A Caracas-based journalist has expressed frustration to me that people on the Chavista side of the political divide, even those independent of the government, don’t answer his calls, don’t want to talk to him – basically don’t trust him. This piece by Girish Gupta of Reuters, depicting a Venezuelan supreme court judge as corrupt, is a nice illustration of why corporate journalists aren’t trusted.
During the  coup, gunfire erupted as opposition supporters marched toward Miraflores Palace, seat of the presidency. Witnesses later said they saw rooftop snipers, gunmen on a bridge and gun-wielding police officers during the shooting.
By the time the violence ended, 19 people were dead.
Basic facts of the event, which fueled years of controversy and trials, are still disputed by critics and supporters of the Chavez and Maduro governments.
The Carmona dictatorship installed by the coup was backed by the United States and (even more openly and enthusiastically) by the western media – the NYT editorial board being the most comical example. About 60 Chavistas were murdered while Carmona was in power (not counting the 19 from both sides of the divide who were likely killed by police working with the opposition). How lovely the way these victims are written out of history by Girish Gupta and so many other western journalists over the years. When Gupta handles verifiable facts this atrociously, it says a lot about how much to trust claims he makes that cannot be verified by readers (the bulk of his article).
US allies are always clean. When Luis Manuel Díaz, an opposition politician, was assassinated in 2015 nobody gave a damn about his criminal associations (which were likely the reason he was murdered) just like nobody ever gave a damn about hundreds of assassinated chavista peasants over the years.
Gupta also wrote
The country’s 1999 constitution, rewritten by Chavez, stipulates the head of the Supreme Court be of “good repute.”
The constitution was written in a three referendum process – at the final stage the constitution was ratified by popular vote. The constitution was annulled by the US-backed Carmona dictatorship. Again – verifiable facts utterly mangled by Girish (“rewritten by Chavez”) to serve his agenda.
I am sure many judges and prosecutors in Venezuela are corrupt. In retrospect I think Luis Ortega Diaz, a former prosecutor who broke with Maduro’s government and is now collaborating with the corrupt and violent US government, had a lot to do with the problems of impunity for the assassinated chavista peasants as Edward Ellis told me in 2011 (naming her department specifically) – and impunity in general.
But when journalists like Girish Gupta go digging for dirt, you know who is always going to come out of it looking clean – basically whoever the western establishment supports.
Nikki Haley, Trump’s Ambassador to the UN, just called Venezuela “an increasingly violent narco-state that threatens the region, the hemisphere, and the world.” Western journalists work tirelessly to make lunatics like Haley appear sane. That doesn’t generate trust in journalists among reasonable people.