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Venezuela - Political Flags - Part 2

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Flag Used in "Opposition March"

This image was taken by the daily "El National" of Caracas on the so called "Opposition March" last Thursday. The addition on the flag take my attention.
Néstor Garrido, 16 October 2002


Flags Used in Demonstrations

There is a phenomenon that recently has taken place in Venezuela about the representations of the National Flag as expression of feeling of a sector of the population that's against the regime of president Hugo Chávez Frias. They are variants or derivates of  National flag without legal effects. This doesn't mean that they are illegal even though someone may be believe the opposite. Some flags have had a brief existence because it have been merely circumstantial; others are recurrent and possibly they will get to be Vexillological Patrimony of Venezuela. According to our modest opinion they aren't pure political flags because don't represent particular political movements or parties: they are flags of social protest because it express feelings of a national group against a prevailing government system. Guillermo has called them "Non-Political Opposition Flags. Guillermo has sent the ones described by Marianella De Faria, joined with the one of the sector that supports the Chavez' regime for your consideration. Other variants also exist.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

I should stress that such flags that are used by Non-partisan opponents of the Chavez Government. None of them seem to be official, nor do they belong to a political party, in the modern sense of the term.
Guillermo Aveledo, 8 September 2003

Opposition Flags

1)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

Representation of the National flag in black and white (2002): hoisted in subsequent manifestations to April 11th, 2002 as mourning symbol.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

2)
image by Guillermo Aveledo, 27 August 2003

Flag of Mourning (2002): Black field hoisted in subsequent manifestations to April 11th, 2002.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

3)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

Flag of hurt and mourning (2002): hoisted in subsequent manifestations to April 11th, 2002 as mourning symbol.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

4)
image by Guillermo Aveledo, 27 August 2003

Flag for requesting Chavez' exit (2003): hoisted in manifestations of the non-politics opposition during 2002 and 2003.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

5)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

This is Flag ZULU in the International Code of Signals.  Is this deliberate and what does it mean if it is?
Andre Burgers, 7 September 2003

Cuatricolor Flag (2003): hoisted during manifestations of the group so called "Gente del Petróleo" (Petroleum People) integrated by oil industry personnel affected by measures taken by the Hugo Chávez' regime. It seems to be combination of the National Flag colors with black, for symbolize protest and mourning;
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

6)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

Representation of National flag in white, gray and black (2002): hoisted in subsequent manifestations to April 11th, 2002 as mourning symbol.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003

Chavez Supporters

7)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

Red Flag (2002-2003): hoisted by Chavez' partisans in Government manifestations.
Raul Orta, 8 September 2003


More Flags of Protest (2000-2004)

Opposition Flags

1)
image by Raul Orta and Ivan Sache, 12 June 2004

With image of Our Lady of Coromoto, Celestial Matron of Venezuela, on the canton.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004

2)
image by Raul Orta and Ivan Sache, 12 June 2004

With image of Our Lady of Valle del Espiritu Santo (Holy Ghost\rquote Valley), Celestial Matron of the Venezuelan Orient, on the canton.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004

3)
image by Raul Orta and Ivan Sache, 12 June 2004

With image of Our Lady Mary Help of the Christians on the canton.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004

4)
image by Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

In the recollection of signatures or "firmazo" for Revocatory Referendum against President Chavez.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004

5)
image by Raul Orta and Ivan Sache, 12 June 2004

With black bow as mourning signal.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004

Pro-government flags (President Chavez partisans)


image by Raul Orta and Ivan Sache, 12 June 2004

With logotype of Movimiento Quinta Republica (Fifth Republic Movement) on the canton.
Raul Orta, 8 June 2004


Revocatory Referendum (15 August 2004)


Initial version
image by Raul Orta, 15 July 2004 and Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004


Latest version
image by Raul Orta, 10 August 2004 and Zachary Harden, 19 December 2004

"RR" ("Revocatory Referendum"), "NO" and "SI" (Yes)...
Naturally, partisans in favor to President’ s exit ("SI") as whom wish that he continues ("NO") have expressed their aspirations in evident way: these ones have chosen a red field with a white cartoon dialog-cloud contains the word "NO" in red capital gothic letters, whereas those ones have assumed as symbol a sphere reproducing National Flag on which appears the word "SI" - eventually accompanied by a sign of admiration too- in white gothic letters complementing itself with the phrase "por Venezuela" (for Venezuela) in black capital letters underneath the sphere, all over white background.
Both designs also has been non-formally reproduced on Flags which justifies also to consider it today as contemporary vexillological pieces, tomorrow historical ones of Venezuela.
Now we would like to consider briefly its semiological-symbollogical connotation. It ‘s obvious that both concepts have been advertising products; but, both are in net syntony with which try to express. Further that one or another one have been fruit of the imposition, the necessity or the spontaneity, is implicit in each case its message and the more perhaps important still, its meta-message; mainly, with regard to the Venezuela that each sector wishes that prevails after August 15th.
Raul Orta, 15 July 2004

President Chavez is a left-winger, the red color is certainly socialist, and we already records plain red flags being used by his supporters.
Richard Knipel, 15 July 2004

The latest versions of the un-formal vexillography of the two tendencies are reflected in the above images (second version): In the "SI" one, blue alludes to Holiest Virgin whose protection and help has been required by the Opposition Sector whilst on the "NO" one was added the word "VOTA" (Vote for).
Raul Orta, 10 August 2004


More "Pro-Chavist" Flags


Colectivo Vargas Revolución
image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


Bolivarian Circle of Baruta Municipality (?)
image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


Iconography of Zamora
image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004

Jaume Olle sent a photo of a meeting of the pro-governmental sector. I have been able to identify one of them; the red-blue-red tricolour. This flag, reproduced with the white border that showed on the photograph, is from the "Colectivo Vargas Revolución", a pro-Chavez, anti-MVR movement in Vargas state.   The other flag, which remains unidentified, seems to be that of a Bolivarian Circle from the Municipio Baruta, in Caracas Metropolitan District. The placing of a place's name to identify the local branch of a national or regional political party is common place. This would not be, however, the flag of a party (none of the pro-government parties we have identified has such imagery). On this particular flag, wehave an effigy of Ezequiel Zamora, an XIXth Century civil war caudillor and one of the historical figures ussualy evoked by the Chavismo movement. This flag can be attributed to a local cell of the movement. According to their website <www.circulosbolivarianos.org> in the Municipio Baruta of Miranda state there are three "Casas Bolivarianas del Poder Popular" (Bolivarian Houses of People's Power), along the parishes of Baruta, Las Minas and El Cafetal.   Nonetheless, the Bolivarian Cricles normally use a different symbol (I have never seen a flag, at least a regularly used flag). Well, a logo, rather than a symbol: they use three concentrical circles (red-blue-yellow) within which they place an effigy of Simon Bolivar, using different portraits. Zamora, together with Bolivar and Simon Rodrigez (a.k.a. Simon Robinson, an early XIXth century pedagogue and enligthened thinker) are the figures whose political proposals, mixed metaphorically in the "Tree of the Three Roots", are considered by Chavismo as the precursors of their ideology.   Zamora's image has been much more widely used than that of Rodr?guez, as has been noted upon following other government rallies, where flags as the one reproduced in ve}chavez!4.gif has been reported. Moreover (in the case of the Chavismo, there is a murky line between partisan flags and government organization's colours. There is a current tendency to modify the colours and emblems of government's ministries and agencies with the Chavismo's red.
Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


image by Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004

The MVR party, however, has not been the main staple of President Chavez movement. although it holds a majority of governorships, and has the largest fraction in the National Assembly, it has not been used by President Chavez as the main instrument of his mass movement. Channelling popular support through grass roots organizations directly linked to the government, such as the Bolivarian Circles, many local pro Chavez groups have appeared, using the movement colours (like top image, which had an unusual tricolour) and crafting some designs of their own. The previous post had two examples of that bearing the image of Ezequiel Zamora. Another common example is the flag portrayed in the second image. This yellow fielded flag bears an uniform-wearing, beret-clad Chavez, printed in black, made from a famous 1992 photograph. The upper hoist corner holds the name "CHAVEZ" in capital yellow, black-bordered, letters; and its lower side has the caption "UNICO LEADER" ("sole leader") in red. the Upper fly corner has a black square mimicking the cover of the 1999 constitution.   More recently, the 2004 recall referendum campaign saw the production of flyers and paper flags. The red colour has finally positioned itself as the colour of choice of the MVR (no statutes reflect this, though). In the bottom image, a red 2:1 field bearing the name "Chávez" in white was widely distributed. You can see how the letter "á", which as an accent mark in the Spanish writing of the President's name, mimics a beret.   Sometimes, the Pro-government rallies fashion the 1859 Barinas Federation Flag, and the 1863 Venezuelan Flag, as an homage to the "Federal Revolution" roots of the Chavista movement.
Guillermo Aveledo, 30 August 2004


Flags Used on "Journalist’ National Day" (2007)

Yesterday on the capital and other cities of Venezuela and in the occasion of 'Journalist’ National Day' the National Pacific Resistance Movement made a march with massive attendance of different sectors for commemorate the date a month ago of the exit of the air of Radio Caracas Television - RCTV an also in defense of the freedom of expression.
Meanwhile, president Chavez’ followers celebrated the date with a concentration on Bolivar Square, historical center of Caracas, affirming that during this bolivarian government it is have been respected as never before all the liberties established on the Constitution.
From the net symbollogical and particularly vexillological point of view, we can report that in the manifestation of president Chavez’ supporters did not appear new expressions (even though it has commented the presence of bolivarian flags with eight stars with the addition of the image of the guerrilla man Ernesto “Che” Guevera on the center) whereas on the march of the resistance besides the national flag with seven stars disposed naturally or upside down and to the flag with the RCTV’ logo we could see:


image by Raul Orta, 28 June 2007

A representation of the National flag with seven stars including the word 'LIBERTAD” (“FREEDOM') in white letters; There was also another one with the words 'LIBERTAD AD' (probably hoisted by members of Democratic Action AD, a traditional politic party of the country), both inscriptions white;


image by Raul Orta, 28 June 2007

A tricolor with the word LIBERTAD in white on the blue stripe without Coat of Arms or stars;


image by Raul Orta, 28 June 2007

A extended giant flag of white background with the black word LIBERTAD;


image by Raul Orta, 28 June 2007

A black flag with a right hand track inserted in a circumference, both white, emblem of the Students Resistance National Movement,


image by Raul Orta, 28 June 2007

Bolivarian flag with eight stars with the addition of the image of the guerrilla man Ernesto “Che” Guevera on the center that was used by president Chavez’ supporters.
Raul Orta, 28 June 2007