Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Venezuela Military Desertions

Bloomberg  has a story about the rising number of soldiers deserting from the Venezuelan military.

But the level of desertion from the Fuerza Armada Nacional Bolivariana has grown exponentially in the last year, especially among troops at lower ranks. At least 10,000 soldiers have asked to retire, Control Ciudadano’s San Miguel said in March.

There's not much on this in Spanish but you can get bits and pieces from Twitter.

This strikes me as potentially quite important. The Maduro government needs the military to keep it propped up. The biggest threat to him is military discontent, just as Hugo Chávez own discontent led him to rebel against his superiors in 1992. But to borrow from Albert Hirschman, if soldiers choose exit (or of course loyalty) over voice, then that works to Maduro's advantage, or at least not to his detriment.


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