We Can Achieve the Venezuelan Spring

EspañolFebruary 12 was Venezuela’s “Youth Day.” In the end, however, two great ironies occurred: the killing of young people, and their killing as they protested insecurity.

The totalitarian government of Nicolás Maduro not only deprived the liberty of students who were protesting peacefully this week — as they demanded the release of students involved in an earlier protest — Maduro also sent his armed and violent thugs to inflict harm on the participants of protests that were taking place in several cities in Venezuela.

In this act of violence and cowardice of the state, three students were killed and hundreds were arrested by the Bolivarian Armed Forces.

Compelled by indignation and mourning for the loss of these fighters — whose only sin was to think differently — right now young Venezuelans are on the streets fighting for freedom and respect for life.

And while all this happens, the Venezuelan media is totally censored by the state. They only transmit a grand mockery of the tragedy that is unfolding: a parade of President Maduro, dancing and singing, while innocent blood runs through the streets.

There is no doubt about the level of dictatorship of this government: don’t protest, because I’ll shoot you; don’t complain, because I’ll put you in jail; don’t inform people, because I’ll censor you. What a lovely democracy, right?

For that reason Venezuelans are now in the streets, struggling for freedom. We are finally awakening to the yoke that oppresses us, realizing that peace is impossible with restrictions: the only way you can have peace, is if you really are free.

“Today was a busy day of protests; tomorrow we return to the streets.” Gabriel Salas, Students for Liberty, Venezuela.

Today more than ever we know that the fight will not be easy. However, united and with clear objectives, young Venezuelans are willing to earn their freedom, and finally, after these 15 years of repression, we can achieve the Venezuelan Spring.

On February 12, but 200 years ago, in the Battle of La Victoria, Venezuelan hero Jose Felix Ribas said: “On this day that will be remembered, we cannot choose between win or lose: it’s necessary to win!”

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