Armed Resistance in Venezuela

Miguel, who is an expat from Venezuela, notes that one civilian armed with a pistol stopped a National Guard advance. Remember, the people who spew all this bullshit about the government having tanks, jets and nuclear weapons don’t really get what armies are for. The purpose of an army is the imposition of political will. It’s not just to kill people and destroy things. Armies do those things, of course, but the overriding goal in using an army is to impose your political will on other people. That becomes much harder and more complicated when the people you’re looking to do that to are universally armed and willing to resist. The problem in Venezuela is there’s not enough of either.

7 thoughts on “Armed Resistance in Venezuela”

  1. As other’s have said … you don’t take over a nation so you can have X cubic miles of ground, even if it’s burned and radioactive. You want the people and their wealth and their productivity within your control.

    The US army won the war in Iraq against the military but for years could not control much of anything. They had to flee to their armed camps and huddle there and only come out in force.

    What changed the balance was when local neighborhoods said “Enough of this crap. We may not like Americans, but we want a stable country again.” And they took control of their neighborhoods with their small arms.

    An insurgency can’t operate if it has to fight both the locals and a foreign army.

    Likewise Vietnam — the US military could defeat the NV army anywhwere anytime, but could never fully take power and control the people.

  2. The tldr version I always shorten it to is; you can’t enforce laws or collect taxes with any of those big toys the government has.

  3. I recently came across this review of the seminal work, ‘The State’ (1985) of recently passed political thinker, Anthony de Jasay. I’ve not gotten to the book yet, but this observation from the reviewer made real sense.

    “No constitution can control this. To constrain the state, only private force could be successful: “Self-imposed limits on sovereign power can disarm mistrust, but provide no guarantee of liberty and property beyond those afforded by the balance between state and private force.” If individuals cannot keep their private institutions and their guns, the state will meet no resistance for it “has got all the guns.” An effective electoral resistance is impossible because the practical purpose of elections is to buy consent, which fuels the exercise of state power. Redistribution calls for more redistribution.”

    Once you give up the guns, you depend on the kindness of politicians, government bureaucrats and government agents.

    Source: An Unavoidable Theory of the State
    By Pierre Lemieux at The Library of Economics and Liberty

  4. As the token semi-liberal around here, I think this is the one thing that most liberals I know don’t get.

    You always hear the trope about “what are you going to do against the military with your little gun”. I know its been said here before, but “They” generally don’t want hurt their fellow Americans. Of course there are always exceptions, but I think this is one thing that we have in our favour should there be some decree about confiscation or whatever…..anyway…

  5. What are the chances they aren’t even being issued ammo? Can Maduro trust large numbers of starving soldiers with loaded guns?

    1. If the ammo always comes with enough food to feed your family, then…maybe.

      The question is, what does any particular soldier consider to be “family”? Do cousins and aunts and uncles count? What about friends? What about *their* families? What about neighbors and *their* families?

      At what point does a soldier see the suffering around him, and say to himself “Sure, I’m providing for my *immediate* family, but too many people I know and love are still suffering! What can *I* do to end this madness?”

      But all that’s assuming, of course, that Maduro *can* provide food along with that ammo in the first place.

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