Nicolás Maduro Moros
President of the Bolivarian Republic
Caracas, 3 April 2020
To the People of the United States of America:
For weeks the world has been paralyzed, trying to control a pandemic that is doubtless one of the greatest challenges we have faced as a society and an international community. Like the people of the United States, we are confronting it as our priority.
Fortunately, in Venezuela, we have had some advantages. We took very early measures of isolation and expanded screening, supported by our public and free health care system, with family medicine doctors around the entire country. We also count on the invaluable community organization to help elevate the social conscience and provide support to the most vulnerable. Similarly, the solidarity of Cuba, China and Russia and the support of the World Health Organization has permitted us to obtain necessary medical supplies, despite the illegal sanctions of Donald Trump.
Upon expressing my solidarity with this important historic challenge and our dismay and sorrow for the pandemic’s consequences in the U.S., I am also obliged to warn you that while the world focuses on addressing the emergence of COVID-19, the Trump administration, once again exploiting institutions to achieve their electoral goals and relying on infamy under the pretext of the war against drugs, has ordered the largest U.S. military deployment to our region in 30 years, aimed at threatening Venezuela and elevating in our region a costly and bloody war of infinite duration.
As a precedent for this fallacious maneuver, on March 26 William Barr, an Attorney General of questionable independence (who recommended the 1989 invasion of Panama against Noriega and assisted in covering up the irregularities of the Iran-Contra scandal) presented unproven accusations of drug trafficking into the US, against me and other senior Venezuelan officials, despite U.S Defense Department information proving that Venezuela is not a country of primary drug transit into the U.S., unlike Washington allies Colombia and Honduras.
It is clear that the Trump administration has constructed a smoke screen to hide the improvised and erratic management of the pandemic in the United States. From the outset, Donald Trump downplayed and denied it, just as he has done with climate change. Today the crisis is aggravated simply because the U.S., despite having the resources, is not willing to transform its health care system into one that prioritizes the full care of the population and not the profit from private medicine and the insurance and pharmaceutical companies.
We in Venezuela do not want an armed conflict in our region. We want a fraternal relationship of cooperation, exchange and respect.
We cannot accept military threats, or blockades or the intent to install an international guardianship that violates our sovereignty and does not recognize the advances of the last year in sincere political dialogue between our government and the majority of the Venezuelan opposition, which desires political solutions, not wars over oil.
Based on the above, I call upon the people of the United States to put an end to this madness, to hold their government officials accountable and to obligate them to focus their attention and resources on the urgency of the pandemic. Along with an end to military threats, I ask for the end to the illegal sanctions and the blockade which restrict our access to humanitarian supplies, so necessary in our country today. From the bottom of my heart, I ask that you do not allow your country to be dragged into another interminable conflict, another Vietnam or another Iraq, but this time closer to home.
We are not so different as they would have us believe with this infamy. We are people seeking a more just, free and compassionate society. Let us not let the particular interests of a minority, blinded by ambition, separate us.
As our leader Hugo Chavez once said, we share the same dream. The dream of Martin Luther King is also the dream of Venezuela and its revolutionary government. I invite you to fight together to make that dream a reality.
No U.S. war against Venezuela.
No more criminal sanctions.
We want peace.
Nicolás Maduro Moros