Twenty-five years of hatred

Caracas Chronicles

¿Hasta cuándo? ¿Hasta cuándo?

Desde la puerta de ‘La Crónica’ Santiago mira la avenida Tacna, sin amor: automóviles, edificios desiguales y descoloridos, esqueletos de avisos luminosos flotando en la neblina, el mediodía gris. ¿En qué momento se había jodido el Perú?

Those are the first two sentences in Mario Vargas Llosa’s masterpiece Conversation in the Cathedral. As he wistfully looks out his window into the drab capital, the protagonist asks himself at which point Peru screwed itself up. The author does not say someone, something screwed Peru over – he clearly believes they did it to themselves.

We Venezuelans have a pretty good answer for the same question: Venezuela screwed itself up twenty five years ago today.

Much has been said about the Caracazo, about its causes and its consequences. The short version for the uninitiated is that after several years of a slowly deteriorating economy, after…

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