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  HOME | Opinion (Click here for more)

Carlos Alberto Montaner: Connect the Dots
"The Venezuela of Nicolás Maduro only survives thanks to the sinister help of Havana's intelligence and counterintelligence," writes Latin American genius Carlos Alberto Montaner. "The ideological issues have taken a back seat and the countries of the “Socialism of the 21st Century” – Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Bolivia – are dedicated to drug trafficking, extortion, murder, torture and imprisonment or exile of opponents."

By Carlos Alberto Montaner

It all happened last Thursday. It’s just a matter of collecting the data and drawing the conclusions. In their enviable language of synthesis, Americans call it “connect the dots.”

The Wall Street Journal published on its first page that the U.S. government spoke with the anti-Maduro factions of the Venezuelan regime. They were referring, first, to Diosdado Cabello. The main author of the information was José de Córdoba, a distinguished journalist who would not risk his reputation in a sensational hoax.

Cabello is an accomplished businessman willing to sell his grandmother’s corpse to McDonald’s. That is perfectly well known to Washington strategists, especially Mauricio Claver-Carone, the principal adviser of the White House for Latin America, or “Comeniños” (Child-eater) as Maduristas call him in their paranoid clandestine jargon.

Simultaneously, Reuters published an extensive analysis of military relations between Cuba and Venezuela. The paper was based on two documents signed between Caracas and Havana that demonstrate something that the academic María Werlau has said and explained a thousand times – the Venezuela of Nicolás Maduro only survives thanks to the sinister help of Havana's intelligence and counterintelligence.

That night on Thursday, August 22, a book was presented in Miami at the headquarters of the Interamerican Institute for Democracy. The book is titled Castrochavismo and was written by the Institute’s Executive Director Carlos Sánchez Berzaín. Its subtitle reveals and summarizes the content of the work: “Organized Crime in the Americas.” At the same time, it suggests how to deal with this criminal phenomenon – resort to the Palermo Convention to fight the mafias.

CSB argues that the ideological issue has taken a back seat and the countries of the “Socialism of the 21st Century” – Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Bolivia, since Ecuador left the cartel after the election of Lenin Moreno – are dedicated to drug trafficking, extortion, murder, torture and imprisonment or exile of opponents.

These activities, which include, if necessary, the creation of “functional oppositions,” are hidden behind a false democratic mantle creating the first “electoral dictatorships with leftist language” in the history of the continent.

Cuban foreign minister Bruno Rodríguez denies (uselessly) that Cuba has phagocyted Venezuela. How can Cuba be the head of that setup if it is a very poor nation, totally unproductive, eight times smaller, from which all those who can flee, which has lived attached to the USSR, to Venezuela, and survives renting professionals abroad or from the crumbs of the remittances sent by their hundreds of thousands of emigrants?

Simple, Cuba learned from the USSR how to control a country with its military. Between 1960 and 1963 some forty thousand Soviet intervention agents helped build the Moscow satellite of Cuba. In addition, when the Soviet subsidy disappeared in 1991, Cuba developed a system of government that mainly benefits the uniformed leadership – the “Military State Capitalism.”

Cuba had it all: the ideological rhetoric, the economic system, the satisfied operators (the military commanders), who guaranteed that power would continue to be held by the ruling elite. Naturally, “the Cuban model” meant the progressive impoverishment of the country and the “pauperization” or “Haitianization” of the base of material support, but those circumstances were of no importance to those who ruled. They could live in an artificial bubble of comfort and resources.

But the most serious part of this nightmare of poverty and brutality is that the “Cuban model” has to grow at the expense of other societies. Cuba needs to export its revolution in order to survive. That was the Cuban goal of the Sao Paulo Forum. The merchandise it offers in return is its own example – sixty years of tight control of a poor people who have lost any vestige of freedom.

I hope Latin America reacts and is able to “connect the dots.” Their lives depend on it.

Carlos Alberto Montaner is a journalist and writer. Born in 1943 in Cuba and exiled, Montaner is known for his more than 25 books and thousands of articles. PODER magazine estimates that more than six million readers have access to his weekly columns throughout Latin America. He is also a political analyst for CNN en Espanol. In 2012, Foreign Policy magazine named Montaner as one of the fifty most influential intellectuals in the Ibero-American world. His latest novel is A Time for Scoundrels. His latest essay is "The President: A Handbook for Voters and the Elected." His latest book is a review of Las raíces torcidas de América Latina (The Twisted Roots of Latin America), published by Planeta and available in Amazon, in printed or digital version.


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