Back in 2006, Chavez addressed the UN General Assembly a day after US President George W Bush had done the same from the same podium. Said Chavez, “The Devil came here yesterday, and it smells of sulphur still today, this table that I am now standing in front of!!” At that point, the ultra-communist, purist atheist Chávez ostentatiously made the sign of the cross, positioned his hands as if praying, and looked briefly upwards – as if in invocation of God. He continued: “Yesterday, ladies and gentlemen, from this rostrum, the President of the United States, the gentleman to whom I refer as the devil, came here, talking as if he owned the world!!”
Well, his successor – the former bus driver Maduro – has ever since struggled to keep up the tradition of Chavismo: a confused hodgepodge of socialism, populism and Bolivarianism. It set Venezuela on a collision course with the US that involved nationalising the latter’s oil companies and sanctions imposed by the US in retaliation, which ended with the meltdown of their economy. Jump forward a decade, and there are now seven million Venezuelans as refugees in every country in the hemisphere – and then some!! Most of the remaining twenty-eight million are grubbing around in garbage cans for scraps – cause their wheelbarrows of bolivars can’t even buy rice.
But the war in Ukraine looks like it’s gonna be a godsend for Maduro. With sanctions against Russia cutting off fuel to European allies and fracked oil from its Permian Basil running out, America suddenly decided it should start to make nice with Venezuela. So, wink-wink, prisoners are exchanged, Chevron gets a licence to restart oil production and ship to its refineries in the States, and now – as far as we are concerned – comes the biggie!! Just when we decide we’re gonna sell all our trillions cubic feet of gas from our oil fields – the US decides to license TT to exploit Venezuela’s Dragon gas field. And compete with us!!
But there was a caveat: the US demanded no cash change hands – just “humanitarian supplies”!! TT’s Rowley dropped our Pressie’s offer for gas like a hot potato and pivoted to Maduro. Fortunately, the latter’s facing a blowback from Chavistas in the army who won’t have any dealings with the Great Satan. So, Maduro rejected the food-for-gas proposal. But will Maduro take a chance and do a pivot?? Can he take a chance to defy the army purists??
Your Eyewitness hopes he does – and he gets tossed out!! We, of course, should proceed full steam ahead with our gas exploitation and marketing.
For us, the Venezs are the Great Satan who covet our land! From both sides!!
If nothing else, the Letitia Wright visit to her native land served to expose the irrelevance of the Opposition to the younger members of those they used to see as their transported “constituency”. They’ve buried their heads in the sand to deny the evidence in front of them, as the PPP – led by Pressy Ali – marched into their communities, making friends. And possible supporters. Because they never really believed in the central concept of democracy – one man, one vote – the PNC never thought that, one by one, the young’uns may change the equation.
So here it was, a young Guyanese superstar created from portraying the liberating role of an African heroine the world looked up to – but the granddaughter of an old PNC supporter – personified that rejection in her actions. She chose to get involved in a circus at City Hall with the Opposition Leader, who’d pettily refused to shake hands with Pressie.
And then avoided been seen taking sides with a polarised local old-line organisation!
…Governance to periphery
Pressy Ali caught everyone by surprise when he decided if the people of Guyana couldn’t get to the mountain of government – then he’d take the mountain to the people!!
For two days every month, this will be repeated – region by region!!