and consensus over partisan violence.
the opposition leadership has emphasized non-violent forms of dissent. There have
also been indications from the government that some of its members understand the
need for dialogue and consensus, though this has not yet been followed by corresponding
actions. Ideally Maduro would appoint some opposition figures to his government,
but at the very least those in position to do so on both sides need to initiate dialogue and consensus building now.
Gustavo. Again, this call for common sense reminds me of the poor peasant that was ill and depressed and went to the doctor. The doctor told him: Your solution is easy. All you need to do is take a vacation, go to Paris or Rome. The idea that Maduro would appoint opposition figures to his government or that opposition figures would accept such appointment collides with all we know about the real Venezuelan situation. Maduro is committed to a “revolution” and a coalition government would mean the end of the “revolution”. It would be easier for the peasant of the story to go to Rome or Paris than for Maduro to call for a coalition.
rhetoric that could incite violence – is not permissible, and those who
engage in it will be treated in full accordance with the law.
opposition, the private sector and civil society, conducting a dialogue to reduce
tensions and find common ground. The Catholic Church, regional partners and
the international community in general should support this approach and be
ready, if asked, to provide mediation at an appropriate point.
The Supreme Court’s electoral chamber should deal fully and transparently with
all complaints of violence, intimidation and irregularities, if necessary ordering a
re-vote in centers where such incidents cast substantial doubt on the original.
The government should make clear that it supports such measures, and, if they
are taken, all sides should immediately recognize the election’s validity.
and freedom of expression, abstaining from threats and legal proceedings
against the independent media and reprisals against public employees suspected
of opposition sympathies; and the armed forces must act fully within the constitution,
which prohibits their participation in partisan politics.
and UNASUR, should encourage a non-violent solution of the political crisis and
offer themselves as facilitators and mediators.
pensions and indigenous rights that earned him the fervent support of millions, especially
among the poor.
Gustavo: This is only half of the truth. The other half is that his policy of handouts, the main claim to Chavez’s reputation as a defender of the poor, will turn out to be his major crime. After money runs out, and it is running out, the poor will be poorer than ever because they were not effectively taught to be self-starters but told to wait sitting down for the free house, ice box, bonuses, the food, free (and poor) education and transport, since they “deserved” all without working for it.
is thus a significant destabilizing factor.
by its dominant, more moderate wing of extra-constitutional paths to regime change.
But there remains a small minority that has consistently questioned
competing with the regime on its own terms and would be strengthened were
the remaining democratic spaces to be closed.
legislators approved a “gentlemen´s agreement” on the need to eschew violence
on the floor of the Assembly, a first step to possible normalization of parliamentary
activities. On the economic front, where unpopular measures are urgently required,
the replacement as finance minister of the hard-liner Jorge Giordani by the more
flexible Nelson Merentes, and an unexpected approach by the new agriculture minister,
Yván Gil, to the private sector, are grounds for some optimism.77 The appointment
of a moderate, Calixto Ortega, as chargé d’affaires of the embassy in Washington,
and a call for dialogue with the opposition by influential former Vice President
José Vicente Rangel are also positive signs. If the immediate passion resulting on
both sides over the disputed election can be calmed, there will be opportunities for
their moderates to pursue such a dialogue and begin the healing process.
protect economic interests and a perhaps excessive respect for internal affairs have
meant that the deepening polarization that now poses a clear and present danger of
political violence and further instability has produced only episodic and mild reactions.
It is time for stronger messages, particularly from neighbors and partners,
such as Brazil. International organizations, including UNASUR and the OAS, must
clearly signal concerns regarding regional instability. This should include a call to all
parties for peaceful resolution of the political impasse, with respect for promotion of
democracy, rule of law and human rights.
Gustavo: Many Latin American governments are simply milking the Venezuelan regime. Protection of economic interests? Yes. Political whores abound, from Mujica in Uruguay to Santos in Colombia.