George Castellanos/AFP/Getty Images

A través del espejo venezolano

CAMBRIDGE – Cuando sabemos que a algún amigo le ha sucedido una catástrofe, sentimos empatía y un poco de vértigo al mismo tiempo. Nos preguntamos si nos podría pasar lo mismo: ¿Es la catástrofe producto de alguna característica peculiar del amigo que por fortuna no compartimos? O ¿somos igualmente vulnerables? De serlo, ¿podemos evitar una suerte similar?

La misma lógica se aplica a los países. El fin de semana del 16 y 17 de julio, a los venezolanos se les brindó la oportunidad de cruzar la frontera con Colombia por hasta 12 horas. Fue un evento que hizo recordar la caída del Muro de Berlín. Más de 135.000 personas aprovecharon ese respiro para ir a Colombia a comprar productos de primera necesidad. Viajaron cientos de kilómetros y convirtieron su dinero por apenas el 1% de las divisas que habrían recibido si se les hubiera permitido cambiar a la tasa oficial que se aplica a los alimentos y medicinas. Pero de todos modos encontraron que valía la pena, en vista del hambre, la escasez y la desesperación que reinan en su nación.

La prensa internacional ha informado sobre el colapso de la economía, como también del sistema de salud, la seguridad personal, el orden constitucional y los derechos humanos en Venezuela. Todo esto está pasando en el país que tiene las reservas de petróleo más grandes del mundo, apenas dos años después de que terminara el auge del precio del crudo más prolongado de la historia. ¿Por qué? ¿Podría suceder en otro lugar?

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