Another notable finding: Despite fashionable explanations, neither U.S. sanctions, nor European or Canadian sanctions, are anywhere near the cause of Venezuelan suffering. “The economy of Venezuela, particularly its oil industry and food production systems, were already in crisis before any sectoral sanctions were imposed,” Bachelet’s report concludes. The economy was in a tailspin long before the Trump administration’s August 2017 economic sanctions, which don’t fully kick in until later this month anyway.
Those sanctions may be “exacerbating” the effects of Venezuela’s economic collapse, but it began several years ago, owing to the gross incompetence and hubris of Hugo Chavez, Maduro’s predecessor and mentor. The collapse has continued in hyper-inflationary overdrive under Maduro, whose hold on power was extended by a fraudulent election last year that the opposition parties boycotted.
Please go read it all