Le Défi de M. Chávez

Les récentes élections législatives qui se sont tenues au Venezuela ont confirmé la tendance qui a placé le pays à la Une de tous les journaux ces dernières années. Le président Hugo Chávez a fait la démonstration une fois de plus qu’il jouit d’un large soutien parmi les populations pauvres et désespérées du pays et qu’il a une bonne mesure d’avance sur son opposition en termes de compétences politiques, d’habileté et de caractère impitoyable. Pourtant, on observe en même temps une baisse de la fréquentation des urnes au fur et à mesure de chaque nouvelle élection organisée sous le mandat de M. Chávez et la régularité douteuse des élections se fait de plus en plus visible.

Il est certain que le retrait de l’opposition à quelques jours de l’élection représentait plutôt, comme le proclama M. Chávez, un symptôme de ses propres faiblesses plutôt que des problèmes de processus électoral. Et il est presque sûr que cette même faiblesse fait partie de l’étouffement progressif de certains aspects de la démocratie vénézuélienne traditionnelle.

Même ainsi, les erreurs de l’opposition ont été très importantes, allant du soutien au coup d’État manqué contre M. Chávez, élu démocratiquement, en avril 2002 aux attaques sans résultat contre PEDEVSA, la société pétrolière nationale du Venezuela, au début de 2003. Rien n’est plus dangereux en politique que l’échec lors de confrontations directes.

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