Surprisingly, Chavez (not the sharpest knife in the drawer) is letting his stooges do his dirty work for him, and it's nasty. Capriles, whose maternal grandparents were Jewish, is actually a committed practicing Catholic, but that hasn't stopped Chavez associates from launching anti-Semitic attacks. Of course this is nothing new for the popular governor who won this latest nomination with an overwhelming 60 plus percent of the vote, and who is Venezuela's greatest hope for defeating Chavez in October. Since he became governor of the state of Miranda in 2008, he has been subject to anti-Semitic slurs, and it looks like that won't end any time soon. Since anti-Semitism isn't anything new in Venezuela, many believe bringing up his Jewish roots is a way to play into the anti-Semitic/anti-Israel feelings prevalent in that country.
Chavistas obviously fear Capriles' popularity so the attacks started almost immediately after winning the Coalition For Democratic Unity's primary. First there were the claims that the he's a "bourgeois" and a "fascist". Chavista Diosdado Cabello, Congress leader, said of Capriles,
'Now we know who is the candidate of imperialism, of capitalism and the right wing. The anti-patriotic candidate has a face. He won't have an easy election campaign.'In spite of the fact that Capriles considers himself a centre-left 'progressive', inspired by former Brazilian president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva's form of government.
Then you have the sexual allegations from Mario Silva, the state media commentator on his The Razorblade TV show:
Silva insulted opposition leaders and then read out a purported police document reporting Capriles was caught in a car having sex with another man in 2000. Capriles denied the allegation and said the document was falsified. Police have not commented.
So far, Capriles isn't taking the bait:
'I wasn't elected to fight with anyone but to solve problems. 'The only confrontation I want is against violence, unemployment, corruption and other problems in Venezuela.'
Unfortunately, people are predicting Chavez will still probably win because of his huge support by the poor in Venezuela, but I am keeping my fingers crossed.
Good luck Henrique!!
Chavez has stepped into the fray. In a speech today he called Capriles a "low-life... pig" saying "you have a pig's tail, a pig's ears, and you snort like a pig."
His anti-Semitism rears its ugly head. Muslims have often called Jews descendants of apes and pigs.
Stay classy Chavez.