This column in Venezuelanalysis details Nicolás Maduro's conspiracy theories while criticizing those who view them as outlandish. The conspiracies mostly involve planes, but also assassination plots, and encompass the governments of the United States, Canada, France, and Colombia.
Across the capitalist media these events are reported in derisive ways with attempts, some more subtle than others, to discredit President Maduro and portray him as a fool or even as a madman - as though Washington is incapable of coups, assassinations and illegal wars in Latin America and around the world.
My own textbook on U.S.-Latin American relations details the coups, assassinations, and illegal wars in Latin America. A core question is whether the historical legacy should automatically be conflated with the assertion that every single conspiracy story is credible because of that history. Obviously I don't think so.
Nonetheless, I do agree with Hugo Pérez Hernáiz, who just yesterday wrote the following:
My opinion is that most of the people now in the government are real radical revolutionaries who sincerely believe in that what they are doing (not all of course, some are cynical corrupt opportunists). They have a radical Manichean conception of good and evil and a simple, clear, and easy to understand theodicy that helps them frame the struggle against evil. Their theodicy is based on the Leninist idea of imperialism as the last stage of capitalism, and it inevitably includes a lot of conspiracy theories to back it up. According to this view, Socialism is “scientifically” perfect; price controls and planned economy is the right way to go. If things go wrong, the only possible explanation is that the enemies are sabotaging the road to utopia.
Basically, if you do not share that radical view, then it is likely not possible for you to believe the many conspiracy theories offered up by the government. If you do share that view, then you are outraged that anyone questions them.
One caveat, though. Hugo Chávez obviously shared the radical view (after all, he created it!) but the conspiracy theories seem to have intensified under Maduro. If the theodicy is constant, then there needs to be some other variable explaining that change.