Venezuela High on Drugs, the Only Thing Booming in Bolivarian Paradise

Rome–Usually, the massive cocaine traffic that flows from northern Latin America is associated with Colombia. No more. It’s Venezuela’s turn to shine as its disastrous populous government turns to the drug trade.

From Petro-State to Narco-State

It apparently started when Hugo Chavez, the discount store Fidel Castro, was still alive. He made a deal with Colombian Marxist guerillas to provide him drugs in return for arms. The reaction to the drug trade news from Chavez’ successor, Nicolas Maduro, is to sue news outlets that report the scandals.

In a way, this is not surprising. Venezuela, home of the self-styled Bolivarian revolution, has been rotting from within for some time. High oil prices provided fuel for a populist spending frenzy without providing any other outlet for economic growth. Inflation is rampant. Current low prices have all but bankrupted the country. Venezuela has the world’s second highest murder rate (after another drug transit point, Honduras).

Whether the drug trade revelations will weaken the mythical hold of Venezuela over its leftist friends in South America remains to be seen. The governments of Brazil Ecuador, Argentina and Bolivia seem to have a crush on anyone who wears a beret and uses the word imperialism more than five times a day.

Here’s a Foreign Policy article on a book that details the revelations.

An overview on the Venezuelan drug role.

Jackson Diehl muses on possible effects.

On Venezuela’s economic problems.



Daniel Williams

Published by Daniel Williams

I am a former correspondent who, for more than 30 years, did time in China, Southeast Asia, Central America, Mexico, the Middle East, Europe and Africa and covered wars that went from episodic to non-stop. My book, "Forsaken," about Christian persecution in the Middle East came out January, 2016. NextWarNotes is a news and analysis blog designed to fill gaps, provide background and think about what’s next. The name of the site comes from a 1935 article by Ernest Hemingway in Esquire Magazine called “Notes on the Next War,” in which he predicted the coming conflagration in Europe, told why it would happen and warned Americans to stay out.

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