About the Venezuelan Oil Deal

By Daniel Nardini

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - CommentaryNormally, I would have said NO to any oil deal with the Venezuelan government of current dictator Nicolas Maduro. It would be like the United States doing a deal with the devil. How would it be any better than doing an oil deal with Russia? But this oil deal has shades of gray to it. It was a deal worked out with the U.S. government on the one hand and Maduro and the opposition Venezuelan Congress on the other. In exchange for the oil going to the company Chevron, which will bring in the oil from Venezuela, the Venezuelan assets currently frozen in the United States will be released and used to help finance education, bringing in food, help rebuild the health care system, and rebuild the electric infrastructure of Venezuela.

Clearly it is a deal that will help the Venezuelan people. It comes on the premise that it will keep Venezuelans from fleeing the country, help to slowly restore a country that has been falling apart, and hopefully bring stability to the region. Under Maduro, Venezuela has become a black hole in South America. Maduro has been the most isolated ruler on the continent because of his policies, his treatment of his people, and his alliance with such totalitarian governments in Cuba, Nicaragua, Iran, Russia and China. Maduro is one of the world’s greatest international pariahs. The Venezuelan opposition Congress has been trying to steer the country back to democracy, but it lacks any backing by the army which is squarely on the side of Maduro.

This has been the situation for a number of years. Neither the opposition Congress nor Maduro have been able to take total control over the country, and the result has been in too many ways a failed nation state. There are already four million Venezuelan refugees in the Americas, and Venezuela has only been getting worse. With his back to the wall, and one of his backers, Russia, in a major war against Ukraine, Maduro has been looking for a way out. This agreement may be one. All of the frozen assets will be administered by the United Nations to make sure that the money will go to where it should go to and the whole process is transparent. Will this agreement work in reality given what Maduro is? Unknown, but at least this is a hopeful sign for the Venezuelan people.

Comments are closed.