Venezuela veils their nation with closed walls

As corruption steeps and currency value drops, Venezuela is going through a historic crisis.

Story by Hannah Larson, Grizzly Den Editor

  The name “Venezuela” has become synonymous with government disorder as the world watches the economically battered country spiral downward. The oil-rich nation has been tormented by inflation, food shortages and lack of medication, leading to a decades-long nightmare for Venezuelans who struggle to afford the most basic of supplies. The spark that set off the latest uprising was the beginning of President Nicolas Maduro’s second term, which protesters claim is an illegitimate administration.

  “The inflation rate in Venezuela is extremely high due to their present economic crisis. Now, the interim president is in charge because Maduro was elected in a fraudulent way,” George Sanders (10) said.

  A band of Venezuela’s National Guardsmen have deserted the country’s armed forces and are involved in a mutiny against the Venezuelan government. Sympathetic citizens showed their support for the rioters by lighting garbage on fire and clamoring for Maduro to step down from his position as president. The riot inspired similar anti-government protests, leading to pandemonium around the country.

  The rebels view Maduro’s second term as an attempt to establish himself as the unchallenged leader of Venezuela. He was inaugurated on January 10th and is set to serve his second six-year term as president. Maduro’s opponents view his “election” as a sham because his primary opponents were prohibited from running against him when he was voted into office in 2018. As a result, the incumbent Maduro retained his position without being challenged.

  “The chaos in Venezuela is directly tied to their most recent elections. If a positive change is to take place, Venezuela’s political system needs to be cleansed of fraud,” Sanders (10) said.

  Despite protests and widespread anti-Maduro sentiment among some Venezuelans, the majority of the military is loyal to the president. The rebel National Guardsmen were reportedly captured, the weapons they stole recovered by pro-Maduro troops. The soldiers’ arrest came shortly after the group’s sergeant posted a video to social media asking Venezuelans to “take to the streets” in support of the “professional troop of the National Guard against the regime.”

  “The fact that Venezuela is encouraging foreign diplomats to leave is concerning. The country is truly suffering in the area of international diplomacy,” Evan Funk (10) said.

  Juan Guaído, the leader of Venezuela’s National Assembly, has been recognized by much of Latin America as the legitimate president of Venezuela, while North Korea and Russia, among others, stand by Maduro as the legally elected leader. The pressure of the international community and Venezuela’s hungry masses may be the only force powerful enough to act as a counterweight to the destructive government that has mutilated Venezuela’s economy.