…in the West
The Venezies are up to their old bellicose tricks…rattling sabres on our western borders and threatening to rain all sorts of fire and brimstone on us. This time – even as the World Court’s about to pronounce on the border controversy concocted by Venezuela – Maduro has objected to our government’s latest round of invitation for bids to explore for oil off our shores!! When will these Venezies get with the programme?? Haven’t they learnt the lesson: that being a puppet to colonial interests back in the 60s, to raise their border controversy, hasn’t earned them any benefits in the long run?? They gotta look at the bigger picture!!
Back then, the US was concerned that Cheddi would’ve taken BG into the communist orbit – like Castro with Cuba – during the raging Cold War. And they used the Venezies to claim two-thirds of our territory as one prong to hold in reserve in case the Brits gave Cheddi independence. The Brits, however, felt Cheddi’s bark was worse than his bite!! Anyhow, since 1962, when they brought the matter before the US, the Venezies have been screaming bloody murder that they wuz robbed at the 1899 Arbitral Award that settled our borders. Even though their reps had signed along the dotted line!!
Back in 1966 – when we got independence – the Venezies actually invaded us and seized our half of Ankoko Island, which they still hold. We had a tripartite (with the Brits as a signatory) Geneva Agreement on how to proceed, but they skirted the terms. In the seventies, they blocked the PNC Government from getting a World Bank loan when he used a windfall from sugar to start a hydroelectric power generating plant on the Mazaruni River!! By the terms of the Geneva Agreement, we took the matter to the UN Secretary General’s Office to propose a settlement procedure – and they suggested the World Court.
Even though the Venezies had signed once again on the dotted line, they refused to accept the World Court’s jurisdiction – after having been dragged kicking and screaming to respond. The irony, of course, is that the US had reversed their stance on them – proving that there are no besties in politics!! The rule – as your Eyewitness has been emphasising forever – is there are no permanent friends or permanent enemies in politics – just permanent interests!!
And if Maduro and the Venezies have a modicum of good sense, they should quit beating up on a next-door smaller state!! Back in the day, Burnham had complained to the multilateral agencies to stymie their aspirations to be a Third World leader!!
Your Eyewitness is very happy that Exxon’s one of the latest bidders. Let’s see if Maduro will poke them in the eye!!
…in the north
Well, this month end – actually, the 27th and 28th – we’ll see sparks flying in Washington when a PNC front group hosts a “Conference on Guyana”. Now, you know what’s gonna be going down!! We had a preview when President Ali met the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) on his trip to Washington – in which Congressman and Democratic House Congressional Leader Hakeem Jeffries participated. Jeffries insisted he told Pres Ali that he gotta get with the PNC’s programme for African Guyanese!! He arranged for the Opposition to also come up to Washington next week.
What was notable, however, was the CBC didn’t mention Jeffries’ desiderata!! The point being that the US would prefer not to deliver a smoking gun to its critics – on interfering in the domestic affairs of independent states!! Pres Ali, of course, had outlined in great detail its development programme, including specific outreaches to African Guyanese!!
Anyhow, Jeffries gonna be delivering the feature address at the Washington meet. Let’s see if he’ll buck Biden’s agenda again!!
Canada’s Trudeau’s bucking for a fight with India. But India’s showing no sign of backing away from defending its state integrity from secessionists!! The Brits split them in 1947, and the cry is now, “Never again”!!