Partido único y Apartheid / Oswaldo Barreto

Single Party and Apartheid

What can explain Hugo Chávez’s sudden insistence on building a single party with the political forces that support his government, the PSUV (Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela), if up to now those forces have followed him unconditionally in such a unanimous manner? Precisely as members of a single party, activists from the Chavista parties have shown the President, the commander in chief, the single leader that they are always ready to follow even his most eccentric whims.

What then is the foundation for this new step into what tacitly seems to be the path that will take us toward socialism of the century we live in? As has been the case for quite some time already, whenever we find ourselves with the need to understand a new creation by Chávez in political, economic or cultural matters, we must resort to the only source from where an answer can flow: history. In effect, history and not precisely our history or the most recent history, but rather the already distant history of the construction of actually existing communism has become for today’s Venezuelans the crystal ball where the future of our society can be read.

And, regarding the construction of a single party of the revolution, the signs that show up in that crystal ball could not be clearer. The leader who battles tenaciously to direct the nation’s politics hegemonically at this moment needs to build an instrument that will allow him to submit the entire nation under his strict personal will. And that instrument is none other than the construction of a party that won’t just serve the purpose of Chavistas submitting themselves to his exclusive and absolute will (an enterprise that, as we’ve said before, Chávez has crowned without the slightest resistance), but rather to achieve the submission and obedience of anyone who might want to survive in the country. And this will be done as it was done in Russia, nine decades ago, when that country began in 1917 the simultaneous construction of socialism and the Soviet empire. During those years, the only ones who found work and means of sustenance were those who were actual members of the party or who the party had allowed to prepare to join its ranks. Evidently, even during that dark era, one could abstain from being a party activist and even criticize its existence, but at the price of being excluded from society and from life itself.

{ Oswaldo Barreto, TalCual, 18 December 2006 }

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