The unconventional war waged against Venezuela and its neighbors is a war that seeks to win over the hearts and minds of the people, convincing them to voluntarily (and often enthusiastically) align with the interests of global capital at their own expense. It is a battle to shift what Italian militant intellectual Antonio Gramsci would call common sense and to infiltrate the dominant worldview with the interests of capital.
Culture, education and environment have also been affected in the unconventional war that keeps the government of the United States (US) in alliance with national sectors and international right wing policy against Venezuela.
Before explaining how the unconventional war has affected these sectors, we must remember what´s the Unconventional War. In a document of the General Staff of the Department of the US Army, dated November 2010, it was defined as “the set of activities aimed at enabling the development of a resistance movement or insurgency, to coerce, alter or overthrow a government, or to take power by employing a guerrilla, auxiliary and clandestine force in an enemy territory. ”
In other words, the Non-Conventional War is what it seeks to achieve a physical, political, economic and cultural penetration of one powerful country into another in unequal conditions, with the objective of submitting it and expropriating it from its assets or resources.
Immense human suffering has been manufactured to lay the ground for U.S. intervention. Though U.S. sanctions have caused 40,000 deaths in one year alone (from 2017 to 2018), U.S. and corporate media have put the blame on the Venezuelan government for casualties. In this sense, the ideological component of the hybrid war against Venezuela follows a long historical trend in which imperial forces “economically suffocate the population of non-aligned countries. Having made them gasp for air, the imperialists blame the governments for—effectively—choking themselves.”
In its latest dossier, Tricontinental: Institute for Social Research details the forms that the hybrid war in Venezuela has taken. Using a concept elaborated by political analyst Andrew Korybko, the dossier discusses the aim of the war to achieve “full spectrum dominance”; to dominate every aspect of society including not only “ideological frameworks but also the full range of human emotions—how to understand desire and beauty, values and aesthetics—as well as all the dimensions of human survival—organisation of the market and production.” It is a war, then, to dominate one’s entire conception of reality. It is a war that seeks to so thoroughly squeeze the people of Venezuela that they are forced to adopt the solutions presented by imperialism. The iron grip will loosen, the U.S. promises, so long as they are willing to sacrifice their sovereignty and submit to the interests and the direction of the United States.
Education and the environment affected
The education sector has also been affected by the Unconventional War against Venezuela. For example, the 2017-2018 school year as a result of Electric Sabotage, including those that occurred in March affected the school calendar and the educational dynamics of the country’s children.
The Non-Conventional War and the economic blockade against the country have affected the transport system, a problem that affects children, who are complicated to move their home to schools.
In addition to this, the Non-Conventional War also damages the environment; but it is only enough to remember the politicization made by governments of the right of the region who excluded Venezuela in an agreement to protect the Amazon, after the voracious fires that have been recorded in the world’s plant lung.
The United States is keenly aware of the legacy left by colonialism, a legacy that it continues to exploit. Forced for centuries to develop its economy around the export of a single primary commodity—oil, in the case of Venezuela—the country is heavily reliant on the import of basic consumer goods, such as food and medicine. This strategy to exploit the weaknesses and limits of target governments is squarely in the center of the strategy of hybrid warfare.