INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: New Pro-Chavez Publication in Lima

Published: Fri 5 Aug 2005 03:28 PM
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS LIMA 003379
SIPDIS
WHA FOR BFRIEDMAN
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PINR PREL PE VE
SUBJECT: NEW PRO-CHAVEZ PUBLICATION IN LIMA
1. SUMMARY: A pro-Chavez, leftist publication entitled
"Wankar" ("the Song of the People" in Quechua) recently
appeared in Lima. The first issue has a slick paper cover
with a dramatic color photo of Chavez sporting his commando
cap, his fist raised in the air. The masthead of the
magazine as well as the subjects and/or authors of most of
the articles are members of the Peruvian Communist
Party-Patria Roja (PCP-PR). The high quality of the cover
graphics, the timing of the magazine's appearance, its low
price, and the prominent way in which the publication
features Hugo Chavez all suggest outside financing. END
SUMMARY.
2. A pro-Chavez, leftist publication entitled "Wankar" ("the
Song of the People" in Quechua) recently appeared in Lima.
Embassy's copies were purchased at Jockey Plaza, an upscale
suburban shopping mall. The magazine's appearance was
obviously intended to coincide with both national strike days
(July 14) and the recent visit of Venezuelan President Hugo
Chavez. The first issue has a slick paper cover with a
dramatic color photo of Chavez sporting his commando cap, his
fist raised in the air. Accompanying text reads: "The Sword
of Bolivar in Peru: Welcome President Chavez!" A subtitle
for the publication itself states that the magazine will be
"the voice of those from below." The magazine sells for two
soles (about USD .65).
3. The inside of the publication does not share the
technical sophistication of the cover. Paper quality is far
less and occasionally the layout is poor. The magazine
dedicates significant space to the creation of "a broad
front" (El Frente Amplio), a recent effort to bring together
over 30 Peruvian leftist parties, a number of them tiny
splinter groups, to advocate social revolution. The
directors of the magazine as well as the subjects and/or
authors of most of the articles are members of the Peruvian
Communist Party-Patria Roja (PCP-PR),though some members of
other leftist/marxist groups are also represented. Among
those listed are Alberto Moreno, PCP-PR Secretary General,
and Hector Bejar, a former 1960s-era "foquista" and
contemporary activist for peasants' and miners' rights. One
American is listed on the masthead, James Petras, a
sociologist from SUNY Binghamton, although Petras is not
listed as author of any of the articles in the magazine.
4. Magazine articles deal with the political opportunities
offered by the allegedly imminent fall of the United States
("the new Babylon"), the formation of the Broad Front by the
Peruvian left, mine conflicts, environmental destruction,
opposition to coca eradication, revolution in Bolivia, the
CIA, and recent leftist youth meetings, both in Peru as well
as the recent 13th World Festival of Students in Caracas.
Quechua words and phrases are liberally sprinkled throughout
with a final article that profiles a recently-deceased
leftist scholar of Quechua, Alfredo Torero. The magazine
refers readers to a website, www.frenteamplio.org. The web
page states that it is under construction.
5. COMMENT: While Wankar's content is symptomatic of
historic PCP-PR propaganda, the high quality of the cover
graphics, the timing of its appearance, its low price, and
the prominent way in which the publication features Hugo
Chavez all suggest outside financing. The first issue
promises further ones to follow, but none have to date. END
COMMENT.
STRUBLE
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