Venezuela’s president’s vendetta against his opponents just got a lot creepier

January 3, 2014
January 3, 2014

Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro rarely passes up a chance to lambast his opponents, but rarely has it been this cheap, or icky. Yesterday, in an effort to boost his image and bash his competition’s, Maduro’s government published the vacation destinations (link in Spanish) of politicians, businessmen, and journalists his government considers to be the enemy.

The list appears to have been pulled from private airport departure data—it includes not only the names, but also identity card numbers for the 27 people listed. It was tweeted twice by the country’s communications minister Delcy Rodríguez, first with the suggestion that unlike Maduro’s enemies, Venezuela’s ruling party “spent the new year with the people”:

Then, shortly thereafter, in case anyone missed it, Rodríguez tweeted out the list again: “Don’t miss the opposition leadership’s list of foreign vacation destinations.”

There, plain for anyone to see, is opposition leader Henrique Capriles’ trip to Aruba on Dec. 22, and that María Corina Machado and Leopoldo López, other Maduro-hated politicians, traveled to Frankfurt and Miami, respectively, late in December. Aside from the abuse of government power to share private information, the return dates of the trips weren’t included, so the data don’t even back up the suggestion that Maduro’s opponents didn’t ring in the new year at home—making the publicity stunt not only creepy, but inept.

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