Bladimir Lugo Armas, the colonel who attacked Julio Borges, the president of the Parliament, on Tuesday is a true representative of what a part of chavismo has become with his barbaric behavior. That push is just a display of contempt from the supporters of Nicolás Maduro for the opinion of 14 million Venezuelans who voted for the members of the current Parliament in 2015.
The savagery became clear with the actions of Col. Lugo Armas, who now has to his credit several similar "feats." On one occasion, he attacked Lilian Tintori and Antonieta Mendoza – wife and mother of opposition leader Leopoldo López, respectively – in addition to making several mobile phones of journalists "disappear." It seems that his rude behavior was learned by the same "class" graduated from the Military Academy as that of the former head of the Parliament until 2015.
His action not only shows utter disrespect for Borges and the rest of the House, but also for all Venezuelans who have demonstrated, every time it has been necessary, that they want to live in a democratic country, with institutions that really work, with respect for human rights. The action of Lugo was a "remake" of what Pedro Carujo did to José María Vargas in 1835.
The response from Borges to the rudeness of Col. Lugo Armas was appropriate. Perhaps, in any case, Borges should have complained about his attitude and demand respect for being the head of the Venezuelan Parliament, but never – as some claim – respond with violence. The attitude of Borges helped expose even more the brutality and savagery of Lugo Armas.
Prior to the incident with Borges, several members of the Parliament were attacked – including women – by officers of the National Guard (GNB), when complaining about the unknown content of a few boxes with the emblem of the National Electoral Council (CNE) being stored in the Federal Legislative Palace in Caracas. The fact that the GNB officers had opposed to reveal the content is suspicious.
Added to the aforementioned events are the actions of chavista paramilitary groups, who on Tuesday kidnapped members and employees of Parliament, along with journalists and other people who were invited to the session, for several hours with the blessing of Col. Lugo Armas and other members of the GNB and the government of Maduro.
What happened on Tuesday is an example of what the country can expect if the Constituent Assembly proposed by Maduro is imposed. Thus, it is time to form a united front, as broad as possible, in order to face this new threat of authoritarianism against Venezuelan democracy. From the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) to the opposition political organizations outside of it, bringing critical chavismo into the mix. Everyone is important.