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Latin America 101: The End of a Dream


The Latin America 101 articles intend to deepen the reader's knowledge of the Italian situation in Venezuela throughout its history. The fundamental purpose of this series is to draw attention to the topic of Italian immigration by providing a thorough overview of the road that led the Italians to Venezuela and then evaluate the relevant historical events.

Latin America 101 will be mainly divided into the following chapters of content:

1. Latin America 101: Venezuela, From Promised Land to Barren Wasteland for Italians

2. Latin America 101: When The Immigration To Venezuela Began

3. Latin America 101: Turned Tables for Italian Immigration

4. Latin America 101: The End of Fascism in Venezuela

5. Latin America 101: Italians in the Post-war Period

6. Latin America 101: The End of a Dream

Latin America 101: The End of a Dream

The Bolivarian revolution spelt the end of a period in history called the Italian-Venezuelan idyll.

Display of Venezuelan flag by protesters during manifestation - [Photo] - Bloomberg

Since Italians began migrating to Venezuela, the two countries and their relationship went through many ups and downs. In the 1950s and 1960s, Italian migration was at a high, and immigrants made a significant contribution to the Venezuelan economy. However, at points, even Italy and Venezuela's political and diplomatic ties were in a state of flux. In 1958, Italy was the very first European country to recognize Rómulo Betancourt's new democratic administration, with Amintore Fanfani as Prime Minister; the Italian Christian Democratic government decided that making ties with Latin America was one of the top goals of Italian foreign policy. Between 1945 and 1948, Betancourt was the president of Venezuela, overseeing the adoption of a new constitution and a comprehensive reform program. However, he was driven into exile when Perez Jimenez's dictatorship came to power. Betancourt did return in 1958, once the Jimenez system fell apart, to become President of the Venezuelan Republic. Prime Minister Fanfani met Rafael Caldera, the leader of the Venezuelan Christian-Social Party (COPEI), in Rome in 1958, and the International Union of Christian Democrats had its Congress in Caracas in 1962. During a conference of the Western European Union (WEU) in June 1965, Fanfani insisted on strengthening ties between communal groups and South America.

A few months later, the President of the Italian Republic, Giuseppe Saragat, paid a visit to Latin America, following a proposal from his Minister of Foreign Affairs, in order to establish a body for economic, cultural, and political cooperation, projecting an image of genuie interest in South America. The years of the Fixed-Point Pact - a government agreement between various