President Chávez to the Venezuelan people
"I hope for much from time. Its
immense belly contains more hopes than past events
and future events have to be superior to past ones."
and its rhythms, time and its mandates, time and its
designs, as Ecclesiastes notes, bring me today to
read this communiqué to the Venezuelan nation and
the international public, as attentive as they have
been to the situation of my health since it began to
show signs of deterioration some weeks ago.
After the excellent tour that we
made of Brazil and Ecuador this past June 5 to 7, we
arrived in Cuba and its solidarity of always to
conclude the event with a review and the signing of
new cooperation agreements.
I confess that, from the point of
view of my health, I had only planned to have a
check of my left knee, already almost recovered from
that injury in early May.
Throughout my life I have been
committing one of those errors that could perfectly
well fit into that category which some philosopher
called "fundamental errors": neglecting my health
and, moreover, being very remiss in terms of medical
checks and treatment. Without any doubt, what a
fundamental error! And above all in a revolutionary
with certain modest responsibilities like those that
the revolution has been imposing on me for more than
However, already in Havana in the
evening of Wednesday, June 8, there we were again
with Fidel, with that giant who has already exceeded
all times and all places. Certainly it wasn’t
difficult for Fidel to realize the discomforts which,
beyond my left knee, I had been trying to conceal
for a number of weeks. He questioned me almost like
a doctor, I confessed almost like a patient, and
that night all the immense medical advances that the
Cuban Revolution has achieved for its people and a
good part of the world were placed totally at our
disposition, with the initiation of a combination of
examinations and diagnoses.
It was thus that a strange formation
in the pelvic region was detected and warranted an
emergency operation given the risk of a generalized
infection. That was Saturday, June 11, in the very
early hours of the morning, a few hours before the
announcement which was read to the country and to
the world, and which has prompted so many
demonstrations of solidarity that I am touched at
After that operation which, in
principal, managed to drain the abscess, an
intensive treatment with antibiotics began, which
was effective and led to a notable improvement.
However, and in spite of my generally positive
progress, throughout the process of draining and
treatment, some suspicions arose as to the presence
of other cell formations not previously detected.
And so another series of special
cyto-chemical, cytological, microbiological and
anatomic studies immediately began, which confirmed
the existence of an abscessed tumor presenting
carcinogenic cells, which made a second operation
necessary, in order to totally remove the
It was major surgery, but without
complications, after which I have continued making
satisfactory progress, while receiving complementary
treatment to combat the various types of cells found
and thus continue along the road to my full recovery.
Meanwhile, I have been and am being
kept informed and in command of the actions of the
Bolivarian government, I am in constant
communication with the Vice President, compañero
Elías Jaua and my entire government team.
I am infinitely grateful for the
numerous and enthusiastic demonstrations of
solidarity which I have received from the Venezuelan
people and other sister peoples, as well as the
heads of state and government of countless countries
in the world, with the conviction that all of that
love, all of that solidarity, constitute the most
sublime energy which is promoting and will promote
my will to win this new battle which life has placed
before us, and, in a very special way, I thank the
Cuban people, the Cuban nation, Fidel, Raúl, all
this medical legion which has placed itself at the
forefront of this battle in a veritably sublime
However, I have also been very aware
of a certain degree of anguish and uncertainty which,
throughout these days, these nights, has been
running through the body and soul of the Venezuelan
nation. I believe that beyond manipulative attempts
on the part of certain well known sectors, those
sentiments were and are inevitable, and are part of
human nature itself, this being surrounded, moreover,
by circumstances which frame it and often shake it,
as is occurring in this case.
From the very first moment I assumed
full responsibility in terms of ensuring the strict
veracity of the bulletins to be transmitted,
fundamentally for two sets of reasons: in the first
place, the medical-scientific reason and, in second
place, and in a very specially careful way from the
very depths of my soul and conscience, the humane
reason, the reason of love, to be more precise, the
reason of love!
We have already talked a bit about
the first; in other words, the medical reason. It
has been a slow and careful process of approximation
and diagnosis, of advances and discoveries
throughout various stages, during which rigorous
scientific procedures have been implemented which
did not admit any haste or pressure of any kind. The
supreme guiding principle sustaining this powerful
reason is full scientific verification, beyond the
indications and suspicions that were appearing.
And, in relation to the reason of
love, I am now obliged to talk to you from the most
intimate part of myself. At this moment, I am
remembering the 4th of February of that year of
turmoil, 1992. That day, I had no alternative but to
talk to Venezuela from my decline, from a road that
I felt was dragging me towards a bottomless abyss.
As from a dark cavern in my soul the "for now,"
burst out and then I sank.
Right now those fateful hours of
April 11, 2002 also come into my mind. Then, as well,
I sent that message to my beloved Venezuelan people,
written from the Turiamo Naval Base where I was a
prisoner, an overthrown and imprisoned president. It
was like a song of pain, shouted from the depths of
another abyss, which I felt was swallowing me in its
throat and I was sinking and sinking.
Now, in this new time of
difficulties, and above all since Fidel Castro
himself in person, the Fidel of the Moncada Garrison,
the Fidel of the Granma yacht, the very same
Fidel of the Sierra Maestra, the giant of always,
came to tell me the harsh news of the carcinogenic
discovery, I have begun to ask my Lord Jesus, the
God of my fathers, Simón Bolívar would say; to the
Mantle of the Virgin, as my mother Elena would say;
the spirits of the savannah, as Florentino Coronado
would say, to grant me the possibility of talking to
you, not from another abysmal path, not from a dark
cavern or a night without stars. Now I would like to
talk to you from this steep path via which I feel
that I am already emerging from another abyss. Now I
would like to talk to you with the sun of dawn which
I feel illuminating me. I think we have achieved
that. Thank you, my God!
And finally, my beloved compatriots;
my adored sons and daughters; my dear young
compañeros, the girls and boys of my people; my
valiant soldiers of always; my brave workers, men
and woman; my dear patriotic women; my beloved
people, all and one in my heart, I am saying that
wanting to talk to you today from my new ascent
towards the return has nothing to do with me myself,
but with you, a patriotic people, a good people. I
did not want nor do I want at all that you should
accompany me along paths that sink into an abyss. I
invite you to continue with me to scale new summits;
there are semeruco trees there in the
mountains and a beautiful song to sing which the
poet of the people, our dear Alí Primera, keeps
singing to us from his eternity: "Let us go then,
let us go, with our father Bolívar in the vanguard,
to continue climbing the peak of the Chimborazo!"
Thank you, my God! Thank you, my
people! Thank you, my life!
Hasta la victoria siempre!
Havana, this dear and heroic Havana,
June 30, 2011.
From the patria grande, I say
to you, from my heart, from all of my soul, from my
supreme hope, which is that of a people: "For now
and for always we will live and overcome!
Thank you very much! Until my return!