The Perpetual Whittling Away of Venezuela

     How bad is it in Venezuela? So bad that fleeing Venezuelans are willing to accept forced labor and sexual exploitation rather than go back. Increasingly, nations are recognizing that something has to be done to stop the perpetual slow collapse of Venezuela, even to the point of calling on the United Nations. After all, with Maduro going out of the way to alienate potential allies, then certainly opposition within the United Nations could be found, right?

     Wrong.

“The United Nations’ Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights Venezuela released a blistering report on Venezuela in July. It found that President Nicolas Maduro’s government engaged in widespread human rights abuses, including the torture and murder of political opponents and average citizens.

“Yesterday, Venezuela was also elected to the United Nations’ Human Rights Council, an intergovernmental body charged with ‘strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights.’

“Also being elected to fill several of the 14 vacant seats on the 47-member council were Mauritania—where local human rights groups estimate that up to 20 percent of the population is enslaved—and Sudan, currently led by a hybrid civilian-military council chaired by a general who overthrew the last president in a coup.”

     It’s not like they engage in supporting drug-trafficking terrorists… or worse?

     Well, at least with their oil reserves, they can keep the compliant part of the populous feed, right? Oh

“Facing the risk of losing oil-production capacity, the Nicolás Maduro regime has developed a seemingly counterintuitive solution to keep the wells pumping: Give away crude to Cuba.

“Petróleos de Venezuela’s trouble selling to international markets because of U.S. sanctions is Havana’s windfall, amid Maduro’s decision to increase oil shipments to the island to free up space in the country’s filled-to-the-brim storage tanks.”

     But hey, that minimum wage hike of 275% oughta make all the refugees happy to come back to a land with… 50,100% inflation.

     At least the pro-democracy opposition is getting funding… even though it doesn’t seem to be doing much.

     The only good news is that despite all the free oil, Cuba is losing one of its few lifelines as Venezuela collapses, with, perhaps, the hope that Cuba will be able to crawl out of the aftermath stronger and freer.

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