by Stephen Lendman
He's home. He arrived on February 18 at 2:30AM Caracas time. He announced his arrival via Twitter.
"I have returned to the Venezuelan homeland," he said. "Thank God!! Thank you beloved people! I will continue the treatment here."
Separately he thanked Fidel and Raul Castro. He praise Cuba's superb medical providers. "We will live and we will overcome," he said.
Fidel Castro wished him well on departure. He said in part:
I am extremely satisfied that you have been able to return to that piece of American land which you love so much, and to our brother people who support you so much.
A long and agonizing wait, as well as your astonishing capacity for physical resistance and the total dedication of a team of doctors, as has been the case over the last 10 years, were necessary to achieve this objective.
You learned a lot about life, Hugo, in those difficult days of suffering and sacrifice.
Now that we will not have the privilege of receiving news of you on a daily basis, we will go back to the method of correspondence which we have used for many years.
We will always live to fight for justice for human beings, consciously and humbly, without fear of the years, months, days or hours that we might have left to live in the most critical era of the history of our humanity.
Our people, who are also your people, will know tomorrow of your return to Venezuelan via this message.
Everything had to be done with much discretion, so as not to give an opportunity to the fascist groups to plan any of their cynical actions against the Bolivarian revolutionary process.
Global supporters "followed the 'health and news of Chavez."
Until victory always!
A firm hug!
Fidel Castro Ruz
On arrival, Venezuelan Communication Minister Ernesto Villegas said reports about his recovery were true. Media scoundrels claimed otherwise.
On state television, Villegas said "He's back. He's back. He's back. The ominous voices are defeated. Those who were calling into question the information emitted by the national government with respect to Chavez's health" were wrong.
"A terrible machinery was activated to delegitimize, to call into question all of the information that was being given, including by echoing the most atrocious" lies.
Chavez "ordered all times the country was (to be kept) informed on the progress of his treatment." Thirty official updates were provided. They were done so accurately. Chavez wanted it that way.
Vice President Nicolas stood in for him in his absence. He called on Venezuelans to celebrate his return. They need no prompting to do so. They often rally supportively.
During his convalescent period, various reports pronounced him dead or dying. On February 15, photos were released for the first time.
They showed him smiling with his daughters. He was reading Cuba's official newspaper, Granma.
On December 11, he underwent complex cancer surgery. He did so for the fourth time in 18 months. Recovery has been slow and difficult. Complications were overcome.
He still requires special treatment. He got world class care at Havana's Medical Surgical Research Center (CIMEQ). He'll continue it at Venezuela's Carlos Arvelo Military Hospital.
His January 10 inauguration was postponed. He was scheduled to take his oath of office before Venezuela's National Assembly.
He'll do it later before the Supreme Tribunal of Justice. It unanimously approved his doing so. Constitutional law was observed.
At issue now is returning to full health. Venezuelan pray he'll do so soon. They reelected him overwhelmingly last October. They won't tolerate dark forces returning.
He turned neoliberal harshness into Bolivarian success. With or without him, it's institutionalized. It's part of Venezuela's culture.
It's polar opposite America's permanent war policy, ravaging the world for global dominance, police state harshness, force-fed austerity, growing human need, and government beholden solely to business and privileged elitism.
Chavez champions human rights. He has no secret prisons. He doesn't invade his neighbors. He abhors torture.
He engages other nations cooperatively. He seeks unity and world solidarity. He supports free, open and fair elections.
Jimmy Carter calls them "the best in the world." It shames America's process. Duopoly power runs things. Republicans and Democrats are two sides of the same coin.
Venezuelans get real democracy. They want things no other way. Their votes count. Chavez institutionalized it. They pray for his full recovery. They want him back in full health.
Chavismo reflects Bolivarian fairness. He did so much for so many. He's too important to lose.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.