Photo: retrieved

Last week, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad al Hussein, regretted that regional pressure against the Venezuelan regime’s actions took too long. In his opinion, “the pressure exerted by the Lima Group started just a year and a half ago”, and before that, the only voices of concern came from human rights organizations, Spain and the United States. As was the case with Rwanda, and more recently with Sudan, humanitarian crises and large-scale human rights violations are usually enabled by a late or insufficient response from the international community.

Venezuela is no exception.

In fact, some of the neighboring governments were happy to look the other way as the country’s democracy was receding, while keeping their arms wide open for oil-derived benefits. Now, they have to deal with the consequences of the biggest exodus in the continent’s history.

As thousands of Venezuelans cross the country’s borders, tensions have been mounting in many of the region’s countries. Outbreaks of violence in Pacaraima have led the Brazilian government to declare a state of emergency and send troops to the border (as was done in Colombia). Furthermore, President Temer recently announced that he is evaluating the possibility of limiting the entry of Venezuelans to the country. Immigration authorities in Trinidad and Tobago have captured and deported a large number of Venezuelan immigrants, an action considered as a “forced return” by UNHCR authorities. For its part, Peru now requires that all immigrants show a valid passport, which is practically impossible to get from Venezuelan authorities. Although Ecuador had taken the same measure, one of its courts recently reversed the decision, citing the need to protect human rights. On August 28, representatives of the governments of Colombia, Brazil, Ecuador and Peru met in order to outline joint strategies to face Venezuelan migration, and on September 4, 11 countries signed the Quito Declaration, regarding the appropriate measures to receive immigrants.

Some of these governments have not been strangers to the Venezuelan regime’s open use of oil diplomacy as a means for gaining regional support.

However, some of these governments have not been strangers to the Venezuelan regime’s open use of oil diplomacy as a means for gaining regional support and balancing out American influence in the continent. The late Hugo Chávez struck countless deals with many neighboring countries, offering low oil prices and flexible payment plans. As economist Ricardo Haussmann explains, “There is no economic rationale behind these deals… It’s a political investment.”

Although Cuba and the members of Petrocaribe have been the greatest beneficiaries of said form of diplomacy, Venezuelan oil has been generously given out to many Latin American nations, especially Brazil, Ecuador, Argentina and Bolivia. In fact, when Ecuadorian President Alfredo Palacio faced protests that shut down national oil production in 2005, Chávez immediately provided a generous oil loan to help meet Ecuador’s commercial commitments. In 2007, Chávez signed a deal with President Rafael Correa to receive Ecuadorian crude in exchange for petroleum products. Ecuador also benefited through financial mechanisms, such as the sale of debt bonds to the Venezuelan government.

Former Brazilian President Lula Da Silva, one of Chávez’s closest allies, closed numerous agreements on energetic cooperation with Venezuela, and Dilma Rousseff followed her predecessor’s footsteps in this matter. In 2005, representatives of the Venezuelan, Brazilian and Argentinian governments agreed to create Petrosur, an alliance which, among other things, aimed to exploit the Orinoco basin. A partnership between PDVSA and Petrobras was established in order to build and operate a refinery, though it ended when the Venezuelan state company failed to pay its dues. The now infamous Odebrecht was trusted with the execution of different public works, and, during many years, Venezuela bought millions of dollars worth of food from Brazil. Additionally, since 2011, Venezuela has been supplying Brazilians with electricity in exchange for an absurd sum that lies well below international standards, while its own citizens face blackouts that last for days.

Apart from the many benefits previously received (including massive food exports to relieve shortages in the country), Trinidad and Tobago signed a deal just last week with Nicolás Maduro, under which it is entitled to receive natural gas for processing. According to Bloomberg, “The deal has long been in the making and will throw a lifeline to Trinidad, which has seen its gas output decline in recent years”.

Because of the benefits received, many governments dared not vote against the Venezuelan State in international forums,

Because of the benefits received, many governments dared not vote against the Venezuelan State in international forums, even when faced with overwhelming evidence of its authoritarian nature. In fact, many expressed their evergrowing support. Who could forget the Mercosur countries’ statement in 2014 rejecting the sanctions imposed by the United States on Venezuelan officials responsible for human rights violations? Or the shameful OAS vote that decided the meeting held to discuss the Venezuelan situation, after mass protests in which many students were publicly murdered by government officials, would be private, and not broadcast to the public?

Following the plummet of oil prices after an all-time high enjoyed by Hugo Chávez, Venezuela is now clearly unable to fulfill its promises. PDVSA has been driven to the ground, along with most industries in the private sector. Chávez’s political project has led the country to ruin. The massive amount of immigrants crossing the continent’s borders, therefore, should come as no surprise.

“Never again”, the promise made after the Rwandan genocide, has been broken time after time. We do not deny that nations should act in their own benefit, but after all, perhaps it was in their best interest to prevent this crisis from turning into a regional problem.

The opinion of the High Commissioner for Human Rights is absolutely correct: regional pressure on the Venezuelan dictatorship took too long. And its delay appears to be dripping in oil.

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46 COMMENTS

  1. well done Miss Ofelia.
    now Venezula lies there in the gutter, in a puddle of her own blood and vomite…everyone took a run at her and now one can stomach the guilt.

  2. The U.N. High Commissioner For Human Rights Pot calling the S.A. Prostituted Nations Kettle black. Venezuela lies in the gutter covered in her own vomit/blood because SHE DID IT TO HERSELF, giving away her financial/oil/other resources to ingrate nations in a short-lived attempt at L.A, aggrandizement, led by a megolomaniacal inept/incompetent/corrupt HDLGP, who was a lapdog to a failed Castro-Communist ideology. The 20 or so new Ven Constitutional articles, copies of the Cuban constitution, all-but-approved by the ANC, will complete the conversion of Venezuela to an even-more-failed Cuban Communist State….

  3. In two words: Vested interests. Once human rights are bypassed in favor of financial gain, you get what you get. You’ve sold out humanity for power and dinero. How often has that ended well?

  4. This is one of the inherent flaws in representative democratic systems. Politicians, all too often, make decisions that are in the short-term interests of their countries, that improve their reelection chances, but that are bad policy in the long-term.

    Marc,

    The small Caribbean countries that sell their votes in the UN and the OAS to the highest bidder have no shame in doing so.

    • Venezuela regaled these 2-bit island nations with goodies to get their compliant votes in made-up anti-U.S. regional organizations, when most of these 2-bits had income/GDP per-capita far in excess of Venezuela’s.

  5. I think it is worth mentioning that the revenue that has fed this program of buying political support and goodwill for an authoritarian regime came, and comes, from somewhere.

  6. I’ve said this for over 30 years. (Socrates said it 2500 years before me). None of us live in a vacuum. Everything we do effects everyone else.

    When you and your Marxist buddies think you are going to create a Utopia and it doesn’t work out, a lot of the true believers are going to come looking for version 2.0 at your door. Brazil, Argentina and Ecuador got out quick. But poor poor Evo is going to have to put up our shut up.

    Come on, Evo. Chavismo screwed up. Show the world how to do it right. Show some compassion for your brother. About 20 million Chavists would love to come to Bolivia!

  7. “Accomplices of the Regime Are Now Affected by The Exodus.”

    Still, Ofelia, you or no one DARE say what’s even more accurate, relevant, significant and important.

    The real “Accomplices of the Regime” are not just top Chavistas, or Lula, or any of the Bolivian Indians and Nicaraguan corrupt Filth. No.

    The real “Accomplices of the Regime” are many. many more. Millions of Pueblo-People. To begin with.

    Yes. That’s right.

    Face it.

    Beyong the 1300 “Generals” and their THOUSANDS of CRAP soldiers, the Sebin, the Gualdia Nasional and all of them thieves, pueblo crap. Yes/ Pueblo crap. Corrupt. Complicit. Culpable.

    Why can’t you say it??

    Say it.

    That would be a start, to fix Klepto-Narco-Cubazuela’s mess.

    Discern where the real problems are.

    Can you?

    Do you have the OVARIOS and honesty to say it, publicly?

    Didn’t think so.

    The accomplices of the Damn Genocidal Chavistoide Tyranny crap, are its own Pueblo-People.

    Not all, buy most. Yes.

    Say it.

    Indians. Corrupt. Complicit.

    To the tune of almost 5 MILLION “empleados publicos”, con carnet. En la nomina.

    LEECHES. Ladrones. Not all, but most.

    SAY IT.

    But you won’t.

    Educate them. But no one will.

    Jail them for their crimes. Yes, Millions of pueblo crap.

    But No MUD shit, or Media shyt will.

    So, get used to Klepto-Narco Cubazuela.

    Until so start calling things for what they are.

    Oh Lawyers of Kleptozuela. Despierten carajo. Sean sinceros, coño.

    o no van ni pa la esquina.

    • ovarios..? Really PC? Understand your po’d, but you’ve been hanging with IRAte too much.. or missed your meds too?

      Short post, but good reporting even if incomplete. The point is these complices will now pay the price for not having a spine.. which may help avoid spread of the contagion.

      Again PC, you bitch about who is responsible, the ignorant masses, but offer nothing more. Bueh.. maybe CC should make us pay for comments by the word, or letters?

      • Thanks for the shout out!

        By the way:

        Did you ever think that your lack of outrage at the stupidity of Venezuelans…which is the sole cause of this whole mess…is very telling? You don’t even hate still die-hard Chavistas, do you?

        You probably cry when you see footage of those poor Germans evacuating Berlin in 1945 as the Soviets moved in. (Isn’t it amazing how decades after, you can hardly find a German who admits to loving Hitler and knew what he was actually doing?)

        Your lack of passion, and lack of the pertinent knowledge and facts, is what brought Chavismo into power in the first place.

        • IRAte,

          P C posted 240 words, 1396 characters all repeating the same drivel each day, as do you. Shouting louder from your keyboards adds little to the conversation, no new information or answers.. but if you feel better venting your spleen at el pobre pueblo have at it.. I’ll just call you out for being an angry old gringo who’s doctor should review your meds.

          • Maybe if you listened to him before 1988, VZ wouldn’t be the shithole it is now.

            And no one gives a crap if you have a problem with someone’s passion and opinions.

            You sound like a TYPICAL Chavista, trying to stifle speech you don’t like.

        • Me personally, my heart is exploding with all the pathos and humanity of Poeta Criollo laid out here every day. The humanity of the phrase “indio es indio”. The cleverness of “Kleptocubazuela”. Don’t know how he does it. Perhaps invocations to Apollo in his chariot. Perhaps the cut and paste function.

      • offer nothing?

        you are either stupid or very dumb, and incapable conducting basic READING activities.

        Education, Corruption, hand in hand in Klepto-Narco Cubazuela.

        I offer Marcos Perez Jimenez to fix that, but he’s dead.

  8. At the end of the day Evo will have to live in his only safe haven…Bolivia.
    Bolivia may not be the end of the world but you can see it from there.
    When I lived in Lima we spoke of lake Titicaca between Peru and Bolivia,
    the titi’s are in Peru and the caca is in Bolivia.

  9. Como les gusta hablar paja, a estas lindas abogadas y otros en CC y demas blogs.

    En vez de mostrar donde esta el problemas EXACTAMENTE, con frialdad y honestidad, para algun dia poder empezar a resolverlo.

    HABLA PAJAS, tu Ofelia, y los demas.

    Muy bonito lo que escriben, y sigan escribiendo paja, decada tras decada, Cuban Style.

    En vez de senalar precisamente cail es la raiz del problema.

    Perez Jimenez: Donde estas? Too late.

    Sigan hablandole le paja, abogados exiliados a los indios corruptos de nuestro “bravo pueblo”

    Y que viva Narco-Klepto Cubazuela. Se lo merecen, por brutos y corruptos. No todos, pero la gran mayoria.

  10. Correccion: En buen criollo: Narco-Cleptozuela. Y su pueblo chimbo, mal educado y corrupto. Complice, en su mayoria. Indio es indio, Nicaraguense es Nicaraguense, Zimbawense es Zimbawense, Klepto-Venezolano y Clepto-Venezolana son lo que son, y tienen lo que merecen. No todos ni todas, pero si la gram mayoria. Por brutos y brutas. Por ladrones y ladronas.

    Es Chavismo es tan solo el reflejo de la corrupcion e ignoracia de nuestro pueblo ignorante y corrupto.

    El dia que entiendan eso, y hagan algo al respecto, en vez de hablar PAJA, sera un comienzo.

  11. “Never again”, the promise made after the Rwandan genocide, has been broken time after time. We do not deny that nations should act in their own benefit, but after all, perhaps it was in their best interest to prevent this crisis from turning into a regional problem.”

    The “Regional Problem”, dear Ofelia and others, is the abysmal lack of real EDUCATION, LAWS and togh Jail Sentences for the THIEVES and crooks in Africa and Kleptozuela. Or Haiti. Or Nicaragua. The sewers of the Planet. Ladrones y ladrones, vagos y vagas, mal educados y mal educadas. For the most part.

    That’s why Africa is where it is. Beyond stupid Religion crap. That’s why the Middle East, Afghanistan and the Moslems are. Religious crap, on top of Ignorance. Thus, permanent war.

    Latin America? Mexico, and the highest rate crimes? IGNORANCE, leads to drugs, leads to guns. Leads to Klepto-Narco Cubazuela. Leads to fake leaders for the MUDcrap. Capriles y demas INDIOS CORRUPTOS.

    La misma vaina.

    Call the real problems for what they are. Educate a stupid pueblo. Jail Millions of corrupt Pueblo.

    Then Chavismo will slowly go away, and Kleptozuela will strat resembling Chile in a few decades from now.

    A coñazo limpio, would be faster. But that ship sailed.

    So lets enjoy life in the Civilized world, get our children to real schools, while Kleptozuela and Africa keep struggling with Corruption and lack of Education. Your children in Spain or Chile or Miami or Peru
    won’t even remember the mess we left in our beloved Venezuela. Por pendejos.

  12. You Sir sound a lot like our poeta criollo. Why continue to beat on a dead horse about what is wrong and focus on what is right. Venezuelans have (since I arrived in 92) always been a generous and hospitable people who were abundant with values on sharing and family and the value of quality of life. Something that contrasted with my North American values of 120 hour work weeks and the more detached, colder relationships that we Canadians maintain. Kind of a calor humano that attracted me from the get go. Well, that’s all fucked up now intentionally by a digression in morals and education right from the jump of Chavismo. But people just do what they do because everyone else is doing it and Chavez said it was ok to steal and taught them to be Bachequeros and stand in lines. Set the example and boiled the frog etc, etc. I think if you were to give them a fresh new start with good leadership and plenty of educational and social reform I think they could make a go of it. They would relish the opportunity to crawl out of what a cesspool their country and lives have become and not have to move away to not starve to death, leaving all that they love and value behind. To go where they are no longer wanted.
    But no one will stick their heads out for fear of it being lopped off by our fearless leader. Its easy to stay the champ when you have minions that beat the crap out of any possible competion. And yes complicit without a doubt, pueblo people have all but lost all traces of humanity as they wallow in poverty and are misguided by their champion in straight up 1984 style. They know in the bottom of their hearts, everyone does, that the king wear no clothes. There needs to be big changes and it won’t be easy but we know what needs to be done.

      • Well said Marc.
        A small spark can transform a place quickly .. learning is a gift even when pain is your teacher. When someone is rude and toxic , it’s not about you , it’s about their inner state.

        • A small spark is going to transform VZ?

          Like a Boston Tea Party?

          If the deaths of thousands…tens of thousands…including KIDS for Christ’s sake…

          Hasn’t done it…

          Please explain this spark that you have in mind.

          Or do you refuse to listen to what Poeta and me have to say? That the people are bankrupt, in the most harmful of ways?

  13. I remember that holier-than-thou president of Uruguay, who with Kirchner of Argentina rushed to close deals with Venezuela to supply food paid for with oil money. They had to know their opportunity was built on the wreckage of Venezuela’s agriculture, but they greedily trampled over the bones of Venezuela’s farm industry to reach the oil trough. Truly, they had adopted Stalin’s slogan of “socialism in one country” – they offloaded their countries’ surplus food and looked away from the devastation to which they were contributing in “brotherly” Venezuela.

      • There’s news today of a British ship intercepting an Argentinian one doing exploratory oil exploration off the Falklands.

        Bad situation, because although Argentina is moving in the right direction, the U.S. will never accept Argentinian claims to that territory.

  14. Many people inside Brazil were horrified with the support our government gave toChavez´s and then Maduro´s regime.

    Today, many citizens are uniting to help the venezuelan refugees that arrive and my team and I are developing a tool to help Venezuelans inside Venezuela. Please check out http://www.bonnum.network . We will launch soon.

  15. Before we blame Chavismo on the stupidity and ignorance of El Pueblo, maybe we should compare Europe with where she was it in, say 1910, and where she was at just a generation later.

    Anyone want to blame the Lost Generation and WWII on the stupid, uneducated, unsophisticated, etc., etc. Europeans of the early 20th century?

    To put it crudely: “Shit Happens.” Always has and probably always will.

    • Has anyone ever seen Canucklehead, Poeta and Ira in the same place at one time? I thought not, this triage of tripe is being penned by one Russian in a third level basement in Red Square. The Russian may be deluded but he is called a gentleman. On second thought it’s probably not scientifically possible for one person to manifest so many adolescent temper tantrums. Canucklehead manages to keep his entries here free from vulgar, vile, offensive words. It’s what he says that is putrid, not how he says it. Now as to Poeta and Ira, it is a very safe bet, given their benjo-ditch like language that neither of them has ever worn the descriptor “gentleman”, their parents must be so proud.

      • Congratulations on the stupidest fucking post ever, thinking we’re the same person.

        Really–are you brain-damaged?

        And what the fuck is ASA058 supposed to mean:

        Do you also suffer from seizures, and your out of control hands and fingers just slap the keys without any thought at all?

        ASA058?

        Who can take such idiocy seriously with that as a starting point?

      • What the hell is benjo-ditch language?

        Let me guess:

        You’ve never had a serious relation with a woman, you masturbate a lot, and have few if any friends.

        Or does “masturbate” fall into the “benjo-ditch” category?

        Should I have used “jerk off” instead?

        • In case you’re not familiar with the term “benjo ditch,” it is a shallow, gently-sloping ditch that funnels water and human waste from the cities in Japan out to the fields for use as fertilizer. These ditches line the roads in town, and if you’re lucky, you’ll find most of them covered with small concrete slabs. Just be careful when you round a corner, because you don’t want a wheel dropping off into a ditch where the covers have been broken.

  16. “You Sir sound a lot like our poeta criollo. Why continue to beat on a dead horse about what is wrong and focus on what is right. Venezuelans have (since I arrived in 92) always been a generous and hospitable people who were abundant with values on sharing and family and the value of quality of life. ”

    Stay off Brazilian hallucinogenics or peyote or whatever you have for breakfast, lunch and dinner. No more Ayahuasca tea for you, Brazilian buddy.

    Kleptozuelans are nothing but ignorant indians with zero to none “moral values”. Broken homes with no daddy, zero education, lots of booze. Lot of corruption. Lazy as hell.

    Or how do you think Chavismo was born, still alive and well?

    You think that an educated, smart, hard-working pueblo creates, breeds, maintains Chavismo for over 20 years? Last I checked, Chavez wasn’t born in Sweden and Masburro ain’t from Norway.

    Nuestro “pueblo” sucks. Get real, and stay off the drugs. Once you understand that, do something: educate them, send them to jail for their dumb crimes. Yes, “el pueblo” to school or to jail, or both. Millions of them useless donkeys and indians. Pueblo sucks. Thus Klepto-Narco Kleptozuela sucks. Even worse than Haiti or Zimbabwe.

    El pueblo is what makes a country. You have one of the worst shitholes in the planet. Kleptozuela. Do the math. Or start talking about how great the Nicaraguan “pueblo” people are. How smart, educated and honest they are. Thus the FILTH they created and maintain. Just like Kleptozuelans. Gente chimba. Comprende?

    Educate them. Send them to jail. Make them work. Then, in several decades, you might get Chile or Costa Rica instead of Klepto-Narco Cubazuela. D

    Keep blaming the “government” or Chavismo. That’s not where it’s at, dumb people.

    • Most of what you said is extremely racist and offensive to the many noble and hard working families that still remain here in Venezuela. But as you said, fatherless in most cases, they are never taught what it takes to be good parents and citizens and that is the responsibility of a government, I believe, is to shape morals in a society through education and yes strict discipline. One you teach people how to be good parents they will perpetuate the cycle. There is ALOT that needs to be addressed and worked on but I would like to site 2 examples of the last 2 masons left on my payroll. They are fine boys, respectful, hard working and punctual, obedient even to my woman (thank god buddy is no longer around to berate me for that) who can be quite a tyrant at times and hard to tolerate. NEVER has anything even so small as a nail disappeared from my house since they have been here, they are model boys who will never get in trouble with anyone and I keep close under my wing and thus a modest blanket of protection with the local authorities. They in turn keep the vermin on the street from taking a run at me and tell me all sorts of details about who is who and what is what. They were born on this block and have no desire to leave our town and yes fatherless, don’t even know who their father is. But they want good things for themselves, like any normal teenager. They eat every meal with us and have evolved to relish what a decent home cooked mean with the family everyday is, one of them confessed to me that he couldn’t stomach how at his moms house she would throw a pot of plain while rice on the table and everyone would scramble to dig in with their hands before it ran out. And then squabble about who ate more…CAN YOU FUCKING IMAGINE THAT?!!! They don’t want that for themselves, they want to have motorcycles and cell phones and buy girls things that they need to buy to have sex, like every other teenager. They learned morals and all sorts of labour skills from welding to carpentry to what ever needs to be done if I’m not around to do it. Good boys that are going to be fine no matter what cause they will go far in life with the tools they need to succeed. So what Im trying to say Poeta is that I AM CANADIAN! Not Brazilan, not Gringo, Canadian, and second Venezuelans are not bad people. Most people are not born bad and Venezuelans are not the cultural exception. They just need some guidance is all. Now stop being so abusive and hateful, it only hurts you as you fester with anger for something you can’t change. I imagine something terrible happened to you here that turned you off for good. Its not for everyone thats for sure but its a beautiful country with more than enough reasons to keep on fighting.

  17. MPJ, with $2 oil, an efficient multinational-managed oil industry, many hardworking European War-refugee immigrants, a relatively-small total pop, small top-level-only corruption, built much of Venezuela’s current infrastructure/public housing. Then came Larrazabal transition make-work populist giveaways, Betancourt democracy mass-movement of campesinos from countryside to cities where they could more-easily be controlled to vote for AD, beginning of bloating of Government payrolls to add further voters, the nationalization of the oil industry, incredibly massive corruption at all levels of Government/military/public institutions, and the rest is history….

  18. @Poeta Criollo you’re into something but what’s the point. @Ofelia great article of the past. Africa’s of the world now include Ecu, Nic, Bol, Ven. Etc. But Ven is worse of the worse. Corrupted world yes, I don’t go anymore to Citgos but I get caught somewhere else. I promise I don’t do anything outside the books like my College students, so innocent like Angels. Venezuelan remain the worst even compared to the veterans in Congo or Zimbabwe they look like enfants du cœur.

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