Venezuela: The theory of mini-imperialism

A TRINIDADIAN environmentalist, Dr. Wayne Kubalsingh has reproduced his pro-Maduro column in the Trinidadian newspaper, Newsday, in the Stabroek News yesterday.
In my piece yesterday, I referred to two instances of intellectual pretense right here in Guyana. One refers to the charlatans masquerading as oil experts since Guyana discovered petroleum assets.

Secondly, the sudden birth of “experts” on international relations (IR) since President Maduro announced a referendum to facilitate his imperialist claim on Guyana. Now in Trinidad, an environmentalist, Dr. Wayne Kubalsingh has become an expert on IR.
Kubalsingh makes an IR academic laugh at his presentation because it is devoid of an elementary understanding of IR. His analysis on what Venezuela wants from Guyana is both comical and dangerous. I find Kubalsingh to be an irritating fellow because of the ignorance he writes.
In another column he wrote during the Caribbean Premier League, he described three Pakistani members of the Amazon Warriors celebrating their team winning the trophy and pointed to the tears of the Amazon captain, Imran Tahir after victory was clinched. He then questioned what Tahir knows about Guyana’s history.
This is sheer ignorance that you should not read from an educated person. Tahir was overcome by his success in leading a team that never won the trophy. That is an emotion inherent in humans. What is the relevance of asking what Tahir knows of Guyana’s history? Really man! This is ignorance!
It was when I read his take on Maduro and his reference to President Ali being Muslim and his derogatory innuendos about Arab countries that I understood his remarks about Pakistani players and Imran Tahir. I quote from his Stabroek News’ letter followed by my comments. Q is for quote and C is for comment.
Q-“Guyana had used its seat at the OAS to join in actions, orchestrated against the sovereignty and the institutions of Venezuela.”
C- Guyana before and after Independence has not made any claim on the territorial sovereignty of its neighbour, Venezuela. It is our neighbour that has not recognised a settled, internationally recognised agreement that has delineated the borders between the two nations. It is pathetic nonsense to use words in such a way as Kubalsingh has done to make Venezuela a victim. Venezuela invaded Guyanese territory in 1966 and currently occupies it. It is an island named Ankoko.
Q-“Guyana has put its institutions and its territory in the service of the major powers that have always aspired to destroy Venezuela in order to grab some of the largest world reserves of oil, gold and gas.”

C- Kubalsingh should stick to environmental studies because he knows nothing about international relations. I put forward to him, the theory of mini-imperialism. It posits that small countries that were once victims of imperialism based on Peloponnesian realism become aggressive to their neighbours for reasons that include space expansion and resource-grabbing. These instincts in world politics are not confined to huge imperialist powers only.

It would take up a book length manuscript to offer Kubalsingh examples. And since the examples are in the dozens since World War 2 and in the post-colonial world, I will not go into an enumeration process, but confine myself to one example from our integration movement, CARICOM. Guatemala for decades had threatened our CARICOM sister country – Belize.
It is nonsense for Kubalsingh to quote Maduro as saying countries want to have the gold, oil and gas assets of nations when that is exactly what Venezuela wants from Guyana. Since Independence we have not been able to develop those resources in Essequibo because of the theory of mini-imperialism.
Q- “A point which begs to be added is that Irfaan Ali, Guyanese president is Moslem. He has hedged this credential in Middle East visits and negotiations with Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates….”
C- How can anyone write such nonsense? What does the religious character of the leader of a developing nation have to do with post-colonial world seeking trade and aid from better off Third World States? The Middle East, the Pacific Rim, South East Asia, South Asia, Africa, South America, have powerfully developed economies which struggling nations in the developing world need to seek friendships with. Any leader that has not made such conclusion a part of his/her foreign policy is not fit to govern his/her nation.
Q “Maduro wants assurances. He wants to talk directly to Ali. He wants to settle these matters bilaterally, neighbour to neighbour. The Bolivarian Republic is regarded as an outlier oil kingdom.”
C- That outlier oil kingdom wants our oil fields. Guyana will not talk to Venezuela about anything unless Venezuela renounces its embrace of mini-imperialism and recognises the 1899 award that settled the sovereignty of both countries.


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