Hands off Venezuela

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Joined: 7-01-18
Mar 24 2018 15:21
Hands off Venezuela

Noam Chomsky and Jill Stein lead support for an end to foreign electoral meddling… by the US concerning Venezuela.

The United States are currently party to a serious case of an unscrupulous foreign power subverting the vital democratic pillars of a sovereign nation in order to promote their own agenda. They are, however, the culprits, not the victims.

The incumbent United Socialist Party of Venezuela are subject to crippling sanctions by the United States of America, the economic hegemon of Americas North, Central and South. As a country which sees 95% of its exports sold by a state-owned oil company, the overwhelming victims of this decision are those who receive redistributed oil wealth under programs designed by Hugo Chavez – ordinary Venezuelans.

Ostensibly aimed at easing the passage of the increasingly authoritarian Maduro through the exit door, history shows that sanctions almost never lead to a more wholesome democracy. As Francisco Rodríguez writes in Foreign Policy magazine:

Extensive academic research has shown that economic sanctions are rarely effective. When they work, it is because they offer the sanctioned regime incentives along with a way out by altering the conduct that led to the sanctions being imposed (such as the rollback of Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for access to international trade). By contrast, the sanctions against Venezuela have backed the regime into a corner, increasing the costs that the government would face upon leaving power and raising the incentives for Maduro to dig in his heels.
It would be disingenuous to state that the US are unaware of the inefficacy and myopia of this approach if the end game is really to improve democracy in Venezuela; instead, use your Occam’s Razor to imagine a more obvious target of US ire: nationalised oil reserves – in this case representing about 20% of the world’s untapped liquid gold.

There is simply no way to justify castigating a largely democratic nation in Venezuela whilst upholding the absolute monarchist Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the apartheid state of Israel as paragons of democratic virtue. The difference between Venezuela and every tinpot dictatorial big brother state that the US embrace is that Venezuela’s vast resources are not open to consumption and profit for Chevron and ExxonMobil.

In recognition of these inconsistent and nonsensical policies aimed at bending a sovereign nation to bow before the economic interests of another, a collection of US academics and politicians are taking aim at America’s relationship with Venezuela.

Green Party leader Jill Stein and world-famous intellectual Noam Chomsky joined the ranks of 154 signatories in an open letter pleading Washington to end the ‘cynical use of coercive economic power to attack a nation that is already dealing with hyperinflation and shortages of basic commodities’.

Joined: 17-05-04
Mar 25 2018 12:04

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