BOLIVIA’S VOTE-CATCHING DICTATORSHIP REPLICATES VENEZUELA’S SERIES OF CRIMES

Iter-criminis means the process to carry out a crime.  It is described as “the path that a criminal goes through from the time he thinks to commit a crime, going through all intermediate steps in its preparation and execution, up to the point of the consummation of the criminal act”. A “vote-catching dictatorship is “the regime that by force or violence concentrates all political power in a person or a group, that represses human rights and basic individual freedoms and uses elections -as a means of simulation and disguise- and propaganda in order to indefinitely keep itself in power”. The existence of a “functional opposition” is key in the iter-criminis process. The functional opposition is a “make-believe opposition”, it is a “fake opposition”. Everything that is happening in the vote-catching dictatorship in Bolivia has already happened in Venezuela and in Nicaragua and the results are crisis, confrontation, and death. 
Carlos Sánchez Berzaín

BOLIVIA’S VOTE-CATCHING DICTATORSHIP REPLICATES VENEZUELA’S SERIES OF CRIMES

Carlos Sánchez Berzain*

A manipulated electoral process being carried out to reelect the disqualified and illegal candidate Evo Morales in a country without the Rule of Law, without separation and independence in the branches of government, with political prisoners and exiles, without freedom of the press, without freedom to organize politically and, therefore, with flagrant violations of human rights.  It is Bolivia’s “vote-catching dictatorship” backed by Luis Almagro the Organization of American States’ (OAS) General Secretary who replicates the “usurpation’s iter-criminis” or series of crimes that oppress Venezuela today.
Iter-criminis means the process to carry out a crime.  It is described as “the path that a criminal goes through from the time he thinks to commit a crime, going through all intermediate steps in its preparation and execution, up to the point of the consummation of the criminal act”.
A “vote-catching dictatorship is “the regime that by force or violence concentrates all political power in a person or a group, that represses human rights and basic individual freedoms and uses elections -as a means of simulation and disguise- and propaganda in order to indefinitely keep itself in power”.
Venezuela is a vote-catching dictatorship ever since Hugo Chavez arbitrarily replaced the “Rule of Law” in order to perpetuate himself in power until his death.  The conditions to make it a vote-catching dictatorship were applied in order to force the so-called election of Nicolas Maduro as the successor of Chavez.  With the call for presidential elections in May of 2018, it became clear for Venezuelans and the rest of the world, the iter-criminis for the “usurpation of power” declared in January of 2019 when the international community recognized Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s President.
The iter-criminis for the “usurpation of power” was also applied in Nicaragua by and for Daniel Ortega’s benefit, who making disappear the “Rule of Law” ended the separation and independence in the branches of government in order to conduct manipulated and fraudulent elections, to hold de-facto power.      
The steps of the iter-criminis are -amongst others- changing of the democratic order through constitutional supplanting and/or prevaricated judicial rulings for the dictator’s/candidate’s own benefit; the manipulation of all of the Branches of Government; the creation of electoral institutions who are subservient to the dictator; the judicialization of political persecution through the use of the regime’s prosecutors and judges with false accusations in order to jail or exile members of the opposition; and more.
The existence of a “functional opposition” is key in the iter-criminis process because without an opposition it is impossible to simulate elections.   The functional opposition is a “make-believe opposition”, it is a “fake opposition” whose role is to simulate competition or the possibility to win an election when, in reality, “it is designed and organized to meet the needs, usefulness, and convenience” of the dictator/candidate.
The “usurpation of power” iter-criminis to sustain dictatorships through elections that are neither free, nor fair, include a series of “Transnational Organized Crime” actions created, directed, and standardized by Cuba’s dictatorship.  These actions range from the use of techniques for instilling fear, repression, use of social and political control methods, propaganda systems, extortion, and recruitment, all the way up to the creation of a very efficient international apparatus to launder crimes committed and present these governments as democratic.
Disinformation campaigns as part of the iter-criminis include the presentation of “elections as a synonym of democracy” to legitimize vote-catching dictatorships, deliberately ignoring that even when elections are free and fair these are only a component of democracy, that they must co-exist along with; the respect for human rights and basic individual freedoms, access to power and its discharge bound by the Rule of Law, with separation and independence of the branches of government, and the unhampered political organization, as mandated by the Interamerican Democratic Charter.
Everything that is happening in the vote-catching dictatorship in Bolivia has already happened in Venezuela and in Nicaragua and the results are crisis, confrontation, and death.  What is taking place, even in matters of Evo Morales’ campaign, is a replication of Maduro’s iter-criminis in Venezuela.  In Bolivia, this coming 20th of October there will be elections without democracy with a disqualified and illegal candidate, and other functional candidates to declare Evo Morales as a usurper of power.

*Attorney & Political Scientist.  Director of the Interamerican Institute for Democracy.

Published by Infobae.com Sunday, August 11th, 2019

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Translated from Spanish by; Edgar L. Terrazas, member of the American Translators’ Association, ATA # 234680.