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Tipsheet

Of Course, Venezuela's 'Crazy' Socialist President Is Blocking Humanitarian Aid

With 200,000 Venezuelans unable to get medicine to treat their chronic illnesses, you would think President Nicolas Maduro would allow humanitarian aid to flow into the country. Nope—he’s blocked such shipments that include drugs to assist those in need after the nation’s health care system has virtually collapsed. There are ghastly reports of babies dying due to rolling blackouts caused by energy shortages. Hospitals are lacking even basic things like soap, gloves, and Tylenol. Still, Maduro would rather let his citizens suffer than face reality: 21st Century Socialism has failed (via Fusion):

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Venezuelans are demanding their government let humanitarian aid into the country after the Maduro administration has apparently blocked several requests to import fee medicines into the crisis ravaged state.

On Tuesday opposition leader Lilian Tintori penned an open letter to President Nicolas Maduro asking the socialist leader to open a “humanitarian channel” that would enable civil society groups to bring medical supplies into the country.

Tintori, who is married to jailed opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez, said that over the past two weeks she has worked with Venezuelan expats in Miami, Bogota and Panama City to collect 100 tons of donated medical supplies to help stock Venezuela’s ailing hospitals.

[…]

The Venezuelan government, however, has denied several attempts by NGOs and opposition groups to bring humanitarian aid into the country, opting instead to import medicine from political allies such as the Chinese government.

The first major aid-block happened in February, when the government turned down a request by the opposition-led congress to enroll Venezuela in a World Health Organization program that provides subsidized medical supplies to struggling countries. Then in May, lawmakers from Venezuela’s ruling socialist party voted against a bill that would have allowed congress to authorize medical imports without the president’s approval.

The socialist government has not explained why it has rejected these initiatives. But opposition leaders say the president is trying to hide the country’s stark state of affairs.

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Maduro has mostly taken a bunker mentality, having the military conduct exercises in preparation for a phantom American invasion. Yet, The New York Times noted this is a “Wag The Dog” tactic aimed at diverting attention from the 1.85 million people who signed a petition to initiate a recall election. Even Maduro’s colleagues in Latin American progressive politics have seemed to lose patience with his antics, with former Uruguayan President José Mujica saying he has respect for the besieged socialist president, but he’s “crazy like a goat.” Maduro even accused Secretary-General Luis Almagro of the Organization of American States of being part of a plot to overthrow his government, and an agent with the Central Intelligence Agency. The OAS has called an emergency meeting to discuss Venezuela’s slide into failed statehood. Maduro, defiant as ever, took to the stump and told the OAS member states to “shove it.”

As Venezuelans try desperately to find food and medicine, Maduro's aversion to accept aid due to the fear of being embarrassed by the failure of left wing economics is absurd. The world already knows Venezuela is collapsing. At this point, Maduro might as well tell his own citizens to “shove it” if he’s willing to die on this hill of keeping Chavez’s legacy alive. He’s dead - just like 21st Century Socialism.

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