First Venezuelan Republic

According to CHEEROUTDOOR.COM, Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela (simplified: Venezuela) is a nation located in the north of the South American region, sharing borders to the west and southwest with Colombia, to the southeast with Brazil and to the east with Guyana, it also has maritime borders with the islands of the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba (dependent on the Netherlands) on the façade of the Caribbean Sea and across the Atlantic with Trinidad and Tobago. In addition, many islands scattered in the Caribbean Sea, the largest being the Isla de Margarita ; Well away from the mainland is the Bird Island, of great strategic importance since it increases the continental shelf of the country.

During the pre-Columbian period, its territory was the residence of important tribal groups of Amerindians such as the Caribs, the Venezuelan aborigines occupied the mountainous region, the plains and Guayana. After being sighted by Christopher Columbus in 1498, a process of colonization began shortly afterwards and then a process of cultural miscegenation. Venezuela was the first country in Latin America to proclaim its independence from the Spanish Crown, a process that was consolidated with the Battle of Carabobo. After a long chapter of civil conflict, the Republic found its way to modernization at the hands of notoriously authoritarian governments. In the middle of In the 20th century, the struggle for a democratic system began, which was consolidated after the overthrow of General Marcos Pérez Jiménez in 1958. Due to the oil boom, Venezuela experienced a period of high economic growth, which was interrupted by the energy crisis of the 1980s, causing a period of political and social instability alternated with financial ups and downs until in 1999, a former member of The Armed Forces of that country, called Hugo Chávez, reached the presidency initiating a process of changes and socio-political and economic reforms, the main examples of which are the 1999 Constituent Assembly as well as the transition towards the so-called ” XXI Century Socialism “started in 2005, in what many recognize as the Bolivarian Revolution.

First Venezuelan Republic

Generalissimo Francisco de Miranda, hero of Venezuelan independence and leader during the First Republic

This republic was not without difficulties. Those who opposed the independence of Venezuela, called the royalists, dominated the provinces of Maracaibo, Guayana and Coro. Meanwhile, Spain had ordered the blockade of Venezuela, making foreign trade difficult, and organized resistance under the command of Captain Domingo Monteverde.

The executive power, divided between 3 people (triumvirate) was not very agile and decided to give absolute powers to Francisco de Miranda to defend the nascent homeland, naming him Generalissimo. To confront the royalist troops, Miranda entrusted Colonel Francisco Javier Ustáriz with the defense of the city of Valencia and then Colonel Simón Bolívar with Puerto Cabello. In Puerto Cabello, a soldier betrayed Bolívar, revolting part of the garrison. Despite this, Bolívar fought desperately to defend the plaza until he had to flee to La Guaira. In a letter to Miranda, he wrote:

“If only one soldier had remained, with that one I would have fought the enemy; if they abandoned me it was not my fault. Nothing was left for me to do to contain them and commit them to save the country; but, ah! my hands. [3]

A Miranda was left with no choice but to surrender in San Mateo the 25 as July as 1812, signing an armistice, which was not met by Monteverde who sent him to jail as he prepared to go abroad. Likewise, he ordered the killing of thousands of people, including women and children who were part of the group of residents who supported the rebel cause. Miranda died in the prison of La Carraca, in Spain, on July 24, 1816, the First Republic disappearing with her prematurely.

Admirable Campaign (1813)

Simón Bolívar, who, after losing Puerto Cabello, had fled to La Guaira, later went to Cartagena (in present-day Colombia). There, the 15 of December of 1812, he wrote the Manifesto of Cartagena where he began to emerge as a great statesman and as a strategist. Bolívar analyzes the situation in Venezuela and explains why the first republic was lost. It also promotes the union of Nueva Granada (Colombia) and Venezuela, to achieve the freedom of both countries.

Among the reasons that Bolívar gives for the loss of the republic are the federalist system, which he said was fine for the United States, but not for a country like Venezuela at that time. He mentions that a much stronger centralized government was required. He explained that the government should be much tougher on the enemy and should build a stronger and more disciplined army.

With this manifesto, he obtained the support of the Congress of New Granada and obtained the material and human resources to initiate what was called the Admirable Campaign, which began with the taking of San Antonio del Táchira, on March 1, 1813 and culminated with the Triumphal entry into Caracas, on August 7, 1813.

First Venezuelan Republic