike - backed by certain
labor unions, the conglomerate business association - Fedecamaras and
elements of the political parties well known for their forty years of
corrupt government.

As is well known, it is all but impossible to gather any reliable
information from the ultra right wing Caracas based media and for
that matter from the "international" sources.

I, therefore have relied on phone conversations with Venezuelans in
diverse sectors of the country.

It should be remembered that Venezuela is a large country (more than
twice the size of California) and only just over 10 percent of the
inhabitants actually live in the capital city.

In Caracas, the vast majority reside in zinc topped shacks and
if  "fortunate", avail themselves of a refrigerator box to use as a
front door. The abject poverty is so very evident the very moment one
arrives in that once beautiful city.

In order to obtain some vague idea of the current events, I have been
going to www.panodi.com This is the website of Panorama. Daily
published in Maracaibo, Venezuela's second city and center of the
petroleum industry.  Panorama has been around for 88 years and has
not been known for Chavez or anti-Chavez positions.

In today's edition, what do I find:

"Commercial activity has been intense and with no problems. Shops
that closed on Monday, worked normally yeaterday. Downtown was filled
with peddlers and shopers. Traffic has been as chaotic as aways."

A sales person in a store, who did not want to be identified,
confirmed that they had closed on Monday  and told the reporter,
"Sir,I have to work."

Nearby towns -  84 % of businesses working normally.

Paraguana oil refineries (the largest refining complex in the world -
formerly owned by EXXON and Shell) completely normal activities.

Ron










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