- Responding in longer form to erroneous reports of his
death, Mark Twain now is quoted saying, "Reports of my death death
were greatly exaggerated."
- Recently, major media managed (made up) news suggested
that Hugo Chavez is seriously ill and close to death. Recuperating from
illness, yes. Potentially terminal, absolutely not. From Caracas, Eva Golinger's
July 1 article explained - headlined, "Chavez Overcomes Health Issue:
Alive and Well, Despite Myths," accessed through the following link:
- More on her article below.
- Throughout his tenure, major media in America, other
Western countries, and Venezuela mercilessly bashed Chavez. In fact, they've
shamelessly vilified him with slanderous pejoratives, while ignoring his
popular support for over 12 years for providing vital social services fast
disappearing in America and other Western countries.
- As "the newspaper of record," perhaps New York
Times reports have been most deplorable, notably from Caracas-based Simon
Romero, who sees one thing yet reports another, producing agitprop, not
real news and information, suggesting Chavez is more despot than democrat.
- How former Times journalist John Hess once described
the broadsheet, applies to him, saying:
- "I never saw a (US) foreign intervention that The
Times did not support, never saw a fare....rent....or utility increase
that it did not endorse, never saw it take the side of labor in a strike
or lockout, or advocate a raise for underpaid workers. And don't get me
started on universal health care and Social Security. So why do people
think The Times is liberal?"
- Moreover, why should anyone think its so-called news
and information is anything more than propaganda for the imperial interests
it serves, Romero in Caracas included. In his and other Times reports,
truth is always the first casualty. Readers beware.
- After the Miami Herald owned El Nuevo Herald cited an
unnamed US intelligence source calling Chavez's condition "critical
- not on the brink of death, but critical....complicated (and) terminal,"
major media reports, including Romero's, began hyperventilating sensationalist
accounts about him.
- On June 23, he headlined, "Chavez's Stay in Cuba
Stirs a Debate at Home," saying:
- Opponents "already chafing at (his) reliance on
Cuban advisers for military and intelligence affairs" now question
his legitimacy "to oversee national affairs for an undetermined stretch
of time from outside the country."
- In fact, while visiting Cuba on the last leg of his Latin
American tour he took ill, complaining of pelvic area pain that, in fact,
required emergency June 11 surgery. More on that below.
- On June 24, Romero headlined, "Venezuela: Chavez
Breaks Silence; Says Little," saying:
- He "broke an unusual stretch of silence with four
brief Twitter messages....laden with references to military glory, Venezuela's
national anthem," and other comments unrelated to his health. In fact,
he and Venezuelan officials kept the public informed with regular reports
on his condition, even though major surgery makes it hard for anyone to
- Then on June 28, Romero headlined, "Venezuela, Like
Castro, Has Brother at the Ready," saying:
- "To the many comparisons....between Venezuela and
Cuba - two close allies, both infused with revolutionary zeal, driven by
movements that revere their leaders - consider one more: the presidential
brother, stepping in during a time of illness."
- Stepping in? Apparently, Romero sees something diabolical
about a brother with another one during illness. Only major media hacks
could manufacture scenarios out of their imagination or home office orders.
- In this case, Romero called Adan Chavez "a physicist
whose radical thinking has often been to the left of the president,"
while failing to say he supports social justice and democracy like his
brother - anathema ideas, in fact, for his Times bosses.
- Through July 3, Chavez was in Havana, recuperating from
major surgery, in fact, expected to remain there for one or more months.
However, on July 4 at 2:00AM Venezuelan time, Telesur showed him arriving
home. In footage aired about five hours later, he said, "I'm fine,
I'm happy. A perfect landing."
- In a later telephone interview, he said he was having
breakfast, "devouring everything." He also explained he went
through "very difficult days" but his recovery is going well.
In fact, he arrived a day before the 200th anniversary of Venezuela's declaration
of independence from Spain, establishing the Republic of Venezuela.
- Today's Bolivarianism, in fact, symbolizes Simon Bolivar's
defeat of Spanish colonizers, liberating half of South America from what
he called the imperial curse "to plague Latin America with misery
in the name of liberty."
- Swallowing some crow no doubt, Romero headlined, "Chavez
Returns to Venezuela," saying:
- "He's back....making an unexpected, but well-choreographed,
return after nearly a month away" on tour, including emergency surgery
- Reluctantly perhaps Romero said he even "log(ged)
onto Twitter," saying:
- "Good morning, my dear Venezuela! Thank you, my
God! It is the start of (my) Return!"
- Earlier, Romero exaggerated his condition post-surgery,
a testimony to his misreporting.
- Truth v. Fiction about Chavez's Health
- Reporting from Caracas, Golinger called major media accounts
"hype" and "myths," the usual way corporate news misreports,
cheating, not informing, their readers, viewers, or listeners.
- As a result, they "perpetuated numerous unfounded
rumors claiming (Chavez) is in critical condition, has cancer, is in a
coma or passed away....wild myths" with no corroborating evidence,
just unsubstantiated hype.
- In addition, anti-Chavez social networks engaged in "a
frenzied orgy of fictitious stories." Some "killed" (him)
several times....while others have invented every possible ailment,"
hyping falsehoods, not facts.
- "Private Venezuelan media have been equally as disgraceful,"
inventing stories, circulating rumors, misreporting flagrantly, some even
claiming Chavez faked his illness.
- "Even State Department officials" told a House
Foreign Relations Committee "they had information about (Chavez) they
couldn't 'make public.' "
- In fact, top US officials routinely misinform Americans
on what they most need to know, especially about war and peace, the economy,
embedded corruption, corporate favoritism, electoral fraud, and America's
global imperial ambitions, including vilifying and toppling independent
democrats to achieve them.
- Venezuelan Government Health Reports
- On June 11, Chavez had emergency pelvic abscess surgery,
essential immediately to avoid bursting and potential serious complications.
- The same day, Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro explained
live on Telesur that Chavez underwent successful surgery, but needed time
- On June 12, in fact, "Chavez himself called into
a live (Telesur TV) show, speaking "for about 20 minutes about the
operation and his current status, as well as his road to recovery and full
capacity to continue leading the government from his hospital bed."
- He was temporarily, not permanently, incapacitated as
is everyone post-surgery. He said a precautionary "deep" incision
was needed to drain his abscess, followed by biopsies checking for cancer
that "came back negative, nothing malignant."
- However, during post-op recovery, major media fabrications
practically pronounced him dead or close to it instead of accurately relating
readily available truths. In fact, Chavez "had surgery on a very sensitive
part of his body and is in recovery and rehab. Everything he had has been
removed and he's healing well." Minimally he'll need one or more months
- On July 1, Romero headlined, "Chavez Can Remain
Outside Venezuela for Months," saying:
- He "shocked" Venezuelans "by revealing
that he had a cancerous tumor removed and would 'continue battling' (from)
seclusion in Cuba for as long as six months if necessary, his vice president
(Elias Jaua) said Friday."
- In fact, he explained that in or out of Venezuela, Chavez
remains in control as president, even if he's away recuperating for months.
He didn't say he'll be gone six months in seclusion, implying that Venezuela
will be in limbo during his absence. Romero got that wrong, as well as
mischaracterizing Chavez's illness, typical of his sloppy misreporting.
- The same day, Reuters headlined, "Venezuela army
assures calm after Chavez surgery," saying:
- "Army chief General Henry Rangel Silva" quashed
"talk of unrest or infighting," explaining that Venezuela's "military
would guarantee constitutional order during Chavez's absence, (and that
he's) still in charge" as head of state.
- On television, Rangel said he's "thinner than usual"
from his ordeal "but still standing. The truth is he is getting better.
He's fine. The country is calm" and functioning as usual in his absence.
- Golinger added that Chavez's pelvic abscess was detected
before it could dangerously spread to other parts of his body. "The
subsequent tumor was luckily detected during his recovery period and removed.
He himself said the tumor cells had not been detected or didn't exist before
the second examination during recovery."
- Thanks to his excellent care (what Cuba's noted for),
"they found and removed it all" in time. Though recuperating,
he's "running the government at a normal pace, signing bills into
laws, approving budgets and overseeing his cabinet member's activities.
Everything has been moving forward as usual" despite major media misreporting
- Excepts from Chavez's June 30 Address
- On June 8, after arriving in Havana on his final Latin
American stop, he began feeling discomfort so "a set of diagnostic
tests started. Hence, a foreign mass in the pelvic area was found, leading
to an emergency surgery (to avoid) widespread infection."
- Intensive antibiotic treatment followed with "positive
progression, which brought along notable improvement. Nevertheless....some
suspected additional cell masses thus far undetected arose." Tests
"confirmed the existence of an abscessed tumor with cancerous cells."
- "This made a second surgery necessary which allowed
us to fully remove said tumor. It was major surgery without complications.
After that, I have continued evolving satisfactorily, (heading for) full
recovery. In the meantime, I have kept up and continue to be informed and
in command of....government....and all my government staff."
- Adding much more, he ended saying, "Thank you very
much. Until my return."
- Whether well, ill or recuperating, at home or away, propagandists
like Romero always find ways to misreport about him. In fact, that's precisely
what they're paid to do, producing fake made up managed news, not real
information and analysis only found through alternative print and broadcast
sources, doing it daily as a public service.
- Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at
- Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and
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