Sobremesa Chronicles

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hovbannerMy petty little rant about the four posts in Prodavinci got me thinking about an issue that has tortured me for a while: what role, if any, should foreigners play in the unfolding Venezuelan tragedy?

We’ve all heard it before: Venezuela’s problems are for Venezuelans to resolve. And while that is a nice little theory, things are rarely so simple in the real world.

We live in a global community. We have international institutions. And internal strife should not always remain internal, for the simple reason that sometimes internal conflicts have no way of solving themselves. When countries are turned upside down, when political conflict threatens to spill over into actual political violence, then the international community must act. Even Nicolás Maduro understands that foreign bodies must play a role in our conflict.

Snobs like me can bitch about foreign analysts meddling into our public sphere, but there is an actual role that foreigners can and need to play in our drama – as long as they inform themselves of the issues. The Venezuelan political crisis is simply not going to be resolved peacefully unless responsible members of the international community (not you, Unasur) intervene.

Leaving Venezuelans to solve our own problems will probably lead to one of two things: a failed state, or a coup. The only people saying that Venezuela can solve its own problems … are the opressors and their propagandists. So, to me, the question is not if foreign bodies should play a role in Venezuela, but which foreign bodies and which roles.

The international community should not leave internal strife on its own because, when it does, disaster ensues. Whether it’s Yugoslavia, Israel, Ukraine, Rwanda, or even Nicaragua in the 1980s, you simply cannot stand by and let a country go to hell, simply alleging “oh, these folks need to solve their own problems.” The world just doesn’t work that way.

Have a good weekend, everyone.