Why You Should Care About the Crisis in Venezuela

Alexandra Lajo Leonardi, Staff Member

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The Crisis in Venezuela has worsened as a coup has started

 

If you follow international news you have most likely have seen the Venezuelan Crisis but if not, here is the summary. Venezuela is home to more than 31 million people, but decreasing by the minute and the country has many complicated problems that has put millions of lives at risk and has caused the death rate to rise dramatically as the crisis continues into 2019, the involvement of the U.S., Russia, and China has become a huge discussion and debate. As if it can’t get any worse, a coup has started in attempts to overthrow the current government.

 

One of the major problems they faced was the blackout, which affected the people of Venezuela greatly as the little food they had spoiled in their refrigerators, people died in hospitals, and bodies began decomposing in the morgue. The blackout lasted for 6 days straight, and some towns didn’t get electricity back for longer than a week. The starving people became desperate and broke into stores stealing food and whatever else they could which led to angry store owners opening fire. Violence is another major problem that hasn’t ended even now, this very minute people are suffering as innocent civilians are getting killed. Other major problems include the shortage of clean water, the millions of people leaving the country trying to find refuge, as the tension and rivalry between the leaders of the country and their supporters continuous to build up. As of right now, the coup has become a problem for civilians while it is supported by the United States, and is part of the opposition leaders plan, which he calls the “final phase”.

 

You might wonder how all this violence started and why this is happening? Well, in the simplest terms, the crisis started because Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro, refuses to step down, even with outside pressure from other counties. He is the cause of the economic failure of Venezuela, and why people are starving, dying, and now fleeing. A new person has stepped up to be the next leader of Venezuela but the president refuses to give up his power and it has led to violent protest. The major thing that has kept Manduro him in power is the military support. The person that has stepped up and is now known as the opposition leader is Juan Guaidó. He is recognized by more than 50 countries as Venezuela’s real leader, and he has offered ideas and solutions of why the blackout happened. While Manduro just pointed fingers at the United States, claiming that the blackout was all part of a sabotage that was planned by Guaidó and the U.S., and so he put Guaidó under investigation. The conclusion was that the blackout was most likely caused by a “brush fire that destabilized the country’s electrical grid, because of the years that it lacked maintenance and the mismanagement of the country’s economy,” this was said by one of the union leaders.

 

As their rivalry continue, countries around the world have joined in and publicly sided with who they support. Russia, the United States, and China are the major countries, that have decided to become involved. Russia supports Maduro and a socialist government. While the United States supports the opposition leader Guaido. China has become very concerned about Venezuela as it has the largest oil reserve in the world and China is the world’s largest oil importer. So the countries relationship is very economically involved. China’s response to the crisis is that it has offered its help, in bringing back stability and economic prosperity, as it hopes that its relationship with Venezuela will grow.

 

Currently the United States has decided not to be directly involved but President Trump has voiced his opinion in supporting opposition leader Guaido. In return Maduro cut off any diplomatic ties with the U.S.

 

The Johnny Green interviewed Joe Wloch, to get an inside view of what students at Weedsport know about this ongoing crisis in Venezuela and about any other global events.

Do you consider yourself well informed on global issues?

Joe Wloch: “It depends on the issue some events I’m more informed about than others.”

What is your view on the topic, does it concern you?

Joe Wloch: “Well my concern is, that the people are being oppressed by the government, and that people are starving to death.”

Where do you stand on the policy of the United States do you think that the U.S. should get involved?

Joe Wloch: “As far as any foreign policy for the U.S. I don’t think that the United States should get directly involved into what going on with other nations and as far as political matters go, I think the policy should be isolationist because if you think back to the past when America has tried to intervene in these regimes, it just makes matters worse. An example is what happened in the middle east, which gave rise to the Taliban. If you look at Vietnam we spent American lives in war that resulted in failure.” However, I think that if people can get out of Venezuela I think that they should be given an amnesty, if they make it into the U.S.”

What would you like students at Weedsport to know about the Venezuelan Crisis?

Joe Wloch: “I want them to know that socialism took route there through democratic means and if we are not careful the same thing could happen here.”

 

While many students may think that this topic is irrelevant to them, it actually will impact our future. It will impact our country in the upcoming election as President Donald Trump is planning on using the crisis as an example of why socialism does not work. It’s important for students to be well informed on global subjects and problems, because you never know how it could impact us.

 

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