Venezuela: On Washington’s Myth of Democracy and Welfare Restoration
By: Chaira Machmudya Salsabila/RUSSIA TODAY
The aftermath fiasco of the 2018 Presidential Election in Venezuela, involving then-candidates Nicolas Maduro and Juan Guaido, is showing no signs of ending. First sparked by fraud allegations of the re-elected Maduro, the once-domestic dispute has turned into a contest where all parts of the international community give their two cents. Countries’ opinions differ and contradict each other like heaven and hell. While some state leaders like Putin suggest a moderated discussion for exchange of words between the two, President Donald Trump is somehow taking a quiet unethical approach towards this issue. His method ranges from taking sides on Guaido, demonizing Maduro for rejecting The States’ suspicious humanitarian aid, to talks on possibilities of sending the US military to Caracas—whatever to get Maduro off his throne.
Washington’s method and strategy in putting their nose into Venezuela’s business might be familiar to some of us. His attempt includes telling everyone how there are severe humanitarian law violations in the Latin American country, crisis and famine-caused deaths linked to Maduro’s decisions in his previous presidency, and the urgency for further international pressure in the forms of, say, military intervention. Have we seen all this before? Yes, in Libya, where “humanitarian” intervention started from allegations of domestic crimes and turned into another game with regime change as its main prize, and civilians’ lives as its unavoidable risk.
If Trump cares so much about democracy in Venezuela, and if he really thinks that Maduro’s Venezuela deserves interventions because of “fraud allegations” among others, can somebody explain his congratulatory words for Juan Orlando Hernandez? The Honduran president got re-elected in 2017 despite of fraud allegations circulating around. Why is the “standing up for democracy” agenda only displayed in Venezuela, but not other countries?
As a leader of his state, it is Maduro’s prerogative right to reject humanitarian aids he thinks will bring more harm than good to the country, especially in the terms of ideology and, obviously, security. The socialist spirit of Venezuela’s ideology includes the strong will to stand on one’s own feet even when times get hard. Also, never forget US’s history of making humanitarian aids as disguise of something else. Nicaragua is a clear example. In the 1970s, when the country fell into crisis, US hid its US $27 millionworth weapons and smuggle them through the disguise of aids for the people.
The 2019 report released by Center of Economic and Policy Research strengthens the suspicions. According to the report, Maduro's failure to safeguard the economic situation in Venezuela is not the reason why crisis in Venezuela is taking place. The inhuman sanctions and political statements given by the United States of America are. Once US acknowledges Guaido as the “interim” President and not Maduro, Venezuela’s official government had lost their access to many international banks, giving them difficulties in international trade and importing basic needs. Why would the state that gives Venezuela the most trouble suddenly looks like they care the most about the ongoing, sanction-caused humanitarian crisis in the country?
Referring to the UN charter, as well as the outcome document of the 2005 Summit, military interventions should be a last resort to handle humanitarian law violations and shall only be ruled by the Security Council. However, before letting US’s military intervention agenda passes, members of the council should take two things into consideration. Firstly, no official investigation has ever been conducted to determine whether or not such violations exist. Secondly, US’s history of using the “responsibility to protect” to perpetuate its superior-subordinate relationship with other countries is not something to be ignored.