The Carupanazo, 60 years of social struggle

The Carupanazo, 60 years of social struggle

Today marks the 60th anniversary of El Carupanazo, one of the first uprisings by groups of young nationalist soldiers and the Creole left against the government of Rómulo Betancourt, who was accused of implementing a regime of terror against political dissidence and ruining the the libertarian spirit of January 23, 1958, the date when the dictatorship of Marcos Pérez Jiménez was overthrown.

That May 4, 1962, given the current situation in the country, in Carúpano, Sucre state, a civic-military uprising took place from the early hours of the morning of that day, which was led by Lieutenant Commander Jesús Teodoro Molina Villegas, accompanied by Major Pedro Vegas Castejón and Lieutenant Héctor Fleming Mendoza.
Six decades after that uprising, Frigate Lieutenant Francisco Aguilera García, who describes himself as a survivor of El Carupanazo, stated that “they took up arms against the government of Rómulo Betancourt and Acción Democrática, for failing to fulfill their electoral promises: civil liberties, full employment policy, agrarian reform, trade union freedom, social security and social peace. Promises, pure promises. Betancourt issued a decree: shoot first and find out later. This resulted in many deaths and disappearances.

In the eastern state, the Carúpano garrison, Marine Infantry Battalion Number 3 and Detachment Number 77 of the National Guard under the command of Molina Villegas, Major Vegas Castejón and Lieutenant Fleming Mendoza rose up.

During the coup, soldiers and civilians took over the Carúpano radio station and broadcast a statement on behalf of the Democratic Recovery Movement.

Leaders of the Communist Party of Venezuela were involved in this movement, among them Eloy Torres, Douglas Bravo and Germán Lairet, and by the Movement of the Revolutionary Left, Simón Sáez Mérida, among others.

The rebels took Río Caribe and San José de Areocuar, with just 350 soldiers and had the support of residents of Carúpano, Cumaná, Güiria and Maturín.

“We, in solidarity, with that people, rose up in combat, thus the Democratic Recovery Movement emerged, commanded by the lieutenant commander, Jesús Teodoro, Molinas Villegas. Honor and Glory to all those missing in action. Until victory always”, he expresses in a text sent to this newsroom, from Managua, Nicaragua, Aguilera García, 60 years after El Carupanazo.

The leaders of the coup awaited the pronouncement of other garrisons, however, it never came and the rebels were attacked by air, land and sea. By five in the afternoon that day, the government had restored “order.”

Approximately 250 were the rebels. It is estimated that 400 people were arrested for this act, in which there were several deaths.


Today, at 10:00 in the morning, at the José Martí House of Our America, in the center of Caracas, the 60 Years of Carupanazo discussion will be held, in which Marcos Fuenmayor, Víctor Chirinos, Roberto Pastor Rodríguez will participate as forum members. and Isaiah Castrellón.

There were several dead during the rebellion.

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