NYT's Editorial: A dangerous standoff in Venezuela
The opposition leader Henrique Capriles said in a statement...“We must save
Venezuela because it's falling down the abyss this government it pushing it toward.”
The effort to oust President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela through a referendum was always a long shot. But it represented the best hope of ending an era of authoritarian rule and epic economic mismanagement through peaceful, constitutional means.
Last week, however, allies of Mr. Maduro in the courts and on the electoral commission shut down the process , with predictable results . On Wednesday, enraged protesters took to the streets, where some came under attack by security forces, while their leaders called for a demonstration on Nov. 3 that will end at the presidential palace.
The latest confrontation between the government and the opposition began with regional court rulings that tossed out signatures supporting the referendum on grounds that some were gathered fraudulently. Based on those rulings, the electoral commission, run by acolytes of the president, last Friday suspended the next step of the process , the collection of signatures from roughly 20 percent of voters. That decision makes it almost certain that a referendum will not be held before Jan. 10, the latest date under which a plebiscite would trigger a new election.
Venezuela's Parliament, which is run by Mr. Maduro's opponents, but which he has rendered largely powerless, reacted with rightful indignation. During a hearing on Sunday, opposition leaders said the electoral commission's decision represented a “rupture of constitutional order” and a de facto coup of the legislative branch. The hearing devolved into pandemonium and bloody scuffles after a band of government supporters burst in.
Some opposition lawmakers have proposed holding an impeachment-type trial. But even if that was to happen, it's unlikely it would be more than a symbolic gesture. Opposition leaders appear to be pinning their hopes on acts of civil disobedience. “Maduro and his cronies must know that being peaceful doesn't mean that we won't defend the nation when we're forced to,” the opposition leader Henrique Capriles said in a statement in which he called on Venezuelans to join Wednesday's demonstration. “We must save Venezuela because it's falling down the abyss this government it pushing it toward.”
Past standoffs have prompted international calls for dialogue. On Monday the Vatican offered to mediate talks between the government and the opposition. There's little reason to be optimistic. Mr. Maduro has demonstrated that he is unwilling to share power or acknowledge the humanitarian crisis gripping the nation. This should persuade leaders in the region to denounce Mr. Maduro in stronger terms than they have in the past and call on Venezuelan jurists and bureaucrats to stop being accomplices of a dictatorship in the making. Meanwhile, China, which has kept the government afloat during years of low oil prices, should stop throwing good money after bad. Beijing is unlikely to see a return on its investments in Venezuela as long as Mr. Maduro remains in power.
In the meantime, ordinary citizens suffer from malnutrition and are dying needlessly, problems aggravated by the Maduro government's refusal to accept humanitarian aid. As the situation worsens, it is only logical that more Venezuelans will be driven by desperation to rise up. If there is more bloodshed, Mr. Maduro will be responsible.
The Editorial Board of The New York Times, an American daily newspaper, founded and continuously published in New York City since September 18, 1851, The New York Times has won 117 Pulitzer Prizes, more than any other news organization, its weekday circulation has fallen to fewer than one million daily since 1990. Petroleumworld does not necessarily share these views.
Petroleumworld reprint this article in the interest of our readers and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners. All comments posted and published on Petroleumworld, do not reflect either for or against the opinion expressed in the comment as an endorsement of Petroleumworld.
All comments expressed are private comments and do not necessary reflect the view of this website. All comments are posted and published without liability to Petroleumworld.
Use Notice:This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of issues of environmental and humanitarian significance. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml.
All works published by Petroleumworld are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.Petroleumworld has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is Petroleumworld endorsed or sponsored by theoriginator.Petroleumworld encourages persons to reproduce, reprint, or broadcast Petroleumworld articles provided that any such reproduction identify the original source, http://www.petroleumworld.com or else and it is done within the fair use as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner. Internet web links to http://www.petroleumworld.com are appreciated.Copyright© 1999-2009 Petroleumworld or respective author or news agency. All rights reserved.
We welcome the use of Petroleumworld™ stories by anyone provided it mentions Petroleumworld.com as the source.
Other stories you have to get authorization by its authors.Internet web links to http://www.petroleumworld.com are appreciated.
Petroleumworld welcomes your feedback and comments, share your thoughts on this article, your feedback is important to us!
Petroleumworld News 10/31/2016
We invite all our readers to share with us
their views and comments about this article.
Send this story to a friend
Write to email@example.com
By using this link, you agree to allow PW
to publish your comments on our letters page.
Any question or suggestions,
please write to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Best Viewed with IE 5.01+ Windows NT 4.0, '95,
'98,ME,XP, Vista, Windows 7,8 +/ 800x600 pixels