Debate: Should the US Impose Oil Sanctions against Venezuela?

PanAm Post Debate: Should the Trump administration impose oil sanctions on the Venezuelan regime? (

In this week’s editorial, the PanAm Post argued that the Trump administration should impose oil sanctions against Venezuela and its Chavista regime. While the arguments against an oil embargo center “on the possible effects of such actions on the Venezuelan people,” we wrote, it is our opinion “that such fears are misplaced.”

We added that, since “Venezuela is on the cusp of an out and out civil war,” which will almost certainly be sparked if dictator Nicolás Maduro goes ahead with his illegal constitutional assembly in a matter of days, it is only through the “severest possible sanctions that a roguish and brutal regime, such as Mr. Maduro’s, and its allies in Cuba can be forced to accept a diplomatic solution.”

Writing from a different perspective, Yigal Chazan argues in his opinion column in the PanAm that

a ban on Venezuelan oil would aggravate the worsening humanitarian situation and possibly lead to default, as Caracas is already struggling to service its debts. The state energy company, PDVSA, would look to find other buyers, but this could take time.

Chazan adds that Venezuelan opposition leaders

have already warned against an embargo, which may also allow Maduro to rally regional support by pinning the blame for the deepening crisis on the US. Moreover, critics of harsher measures point out that the Cuban regime has survived despite over fifty years of American sanctions.

So which side should the Trump administration take when the future of Venezuelan democracy is at stake in a most critical moment? Readers for or against the proposed oil sanctions against the Maduro dictatorship can vote on the PanAm Post’s Facebook page.

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