After an alleged assassination attempt against Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro on Sunday, the government alleged that “far right” groups in the country worked with Colombia President Juan Manuel Santos in Bogota and others in Miami to attack him.
Footage showing bodyguards scrambling to protect him while members of Venezuela’s military scatter out of fear made the rounds in the press, undoubtedly making Maduro look like a vulnerable dictator. Perhaps, that’s precisely what drove him to, once again, make accusations without any proof.
Unfortunately, what we see in Venezuela is far from just a corrupt leader taking advantage of his position. Unlike what left-leaning TV stars may say about the “not-so-socialist” country and its reality, Maduro is guilty of much more than just being a regular politician.
By directly meddling with Venezuelan businesses and taking over factories, forcefully disarming critics and arming supporters, and toying with the country’s currency as if printing Monopoly money, Maduro put an expiration date on his own standing as a leader. But not without hurting and even killing several of his own people in the process.
And yet, when the cameras are rolling, he speaks only to point the finger at the boogeyman he created, the “far right,” whose involvement with the “imperialist Americans” threatens his government.
It is often said that “the first casualty, when war comes, is truth.” But in Maduro’s Venezuela, truth was never part of the package. Perhaps because the president has always been at war with the truth itself.
Venezuela Needs Liberty
In Art of War, Sun Tzu opens the book with the line, “Warfare is the greatest affair of state, the basis of life and death, the Tao to survival or extinction.”
If there’s one thing Maduro and many other government heads understand is that war, any war or even the idea of war, is what fuels the state. It is the thought of standing tall against an enemy, real or otherwise, that gives the state its legitimacy in the minds of people, and that allows leaders to vamp up taxation, inflation, and other policies that ultimately hurt only the common man.
When people are allowed to live freely and worry about their affairs, prosperity ensues. Not because people are inherently good, but because the free market is the most effective way to bring different people together for the exchange of goods and services in the name of mutual benefit.
When governments are in place to pick winners and losers and giver individuals power over others, people suffer.
Instead of another strongman to take over where Maduro left off, what Venezuela needs now is freedom. After so much suffering under the current socialist regime, one would think that Venezuelans are ready.