Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Venezuela

Venezuela Meltdown Update (28)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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Whether Muscovy is intending to replay Syria again, or trying to cheaply “stick a finger in Washington’s eye”, many in the US media and analytical community are reading it as the former. Either way, it is an opportunity to test the US and prove US weakness, if Russia does not get kicked in some place delicate, and prove US bullying if it does get kicked. The typical Muscovian game, probe for weakness and exploit the opening immediately if it presents itself. The best play will, of course, be to subject Muscovy to another reminder of its global impotence, preferably in a manner that does not provide opportunities for a propaganda payoff.

NATSEC Adviser Bolton is correct in this assessment. Latin America has a right to develop without “assistance” from self-identified revanchist neo-colonial players like Muscovy (trying to invade and reabsorb Ukraine and threatening to do the same to Belarus and Kazakhstan is colonialism).


Secretary Pompeo on Twitter: “Maduro calls for hands off #Venezuela while he invites security forces from Cuba and Russia, so he and his cronies can keep plundering Venezuela. It is time for Venezuelan institutions to stand for their sovereignty. Russia and Cuba, #HandsOffVenezuela.”

Franco Ordoñez on Twitter: “WASHINGTON The excitement in some U.S. and foreign diplomatic circles about the rise of Juan Guaidó and expectation for the fall of Nicolas Maduro has been replaced by frustration over the Venezuelan leader’s staying power and concerns of Russian meddling. https://t.co/dO003ywsTy”

Jennifer Hansler on Twitter: “Elliott Abrams says it seems that Russia is “helping the [Maduro] regime with the S300 ground to air missile system, which apparently got all screwed up by the blackout.” #Venezuela”

In full: Bolton condemns Russian forces in Venezuela – YouTube

Sky News Published on Mar 29, 2019 US National Security Adviser John Bolton has condemned Russia the presence of Russian troops in Venezuela, in a wide-ranging interview about politics and Brexit with Sky News’ Cordelia Lynch.

Putin Pulls a Syria in Venezuela – WSJ

The Russian is betting he can prop up Maduro at little political cost.

As Maduro confronts a crisis, Russia’s footprint in Venezuela grows – The Washington Post

Moscow is seizing an opportunity to stick a finger in Washington’s eye, experts say.

Will Moscow Make a Mockery of US Red Line in Venezuela? | Newsmax.com

Why has Trump been unwilling to confront Putin in any way on any issue? And will Venezuela be the moment when Trump finally ends his appeasement?

Trump Says He Will ‘Probably’ Talk To Putin, Xi About Venezuela

U.S. President Donald Trump says he will “probably” talk to Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping about the situation in Venezuela, which finds Washington on the opposit…

U.S. Condemns Russian Troop Deployments In Venezuela

Washington has condemned Russia’s deployment of military forces in Venezuela, with senior U.S. officials saying the presence of Russian troops there is destabilizing a country that already faces a …

U.S. Raises Likelihood of Venezuela Intervention | World | US News

The Trump administration raised the possibility of U.S. intervention in Venezuela on Friday, threatening the regime of Nicolas Maduro and his Russian backers against using military forces to maintain power. National security adviser John Bolton issued a statement Friday morning condemning Maduro’s recent crackdowns against widespread dissent, days after the Russian military deployed almost 100 troops and 35 tons of cargo to Caracas in support of the embattled government – a move Moscow dismissed as “nothing mysterious” but which the White House appears to consider escalatory. The U.S. supports opposition leader Juan Guaido, whom Maduro banned from public service for 15 years on Thursday. “We call on the Venezuelan military to uphold its constitutional duty to protect the citizens of Venezuela,” Bolton said. “We strongly caution actors external to the Western Hemisphere against deploying military assets to Venezuela, or elsewhere in the hemisphere, with the intent of establishing or expanding military operations.” The White House will consider such activity as “a direct threat to the international peace and security in the region,” Bolton said. “We will continue to defend and protect the interests of the United States, and those of our partners in the Western Hemisphere, which are rooted in a shared respect for liberty, security, and the rule of law.”

Bolton: Russian forces in Venezuela are a ‘direct threat’ to the US

Russian military forces deployed to Venezuela pose a “direct threat” to the United States and other Western Hemisphere nations, one of President Trump’s top advisers warned Friday.

John Bolton calls Russian presence in Venezuela a ‘direct threat’

John Bolton said on Friday that Russia’s continued military presence in Venezuela could be considered a “direct threat” to international…

WH: Russian Forces in Venezuela ‘A Direct Threat’

National Security Advisor John Bolton condemned Russian military presence in Venezuela Friday as “a direct threat to international peace and security.”

John Bolton Invokes Monroe Doctrine, Once Declared Dead by John Kerry | Breitbart

John Bolton invoked the 196-year-old Monroe Doctrine regarding Venezuela — five years after John Kerry declared the doctrine “over.”

White House tells Russia that sending troops and military equipment to Venezuela to prop up Maduro is a ‘direct threat to international peace’ after special forces land in Caracas | Daily Mail Online

National Security adviser John Bolton said ‘deploying military assets to Venezuela’ is ‘provocative’ and that the U.S. would ‘defend and protect’ its interests in a direct warning to Putin.

Bolton Warns Against Meddling in Venezuela After Russian Moves – Bloomberg

U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton warned nations “external to the Western Hemisphere” against deploying military assets to Venezuela, less than a week after Russian troops and planes landed at an airport near Caracas.

US warns Russia, others against sending troops to Venezuela | Venezuela News | Al Jazeera

White House adviser John Bolton accuses Nicolas Maduro is using foreign military personnel to stay in power.

Abrams says U.S. response to Russian troops in Venezuela could include sanctions | Reuters

The U.S. special representative for Venezuela said on Friday that U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has a list of options, including sanctions, Washington could use to respond to the presence of Russian troops in Venezuela.

White House warns Russia over troops in Venezuela, threatens sanctions

By Roberta Rampton and Lesley Wroughton WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House on Friday warned Russia and other countries backing President Nicolas Maduro against sending troops and military equipment to Venezuela, saying the United States would view such actions as a “direct threat” to the

Exclusive: Trump eyeing stepped-up Venezuela sanctions for foreign companies – Bolton | Reuters

U.S. President Donald Trump is considering imposing sanctions on companies from other countries that do business with Venezuela to cut off revenues to President Nicolas Maduro, Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton told Reuters TV on Friday.

White House warns Russia over troops in Venezuela, threatens sanctions | Reuters

The White House on Friday warned Russia and other countries backing President Nicolas Maduro against sending troops and military equipment to Venezuela, saying the United States would view such actions as a “direct threat” to the region’s security.

US Hints at Economic Sanctions for Venezuela

US president calls Venezuela ‘a big fat mess,’ and an example of socialism

US condemns Russia troop deployment to troubled Venezuela

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration on Friday condemned Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro for what it said was his reliance on foreign military personnel to stay in power and renewed a warning to Russia against getting involved.

Guaido: Maduro paying for Russian military presence with gold | One America News Network

Embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is facing accusations he is buying support from Russia. Self-proclaimed interim President Juan Guaido launched the accusation on Thursday, while speaking to a crowd of supporters. According to Guaido, Maduro is paying Russian troops in gold for their presence in the country. He said Maduro is trying to rally support from his diminishing allies in the Venezuelan military by boasting about his international support from Russia.

Caracas and other major Venezuelan cities hit by new blackout

A new blackout hit Caracas and other major Venezuelan cities on Friday, the third major electricity outage in the crisis-plagued country this month. It is the third time since March 7 that a major power outage has hit Venezuela — worsening the already-dire economic and living conditions in a country

Caracas and other cities hit by new blackout – Venezuela crisis

US and dozens of other countries recognise opposition leader Juan Guaido as oil-rich country’s interim leader against President Nicolas Maduro, who refuses to step down and accuses Guaido of being a US puppet.

Diplomats unsure about Maduro’s downfall in Venezuela | Miami Herald

The excitement in some U.S. and foreign diplomatic circles about the rise of Juan Guaidó and an expectation for the fall of Nicolas Maduro has been replaced by frustration over the Venezuelan leader’s staying power and concerns of Russian and Chinese meddling, according to multiple diplomatic sources.

Many Venezuelans Who Fled Are Eager To Oust Nicolás Maduro : NPR

Tensions are building at Colombia’s border with Venezuela, where former Venezuelan forces and migrants are taking refuge. Many are eager for a revolution back home.

Trump slams Colombia’s president: ‘He has done nothing for us’

President Trump on Friday attacked Colombian President Ivan Duque Marquez, grumbling that Duque “has done nothing for us,” specifically on reducing illegal drug shipments.

Reviving the Monroe Doctrine | Power Line

When I was growing up, any 12-year-old could accurately describe the Monroe Doctrine. I don’t suppose that is true anymore. Instead, we have John Kerry–in my estimation, one of the least capable men ever to engage in American public life–assuring us that “the era of the Monroe Doctrine is over.” Russia took advantage of that assurance to send around 100 “specialists” to aid Venezuela’s bankrupt socialist regime. The Trump administration is not amused. The White House on Friday warned Russia and other countries backing President Nicolas Maduro against sending troops and military equipment to Venezuela, saying the United States would view such actions as a “direct threat” to the region’s security. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has been given a list of options to respond to Russia’s growing presence in Venezuela in support of Maduro, including new sanctions, said Elliott Abrams, the U.S. special representative for Venezuela. “We have options and it would be a mistake for the Russians to think they have a free hand here. They don’t,” Abrams told reporters at the State Department. Elliott Abrams has a long track record as a hero of democracy. Mike Pompeo is rapidly developing one. U.S. President Donald Trump earlier this week said “Russia has to get out” of Venezuela and said “all options” were open to force Russia to do so after two Russian air force planes carrying nearly 100 military personnel landed outside Caracas. Trump’s national security adviser John Bolton issued a second warning on Friday in a strongly worded formal statement. “We strongly caution actors external to the Western Hemisphere against deploying military assets to Venezuela, or elsewhere in the Hemisphere, with the intent of establishing or expanding military operations,” Bolton said. Most Americans probably don’t realize that this has been going on for a while. Cuba was, of course, the epicenter of foreign influence in the Americas, kept afloat for decades by the USSR. But more recently, Russia, China and Iran have all sought to take advantage of the anti-American, socialist Maduro regime to establish a strategic foothold in the Americas.

Turkey pledges support for [Ed: Chavista] Venezuela, U.S. mulls secondary sanctions | Ahval

Turkey “regrets” U.S. envoy Elliot Abrams’s statements on its relationship with Venezuela and “is against attempts to replace legitimate governments through foreign intervention,” Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hami Aksoy said on Friday , a day after Abrams criticised Turkey for supporting the Venezuelan government. Shortly after the Turkish foreign ministry published Aksoy’s statement, U.S. President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, John Bolton, told Reuters TV the president was considering secondary sanctions for countries that do business with Maduro. Bolton said the United States was moving towards secondary sanctions to cut revenues to Maduro’s government, Reuters reported . “We are even now looking at a series of additional steps we could take,” Bolton said. Abrams, Trump’s special envoy to Venezuela, told reporters on Thursday he had asked Turkey to stop cooperating with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.

Venezuela’s Guaido makes renewed promise to deliver aid | Fox News

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido says medical aid will be coming into the South American country.

IFRC to bring humanitarian aid into Venezuela – International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies

Caracas/Panama/Geneva, 29 March 2019— The President of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has announced that IFRC will have unhindered access to bring humanitarian aid into Venezuela to support a major scale up of medical care and other assistance by the Venezuela Red Cross. The announcement comes after a series of meetings this week in the Venezuelan capital Caracas with institutions and humanitarian, social and political groups. Speaking at a press conference in Caracas, IFRC President Francesco Rocca said: “The IFRC will be able to scale up health activities across the country in a manner that is independent, neutral, impartial and unhindered, reaching more vulnerable people.”

Venezuela allows Red Cross to deliver aid | TheHill

The Red Cross announced Friday that President Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela will allow aid trucks into the country after weeks of dispute at the country’s border with Colombia.

Red Cross ready to aid Venezuela, warns against politics

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies said Friday that it is poised to deliver aid to Venezuela, warning that it will not accept any interference from President Nicolas Maduro or opposition leader Juan Guaido.

Venezuela crisis: Red Cross set to begin crucial aid – BBC News

Aid could start in two weeks, the group says, after getting approval from the government.

Red Cross to begin aid to Venezuela by mid-April – CNN

The president of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, has claimed victory after the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies announced Friday it would have unhindered access to bring aid into the struggling country.

Red Cross to deliver crucial aid to struggling Venezuela

The involvement of the International Federation of the Red Cross could signal that President Nicolas’s socialist government, which has been subjected to crippling US sanctions, may allow in much-needed food and medicine, after denying the country is suffering a humanitarian crisis.

‘Russians Will Pay a Price’: US Mulls Response to Moscow Over Venezuela – Sputnik International

Earlier, the White House criticised the arrival of Russian military aircraft in Caracas, with Vice President Mike Pence calling it an “unwelcome provocation”. US President Donald Trump, in turn, demanded that Russia “get out” of Venezuela, while at the same time did not exclude the use of military force by the US in the country.

Venezuela Slams US Threats Against Russia, Reminds of Pentagon Military Activity – Sputnik International

The statement comes after US Special Representative for Venezuela Elliott Abrams pledged that Moscow “will pay a price” for last week’s arrival of Russian military planes in Venezuela. The Russian Foreign Ministry in turn noted that Moscow had not violated either international or Venezuelan law with its actions.

Russia to keep deepening cooperation with Venezuelan military – state arms exporter — RT World News

A new helicopter training center has been built in Venezuela, the Russian state arms exporter said, pledging to deepen cooperation with Caracas. The news comes amid US threats of sanctions over Russia’s presence in the country.

US orders foreign firms to further cut oil trade with Venezuela regardless of sanctions – report — RT Business News

Washington has demanded non-US oil trading houses and refiners cut operations with Venezuela beyond the already imposed sanctions or face sanctions themselves, according to a Reuters report.

Venezuela to Have Capacity to Train Foreign Pilots to Fly Russian Mi Helicopters – Sputnik International

CARACAS (Sputnik) – The opening of a helicopter flight training centre in Venezuela will allow Caracas to offer pilot training programs to other countries that operate Russian-made Mi-family helicopters, the Venezuelan Defence Ministry said.

‘Are You a Monster Too?’ Melania Trump Slammed Over Photo Op With Guaido’s Wife – Sputnik International

Caracas has accused Washington and its allies of supporting a coup plot against the Latin American country after the US moved to recognise opposition figure Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s self-proclaimed ‘interim president’.