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Venezuela: political prisoner punished for supporting RCTV

By Daniel Duquenal

06.04.07 | I could only find a French word that would qualify the attitude of the Ramo Verde military prison facility warden, Garde-Chiourme. A pejorative term for a rather needlessly sadistic warden. Curiously if I could not find a translation for English, I did find that chiourme had the similar origin as the Spanish "chusma" who refers to low life individuals. Considering what I am going to narrate, it seems quite appropriate.

General Uson is the most famous political prisoner of Venezuela in that he is the one that got a trial and got jail sentence for the only reason of expressing an opinion in a talk show. The astounding case is working its ways thorough international courts to the point that Chavez tried to negotiate some pardon with Uson, a pardon that Uson promptly rejected.

That would have been that but unfortunately for Uson he had the idea to support a petition on RCTV right to remain open. Well, the warden/chusma/garde-chiourme of Ramo Verde, Colonel Orlando Blanco Berroterán, was not amused and on his own he decided that Uson would be deprived of visits for a week as a punishment. Except that unfortunately it seems that the said colonel has no right in exacting such punishment, and certainly not on his own. That is, if indeed there was a punishment to be exacted on Uson (which according to all evidence and the sentence that subjected Uson to jail does not apply) the said chiourme colonel should have started some form of hearing with some legal stuff to justify such a penalty.

There is no point to go into the legalese of course. What is interesting here is the sycophancy of the colonel. Trying to score brownie points with his superiors he took an initiative that will only help Uson in the long run, justifying even more any international unfavorable decision against chavismo that international courts will take. Look at the video that I just posted this morning: everywhere all sorts of folks are using the personal vendetta between Chavez and RCTV/Granier to try to edge out potential rivals for whichever position they aspire to! Law, ethics, morality count for nothing for such people, willing to sacrifice fast whomever they need to sacrifice so that Chavez is pleased with them.

Regimes such as the Chavez one have an amazing ability to raise to position of authority total mediocrities such as that colonel who, under a democratic regime with a modicum of rules and procedures based on law and not on El Supremo will, would have never reached such a responsible position. So is Berroteran to be added to lengthening list of people who will have to be investigated once Chavez is ejected from office as it will happen sooner or later. There are certain type of crimes that can be always prosecuted, those that attempt the basic human rights of people, "crimenes de lesa humanidad", crimes against humanity. Someone should be nice enough and let Berroteran know about that.

Editor's note: below copy of letter that Francisco Uson sent to RCTV (apologies to the language impaired):

Ramo Verde, 23 de Marzo de 2007

Familia RCTV

Para aquellos que hemos sido víctimas de la opresión no nos puede causar extrañeza la situación que enfrenta la Familia RCTV como organización y como grupo humano.

En el imprescindible proceso de transculturización Hugo Chávez ha encontrado en la Familia RCTV un formidable adversario, un paladín en la lucha por la libertad de información y comunicación, condensado en un grupo con aquilatadísimos principios éticos, morales y profesionales.

Ustedes ofrecen al pueblo venezolano algo que este régimen es y será incapaz de ofrecer, que es calidad en lo que hacen, ya que ustedes son el ejemplo de los ciudadanos emprendedores y serios, pero sobre todo LIBRES.

Con su labor tesonera ustedes desarrollan y preservan en la ciudadanía lo que Hugo Chávez quiere destruir, la antítesis que le está impidiendo imponer su proyecto totalitario, nuestra forma de ser, nuestra venezolanidad.

En estos aciagos momentos la Familia RCTV debe ser una sola, monolítica, indivisible. Mantengan su espíritu de lucha que el pueblo venezolano está con ustedes.

Desde estas cuatro paredes, detrás de las rejas de Ramo Verde, me siento más libre que nunca. ¿Saben por qué? Porque no doblegué mi dignidad ante las ofertas y promesas que me hicieron. Estoy seguro que ustedes preservarán, por encima de todo, los principios y valores de esa noble institución llamada RCTV.

Me despido con la más profunda admiración y el eterno agradecimiento de parte de toda mi familia y en el mío propio.


Francisco V. Usón R.
Preso Político y de Conciencia

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