CARACAS, Monday December 31, 2012 | Update

Dieterich: Chavezism without Chávez is actually possible

The political expert estimated that Chavezism will remain in power for at least one presidential term. "Then, it will tend to follow the path of Venezuelan Acción Democrática party: it will stagnate and lose competitiveness"

Monday December 31, 2012  05:42 PM
Heinz Dieterich, the German sociologist viewed as Hugo Chávez's mentor, spoke about the possibility of "Chavezism without Chávez," explaining that such political trend is likely to remain in place because "its projects meet some modernization needs of the market economy and the national governance system." He added that Chavezism's projects are a "working model" which, in his view, will continue under Vice-President Nicolás Maduro.

Dieterich, who is credited with creating the concept of "21st Century Socialism," however, told Chilean newspaper La Tercera that Chavezism without Chávez may not become true, because projects like Chavezism and Peronism are marked by the unique features of the "personality of their creators" and take hold "under circumstances" that are "unrepeatable."

As for Chávez's move to appoint Maduro as a possible successor, Dieterich said the Venezuelan president based on three reasons: "1) He trusts that Maduro is the dolphin that most faithfully will seek to continue his political project (either the Bolivarian (revolution) or Chavezism); 2) Maduro is popular among people, and 3) Similarly, he can win elections against (opposition leader Henrique) Capriles."

Conversely, Dieterich warned that National Assembly Speaker Diosdado Cabello was ruled out as Chávez's successor because "he is not suitable for public activities, as he is a lousy speaker; he knows nothing about uttering a cohesive argument and lacks charisma." Dieterich stated further that Cabello is "ambitious and not very ethical and, therefore, not loyal." Although he stated that "he may be useful as a minister."

Dieterich estimated that Chavezism may remain in power for at least one presidential term. "Then, it will tend to follow the path of Venezuelan Acción Democrática party: it will stagnate and lose competitiveness. Anyway, the country will continue with the typical bipartisan political governance structure that characterizes capitalism today and that, in fact, never disappeared in Venezuela."

Survival chances "are slim"

Dieterich, on the other hand, stated that "it is impossible that (Chávez) takes office as president again." He added that the Head of State, reelected in the elections on October 7, suffers "a rapidly spreading cancer."

The political expert stressed he has a relationship of "friendship" and "collaboration" with Chávez.
Cases of torture brought before the UN

While she was detained, she was kept blindfolded, she was doused with water and then electric shocks were applied to her arms, breasts and genitals. She was threatened and told that she would be killed and buried in pieces." Gloria Tobón's is one on the list of documented cases reported by Amnesty International in its briefing document to the United Nations Committee Against Torture.

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