Yesterday, a dark chapter in American history got that much more disgraceful. Attorney General Holder announced the closure of the last two open criminal inquiries into abusive interrogations by CIA officials. The pronouncement means that not a single CIA official will be prosecuted in federal courts for any of the abuse, torture or even death that took place at the hands of CIA officers and contractors.
Since 9/11, dozens of terrorism suspects have been held incommunicado by the CIA in secret prisons around the world and subjected to repeated brutality in the name of extracting information. The White House and its lead legal advice team, the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel (OLC), approved the use of these previously illegal tactics based on profoundly flawed legal reasoning and a complete lack of interrogation or law enforcement experience.
CIA interrogators were told that they could waterboard suspects, even though the Reagan administration and its predecessors prosecuted Americans and others for using the tactic. Interrogators were told they could use, among other tactics, extended sleep deprivation; “stress positions” such as forced-standing, handcuffing in painful crouched positions and shackling people to the ceiling, usually for hours or even days; confining prisoners to small, coffin-like boxes with air and light cut off; extended forced nudity; sensory bombardment; extreme temperatures; hooding; and physical beatings, including slamming prisoners into walls. Each and every one of these techniques had been declared torture at some point by US courts, Israeli courts, European Courts, the UN Committee on Torture or other foreign courts. But the OLC’s approval of the techniques meant the Obama Justice Department refused to investigate their use. Instead, in 2009, Attorney General Holder ordered a preliminary review of 101 cases where the CIA allegedly went even beyond the approved torture techniques. In June 2011, the Justice Department closed 99 of those cases and opened full investigations into the remaining 2, both of which involved prisoners who died while in US custody. Now, those last two investigations have also ended.
It is simply unacceptable that torture can be treated with impunity, no matter the goal of the torturers. Doing so gravely undermines the prohibition against torture worldwide and sends the dangerous message to US and foreign officials that there will be no consequences for future abuses.
So, the ACLU is taking the long view of this struggle. Despite the Justice Department’s refusal to enforce the law, we will continue to press for true accountability – both in the United States and overseas – for the designers, facilitators, overseers and perpetrators of torture and abuse. We will continue to work for the day when officials hear a resoundingly different message than the one delivered by Attorney General Holder: torture and abuse are never legitimate, but if you do make the egregious error of crossing that line, fear the law, for you will be held be to account.
Manufacturing Dissent is a documentary about the psychological-warfare by the media and political establishment of the west and their allies aimed at facilitating the US, European and Israeli agenda of getting rid of the current Syrian government. It demonstrates how the media has directly contributed to the bloodshed in Syria.
The documentary de-constructs the main allegations those actors have presented, namely that the Syrian government was systematically repressing peaceful protests and that it has lost legitimacy. It shows how such claims are supported by scant evidence and are therefore little more than propaganda to serve the foreign policy interests of their countries.
Manufacturing Dissent includes evidence of fake reports broadcasted/published by the likes of CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera and others and interviews with a cross section of the Syrian population including an actor, a craftsman, a journalist, a resident from Homs and an activist who have all been affected by the crisis.
Produced by journalists Lizzie Phelan and Mostafa Afzalzadeh.
Edited by Lizzie Phelan.
Website for the documentary here http://www.manufacturing-dissent.com/ designed by Shahinaz Alsibahie.
- Israeli Media reports “Syrian Rebels Claim to Take Over Chemical Weapons” (pennyforyourthoughts2.blogspot.com)
- “Progressive” War Propaganda: Deception with a Human Face (vaticproject.blogspot.com)
West bank – Three Palestinians were injured and 5 arrested today during Nabi Saleh’s weekly demonstration. Israeli military set up road blocks surrounding the village early this morning in order to prevent people and journalists from participating.
At 4:30 p.m., Malek Tamini was shot with a live bullet which went through his hand and the side of his body. He has undergone surgery for his injuries. One Palestinian suffered an open wound after being shot with a tear gas canister during protests. Soldiers were firing tears gas canisters directly in to the crowd with the intent of causing serious injury and then prevented the ambulance from entering the village for one hour . One local resident received stitches in Ramallah hospital after suffering a head wound from a rubber-coated steel bullet.
Five Palestinians protestors including Mohammad Khatib and Bilal Tamimi of the popular committees, a student journalist, and two young women activists were arrested in the morning while walking towards the village spring which was annexed by the nearby illegal Israeli settlement, Halamish. All have since been released.
Nabi Saleh is a small village of approximately 550 people, twenty kilometres north west of Ramallah in the West Bank of the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
The Israeli colony of Halamish (also known as Neveh Tzuf ) was established on lands belonging to the villages of An Nabi Saleh and Deir Nidham in 1976. In response to the illegal colony being established on their land, the residents of An Nabi Saleh and Deir Nidham began holding demonstrations in opposition to the theft of their land and the establishment of the colony (whose establishment violates international law). The residents of An Nabi Saleh and Deir Nidham lodged a court case against the colony in Israel’s high court, but were unable to stop the construction the illegal settlement.
Since its establishment in 1977, Halamish colony has continued to expand and steal more Palestinian land. In 2008, the residents of An Nabi Saleh challenged the building of a fence by the colony on private Palestinian land, which prevented Palestinians from accessing their land. The Israeli courts ruled that the fence was to be dismantled. Despite the Israeli court ruling, the colony continued to illegally annex more Palestinian land. In the summer of 2008, Israeli settlers from Halamish seized control of a number of springs, all of which were located on private Palestinian land belonging to residents of An Nabi Saleh.
In December 2009, the village began weekly non-violent demonstrations in opposition to the illegal Israeli colony of Halamish annexing the fresh water springs and stealing more of the village’s land. Since An Nabi Saleh began its demonstrations, the Israeli military has brutally sought to repress the non-violent protests, arresting more than 13% of the village, including children. In total, as of 31 March 2011, 64 village residents have been arrested. All but 3 were tried for participating in the non-violent demonstrations. Of those imprisoned, 29 have been minors under the age of 18 years and 4 have been women.
For more information see Nabi Saleh Solidarity.
Paddy Clark is a volunteer with Jordan Valley solidarity.
- Nabi Saleh: “The resistance is for our kids’ future” (occupiedpalestine.wordpress.com)
- Soldiers Attack Nabi Saleh Weekly Protest, Injuries Reported (imemc.org)
- Israeli Court Approves Well Destruction In Bethlehem (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Israel soldiers attack children, separate from detained mother (bikyamasr.com)
RAMALLAH — Different human rights organizations were able to document last August 26 attacks by extremist Jewish settlers against Palestinians and their property in the West Bank and noted that there were other attacks not documented for many reasons, according to Haaretz newspaper.
These attacks were reported by B’Tselem, OCHA, Coexistence, and There is Law, organizations active in the occupied Palestinian lands.
The newspaper explained that in four different arson attacks, 19 Palestinians sustained injuries and the most dangerous one happened when Jewish settlers threw a Molotov cocktail at a Palestinian car boarded by six passengers from Nahalin village from the same family. All six Palestinians were admitted to the hospital, two of them were in serious condition and the others suffered moderate burn injuries.
The newspaper also mentioned other incidents in which Palestinians sustained injuries during attacks by settlers. Different arson attacks were reportedly carried out by Jewish extremists on Palestinian homes and cars in different West Bank areas.
- Renegade Jewish Settlers (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Jewish Settler’s Vehicle Rams Child in Hebron Hit and Run (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Jewish settlers spray toxic substance, kill herd of sheep (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Jewish Settlers Empty Palestinian Well, Flood Farmlands (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- Number of Jewish settlers in West Bank doubled in 12 years (alethonews.wordpress.com)
Palestinian women wait to cross an Israeli checkpoint on their way from
the West Bank city of Bethlehem to attend prayers in the Al-Aqsa Mosque
in Jerusalem during Ramadan 2011. (MaanImages/Luay Sababa)
After years of travel restrictions, Israel last month opened up its borders to many (not all, of course) Palestinians from the West Bank. In Nablus alone, 17,000 permits were issued out of 25,000 applications. Certain age groups were allowed in without a permit.
The occasion was the holy month of Ramadan, but there is no denial that a decision was taken somewhere in the Israeli military establishment to loosen up the big prison that millions of Palestinians find themselves in.
Even the dreaded Qalandiya checkpoint all of sudden became much easier to cross, with soldiers merely looking at the car number while crossing, at times without the long lines that have become its trademark.
Naturally, Palestinians were delighted to be able to pray in Jerusalem’s Aqsa Mosque and visit relatives and friends in Jerusalem and inside the Green Line. Many had not been in Jerusalem for decades.
Parents took their children (some teenagers) to see a Jerusalem they had never seen. Many flooded West Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa and other locations.
Palestinians shopped (the Malha mall is said to have sold goods worth two million shekels in one weekend). They hit the beaches and stores, enjoying a rare occasion to get out of the closed area of the West Bank.
The Israeli decision, carried out unilaterally (except for the administrative part at the liaison offices), surprised many, including the political establishment.
What was the reason for this Israeli “benevolence” at a time when hundreds of foreigners coming to visit Palestine are denied entry at the King Hussein Bridge?
Palestinian commentators hit the airwaves with arguments, wondering whether the decision was primarily political or economy-related.
They said that Israel was satisfied with the high degree of security cooperation with the Palestinian Authority and that the security situation was the best in years and therefore Israelis wanted to take advantage of this security lull to help release Palestinian tension.
Some argued that Israel was concerned that a third intifada might be around the corner and that their decision allowing masses of Palestinians to move around might help steer people away from a return to violent confrontations.
Others pointed out the various statistics showing how much Palestinians purchased in Israel and said that this was a calculated decision to help Israel’s economy and to counter the boycott of Israeli products.
Some, however, said that this does not make sense because the amount of money spent by Palestinians in this one burst is peanuts compared to the large Israeli economy.
Yet others argued that with the Palestinian Authority’s financial situation in a dire situation, the number of unemployed Palestinians will increase dramatically, which could contribute to the return of violence. This economic safety valve, it was argued, had more with the idea of returning the Palestinian economy to the days when it was totally dependent on Israel.
With Israeli companies needing workers and with the anti-African mood in the Israeli public, the argument was that it might be time to allow Palestinian workers who commute and therefore not cause a major social problem in Israel to start working in Israel.
Palestinian laborers are very much desired by Israeli employers because of their high level of productivity, knowledge of Hebrew and understanding of the needs of Israeli employers.
To many, the Palestinian workers are much better than the imported Thai workers or African migrants.
Whatever the real motivation behind the Israeli move to relax its border-crossing policy, it seems clear that a political solution is much further than previously expected.
An independent Palestinian state with strong economic ties with Jordan, Egypt and the Arab world is perhaps farther now than in decades.
With the lack of a horizon for peace, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s economic peace initiative is now in high gear, being applied unilaterally by the Israeli army.
Daoud Kuttab is a journalist and former professor of journalism at Princeton University.
Tunisia – For the past three months, the Arab Maghreb countries have been witnessing a growing number of controversies and scandals concerning cells linked to Israeli espionage activities.
It began when an informants network was dismantled in Mauritania early this year. Then Mossad made the headlines in Algeria and Morocco in a string of reports, rumors, and hoaxes.
Finally, a new scandal reverberated across Tunisia last week involving a wide network of Mossad operations, including espionage centers using the country as a base to spy across the Maghreb region.
Abderraouf al-Ayadi, head of the Wafa Movement which split from the Rally for the Republic (RPR), caused a huge stir last week when he revealed that Mossad has stepped up its activities in post-revolutionary Tunisia.
He said that these activities were being conducted under the “cover of European and US NGOs that claim to be charitable, humanitarian, or cultural.”
This echoes earlier statements by the head of the Tunisian Workers Party (formerly POCT), Hamma al-Hammami, about “Israeli spy networks operating in post-revolution Tunisia that took advantage of the state of chaos and lawlessness that swept the country following president Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali’s escape.”
The information revealed by Ayadi and Hammami coincided with a February report by the Yafa Center for Studies and Research focusing on Mossad activities in the Maghreb. The report said that the agency began concentrating its operations in Tunisia following the PLO’s exit from Beirut and relocation to Tunis in 1982.
Interest in the region declined after the signing of the Oslo accords, until the Tunisian revolution brought it back.
The report spoke about the post-Oslo Tunisian-Israeli rapprochement which became public with the establishment of a bureau for economic cooperation in 1996.
The relationship included a secret item about the “establishment of a system for security coordination between the Mossad and Tunisia by Shalom Cohen, a Tunisian Jew working in the North Africa section of the Israeli Mossad. In the same year, he became the director of the Israeli interest bureau in Tunisia.”
According to the report, Cohen used his diplomatic cover to build a “Mossad network” based in the capital Tunis, with branches in Sousse and Djerba.
The Yafa center information is consistent with that which Ayadi said he had received from a high-ranking Tunisian security source who reported the surveillance of a secret Mossad network “of around 300 agents” distributed over the three spying bases.
The first base was in the capital and run by a certain Nachman Jalboagh. It focused on Algeria by collecting information, monitoring targets, and recruiting agents.
The second is in Sousse and run by Doron Pierre. Its operations were primarily inside Tunisia, especially the monitoring the remaining Palestinians in Tunisia, Salafi movements, and groups opposing peace with Israel.
The third is in Djerba, run by Nurit Tsur, and focuses on Libya. It also acts to protect the Jewish sect in Tunisia, which is concentrated on the island, and collects information about Jewish archaeological sites and landmarks in Tunisia, Algeria, and Libya.
Tunisian authorities have remained silent despite the uproar caused by the revelations. The government has yet to take any public action concerning the issue.
Speaking to al-Maghreb newspaper, interior minister Ali al-Arid said “the statements concerning 300 Mossad spies in Tunisia, working under the cover of cultural NGOs and travel agencies, are unfounded and completely irresponsible.”
“They are intended to disturb the work of security agencies that toil night and day to protect Tunisia. Anyone who has information about the issue should contact the security agencies so they can confirm it,” he added.
Tunisian anti-normalization activists believe that the interior minister’s statements contradict information broadcast on official Israeli television in the first days of the Tunisian revolution.
Mossad had boasted about “a special operation in Tunisia, under the cover of European companies, to evacuate a group of Israelis who were visiting Djerba, the site of the oldest synagogue in the world, al-Ghariba temple.”
Tunisian activists suggest that “Mossad activities and crimes are not new in Tunisia. The most famous was the bombing of the Hammam al-Shat suburb in the autumn of 1985. It targeted the offices of late Palestinian president Yasser Arafat. The Mossad also carried out numerous assassinations in Tunisia, including that of the mastermind behind the first intifada, Abu Jihad, in 1988.”
Following the Oslo agreement, nationalist and leftist currents, as well as anti-normalization associations accused Ben Ali of “facilitating Mossad operations and activities in Tunisia.”
This was highlighted in a documentary broadcast by Tunisian television following the revolution called “The State of Corruption.” The film exposed the significant role that Ben Ali played in setting the scene for the accords.
Following Oslo, the former dictator opened an Israeli economic cooperation bureau in Tunis. The office initiated its activities by contacting several Tunisian intellectuals and journalists to lure them into normalization activities. The majority refused to be involved.
The bureau was later closed due to popular pressure following the 2002 Israeli assault on the West Bank and the consequent siege of Yasser Arafat’s headquarters in Ramallah.
The alarm sounded by Ayadi and Hammami is based on evidence and information corroborated by rights activist Ahmed al-Kahlawi, president of the Tunisian Association for Fighting Normalization and Supporting the Arab Resistance (TAFNSAR).
Kahlawi said that “several foreign organizations active in post-revolution Tunisia, such as Freedom House, play a major role in propagating the culture of normalization under the pretext of defending human rights.”
He also laid bare the schemes of an organization called “AMIDEAST, which teaches English under the supervision of the US embassy. It entices students to give up their animosity towards Israel and promotes programs that claim to call for peace and dialogue between cultures, but in reality it aims to foster normalization.”
“With the fall of Ben Ali, Israel lost a strong strategic ally in North Africa,” Kahlawi explained. He indicated that most Zionist leaders admit this openly, including Benjamin Netanyahu and Silvan Shalom, who is of Tunisian origins (born in the city of Qabis).
Ben Ali had officially welcomed Shalom in 2005 in a meeting that was not covered by the Tunisian media, coinciding with the World Summit for the Information Society (WSIS) in Tunis.
Kahlawi said the latest revelations about Mossad’s role in Tunisia should be further grounds for the constituent assembly to ratify chapter 27 of the proposed constitution, related to crimes of normalization and prosecuting collaboration with the Zionist state.
He added that “al-Nahda had rejected the criminalization of normalization, with a demagogic argument contending that the Tunisian constitution will last longer than the Israeli state, which will inevitably perish!”
Most Tunisian anti-normalization activists suspect the real reason behind al-Nahda eschewing the criminalization of normalization to be “pressure from the US on the ruling troika, and specifically on the movement, to prevent the ratification of chapter 27, which had been proposed by anti-normalization associations.”
- Tunisia: Al-Nahda’s Failures Lead Sidi Bouzid to Rise Again (alethonews.wordpress.com)
- “Arab Spring” back to the beginning? (english.ruvr.ru)
“You can’t exclude any hypothesis … It’s practically impossible that here in an [oil] installation like this which is fully automated everywhere and that has thousands of responsible workers night and day, civilian and military, and that there is a gas leak for 3 or 4 days and nobody responds. This is impossible.”
President Chavez responding to US media and opposition charges that the explosion and fire at the oil refinery was due to government negligence.
Only 43 days before the Venezuelan presidential election and with President Chavez leading by a persistent margin of 20 percentage points, an explosion and fire at the Amuay refinery killed at least 48 people – half of those were members of the National Guard – and destroyed oil facilities producing 645,000 barrels of oil per day.
Immediately following the explosion and fire, on script, all the mass media in the US and Great Britain, and the right wing Venezuelan opposition launched a blanket condemnation of the government as the perpetrator of the disaster accusing it of “gross negligence” and “under-investment” in safety standards.
Yet there are strong reasons to reject these self-serving accusations and to formulate a more plausible hypothesis, namely that the explosion was an act of sabotage, planned and executed by a clandestine group of terrorist specialists acting on behalf of the US government. There are powerful arguments to sustain and pursue this line of inquiry.
The Argument for Sabotage:
(1) The first question in any serious investigation is who benefits and who loses from the destruction of lives and oil production?
The US is a clear winner on several crucial fronts. Firstly, via the economic losses to the Venezuelan economy – 2.5 million barrels in the first 5 days and counting – the loss will put a dent on social spending and delay productive investments which in turn are key electoral appeals of the Chavez presidency. Secondly, on cue the US joined by its client candidate,Henrique Capriles Radonski, immediately launched a propaganda blitz aimed at discrediting the government and calling into question its capacity to ensure the security and safety of its citizens and the principle source of the country’s wealth. Thirdly, the explosion creates insecurity and fear among sectors of the electorate and could influence their voting in the October presidential election. Fourthly, the US can test the effectiveness of a wider destabilization campaign and the government’s capacity to respond to any further security threats.
(2) According to official government documents the US has Special Forces operations in over seventy-five countries, including Venezuela, which is targeted because of an adversarial relation. This means that the US has operative clandestine highly trained operatives on the ground in Venezuela. The capture of a US Marine for illegal entry in Venezuela with prior experience in war zones in Iraq and Afghanistan is indicative.
(3) The US has a history of involvement in violent destabilization activity in Venezuela – backing the military coup of 2002 and the bosses’ lockout in the petroleum industry in 2003. The US targeting of the oil industry involved sabotage of the computerized system and efforts to degrade the refineries.
(4) The US has a history of sabotage and violence against incumbent adversarial regimes. In Cuba during 1960, the CIA torched a department store and sugar plantations, and planted bombs in the downtown tourist centers – aiming to undermine strategic sectors of the economy. In Chile following the election of Socialist Salvador Allende, a CIA backed right-wing group kidnapped and assassinated the military attache of Socialist President, in an effort to provoke a military coup. Similarly in Jamaica in the late 1970’s under democratic socialist President Manley, the CIA facilitated a violent destabilization campaign in the run-up to the elections. Sabotage and destabilization is a common weapon in the face of impending electoral defeats (as is the case in Venezuela) or where a popular government is firmly entrenched.
(5) Force, violence and destabilization campaigns against incumbent regimes have become common operation procedure in current US policy. The US has financed and armed terrorist groups in Libya, Syria, Lebanon, Iran and Chechnya; it is bombing Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Afghanistan. In other words US foreign policy is highly militarized and opposed to any negotiated diplomatic resolution of conflicts with adversarial regimes. Sabotaging Venezuela’s oil refineries is within the logic and practice of current global US foreign policy.
(6) Domestic politics in the US has taken a further turn to the far right in both domestic and foreign policy. The Republican Party has accused the Democrats of pandering to Iran, Venezuela, Cuba and Syria – of not going to war.
The Obama regime has responded by escalating its military policies – battleships, missiles are aimed at Iran. He has supported Miami’s demand for “regime change” in Cuba as a prelude to negotiations. Washington is channeling millions of dollars via NGO’s to the Venezuelan opposition – for electoral and destabilization purposes. No doubt the opposition includes employees, engineers and others with security clearance and access to the petroleum industry. Obama has consistently taken violent actions to demonstrate that he is as militarist as the Republicans. In the midst of a close election campaign, especially with a tight race in Florida, the sabotage of the Venezuelan refineries plays well for Obama.
(7) With a little more than a month left before the elections, and President Chavez is showing a 20 percentage point advantage; the economy is on track for a steady recovery; social housing and welfare programs are consolidating massive low income support or over 80%; Venezuela has been admitted into MERCOSUR the powerful Latin American integration program; Colombia signed off on a mutual defense agreement with Venezuela; Venezuela is diversifying its overseas markets and suppliers. What these facts indicate is that Washington has no chance of defeating Chavez electorally;it has no possibility of using its Latin neighbors as a springboard for territorial incursions or precipitating a war for regime change; and it has no chance of imposing an economic boycott.
Given Washington’s declared enmity and designation of Chavez as “a threat to hemispheric security” and faced with the utter failure of its other policy tools, the resort to violence and, in this specific case, sabotage of the strategic petrol sector emerges as the policy of choice. Washington, by revealing its resort to clandestine terror, represents a clear and present danger to Venezuela’s constitutional order, an immediate threat to the life blood of its economy and of the democratic electoral process. Hopefully, the Chavez government, backed by the vast majority of its citizens and constitutionalist armed forces will take the necessary comprehensive security measures to ensure that there is no repeat of the petrol sabotage in other sectors, like the electrical grid. Public weakness in the face of imperial belligerence only encourages further aggression. No doubt heightened public security in defense of the constitutional order will be denounced by the US government, media and their local clients as “authoritarian” and claim that protection of the national patrimony infringes on ‘democratic freedoms’. No doubt they prefer a weak security system to ply their violent provocations. Subsequent to their decisive electoral defeat they will claim fraud or interference. All this is predictable, but the vast majority of voters who assemble, debate and cast their ballots will feel secure and look forward to another four years of peace and prosperity, free from terror and sabotage.
Last Saturday 25 August an explosion resulting from a gas leak occurred in Venezuela’s largest oil refinery Amuay, which at the time of writing has killed 48 people and injured over 100 more. It is one of the deadliest industrial accidents in the history of Venezuela’s oil industry. An official investigation has been launched into the tragedy.
While President Hugo Chavez urged for avoidance of speculation on the cause of the incident until conclusions are reached by the investigation, opposition politicians and media immediately launched claims that the explosion was due to lack of government investment and maintenance. Likewise, some journalists and commentators have alleged that the explosion could be the result of deliberate sabotage in order to damage the electoral campaign of Hugo Chavez ahead of presidential elections in October.
Here, Venezuelanalysis.com has translated an article from the Venezuelan News Agency (AVN) examining the circumstances before and after the tragedy that have been fuelling speculation over possible sabotage at Amuay. However, the official investigation over the disaster will likely take at least a month, according to Venezuela authorities.
The Most Unusual “Coincidences” of the Amuay Tragedy
By AVN / YKVE Mundial
This information was sent by the citizen J.W. Wekker Vega, collected from the social network Facebook. Below is the content of that information:
1. Luis Vicente Leon and Oscar Schemel [of private Venezuelan polling firms Datanalisis and Hinterlaces, respectively], despite being opposition supporters, have said in the last few months that Chavez’s victory [in the presidential elections on 7 October] would only be reverted by “catastrophic,” “extraordinary” events that generate “collective commotion” and politically affect Chavez.
2. An “amateur” with a professional camera, at 2:00am [on the night of the explosion], was alone in the surrounds of the Amuay refinery, unusual because people don’t pass through there; and he captured the first explosion, which was broadcast “exclusively” by Globovision [a pro opposition TV channel] in record time.
3. At the same time as the explosion at Amuay, three government websites were hacked, including the CADIVI [Venezuela foreign exchange commission] website.
4. The deaths of sixteen members of the National Guard, if well observed, aren’t explained in the media. The presence of sixteen National Guard members at the refinery at that time isn’t explained. And the reason the National Guard victims of the tragedy stayed up overnight in the refinery’s Guard Command was to guard the installations, given that an important number of sabotages in the refinery have been reported and denounced in recent years.
5. Only minutes after the tragedy, thousands of Blackberry instant messages were spread as much by users as by automatic senders (software), that placed information in emails and other media about the situation via spam.
6. The tragedy was immediately treated as a political issue, as many opposition leaders appeared in the public sphere to launch direct attacks on Chavez and PDVSA.
7. The portrayal of the event on an international scale is unprecedented. On few occasions has this type of coverage been seen for events like this.
8. A few hours after the tragedy, Blackberry instant messages and information circulated in media and social networks that generated uncertainty over the availability of fuel. People were incited to head en masse to fill up their tanks, and lack of supply is spoken of openly. This looks like a strategy to generate chaos, and a call for calm has been issued, as the country has other refineries and a good reserve of fuel stores.
Spanish language source: YKVE Mundial