How Did the Two Failed 1992 Coup d’Etat Attempts Led By Hugo Chavez Help His Political Career?

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Plan of Investigation

How did the two failed 1992 coup d’état attempts led by Hugo Chavez help his political career? This investigation will answer the question by analyzing two results of the failed coups; first, that the coups exposed the corruption, failures and weakness of President Perez and his government; second, that the coups presented an image to the Venezuelan people of a dynamic, charismatic and populist leader in the person of Chavez. The most important sources used will be contemporary press accounts, Chavez’s speech and reactions from ordinary Venezuelan people at the time.

This investigation will not assess the conditions or conflicts of any surrounding country at the time.

Summary of Evidence
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After Perez was instituted into the presidency, the COMACATE changed their name to the Bolivarian Revolutionary Movement. A more appropriate name for their radical ideologies.
The BRM and other independent military corps developed tendencies to intervene and influence in government in the efforts to stop corruption and take actions against irresponsible politicians.
February 4, 1992 - First coup attempt
Under Lieutenant Colonels Hugo Chavez and Francisco Arias Cardenas.
Ten to twelve battalions stationed in four other major cities participated in the coup.
Uprising failed
Senior officers and majority of their junior colleagues and troops remained loyal to the constitutional authorities.
After being caught, the rebels revealed their anti-bureaucratic sentiment (because of the income differentiation in the army and economic gap in the country); populist beliefs (the government was not supporting the people’s ideas)
Justification of coup the ongoing economic crisis increase of corruption government failure to protect the people’s interest (negotiations with Colombia over border problems) officer’s complained about the use of the army as a police force created civil unrest
“to save Venezuelans who are suffering from demagogy and bureaucracy,” (Diario, 1992)
After the coup, President Perez persuaded the public that the coup was just from some ambitious officers and that the army was on the side of the democratically elected government.
Perez insisted

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