Marea Socialista’s Editorial # 24 – Simulacrum, Consultation and “Hour 0”: Digging Trenches

Marea Socialista’s Executive Board

The journey of July 16 obliges to construct a characterization as close as possible to the current moment, an analysis at different levels. For this, it is necessary to look behind the numbers of both events that Sunday. Because these numbers are uncertain and difficult to verify, in addition to being at the service of the propaganda war that, since is part of the ongoing confrontation, leads the political directions of polarization. The analysis we present is in the context of the scenarios that we presented in our Editorial # 23, Pact, civil war or return to the Constitution of ’99 [1].

For this, we propose to interpret the facts beyond the numbers in the following points: a) the meaning of the citizen mobilization of the journey; B) the orientation made public by the leaderships, including the announcement of Time 0 launched by MUD; C) which government measures were applied these days and what has been the position of MUD and their Asamblea Nacional (AN); And finally, a question, perhaps the most important one to be unveiled: D) Which scenario is opened with this journey?

A) The plebiscite or popular consultation convened by MUD had a high participation. It is a fact that has fulfilled the purpose that was proposed. For those who were able to go through the points in which the consultation was held, it was possible to appreciate, on the part of the citizens who attended the same, a desire for democratic participation, rejection of the government and a conscious action that supports the feeling of citizen demand that was expressed, in addition to the focal groups, in the last 100 days. Despite the manipulation of the questions, the consequences of which we shall see later, and the intentions of the MUD leaders, the population showed in the consultation a clear repudiation of the false Maduro Constituent.

The constituency’s simulacrum was a defensive reaction of the government to the convening of the plebiscite and demonstrated that the government maintains, albeit limited, its organizational capacity and mobilization of apparatus. The simulacrum, prepared with a single point per parish, was organized in this way to obtain the visual effect of huge concentrations of people willing to participate in it. But only to point out that the participation was less than that of the MUD Consultation, and from that point on, we conclude that “Time 0” with “Government of National Unity” began also, as the summit proposes, to manipulate a success that belongs only to a citizenship that has lost its fear. However, the demonstration of the simulacrum made it clear that Maduro’s government, in addition to the significant deterioration of its social base of support, maintains, for all reasons, a capacity for mobilization and a functioning apparatus. It is important to take into account this response from the government because it shows that the situation continues, three months after the protests began, in a catastrophic draw which explains, among other reasons, growing international interference and pressure, such as the latest statements by Donald Trump and Manuel Santos, those of the latter held in Cuba, when he participated in an official act.

B) On the other hand the speeches and orientations of the leaders of both leaderships continue throwing gasoline in the fire of the dangerous situation the country goes through. Once the day of July 16 was over, and after the first hypocritical greetings to citizen participation and peace, both sides once again strained the situation. Anyhow, in this case, the evident success of the plebiscite on the simulacrum, gives more prominence to the MUD leaders. At noon on Monday, this leadership stripped all its intentions: in the Chacao Cultural Center, it launched its “Hour 0”, surely opening space for the possibility of an even greater growth of political violence, which will be paid fisrtly by the people and the country. So the possibility of a democratic exit is furthermore eliminated. And using as an argument the support received in the plebiscite. As we pointed out in our Editorial # 23, the realization of the plebiscite as that of the Constituent Assembly does nothing but pay for the exponential growth of confrontations and open the door to armed clashes with unpredictable characteristics.

C) While preparing these events with a democratic appearance and manipulated content, the government of Maduro signed two contracts that represent a scandalous surrender of sovereignty. The first with the permission of the Supreme Court, supported by the Sentence 155, authorizing the creation of a joint venture in the Oil Strip in an international capital society known as vulture funds, where participate the Anglo-Saxon capital, the Rothschilds, and probably Russia and China, this occuring hours after a lovely telephone conversation between Maduro and Putin.

Days later, another oil contract was signed with the US transnational Horizontal Well Drillers to form a joint venture, in which Maduro indicated that he was anxiously awaiting the moment to shake hands with Trump.

But Monday 17, the Gringo Head of State answered the request of handshake with a threat, stating that if Maduro continued with the Constituent, quick and forceful economic sanctions against our country would be taken. There has also been an increase in contracts for the drilling of damaging horizontal wells with the sadly notorious Halliburton, involved in mercenary operations in Iraq.

In his effort to remain no matter what in charge, President Maduro, with all his pride, doesn’t want or can’t see that each capitulation to big capital, as he has been doing in recent years, in spite of achieving the support it seeks, only manages to redouble its blackmail to obtain new concessions and paves the way for more direct interference. The MUD leadership is, of course, silently watching the delivery of the country meant by these contracts, as well as in relation to Trump’s statements.

(D) Which scenario is opened after July 16? This question is easier to be made than to answer, as the situation remains dominated by uncertainty. However, the convene of the “Hour 0” by the direction of the MUD is not a surprise and less is the support they have just received by Donald Trump.

When we proposed to reject the plebiscite, we did this denouncing that this was the objective of the plebiscite. The agreement for a “Government of National Unity” and the election of the members of an institution as TSJ by the current National Assembly means the configuration of a double power, a condition precedent to an open civil war, taking away for now any possibility of a democratic solution.

The same apllies for the call of a “Paro Civico”, which some confused want to see as a workers ‘struggle, but is in fact a bosses’ strike such as those organized by Fedecamaras in 2002/2003. Without a program to fight popular needs, which requires, among other measures, suspension of illegitimate External Debt payments to solve the shortage of food and medicines, and no proposal to defend workers’ income, this “Civic Stop” is useful only for the leaders of the MUD to consolidate its capacity of negotiation or its positioning for the increase of a confrontation that will cause still greater damages in the daily life of our people.

In turn, the government of Nicolás Maduro accelerates the route to the Constituent. All their activity is focused on reaching the 30th of July and holding the elections of the “constituents” and in suppressing the protests or legitimate manifestations.

While not presenting an upcoming negotiation, one that is not disposable, these irresponsible leaders will continue to dedicate themselves in digging the trenches from where they will lead the fratricidal confrontation. From our part, we are calling for a halt to this madness.

We call for the suspension of the false Constituent Assembly, the advance of the elections to governors, a clear timetable for presidential elections, a full return to the Constitution of 99, and the implementation of immediate measures such as pointed out above, to stop the impact on our people of the brutal crisis that affects the country. This is a democratic way of resolving the current impasse without the tragic outcome that would mean entering the irreversible territory of an armed confrontation.

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