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Venezuela Beneath the Skin of Imperialism

Twenty-Five minutes into the Mission Impossible film starring Tom Cruise, there’s a scene of a high-jacked train. Amongst the high-jackers their conversation reveals an exquisite U.S. imperialistic Machiavellian monologue, past and present: “you are defined by who you hate” and “once you know who you hate, everything works.” It is probably one of the most defining mental state descriptions of the mode of operandi by U.S national security advisors towards Venezuela for the past 20 years.

The application of hate as an instrument of control puts at risk; innocent, political neutral bystanders and everyone else. It is a stored surplus for any power-seeking malevolent intentions to acid strip away any reasonable doubt to question authority and imperial rule. It is the perfect rationale that best camouflages racism, bigotry, cruelty and vengefulness. Its coiled tension when released can cause irreversible damage. Hence, the grip of hate can evolve into violence and evil acts of destruction. It points to an emotional/calculating path of insanity that goes in many directions and can be as permanent as U.S Imperial hegemony with different levels of undiscriminating forms of punishment.

The Jekyll and Hyde character of empires according to its national security excuses and interest will determine the degree of humane rights violations and destruction with no regrets or remorse what so ever. Past U.S presidents have made it very clear as did H.W Bush during an international incident, “I will never apologize for the United States of America. I don’t care what the facts are.”[1]U.S Imperialism draws its adrenaline from the logic of a biblical syndrome as the chosen one to lead as a divine favor to the world. Not to say the least the rewards that come plundering and domination. The banality of hate normalizes everyday practices with justifications that conceal the inhibited ability to a face-to-face discussion without the vantage point of might or superiority.

It is unable to see eye to eye with otherness as equals for it is easier to harm, stereotype and accuse when the other is under the scope of hate. Hate is a manipulative variable, a barrier and an essential component to suppressing truth. Hate short circuits the will to dialogue and allows degenerate thinking possess hearts and souls. It is the first step to indifference. CAUTION To fall under its spell is a moral and an ethical defeat against sanity, peace and justice. A recent tweet with a brutal image posted by a U.S senator from Florida against President Maduro reflects the malevolent character of a U.S senator gone insane and stray with hate.[2]

The targeting of Venezuela is not just to remove its political Bolivarian identity but to build animosity amongst people of the region towards one another. It is a tactful jingoistic approach against Venezuela to fragment a unifying possibility while Bolivarians seeks a way out from the shadows of a world economic system made from the simmering ashes of colonization. The assault to its national sovereignty by U.S imperialism stokes anxieties of distrust and seeks out the fissures within its boundaries like it did in Chile 1973. Such hostility is an extension of Eisenhower’s dictum during the Korean War: “Set Asian to fight Asians.”[3]In the case of Venezuela, it is ‘set the Venezuelans to fight Venezuelans.  The imperial goal is to pry open the country to the will of a global economic ruling status quo at all cost.

The psych-ops against Venezuela from both spheres of the world; the global north and their obedient collaborators of the global south Led by U.S, is a strategy of throwing the other of balance based on insidious fake accusations driven by deceiving social media networks, journalist and short-sighted reporters. For Argentinian journalist Rudolfo Walsh (1927-1977) conformist and imperial abiding reporting are ‘cultural tranquilizers.’

The attempt by the U.S government  and the Lima group as an accomplice to steal and control Venezuela’s natural resources, oil (the largest oil reserve in the world), nickel, copper, natural gas, gold, water is not the only objective in this conflict; it’s to delay and push back decades the possibility to strategize a healthy regional economic system for Venezuelans and partners that can counter capitalist imperial ambitions. The coveting of such natural wealth by U.S is disturbing as is the manufacturing of destruction by its arrogant use of its military might and world influence. The repeated historical pattern of coveting strategical resources once again proves that U.S hegemony is lethal to a safe planet. Such bold imperial plan to heist Venezuela’s main source of state revenues (oil production) could not have better been expressed other than by National Security Advisor John Bolton:

“We’re in conversation with major American companies now,” he said. “I think we’re trying to get to the same result end here. … It will make a big difference to the United States economically if we could have American oil companies really invest in and produce the oil capabilities in Venezuela.”[4]

Any extreme measures vs radical measures for Hannah Arendt does not imply change. In the case of Venezuela, the extreme measures (first phase of indirect violence) against its sovereignty are regressive actions of economic strangulation (sanctions) meant to frustrate and bend the will of its democratically elected government, president, its citizens at a time of economic difficulties. All attempts by Venezuelan government to an open dialogue have been canceled by the opposition. The attack against Venezuela is against a possible radical shift that implies an economic structural change were by power and destiny lays in the hands of its constituency without any outside interference. While the freezing of Venezuela’s accounts and access to loans essential for trade and to pay for imports is animperial geographical reliningof Venezuela’s ability to escape the financial chokehold imposed by the financial power houses of the world. Hence it is an extension of an undeclared war.

Venezuela’s reliance on its military for protection is questioned by some. The answer is, how can it not be when the powerful grow powerful and the weaker grow weak resisting zealot medieval inquisitions by Europe, Canada, U.S and a harmful reactionary opposition. The press and tranquilizing media have confine Venezuela’s military support of Maduro as having been paid off… as if loyalty and dignity in defending their country did not exist. Could it be U.S attempts at buying the generals failed?  What is ignored is the anti-imperialist character of the Bolivarian forces.[5]The Venezuelan military deserters who crossed over to Colombia on February 23, 2019, now find themselves abandoned both by Colombia and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. The UNCHR and the Colombian Government have given the soldiers 4 days to leave the refugee camp.[6]

The whole theatrical show of humanitarian aid and U.S war planes landing on a dusty border town in Colombia with reporters reporting from the frontline with serious faces of concern is a typicalhollywoodscript while the American public as spectators watch each scene unfold like a movie that is meant to be seen only from afar. For the act of watching requires no input and neither is the spectators expected to contribute in any way other than to watch and be entertained. Like extras in a film the participants  as well as the viewers are regulated to take orders and perform according to the script. It is either you like or not. If you don’t, then turn the channel, move away and look the other away. In his 2005 epilogue to America the New Empire,(pg.390) Scottish Historian V. G Kiernan expressed the following: “a significant portion of the U.S public has come to regard maintenance of Empire as a great sacrifice, involving humanitarian devotion to the spread of democracy and the global well-being.”

As states from the global south dismantle and liquidate their resources and state own enterprises (some willingly others forced) to the highest bidders of the North, they cease to be owners and instead are converted into managers for the rich and the mighty at the expense of the people present and future. Any subsidizing is reserved for corporations, banks and entities vital to imperial domination and not to beneficial healthy planetary programs.

U.S war traumas derived from defeats are superseded by more wars. It is condemned like Sisyphus to a never-ending task of perpetual war after reaching the top of the hill only to restart again. For it is sentenced by the very same nature of empire ambitions (market expansion+ unlimited/appropriation of natural resources+ finance capital control+ cultural hegemony+ Military might.) and its institutional arrogance that comes from conquering and dominating. No peace can come from this systematic harassment towards Venezuela: “It is meant to destroys the social fabric and cuts at collective bonds – using chaos to get its way.”[7]

The self-inflicting pain caused by U.S Imperialism is transferred over to the uncritical and consciously naïve citizen: the political neutral bystander, the innocent, and everyone else. Be it left or right, center left or center right, liberals and democrats the absence of an ethical complicity with any victim of empire ventures is complicit with its system. For hate allied with injustice, racism and depravation of basic human needs is a blinding factor that can and has subjected the innocent, the uncritical and consciousness naïve citizen to participate in direct or indirect horrendous acts of human rights violations by allowing it to happen. Under such circumstances hate can be best described when it crystalizes into what Arendt describes as the banality of evil.

Imperial propaganda, its motives and its persuasive ways are hidden in the colonial details (fine print). There are plenty of historical facts that counter the conjured lies by unscrupulous governments. If anything, taking a closer look at the facts and moving away from any biases towards the global South in this case Venezuela, is an important step to take. It will assist our co- responsibility we owe to ourselves and to others with justice, truth, fairness and dignity for all.[8]

Notes.

[1] V.G Kiernan, America The New Imperialism: From White settlement to World Hegemony (2005, London, New York, Verso publications)pg. 392.

[2] https://www.rt.com/news/452329-rubio-gaddafi-venezuela-tweet/

[3] V.G Kiernan, America The New Imperialism: From White settlement to World Hegemony (2005, London, New York, Verso publications) pg. 292.

[4] http://time.com/5516920/inside-john-boltons-month-long-p-r-campaign-against-venezuelas-government/

[5] https://www.telesurtv.net/news/comunicado-fanb-trump-eeuu-lealtad-nicolas-maduro-20190219-0018.html

[6] https://www.telesurtv.net/news/militares-desertores-denuncian-abandono-cucuta-colombia-20190316-0021.html

[7] https://www.thetricontinental.org/dossier-4-the-people-of-venezuela-go-to-vote/

[8] Scholar and philosopher Frederick B. Mills makes a  reference  to our co-responsibility in his monograph of Enrique Dussel’s Ethics of Liberation: An Introduction.

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