Critiques from both Chavistas and the opposition in Venezuela raise the question: How to evaluate a government committed to a gradual democratic road to far-reaching change in the context of extreme polarization and conflict?
Even as they continue to shape the domestic political agenda, Chile's resurgent social movements are mobilizing to build cross-border solidarity, pressuring newly-elected President Michelle Bachelet to ally with other leftist governments in the region.
Community members of Pie del Tiro in Mérida maintain a watch in their streets a day after barricades set up by opposition protesters had been cleared. “They [the protesters] rob us…they charge us a toll to cross the barricades.”
With few exceptions, most international media coverage of the recent protests in Venezuela gives little sense of the response from the popular social movement actors who support the Maduro government but operate independently from it.
Blogger Francisco Toro claimed in the New York Times that Venezuelan "government pressure ensured that no broadcast media carried coverage" of a speech made by opposition leader Henrique Capriles. But the two largest private media outlets did in fact cover the event.