Turn attention to Venezuela

President Donald Trump has been accused of using hyperbole too freely. But his speech to the United Nations Tuesday did not fall into that category. Sadly, he merely presented the facts.

“The Venezuelan people are starving and their country is collapsing,” Trump told U.N. delegates. That country’s dictatorial president, Nicolas Maduro, has taken Venezuela to the “brink of collapse,” Trump added.

Venezuela has enormous petroleum reserves, which should make life there relatively easy. But socialist rule under Maduro literally has forced some people to wonder whether they can find enough to eat.

Maduro’s response to demonstrations demanding reform has been to solidify his control. Opposition to him can be dangerous.

Trump discussed several concerns during his speech at the U.N. Among them were aggressive behavior and arms buildups by North Korea, Iran and Syria.

Obviously, the U.N. needs to do more to rein in those nations’ leaders.

But the fact our president felt the need to devote so much time to Venezuela is an indication of how serious matters have become there.

U.S. officials are among those who have established economic sanctions meant to put pressure on Maduro. To date, they have accomplished little, if anything.

More concerted action on behalf of the Venezuelan people is necessary, and the U.N. is the place where that can and should be arranged.

Trump is among those who, in the past, have questioned the U.N.’s relevancy. In many situations, the world body simply has not done its job.

Venezuela’s dilemma, affecting the entire hemisphere, cries out for international action.

By Patricia Older

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