Once the longest-running democracy in South America and a very important ally of the United States, Venezuela transformed under the rule of Hugo Chavez and subsequently his successor Nicholas Maduro. However, with the National Assembly Elections last December, the Venezuelan public produced an undeniable landslide for the opposition and a firm rejection of Chavismo. With the world’s largest proven oil reserves, what happens next in this country has important implications for the entire world. Will the opposition seek revenge on the Chavistas or use their powerful mandate to rebuild Venezuela’s gutted institutions? Will Maduro respond by setting up parallel institutions of government stocked with Chavistas, or go quietly into the night? To answer these questions and more, we are pleased to feature Vanessa Neumann, our “go-to” person on Venezuela.
Dr. Neumann is an Associate of the University Seminar on Latin America at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University, where she received her Ph.D. in political philosophy. Having worked as a journalist on three continents, she has written for The (London) Sunday Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, and The Weekly Standard.