Venezuela: 16N and the Other Battles to Be Fought

Gerónimo Paz day of the 16N ended as a hard setback for the opposition, which is revealing its deep crisis, a crisis of leadership, of a clear strategy and a political proposal capable of mobilizing even its hard social base, not to mention the majority of the Venezuelan people. It demonstrates that Guaidó’s leadership was a product of poor quality political manipulation, a fraud against the opposition people, absolutely dependent on their North American mentors. The Venezuelan right is in a dead-end labyrinth from which it is very difficult to know how they will emerge, since the “credible threats” of U.S. intervention, which have become their main political resource, have been exhausted.

Beyond this element, it is well known that we are facing a phenomenon of demobilization of the people, since the marches of Chavismo were not massive either. This must be addressed by the political leadership of the Bolivarian revolution. The national majority is sending a message of disgust for politics that must be read and heeded.

Between the battle to survive the crisis and the disappointment with national leadership, people opt for anti-politics. This is very dangerous for a society. There is an urgent need for a process of rethinking the way we do politics, for credible actions to rectify, to balance what we do and how we do it. The revolution must be reinvigorated. In order to do so, we must begin with the re-impulse of the political and ethical revolution initiated and promoted with determination by Chávez.

The central battle is certainly the economy. The main efforts must be deployed there: circumventing the blockade, recovering oil production, overcoming hyperinflation, returning the purchasing power of wages are the central tasks. But all this requires profound changes in leadership performance, it requires radical political ethics, greater political efficiency, the capacity and willingness of leadership not only in hours of threats, not only in contingency situations, but also in day-to-day life, to be at the side of people constructing solutions, creating responses, deepening participation and empowering people.

The titanic battle to defeat the plans of intervention over the country requires a solid national unity, which is forged on the trust that the people have in their leadership and in the political project. Chavismo continues to be a force with many strengths, levels of organization, cohesion, unity of action, etc., but much more is needed to defeat the strategy of aggression that we face. It requires a national majority united behind the purposes of defending peace, sovereignty and democracy. This means adding the broadest sectors and for this to happen we must make profound changes, we reiterate, in the way politics is done. We must recompose the expectations that something good is going to happen and is happening, and in this, we repeat, the leading task by virtue of its ethics, example, creativity and determination to overcome difficulties is a fundamental key.

It is not a question of “We are doing well yet we are doing badly”, but of seeing things far beyond a single day, unquestionably victorious, but which can lead us to a limited appreciation of the complex political situation we are going through.

The battle is therefore not only an economic one. It is also a battle that requires ethical and democratic leadership with a praxis based on radical political ethics. We believe this is the beginning of the new beginning that the president speaks of. The renewal of the process, the recovery of its transforming dynamics in, above all, an ethical and democratic revolution.