Information operations · Information Warfare · Venezuela

Venezuela Meltdown Update (21)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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No major developments, but a great many lesser ones, as the country unravels, and Russia tries to stave off the inevitable. Sen Rubio is right, things will get very ugly for ordinary Venezuelans.

Rubio: Starving Venezuelans about to suffer in ‘a way we have not seen’

Venezuela is just days away from “a period of suffering no nation in our hemisphere has confronted in modern history,” Florida Sen. Marco Rubio warned Thursday.

U.S. Tries to Squeeze Venezuelan President by Revoking His Allies’ Visas – The New York Times

The visa announcement is the latest in a series of relatively modest moves designed to slowly choke off President Nicolás Maduro’s economic resources.

24 senators ask Trump to protect Venezuelans, give them TPS status

A group of senators asked the president to grant Venezuelans Temporary Protected Status. Florida’s Marco Rubio was the only Republican in the group.

Senators push Trump on emergency legal status for 74,000 Venezuelans

President Trump’s top congressional allies in the Venezuela crisis are urging him to grant emergency legal status to thousands of people who have fled strongman Nicolas Maduro’s rule.

Elliott Abrams: TPS for Venezuelans ‘under review’ | Miami Herald

Elliott Abrams, the Trump administration’s special envoy for Venezuela, said Temporary Protected Status for Venezuelans is “under review” during a Senate Foreign Relations hearing Thursday chaired by Marco Rubio.

Venezuela blackout: Maduro blames US for power outage | Venezuela News | Al Jazeera

Venezuela blames opposition leader Juan Guaido and the US after much of the country plunged into darkness.

Venezuela power cuts: Blackouts hit Caracas and spread – BBC News

President Maduro’s government blames “sabotage” by the opposition trying to unseat him.

Venezuela crisis: Crowds greet Juan Guaidó on return – BBC News – YouTube

BBC News Published on Mar 5, 2019 Venezuela’s self-declared interim leader Juan Guaidó has returned to Caracas, risking possible arrest as he breaches his travel ban.

Venezuela News Latest: Colombia Thwarts Plan by Soldiers – Bloomberg

Late last month, as U.S. officials joined Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido near a bridge in Colombia to send desperately needed aid to the masses and challenge the rule of Nicolas Maduro, some 200 exiled soldiers were checking their weapons and planning to clear the way for the convoy. Late last month, as U.S. officials joined Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido near a bridge in Colombia to send desperately needed aid to the masses and challenge the rule of Nicolas Maduro, some 200 exiled soldiers were checking their weapons and planning to clear the way for the convoy. Led by retired General Cliver Alcala, who has been living in Colombia, they were going to drive back the Venezuelan national guardsmen blocking the aid on the other side. The plan was stopped by the Colombian government, which learned of it late and feared violent clashes at a highly public event it promised would be peaceful. Almost no provisions got in that day and hopes that military commanders would abandon Maduro have so far been dashed. Even though Guaido is back in Caracas, recognized by 50 nations as the legitimate leader of Venezuela, the impromptu taking up of arms shows that the push to remove Maduro — hailed by the U.S. as inevitable — is growing increasingly chaotic and risky. As the standoff drags on, the urge to seek some sort of military solution will only increase. Guaido himself hinted at such an idea in the immediate aftermath of the failed aid mission. His comments got a cool official reception in Washington, Bogota and Brasilia but Senator Marco Rubio, who has helped shape U.S. policy on Venezuela, seemed to cheer them on. President Donald Trump has said all options remain on the table.

Russia’s sanctioned Rusfincorp to take on Venezuela’s oil giant accounts: media – news world | UNIAN

The Russian accounts of Venezuelan companies, including state oil firm PDVSA, will be moved to the Russian Financial Corporation Bank (Rusfincorp), which is sanctioned by the United States, a source told Reuters on Wednesday. Russian authorities made the decision to move the Venezuelan accounts after consultations with their counterparts and business in Venezuela, two sources familiar with the negotiations said.

Venezuela to lose up to £1.2BILLION gold reserve to US bank as Maduro fails to pay debt | World | News |

VENEZUELA is set to lose gold worth up to £1.22billion after failing to pay its debts to Citibank.

Maduro’s Inner Circle Travels Globe to Buy Regime More Time – Bloomberg

For weeks, Venezuela’s central bank president Calixto Ortega had seemingly gone missing. His staff hadn’t seen him, they had no idea where he was and had even begun to wonder if perhaps he had abandoned his post or fled the country.

Branding aid for Venezuela as a US coup is dead wrong | TheHill

International coverage and social media commentary is forgetting the moving and dramatic democratic groundswell against brutal dictatorship.

U.S. journalist detained in Venezuela says he was pushed to support Maduro | Reuters

Venezuelan security officials who detained an American journalist for more than 12 hours pushed him to voice support for socialist President Nicolas Maduro, whose government faces international condemnation, the journalist said on Thursday.

American journalist detained in Venezuela released, mother says | Fox News

An American journalist who was detained in Venezuela on Wednesday by government officials has been released.

U.S. journalist Cody Weddle working in Venezuela for WPLG-TV detained then freed hours later – CBS News

ABC affiliate WPLG-TV reporter Cody Weddle was seen leaving from his residence with five men wearing black uniforms early Wednesday

American journalist based in Caracas detained by government officials amid Venezuela unrest | Fox News

An American reporter based in Caracas, who earlier this week covered opposition leader Juan Guaido’s “triumphant” return to  Venezuela, has been detained by government officials after an early morning raid Wednesday, reports said.

UAWire – Media: Another Russian plane flew from Moscow to Caracas

Nordwind Airlines' Boeing-777 flew from Moscow to Caracas on March 1, then traveled to Uganda and Zanzibar and returned to Venezuela on March 4,  …

UAWire – Kremlin warns of ‘toughest response’ if Russian investments in Venezuela are threatened

Russian Ambassador to Caracas Vladimir Zaemski promised that Moscow's response to attempts of depriving the Russian companies of their …

Juan Guaido returns to Venezuela to resume charge vs Nicolas Maduro after US warns against his arrest – CBS News

Opposition leader Juan Guaido risked arrest returning to Venezuela but breezed through airport security, so where does his uprising go now?

🇻🇪 Venezuela Crisis: Maduro denounces ‘minority of opportunists and cowards’ | Al Jazeera English – YouTube

Al Jazeera English Published on Mar 5, 2019 As Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and opposition leader Juan Guaido rally their supporters, neither side is showing signs of backing down. While Maduro addressed a meeting of military heads, Guaido reached out to thousands of workers in the public sector, who have traditionally supported the government. All this comes before Saturday’s government-backed march. Al Jazeera’s Manuel Rapalo reports from Cucuta, near Venezuela’s border with Colombia.

Venezuela crisis: Maduro vows to defeat ‘crazed minority’ – BBC News

Venezuela’s president calls for “anti-imperialist marches” to coincide with opposition protests.

Juan Guaidó, interim president or opposition leader? – The Washington Post

The State Department’s spokesman says news organizations that describe Guaidó as anything other than interim president feed “into the rhetoric of the dictator.”

Venezuela’s Guaido vows to paralyze public sector to squeeze Maduro | Reuters

Opposition leader Juan Guaido held talks with Venezuela’s public sector unions on Tuesday about staging strikes to help bring down the government, as President Nicolas Maduro said a “crazed minority” bent on destabilizing the country would be defeated.

Europe and the U.S. are at odds over Iran. Cuba may be next. – The Washington Post

A section of a 1996 U.S. law could be the newest irritant in the U.S.-E.U. relationship.

Trump administration allows first lawsuits against Cuba for US property seized during Castro’s revolution

The Trump administration is taking a historic step against the Cuban military and intelligence services controlling that country and propping up Venezuelan strongman Nicolas Maduro, the State Department announced Monday.