Maduro proposes 'elections'...for his opponents
Now that "dialogue" is going on between Venezuela's socialist dictator Nicolás Maduro and democratically declared acting president Juan Guaidó, Maduro has an opening offer.
Venezuela's President Nicolás Maduro has proposed bringing forward next year's election for the opposition-controlled National Assembly.
National Assembly President Juan Guaidó dismissed the proposal as "a farce".
The two men have been at loggerheads since January when Mr Guaidó declared himself interim president, arguing Mr Maduro's re-election was fraudulent.
Talks between the two sides via international mediators are under way in the Norwegian capital, Oslo.
Elections for thee, but not for me. "Elections," as they are called in Venezuela, are just for the people who oppose the regime.
Bear in mind that Venezuela has seen humongous, million-plus-strong protests over elections and a call for some new ones. Nobody's protesting to get new elections from the National Assembly, which is the last redoubt of opposition control. The guy they want on the ballot, in free and fair elections, is Maduro himself, who was "re-elected" last year in elections so fraudulent that only the world's pariah states recognized them.
That's some chutzpah, for Maduro to call for such "elections."
It sounds as if he's interested in a new fraud election to get his opponents out of there.
And it's insulting as heck, given that the Maduro-democrats talks in Norway, to please the Norwegians more than anyone else, are supposedly an effort to work out a new deal for free and fair elections.
Maduro's proposal for who gets the elections shows the futility of talking to him, the idiocy of dialogue, which, in any case, has been attempted multiple times in the past, only to lead to more dictatorship.
It also signals that far from being the scared guy in the palace, looking for enemies in every corner, as some U.S. officials have been suggesting that he's quite comfortable. And he's got only contempt for the angry Venezuelans in the streets calling for free and fair elections.
Maduro's insulting proposal signals that to him, none of this is a problem. The "dialogue" is just for show, a bid to appear reasonable and respectable to the Norwegians, while using the talks as means to expand his dictatorial power, even as Venezuelans starve in the streets. No issue.
He's not serious. And whether the Guaidó forces and the Norwegians themselves recognize this, with crap like this coming out from Maduro, it's pretty clear the talks are done.