What once was one of the richest countries of the entire world has degraded over the last 17 years. The government seems to not please its people for various reasons, including hiding necessary information, corruption, denial of Communism, missing essential necessities, such as food, medicine and others. People in Venezuela suffer on a daily basis, struggling to at least survive, hoping that they will live another day.

Initially, many Venezuelans knew trouble was on the way when on the 6th of December of 1998 Hugo Rafael Chavez Frias was elected president of the Republic. On the 11th of April of 2002 the citizens attempted to overthrow the government, yet failed. After 14 years of ruling the country under maximum dictatorship, president Hugo Chavez died after being diagnosed with colorectal cancer. Venezuelans saw this as an opportunity to move away from the past, and finally have what they’ve missed the most, democracy!

The once-in-a-lifetime opportunity flew by Venezuela — it was too late. The government assigned a new temporary president, Nicolas Maduro, a simple man with no political experience, led by other corrupt ministers. Since then, the 14th of April of 2013, Venezuela has been worse than ever, with a food crisis — something that never afflicted the country before — political injustice and police brutality.

The day when Venezuelans had enough was the 12th of February of 2014, when they  decided to stand up to this corrupt and filthy government. Those who protested had no intention to commit violence, yet the government saw it in another way. The GNB (Guardia Nacional Bolivariana) took violent action against harmless, peace- filled people.

Since then, the situation has declined gravely. Many opposition leaders are now serving time in prison for no reason at all — since when is protesting peacefully a serious crime? Take for example, Leopoldo Lopez. The father of 2 is now, at what the Venezuelan people consider “The Most Dangerous Prison Nation-Wide,” serving 13 years and 9 months for leading a protest. “Unjustly sentenced,” said Gabriel Roig, attending Exeter Summer Session. Also arrested was Antonio Ledezma, seized by 10 GNB’s who unexpectedly barged to his office building with assault rifles.

After terrorizing the whole nation with police brutality, and injustice, the government has shut down basic necessities. Meaning, most people have to wake up at the ungodly hour of 3 a.m. to buy a loaf of bread, or a piece of meat and chicken, even toilet paper! This has made the people  desperate, and begin food riots. A food riot basically is when two or more people start a brawl for what they need. And as cruel as it sounds, this is what the government wanted all along, — a nation where everyone is divided and no one is united.

And you might ask yourself how in the world is there no food? Well, the government rejected Empresa Polar’s proposal of donating money so it can produce food, and then resell it to the nation. Engineer and businessman Lorenzo Alejandro Mendoza leads Empresa Polar, which he inherited after his father passed away. Nicolas Maduro has falsely accused this man of being a corrupt businessman, for not following instructions. But after various press conferences, Mendoza is recognized as one of the opposition leaders, this bringing event more hatred towards Maduro.

As this story concludes, we’ve interviewed several Venezuelans who are considered the future of the country. They are present at Phillips Exeter Academy to learn new ways to get rid of the government and make the country they love great again. All are devastated by the situation and they hope one day they will live without great danger and peace all round. Venezuela needs a quick, productive remedy.