viernes, 28 de abril de 2017

Withdrawal from the OAS is a victory for Venezuelan opposition

Jigsaw word: DICTATORSHIP, balloon: Come on, Nicolás…a little effort…you got it!

The announcement by Venezuela’s narco-dictatorship of its imminent withdrawal from the OAS is an important victory for the democratic Venezuelan opposition. This retreat is a serious mistake, as was the recent, unnecessary coup d’Etat to the Asamblea Nacional (National Assembly). Now, the group in power thought it was more intelligent to challenge the world with a withdrawal than to risk being expelled, as the Castrista régime was in 1962 when it was banished from the regional body.

This escape is an acknowledgement of imminent defeat, they know the Inter-American Democratic Charter will be applied to them and that the group of unconditional governments has neither the votes nor the moral credibility to make up for whatever decision the majority makes.

The problem is that instead of fighting until the last minute and even after, they have admitted before the world that the lack the reasoning and the will to face up to the democratic community’s demands. Thus, it is an acknowledgement that, yes, they are a dictatorship, yes, they use repression against an unarmed people and no, they will not hold elections even if they have to swamp Venezuela’s streets in blood.

This decision’s first negative impact is against the governments that have been voting in favor of Maduro in the OAS. They have even risked a rift with Washington. Now their ally in Caracas, with no warning, withdraws from the arena. The narco-dictatorship has expelled itself and leaves them in a bad position. What are they going to do, withdraw as well?

The other harmful result of the decision has to do with the millions of Latin American sympathizers with the demagogic left who still had some hope that thing would be solved the right way and one way or another all that was being said about repression and corruption in Venezuela would be left behind with a compromise. Among them we could include the percentage of Venezuelans who support the regime for ideological reasons of out of fanaticism.

By leaving the OAS under these circumstances, Maduro’s government cuts its political and moral ties with the community in the Americas and remains with its strategic allies: Russia, Iran, China North Korea, Hezbollah, the Castrista dictatorship and the drug-trafficking mafia. Venezuelan generals and all those supporting Maduro and mentor Raúl Castro cannot claim to be bolivarians any longer. At the Angostura Congress in Panama in 1863, Simón Bolívar warned: “Nothing is as dangerous as allowing the same citizen to remain in power for a long time. The people become used to obeying him, and he to control it, where usurpation and tyranny arise.”

The OAS no longer has to expel that government, nor does it necessarily have to suffer a split among its members when, demanding an election solution in Venezuela, it must apply some type of punishment to a regime that has left. 

The countries truly committed to the Inter-American Democratic Charter are free to make up a group to support democratic Venezuelan opposition with whatever it is needed to prevent their country from falling into the darkness of totalitarianism.

The Venezuelan narco-dictatorship has opened the door for a community made up only of governments democratically elected to organize itself without ceasing to belong to the OAS. They can establish privileged trade, political and diplomatic bonds among them. They must even be capable of helping peoples who lose their freedoms. Actually, the Inter-American Democratic Charter is not an effective instrument, because it lacks coercive power, only allowing for dictatorships to shed their masks when convenient.

Lastly, the great beneficiary from this scarcely intelligent decision to withdraw from the OAS is the democratic Venezuelan opposition which, marching down the streets and paying a heroic quota of sacrifice has won the admiration and solidarity of millions of democrats the world over and has forced the narco-dictatorship to fully take off its mask.

By Huber Matos Araluce, San José, Costa Rica, April 27, 2017. 

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