La marche des Caudillos

La réélection pour une période illimitée que les présidents Hugo Chávez et Evo Morales ont recherché respectivement au Venezuela et en Bolivie reflète un phénomène, le caudillismo , qui n’a malheureusement jamais été très loin de la surface de la politique latino-américaine. Le président russe Vladimir Poutine a lui, au moins, eu la décence d’honorer la forme de la constitution de son pays lorsqu’il a récemment promis de se retirer et de se présenter au Parlement.

Certes, de nombreux présidents latino-américains ont récemment réussi à changer la constitution de leur pays afin de rallonger la durée de leur mandat. L’argentin Carlos Menem, héritier du péronisme, la forme la plus résistante de caudillismo du continent, en a été l’illustration, mais il exerçait un caudillismo modéré, qui maintenait, au fond, les normes démocratiques.

Le caudillismo a deux facettes. D’abord, parce qu’il s’agit par-dessus tout d’une représentation politique, il peut avoir ses propres particularités locales. Ensuite, bien que le caudillismo personnifie le politique, il dépend moins des caractéristiques du caudillo que des conditions sociales, politiques et économiques du pays dans lequel le caudillismo s’enracine. En d’autres termes, bien que le charisme d’un caudillo soit important, il ou elle est une création sociale.

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