VENEZUELA: What Coup?

Soldiers were slightly more in evidence than usual on Caracas streets last week. There was an irksome 7 p.m. curfew, and at night Caraqueños heard isolated shots from snipers vainly trying to scare up a little counter-revolutionary enthusiasm. Except for these signs, and the new faces in Miraflores Palace, Venezuelans might almost have asked themselves, 'What coup?"

Traffic swirled around the Plaza Bolivar; Christmas shopping was off only slightly. The Venezuelan idol, Luis Sánchez ("El Diamante Negro"), dispatched his quota of bulls in the Nuevo Circo bull ring, the horses made their customary circuits of the Hipódromo race track, and...

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