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Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:19 AM

What do y'all think? Is this the modern day equivalent...........

to a worker's militia? Or is it a gang of "thugs"?

http://www.tennessean.com/article/20120429/NEWS08/304290095/Pro-Chavez-gangs-allowed-rule-turf-Venezuela?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|News Nation & World

16 replies, 2045 views

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:47 AM

1. Given DU's anti-Chavez bias, I'm betting on "thugs", but it's what we're going to have to do or fail

 

Fantatically one-sided article, though. It's hard to tell anything from it

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Response to saras (Reply #1)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 12:02 PM

4. "Fanatically one-sided article..."........

Ain't that the truth. The one-sidedness of the article is what pointed me towards my question though. Worker's militias are usually considered "gangs of thugs" by the capitalist owners.

And yes, you've definitely got to read between the lines to get anything out of it.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:49 AM

2. Wow, slanted at all?

First, label them as gangs, despite their attempts to bring law and order where the police don't go.

Second, tie them to Chavez, despite his criticism of the groups.

Third, accuse them of crimes they might commit...


“These illegally armed groups could at some point use those weapons to commit crimes or to destabilize any government,” said Luis Izquiel, who leads a security committee for the opposition.



I believe the US counterpart is known as "The Guardian Angels".


I'm not defending these groups, just pointing out the article's bias.

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Response to Scuba (Reply #2)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 11:59 AM

3. Oh yeah, DEFINITELY biased..........

but then again, it's a bourgeois newspaper using a bourgeois news service. I EXPECTED bias, but you can read between the lines, hence my question about the "gangs".

The reason I got into thinking that this MIGHT be considered worker's militia is because "thugs" was what the Bolshevik worker's militia in the various cities was called by the Kadets and other centrist parties in Russia of 1917. Well, that and the fact that they seem to BE the only effective policing these poor areas in Venuezuela have. And as a leader, Chavez would probably have to call them on some things even if they support him. They are, after all, ad hoc bodies (usually) and probably rather loosely led.

It would be interesting to research them more deeply.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 12:55 PM

5. Given Chavez's current medical condition I think he

and the workers need all the help they can get. Others are already jockeying for power in Venezuela.

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Response to TBF (Reply #5)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 01:17 PM

8. And help for the working class is what a worker's militia.........

is all about. They are, ideally, supposed to provide police type protection for the workers and the poor, along with defense against fascists and reactionaries. We actually need to start organizing them here ASAP.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 12:55 PM

6. They have a Facebook page.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Colectivo-La-Piedrita/64515065179?filter=2

They got some bad press a few months ago for a photo "arming children", but the Socialist paper Aporrea published their statement correcting this: it was a playacting skit.

http://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=n&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&layout=2&eotf=1&u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.aporrea.org%2Factualidad%2Fn197885.html&act=url


To the capitalist press, anyone or anything that threatens teh "free markets" is a "thug". At least they haven't shot anyone in the face point-blank with tear-gas canisters and "bean-bag" bullets.

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Response to Starry Messenger (Reply #6)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 01:14 PM

7. As noted in posts above, the sheer bias in this article..........

is what got me to thinking about the comparison to a worker's militia. As a "fundamentalist" Bolshevik, I think that worker's militias are needed and I KNOW that they will be characterized as "thugs" and "gangs" by the capitalist press. The original worker's militias in Russia was characterized the same way by the Kadets and even some of the Mensheviks.

Thanks for the resources Starry. The article, as biased as it was, made me want to research them further.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Reply #7)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 01:42 PM

10. I'm glad you posted it, it's got me curious too. :)

I don't know that much about Venezuela. An artist friend of mine went on a fact-finding tour there when the revolution had just gotten started and had great reports about what was going on.

The author of the article in the OP seems to focus on cranky-pants articles on Chavez and Venezuela: http://www.salon.com/writer/fabiola_sanchez/

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 01:28 PM

9. That's not an article...

that is an "8 sentences in 4 paragraphs" diatribe ( yeah, i counted). It is no more than propaganda, and a ham- fisted piece of that.

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Response to ret5hd (Reply #9)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 02:02 PM

11. No argument from me. HOWEVER..........

it did enlighten me about the fact that there does seem to be something akin to a worker's militia organized in Venezuela. It made me curious about it.

With propaganda from the capitalist press, you have to read between the lines.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Sun Apr 29, 2012, 08:25 PM

12. Well that was some shoddy "Journalism" Hearst would be proud.

Honestly though, I can't really give much of opinion on this group because aside from the article I don't know anything about them and opinions made from ignorance are worse than useless. If anyone can recommend any better sources on this group I'd be interested in reading them.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Mon Apr 30, 2012, 05:09 AM

13. washingtonpost.com carried a longer version of the article

Here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/in-venezuela-armed-groups-that-pledge-allegiance-to-hugo-chavez-rule-over-slum-fiefdoms/2012/04/28/gIQAQNWMnT_story.html

Still not judging without more information but this version was a little more in depth.
Also some interesting photos there.

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Response to limpyhobbler (Reply #13)

Mon Apr 30, 2012, 11:14 AM

14. Yeah, I noticed on their facebook page.........

that there was a lot of religious imagery involved with this group. Maybe an offshoot of the "Liberation Theology" of the 60s/70s?

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Reply #14)

Mon Apr 30, 2012, 05:10 PM

16. That they'd be on Facebook is amazing. Definitely not our ancestors' revolutions.

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Response to socialist_n_TN (Original post)

Mon Apr 30, 2012, 05:06 PM

15. JC with a gun? Sounds RW. And if they're controlling 'one of Caracas’ most violent slums'

They are not doing a good job of protecting the people as a 'militia' might be employed by the residents, if this is true. Why would a militia enforcing access to the neighborhood be a plus if crime is still high?

Possibly the existence of such an armed militia or their support for Chavez is causing the neigbhorhood to be classifed as violent, especially if gun ownership and such associations are illegal.

When RW militias operated at large estates or behind gates in Latin America, their actions were not up for press scrutiny. Weren't they purveyors of violence, but with the umbrella of property to shield their acts?

This group is controlling a small area, not a large estate or compound.The day-to-day life of the people in the neigbhorhood would be the indicator of what this group would be working to achieve.

This may be sensationalism to smear Chavez. I support social justice for the unlanded poor in Venezuela and standing up to foreign interests to make them pay a fair price for resources. But I don't know any Latinos who like him, they regard him as a crook and terrorist.

I don't really know the facts on the ground, or if this is a good thing or not, but it sounds like gangs or mafia activity controlling an area.

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