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Chavez and Venezuela Still Free * Nicaragua Assassination * 9/11 Investigations

14 April 2002

What a difference a couple of days can make. Freedom has survived a paid for (oil-interest) military coup in Venezuela. This coup leader had been recognized as legitimate by the US media and government. Yet all that has changed. The will of the people in Venezuela and its military had freed President Hugo Chavez. Following today's article is a courageous eye-witness account of the Coup in Caracas. Item 2 shows the dangers lurking in a corrupt world, motivated by fear and greed, a beloved professor in Nicaragua was assassinated in his home. He was the husband of Dr. María Luisa Acosta, an internationally renown indigenous human rights lawyer. Silence can become deadly.. So please take appropriate actions. Item 3 is a Washington Post article on Cynthia McKinney (D-GA) calling for 9/11 investigations. We have to keep supporting this noble woman seeking truth. And item 4 is an update on Lieutenant Michael Vreeland's confirmation of 9/11 foreknowledge. Vreeland was reported in writing a letter to warn of impending terrorist attacks of September 11th, in August of 2001. This letter had been entered into court documents.

1) Chavez and Venezuela Still Free -- By the will of the people
2) Human Rights Assassination in Nicaragua
3) Cynthia McKinney Calls for 9/11 Investigations
4) Follow-up Update on Lieutenant Michael Vreeland


1) Chavez and Venezuela Still Free -- By the will of the people

Venezuela president back in power
April 14, 2002 Posted: 2:21 PM EDT (1821 GMT)

CARACAS, Venezuela (CNN) – President Hugo Chavez has reclaimed power in Venezuela, just two days after being forced from office.

In a televised address he promised to unite the country and denied an announcement made by the military on Friday that he had resigned.

Chavez was forced from office after he ordered the army to quell anti-government protests and 12 demonstrators were killed.

Initially Chavez was replaced by Pedro Carmona, a businessman and economist, only for him to be replaced by Chavez's vice president Diosdado Cabello, when he tried to dissolve the National Assembly.

Cabello was sworn in as the head of government but he now appears to have stepped aside for Chavez's return.

Cabello has told national radio he would remain as president until Chavez can be reinstated.

Three-thousand members of the National Honor Guard -- which protects the presidential palace and has remained loyal to Chavez -- regained control of the presidential residence hours before Carmona's resignation became official.

Chavez returned to the palace on Sunday on helicopter and was seen surrounded by bodyguards.

Jubilant pro-Chavez supporters gathered outside the palace, Miraflores, ahead of his return waving flags and singing the national anthem.

In a televised address he said: "There are a lot of urgent things to take care of now. We must fix that light that has been broken. I call for peace. I call for strength within all Venezuelans."

And despite its role in his temporary removal from office Chavez praised the military saying: "Our military forces ... have a heart. I was never mistreated.

"I have learned a lot from our military forces. By listening to them I felt like a soldier once again."

The Bush administration said it hopes Chavez listened to his countrymen.

In an interview Sunday with "Meet the Press," National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said,
"I hope that Hugo Chavez takes the message that his people sent him: that his own policies are not working for the Venezuelan people, that he's dealt with them in a high-handed fashion.

"And I hope that ... he understands this is the time for him to reflect on how Venezuela got to where it is," she said. "He needs to respect constitutional processes. This is no time for a witch hunt. This is time for national reconciliation in Venezuela."

Chavez, who led a bloody 1992 failed coup attempt, now enjoys wide support from Venezuela's poor, many of whom believe he has addressed issues facing them.

He took office in 1999 after a sweeping to election victory in December 1998 promising constitutional reform, an end to corruption and the redistribution of oil wealth.

Venezuela is the world's No. 4 oil exporter and the second biggest source of oil to the United States.

Washington blamed Chavez for provoking the crisis, while several Latin American leaders, including the heads of Peru and Mexico, said during the crisis they would not recognize the new government until elections were held.

The leaders of Argentina, Mexico and Paraguay -- meeting in San Jose, Costa Rica -- said Saturday they would not recognize any new leaders in Venezuela until elections are held there.

"There are a lot of urgent things to take care of now," Chavez said. "We must fix that light that has been broken. I call for peace. I call for strength within all Venezuelans."


Related Story:

Coup in Venezuela: An Eyewitness Account
By Gregory Wilpert

The orchestration of the coup was impeccable and, in all likelihood, planned a long time ago. Hugo Chavez, the fascist communist dictator of Venezuela could not stand the truth and thus censored the media relentlessly. For his own personal gain and that of his henchmen (and henchwomen, since his cabinet had more women than any previous Venezuelan government's), he drove the country to the brink of economic ruin. In the end he proceeded to murder those who opposed him. So as to reestablish democracy, liberty, justice, and prosperity in Venezuela and so as to avoid more bloodshed, the chamber of commerce, the union federation, the church, the media, and the management of Venezuela's oil company, in short: civil society and the military decided that enough is enough--that Chavez had his chance and that his experiment of a 'peaceful democratic Bolivarian revolution' had to come to an immediate end.

This is, of course, the version of events that the officials now in charge and thus also of the media, would like everyone to believe. So what really happened? Of course I don't know, but I'll try to represent the facts as I witnessed them. First of all, the military is saying that the main reason for the coup is what happened today, April 11. 'Civil society,' as the opposition here refers to itself, organized a massive demonstration of perhaps 100,000 to 200,000 people to march to the headquarters of Venezuela's oil company, PDVSA, in defense of its fired management. The day leading up to the march all private television stations broadcast advertisements for the demonstration, approximately once every ten minutes. It was a successful march, peaceful, and without government interference of any kind, even though the march illegally blocked the entire freeway, which is Caracas main artery of transportation, for several hours. Supposedly at the spur of the moment, the organizers decided to re-route the march to Miraflores, the president's office building, so as to confront the pro-government demonstration, which was called in the last minute. About 5,000 Chavez-supporters had gathered there by the time the anti-government demonstrators got there. In-between the two demonstrations were the city police, under the control of the opposition mayor of Caracas, and the National Guard, under control of the president. All sides claim that they were there peacefully and did not want to provoke anyone. I got there just when the opposition demonstration and the National Guard began fighting each other. Who started the fight, which involved mostly stones and tear gas, is, as is so often the case in such situations, nearly impossible to tell. A little later, shots were fired into the crowds and I clearly saw that there were three parties involved in the shooting, the city police, Chavez supporters, and snipers from buildings above. Again, who shot first has become a moot and probably impossible to resolve question. At least ten people were killed and nearly 100 wounded in this gun battle-- almost all of them demonstrators.

One of the Television stations managed to film one of the three sides in this battle and broadcast the footage over and over again, making it look like the only ones shooting were Chavez supporters from within the demonstration at people beyond the view of the camera. The media over and over again showed the footage of the Chavez supporters and implied that they were shooting at an unarmed crowd. As it turns out, and as will probably never be reported by the media, most of the dead are Chavez supporters. Also, as will probably never be told, the snipers were members of an extreme opposition party, known as Bandera Roja. These last two facts, crucial as they are, will not be known because they do not fit with the new mythology, which is that Chavez armed and then ordered his supporters to shoot at the opposition demonstration.

Perhaps my information is incorrect, but what is certain is that the local media here will never bother to investigate this information. And the international media will probably simply ape what the local media reports (which they are already doing). Chavez' biggest and perhaps only mistake of the day, which provided the last remaining proof his opposition needed for his anti-democratic credentials, was to order the black-out of the private television stations. They had been broadcasting the confrontations all afternoon and Chavez argued that these broadcasts were exacerbating the situation and should, in the name of public safety, be temporarily shut-down.

Now, all of 'civil society,' the media, and the military are saying that Chavez has to go because he turned against his own people. Aside from the lie this is, what is conveniently forgotten are all of the achievements of the Chavez administration: a new democratic constitution which broke the power monopoly of the two hopelessly corrupt and discredited main parties and put Venezuela at the forefront in terms of progressive constitutions; introduced fundamental land reform; financed numerous progressive ecological community development projects; cracked-down on corruption; promoted educational reform which schooled over 1 million children for the first time and doubled investment in education; regulated the informal economy so as to reduce the insecurity of the poor; achieved a fairer price for oil through OPEC and which significantly increased government income; internationally campaigned tirelessly against neo-liberalism; reduced official unemployment from 18% to 13%; introduced a large-scale micro-credit program for the poor and for women; reformed the tax system which dramatically reduced tax evasion and increased government revenue; lowered infant mortality from 21% to 17%; tripled literacy courses; modernized the legal system, etc., etc.

Chavez' opposition, which primarily consisted of Venezuela's old guard in the media, the union federation, the business sector, the church, and the traditionally conservative military, never cared about any of these achievements. Instead, they took advantage of their media monopoly to turn public opinion against him and managed to turn his biggest liability, his autocratic and inflammatory style, against him. Progressive civil society had either been silenced or demonized as violent Chavez fanatics.

At this point, it is impossible to know what will happen to Chavez' 'Bolivarian Revolution'--whether it will be completely abandoned and whether things will return to Venezuela's 40-year tradition of patronage, corruption, and rentierism for the rich. What one can say without a doubt, is that by abandoning constitutional democracy, no matter how unpopular and supposedly inept the elected president, Venezuela's ruling class and its military show just how politically immature they are and deal a tremendous blow to political culture throughout Latin America, just as the coup against Salvador Allende did in 1973. This coup shows once again that democracy in Latin America is a matter of ruling class preference, not a matter of law. If the United States and the democratic international community have the courage to practice what they preach, then they should not recognize this new government. Democrats around the world should pressure their governments to deny recognition to Venezuela's new military junta or any president they happen to choose. According to the Charter of the Organization of American States (OAS), this would mean expelling Venezuela from the OAS, as a U.S. state department official recently threatened to do. Please call the U.S. state department or your foreign ministry and tell them to withdraw their ambassadors from Venezuela.

Gregory Wilpert lives in Caracas, is a former U.S. Fulbright scholar in Venezuela, and is currently doing independent research on the sociology of development. He can be reached at:
Gregory Wilpert, Ph.D.; Central University of Venezuela, Caracas
New School University, New York


2) Human Rights Assassination in Nicaragua

This following information was forwarded by the ProLibertad Freedom Campaign.
Tuesday, April 9, 2002

Dear Friends and Supporters of Nicaragua:

With sadness and a great sense of moral outrage we report that Francisco José García Valle, esteemed professor at the University of the Autonomous Regions of the Caribbean Coast of Nicaragua and husband of Dr. María Luisa Acosta, internationally renown indigenous human rights lawyer was assassinated in his home on Monday night.

At the time of his murder, his wife was meeting with the IFCO/Pastors for Peace Central American Caravan to Chiapas, Honduras and Nicaragua, which had been in the region for the last week and a half. Maria, who has received threats to her physical safety in the past because of her work advocating on behalf of indigenous communities fighting for their land and other basic human rights, was briefing the caravan on an important case that she is currently working on. Had she not been away from her home meeting with the caravan, she could have met with the same fate as her husband. Francisco Jose was found bound and gagged, shot in his heart. A police investigation is under way, however at this time, there is no information available about who is responsible for this heinous act.

The caravan members were able to accompany Attorney Acosta today, but we remain extremely concerned about her continued safety given this violent attack against her immediate family. The caravan held a press conference Tuesday afternoon in Managua to call for the immediate apprehension of the assassins and for the guaranteed protection of Attorney Acosta and her

IFCO/Pastors for Peace is urgently requesting that you communicate your concern to Nicaraguan President Enrique Bolaños, specifically:
1. Express your outrage at the senseless murder of Francisco José García Valle and concern for the security of Maria Acosta and her family, who have been at the forefront of the struggle for indigenous rights in the region.

2. Demand that the security of Maria Acosta and her family be ensured by the government of Nicaragua and that a rigorous, stepped up investigation into the murder begin NOW.

3. Demand that the assassins be immediately apprehended and brought to justice.

You can address your letters to:

President Enrique Bolaños
The Nicaraguan Ambassador
The Republic of Nicaragua
1627 New Hampshire Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20009
Telephone(202) 9396570
Fax(202) 939-6574

More information as to where to send messages of condolence and solidarity, as well as future actions to take, will be available shortly.

IFCO/Pastors for Peace
402 W 145th Street, New York City, NY 10031
212-926-5757; fax212-926-5842;;

IFCO/Pastors for Peace
402 W 145th Street, New York City, NY 10031
212-926-5757; fax212-926-5842;;


3) Cynthia McKinney Calls for 9/11 Investigations

Friday, April 12, 2002;
Page A16

Democrat Implies Sept. 11 Administration Plot

By Juliet Eilperin
Washington Post Staff Writer

Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-Ga.) is calling for an investigation into whether President Bush and other government officials had advance notice of terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 but did nothing to prevent them. She added that "persons close to this administration are poised to make huge profits off America's new war."

In a recent interview with a Berkeley, Calif., radio station, McKinney said "We know there were numerous warnings of the events to come on September 11th. . . . What did this administration know and when did it know it, about the events of September 11th?

Who else knew, and why did they not warn the innocent people of New York who were needlessly murdered? . . . What do they have to hide?"

McKinney declined to be interviewed yesterday, but she issued a statement saying"I am not aware of any evidence showing that President Bush or members of his administration have personally profited from the attacks of 9-11. A complete investigation might reveal that to be the case."

Bush spokesman Scott McLellan dismissed McKinney's comments.

"The American people know the facts, and they dismiss such ludicrous, baseless views," he said. "The fact that she questions the president's legitimacy shows a partisan mind-set beyond all reason."

In the radio conversation, McKinney delivered a stinging attack on the administration. In 2000, she charged, Bush forces "stole from America our most precious right of all, the right to free and fair elections." With the September attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and in
Pennsylvania, McKinney said, "an administration of questionable legitimacy has been given unprecedented power."

She suggested that the administration was serving the interests of a Washington-based investment firm, the Carlyle Group, which employs a number of high-ranking former government officials from both parties. Former president George H.W. Bush -- the current president's father -- is an adviser to the firm. McKinney said the war on terrorism has enriched Carlyle Group investors by enhancing the value of a military contractor partly owned by the firm.

Carlyle Group spokesman Chris Ullman asked: "Did she say these things while standing on a grassy knoll in Roswell, New Mexico?"

During her five terms in office, McKinney has often given voice to radical critiques of U.S. policy, especially in the Middle East.

She defied the State Department to investigate assertions that international sanctions are brutalizing innocent Iraqis.

With her comments concerning Sept. 11, McKinney, 47, seems to have tapped into a web of conspiracy theories circulating during the past six months among people who believe that the government is partially -- or entirely -- to blame for last year's attacks, which killed more than 3,000 people.

"What is undeniable is that corporations close to the administration have directly benefitted from the increased defense spending arising from the aftermath of September 11th," McKinney charged. "America's credibility, both with the world and with her own people, rests upon securing credible answers to these questions."

None of McKinney's colleagues has embraced her allegations, but a few said they are familiar with the theories.

"I've heard a number of people say it," said Rep. Melvin Watt (D-N.C.), who quickly added, "I can't say that it would be a widely held view" among lawmakers.

Some lawmakers have a less charitable view of McKinney's penchant for publicity. Rep. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) said McKinney is simply trying to impress her constituents.

"She's demonstrated at home an ability to win," he said, "and she's demonstrated in Washington a total lack of responsibility in her statements."

Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.), a friend of McKinney's, said the Georgia Democrat is adept at seizing on "red-meat" issues that resonate with her political base and have helped her fend off a series of GOP challengers.

"She's not as random as people think," Kingston said. "People always want to hear a political conspiracy theory."

Staff writer David Von Drehle contributed to this report.
© 2002 The Washington Post Company


Please consider writing or calling in support:

Congresswoman Cynthia Ann McKinney
124 Cannon Building Washington, DC 20515
ph 202 225 1605 fax 202 226 0691

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Related Links:

Democrat Implies Sept. 11 Administration Plot Washington Post {4-12-02}

9-11 Overview by Vision TV, Bush / CIA Complicity in 9-11, Real Player Video Stream at


Reasonable Doubts About September 11th, 53 minute Real Player Video stream at


FULL STORY AT INDYMEDIA -- 9.11 - What did the U.S. know, and when did it know it?

Flyby News: The Bush Conspiracy & 9/11 Investigative Updated Reports,11057,


4) Follow-up Update on Lieutenant Michael Vreeland

Editors's Note:

The following information came from Chuck, a subscriber. He did some special follow-up work on the April 5th Flyby News issue "Proof of 9/11 Foreknowledge – by Michael C. Ruppert." It is our hope that more of us will continue to follow Vreeland's case. He asked Lt. Vreeland to post the Court information, so any doubters could verify that his case is actual and ongoing. This is the information he provided:

The Superior Court of Justice
361 University
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Chuck mentioned that the Lieutenant has a message forum being run at his website. He is on the message board daily. Anyone can participate by accessing the Website, then click on "FORUM." Then click on one of the message strings. At the left side of any posted message you can click on "Reply". When you do so, a username and password are called for. Simply enter the Username "mike25gta" and the password "greens", then place your message in the text block and click on the "Add" button. [My computer couldn't access the FORUM page, but I did get this following message on the focus and purpose of Lt. Vreeland's webpage:

USA Spy Forsaken by US Government

Lt Delmart Vreeland has been imprisoned for 16 months in Ontario, Canada. He allegedly is a US spy forsaken by his own government. He wrote a letter to warn of impending terrorist attacks of September 11th, in August of 2001. The letter he wrote has been entered into court documents. He is fighting extradition to the US for fear of assassination. He has sold everything he owns for his defense. This website is dedicated to raising money for Lt Vreeland's Defense Fund.
For more information, see:

For Flyby News posting of Proof of 9/11 Foreknowledge by Michael C. Ruppert, see:,78245,

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