– What are we waiting for, when we deploy military drills that have made us the world’s laughingstock due to their magnificent incompetence, in grotesque contrast with their proclaimed lofty goals?

We’re waiting for the barbarians, they’re supposed to invade us today.

– What’s the reason behind our National Assembly’s inaction, why have parliamentary functions been suppressed, while a National Constituent Assembly elected through fraud and representing a extremely limited minority of society decides the future and fate of an entire nation, as traditional democratic institutions fade in our memories?

Because the barbarians are invading us today. We can’t legislate in the midst of an invasion. We can only prepare to fight them. All our efforts, our logistics, our economy and even our lives, must be focused on preparing for the barbarian invasion.

– Why has our emperor started to wake up so early, constantly talking on compulsory broadcasts; why does he shut down radio stations and why does he arrest, torture, murder and disappear people; why does he wear military garb and why has he decided to pretend we are at war?

Because the barbarians are invading us today and he personally wants to be in one of the fronts waiting for them, so they can get acquainted with our fury and our power. He wants to be there to see them completely and shamefully crushed, to watch them flee like cowards. He wants to be there, in the first line of fire and be the first to shout “Yankees go home and homa!” when the insolent foreigners attempt to set foot on our nation’s soil.

– Why did our two consuls and praetors appeared today in their embroidered red robes; why do they wear bracelets with so many amethysts and embedded rings and shiny emeralds;why do they clasp today such precious, magnificently engraved silver and golden staves? Why do they wear luxurious clothes and live in pompous mansions?

Because the barbarians are coming today and they’re impressed by these things; and they want to show them that they have billete que jode to face them down, because they’ve been stealing for two decades. In fact, the amount they’ve robbed this nation is unprecedented in the whole of human history. That’s another wrong record we shattered.

They want the barbarians to know who they’re messing with; that sanctions and freezing their accounts don’t matter, that they have enough money everywhere to survive, that they won’t lack food or medicines and that if, perchance, a high official should be wounded by mistake, they could be immediately transferred to Cuba and cared for. What happens to the people is different story, but the consuls and praetors want to show the barbarians that they’re invincible, because lacking scruples makes people invincible.

– Why haven’t the honorable orators, as they always have, spout their grandiose speeches and say their statements? Why aren’t there massive rallies in Avenida Bolívar to boast of the people’s wonderful support for the emperor, with aerial shots taken from a helicopter, like the old times, and broadcast by the impartial State TV channel?

Because the barbarians will invade us today and they don’t understand our language. No speech will impress them. Besides, our great leaders are all training, because they’ll all be in the first line of fire to lead by example when the barbarians invade us.

– Where does this sudden bewilderment and confusion come from? (The faces have grown so grim!) Why do people flee from the streets and squares in such a rush and return to their homes in anguish?

Because night came but the barbarians didn’t. Some men have returned from our borders and reported that there’s no such thing as barbarians. 

– And what’s going to happen to us now without barbarians? In the end, these people were some kind of solution.

– And why do they arm thousands of people who have no experience handling rifles, why are weapons being freely distributed, if the barbarians won’t invade us? Why is our army training, then?

To oppress their own people. The emperor wants to rule even if that means he must annihilate every last one of his subjects. In the end, it turns out that we’re the barbarians.

Gallegos was so right.

This article was originally published on TalCualDigital.com
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  1. I take issue with the comparison between a bunch of Banana Republic warlords and the first emperor Julius Cesar. That is certainly an analogy i would boast about if i were an enchufado.

    An undeserving title if there ever was one.

      • Maybe you needed to state the obvious, but that`s besides the point i was refering to.

        Maybe next time we can liken Diosdado with Alexander of Macedonia or Pablo Escobar with Napoleon Bonapart .If your literary device is empowering the assholes putting them in place of great historical figures then maybe it needs to go back to the drawing board because it`s missing its mark. El Mortadelo compared himself with ultimate dictator of the greatest Colombian Empire Simon Bolivar for a reason after all.

        The barbarians did sack Rome sucesfully several times btw, kinda of a big deal for a reason back in the day. The most powerful state of its day is not Venezuela of today,

        if we venezuelan citizens are anyone from that story its the poor gauls who were left dying of hunger at the gates of Cergovia during the roman siege and were decimated in the aftermath. The same siege were Vercingetorix and the other barbarian chieftains learned the hard way not to cross Julius [email protected]*ing Caesar, as pictured in the background image.

      • It doesn`t matter if it directly glorifies them, it empowers the power even more.

        It is a matter of meta message being the opposite as intended.

        Putting a Maduro Moustache on the most powerful man of the most powerful civilization of its time is one hell of a missed target as far as “wanting to be sophisticated” literary devices concerns.

        Again i repeat “it is a comparison i would boast about if i were an enchufado” I would totally host parties with togas after reading this corny stuff about how powerful and great i am.

        oh and the citizens? be afraid , because it is not a bus driver on top of a fail 4th world fail state, it is another Julius Caesar no less.

    • I take issue from you all. The “bunch of Banana Republic warlords” were not barbarians. They were actually from the Barbados, just transporting more cocaine to U.S.A. / UK to keep Mad Ernie, and his associates in business. (The real problem is related to those that have “get high”, to keep the engine running0 .

    • I enjoyed this (and learning about the original poem), but I must say, you have profaned one of my favorite paintings depicting the era. Vercingetorix surrendering in grand fashion to Julius Caesar, effectively ending the grand revolt against Roman conquest/annexation of Gaul…a romantic portrayal worthy of the conclusion to an epic struggle.

      And yet, you dare you alter it and put a mustache on Caesar!

  2. Stupid article…Venezuelan’s have no balls and are impotent.They deserve to die and starve under an oppressive regime because they were warned.Please write an article on how America should and can invade Venezuela because even though I am resentful towards these people I would like an invasion.#MAGA

  3. Gallegos is Romulo Gallegos, venezuelan author and elected president 45-48. Laureano is probably referring to this Gallego´s phrase: Algún día será verdad. El progreso penetrará en la llanura y la barbarie retrocederá vencida”. Santos Luzardo en Doña Bárbara. Some day it will be true. Progress will penetrate the the plains (llanura) ans the barbarie will retreat defeated. Santos Luzardo said, a character of his novel Doña Barbara.

      • This is not the first Romulo Gallegos reference to turn up in Venezuelan politics. On a number of occasions, Hugo Chávez referred to President Bush as Mr. Danger. This was another borrowing from Romulo Gallegos, who had had a character named Señor Peligro, a.k.a. Mr. Danger, in his book Doña Bárbara.

  4. Vero, your history is ok but your understanding of literary allusion is far off plumb. A device like this is not used to compare historical figures nor yet cultures. You’re taking the thing literally. It’s not history.


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