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Saturday 7 December 2019
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Letters to the Editor

Kamla’s position on Venezuela courageous

THE EDITOR: In the face of rapidly unfolding political and diplomatic events globally and the current isolation of TT for its ill-advised decision to recognise unwittingly and side with the internationally denounced illegal and illegitimate regime of Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro bilaterally while pursuing a contradictory neutrality/non-interference position at the multilateral Caricom and UN levels, it appears to me that Kamla Persad-Bissessar outwitted Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley in her strategic support for (self-declared) interim president Juan Guaido.

She based her decision on humanitarian concerns rather than on geography, petro-politics and the simplistic/pedantic who answers the phone.

It is my view that her decision would appear to reduce the scope for post-Maduro retaliation against TT by covering the Guaido base left neglected by Rowley’s interventionist/recognition strategy. When both positions are taken together TT, if regime change were to occur, has protected its future relations. But Persad-Bissessar has also exercised her political options wisely, strategically and from a political sense adopted expectedly a position that is different from the Rowley administration.

The differing positions flow from contradictory definitions. Persad-Bissessar’s position was courageous. It ascended the high moral ground, taking into account the prolonged and disturbing humanitarian crisis in Venezuela extending also to neighbouring countries, widespread deprivation of human political and civil rights, near collapse of the economy, runaway spiralling inflation, corruption, sheer dictatorship by the Maduro regime and the increasing pro-Guaido recognition by Latin American and EU states.

On the other hand, unwitting recognition by TT was purely accidental with Foreign Affairs Minister Dennis Moses attending Maduro’s inauguration to shore up and secure the promise of Venezuelan gas from the Dragon’s mouth in a post-Sandals scandal scenario.

Petro-politics swayed the Government in favour of Maduro while down-playing the serious human rights violations and refusal to accommodate Venezuelan refugees in TT, citing unconvincing absence of legal provisions but forgetting the Dominicans.

It appears that the Rowley administration was gripped in the vice of Maduro’s Dragon gas promise as an obsessive compulsive disorder because the Dragon cannot fail us after the Sandals pull-out. That will be a fatal blow to Rowley’s political credibility because of a perception that his personal stakes were involved.

Hence his current pathetic damage control measures targeting and blaming the innocent media as scapegoats and the Opposition as traitors for adopting a different position that is less damaging but also insignificant from a TT perspective.

STEPHEN KANGAL, Caroni

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