Information operations · Information Warfare · Venezuela

Venezuela Meltdown Update (33)

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

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The regime continues to hang on, hoping it can bluff its way through the crisis. Much political argument in the US. interesting analysis by FP on the immense stockpile of weapons held by the regime and the no less immense risk of their sale to drug cartels, narco-terrorists, and other problematic entities.

President Donald J. Trump Stands for Democracy in Venezuela

President Donald J. Trump supports Interim President Guaido and the Venezuelan people in their fight for liberty and justice.

Brutal Repression’ Of Venezuelan People ‘Must End,’ Trump Says As Lavrov, Pompeo Agree To Meet Next Week

U.S. President Donald Trump has appealed for a swift end to the “brutal repression” of the Venezuelan people, after U.S.-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido’s call for a military uprising appeared to fall short.

Vice President Mike Pence on Twitter: “As Venezuelans take to the streets to stand for their freedom against an oppressive dictator, Democrat Congresswoman @IlhanMN chooses socialism over freedom. The Trump Administration stands with the freedom-loving people of Venezuela.…”

Joe Biden on Twitter: “The violence in Venezuela today against peaceful protesters is criminal. Maduro’s regime is responsible for incredible suffering. The U.S. must stand with the National Assembly & Guaidó in their efforts to restore democracy through legitimate, internationally monitored elections.”

John Bolton on Twitter: “Maduro is undermining the Constitution & territorial integrity of Venezuela by allowing foreign countries to arm ‘colectivos’ and repress innocent Venezuelans. The Venezuela military’s role in Venezuela’s transition to democracy is vital – it must protect the people of Venezuela.”

John Bolton on Twitter: “.@vladimirpadrino, @Ivanr_HD, @MaikelMorenoTSJ: Your time is up. This is your last chance. Accept Interim President Guaido’s amnesty, protect the Constitution, and remove Maduro, and we will take you off our sanctions list. Stay with Maduro, and go down with the ship.”

Marco Rubio on Twitter: “Surprised more people haven’t realized that if #Maduro was truly confident about the support of the military in #Venezuela he wouldn’t spend so much time trying to prove it. And if he is so confident about his overall support why won’t he venture outside a heavily guarded base?”

John Bolton Is Reportedly Pushing for Military Conflict in Venezuela. Will Donald Trump Hold Him Back?

White House national security adviser John Bolton has pushed a hawkish foreign policy on a president who campaigned to stop costly, “endless wars” waged by the U.S.

Military action possible in Venezuela, Pompeo says | Fox Business

President Trump is prepared to take military action if necessary to end Maduro’s regime, said Sec. Mike Pompeo.

Military action possible in Venezuela, Pompeo says – news world | UNIAN

Military action is on the table in Venezuela, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday. In addition to a handful of actions already taken by the Trump Administration to stop Cuba’s support, “there are more that we will continue to work on,” Pompeo said adding that “we’ll do the same for the Russians.”

“I would much rather be on the side of Guaidó than Maduro,” senior Trump administration official says – CBS News

In interviews with CBS News, senior administration officials said the White House is emboldened over Guaidó's recent &quot;Operation Freedom&quot; campaign

Venezuela: How Trump can use military force to topple Maduro’s regime | Fox Business

Three ways Trump can use military force to allow Guaido to takeover in Venezuela.

Venezuela’s Maduro shows off military loyalty days after Guaido’s attempted uprising – YouTube

Global News Published on May 2, 2019 Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and top military figures made a show of unity in a television broadcast on Thursday just two days after opposition leader Juan Guaido urged the military to join him to oust the socialist leader. Maduro’s display of military force sought to to reject claims by the United States and the opposition that the armed forces high command was prepared to turn on him, and gave order to armed forces to stop ‘traitors’ and ‘coup plotters.’

Russia: US Courting ‘Drastic Consequences’ in Venezuela

Bolton: Russians making a mistake getting involved in Venezuela; this is not their hemisphere

Russia Says U.S. ‘Wrong’ on Venezuela, Will Gather ‘Group of States’ to Prove It

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said he would rally states for “the protection of the basic norms and principles of international law, the way they are enshrined in the U.N. Charter.”

Venezuela crisis: Defiant Maduro appears with soldiers – BBC News

The embattled Venezuelan president is surrounded by soldiers in a televised event.

Venezuelan court issues arrest warrant for opposition politician Lopez – Reuters

A Venezuelan court on Thursday issued an arrest warrant for opposition politician Leopoldo Lopez given he violated a 2017 court-imposed order to remain under house arrest, according to a statement on the Supreme Court’s website.

Venezuela Is at a ‘Tipping Point’ – Foreign Policy

The former head of U.S. Southern Command says, despite the failed uprising, Maduro’s regime is crumbling.

Venezuela’s democratic uprising might fail

Venezuela’s people are getting into survival mode, more consumed with securing food and water than toppling the Maduro regime.

Venezuela crisis: How the White House may be helping Maduro stay in power. – The Washington Post

The Venezuelan leader endures not just despite American pressure, but perhaps also because of it

How many Cuban troops are there in Venezuela? The U.S. says over 20,000. Cuba says zero. – The Washington Post

“There are no troops,” a Cuban official claims.

Russia has secretly installed nuke missiles in Venezuela, US politician claims in chilling echo of Cuban Missile Crisis

He made his astonishing allegations hours after Venezuela was pushed to the brink of civil war when opposition leader Juan Guaido called for rival Nicolas Maduro to be ousted from office. Diaz-Balart told Fox News if Maduro stays in power it could be “an open door for the Russians and for the Chinese and for others to increase their activity against our national security interest.” Journalist Tucker Carlson then asked: “Are you suggesting they are going to invade?” “The closest we ever came to nuclear war was because the Russians put missiles, right, nuclear missiles in Cuba,” replied Diaz-Balart. “Are you saying the Russians will put nuclear missiles in Venezuela?” Carlson asked. “What I am suggesting is that they are already there,” answered Diaz-Balart, without offering any evidence to back up his claim.

Russia put nuclear missiles in Venezuela, Rep. Diaz-Balart suggests | Fox News

Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., appeared on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” and made a case for backing opposition to disputed Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and suggested that Russia had installed nuclear missiles in the South American nation.

Information war: Venezuela blocks social media and TV as it tries to contain uprising – CNN

As the Venezuelan government and opposition clash on the streets of Caracas another battle is underway: an information war fought over social media and TV networks.

CNN, BBC taken off the air by Venezuelan government | TheHill

CNN and the BBC were taken off the air in Venezuela on Tuesday by the country’s government amid an apparent coup by supporters of National Assembly leader Juan Guaidó. CNN reported that broadcast providers DirecTV

CNN and BBC pulled off the air by Venezuela’s government – CNN

CNN was taken off the air by the Venezuelan government on Tuesday moments after the network broadcast a feed that showed military vehicles running over protesters in Caracas.

Venezuela crisis: US names figures involved in Maduro exit plan | World | The Times

Three senior figures in the Maduro regime agreed to a 15-point plan with Venezuela’s opposition for a peaceful handover of power after weeks of secret talks, it emerged today.Under the deal, President Maduro would have been allowed a dignified exit from the country, making way for Juan Guaidó to bec

Cuba denies military support for Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro as thousands gather in support of opposition leader Juan Guaido – while the U.S. demands all foreign influence, including Russia, remove itself from the political battle | Daily Mail Online

Cuabn officia; Carlos Fernández de Cossío said that the US is falsely accusing his country of providing military support to Venezuelan leader Nicolas Maduro over the opposition’s Juan Guaido.

John Bolton on violent clashes in Venezuela: ‘There’s a lot at stake’ for ‘the hemisphere as a whole’ | Fox News

As the unrest continued in Venezuela on Wednesday, National Security Adviser John Bolton said on “Fox & Friends,” “There’s a lot at stake here for the people of Venezuela but for the hemisphere as a whole.”

Intervention by Russia and Cuba is destabilizing for Venezuela, – Pompeo

The U.S. State Secretary urged Russia and Cuba to stop supporting Maduro

US military prepping for Guaidó takeover in Venezuela

The commander of U.S. forces in Latin America told Congress Wednesday that the military is developing plans to be immediately ready for any contingency if Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó ousts dictator Nicolás Maduro from power. The commander of U.S. forces in Latin America told Congress Wednesday that the military is developing plans to be immediately ready for any contingency if Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó ousts dictator Nicolás Maduro from power. Adm. Craig Faller, head of U.S. Southern Command, told the House Armed Services Committee he believes it is only a matter of time before Guaidó, president of the country’s National Assembly, takes control. Guaidó encouraged Venezuelans to take to the streets starting Tuesday, saying that the final phase of “Operation Freedom” had begun. “[T]here is going to be a day when the legitimate government takes over, and it’s going to come when we least expect it,” said Faller. “And it could be right now, so we are calling it ‘day now’ planning.” Faller told the committee that repairing Venezuela’s dilapidated economic and energy infrastructure after years of corruption and mismanagement won’t be a sample task. “[T]he magnitude of the misery is going to require every element of international unity that currently exists,” he said. Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass., asked Faller if military planning includes contingencies involving the aftermath of a U.S. intervention in the country. Faller said the military is preparing for anything the president has said is on the table, adding that “we are on the balls of our feet.” He said he would prefer to disclose the details in a closed session of Congress. Trump has kept military options on the table since Venezuela’s political crisis began. In January, the United States and dozens of other Western nations recognized Guaidó as the country’s interim president.

Why overthrowing Maduro in Venezuela would spell disaster for Putin: Russia stands to lose billions of dollars through unpaid loans, access to cheap oil and arms deals if Guaido wins | Daily Mail Online

Moscow has give its support to Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro in an attempt to secure billions of dollars in loans, control of the world’s largest oil reserves, and preserve a key strategic partner.

Venezuela’s Guaido Takes a Big Risk for a Small Win – Bloomberg

Restoring democracy will require less brinkmanship and more international support.

Venezuela crisis: Guaido defiant after failed attempt to recruit military

“There’s no turning back,” Juan Guaido, opposition leader, said as he addressed supporters on the streets of Caracas on Wednesday.

Venezuela crisis: Protesters gather after Guaidó call – BBC News

The opposition says protests will go on “with more strength than ever” a day after violent clashes.

Live: Venezuela in crisis as Guaido calls for May Day protests – CNN

More protests are planned in Venezuela on Wednesday following an attempt by opposition leader Juan Guaido to spark an uprising against embattled President Nicolas Maduro.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro Vows to Punish “Operation Liberty” Protesters – YouTube

TicToc by Bloomberg Published on May 1, 2019 Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro dismissed U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s claims that the embattled leader was ready to flee the nation in a televised address last night, as he also vowed that protesters against his regime “cannot go unpunished.” “Mike Pompeo said today in the afternoon … he said: ‘Maduro has a plane ready to go to Cuba, to flee, and the Russians took him off the plane and forbade him to leave the country,'” Maduro said in a televised meeting. “Mr. Pompeo, please, what lack of seriousness.” Maduro also used the televised address to reiterate that he maintained the backing of the country’s military and would be punishing dissidents. “We have to identify all those people who fired weapons and go find them and submit them to justice, deliver them to the Prosecutor’s Office and the courts to all,” Maduro said. “There are videos of all kinds. We know who they are, we have to look for them. There can be no impunity, there must be justice for there to be peace in Venezuela.” Maduro was in part responding to Pompeo’s claim that the socialist leader had been on the brink of fleeing Venezuela before Russia thwarted those ambitions. “We made so much progress,” Pompeo said last night. “We literally had Nicolas Maduro getting prepared to get on his airplane and head out of the country before he was stopped — stopped, really at the direction of the Russians, and I must say, there’ll be another sunrise tomorrow, and the opportunity for Venezuelan democracy, I am confident, will remain.” In astonishing scenes on Tuesday, violence broke out on the streets of Caracas after opposition leader Juan Guaido and Leopoldo Lopez — freed from house arrest by deserted Venezuelan security forces — called for an uprising early in the morning. They said they’d gained military backing and would begin the “final phase” of their push to oust Maduro. Guaido — whom the U.S. and 53 countries recognize as the nation’s legitimate leader — called for further protests in a statement on social media last night. Venezuela was rocked by violent clashes on Tuesday between opposition protesters and security forces loyal to Maduro. The protests marked a dramatic escalation of the political crisis that’s left the country teetering on the edge of violence for months. “Maduro does not have the backing or respect from the Venezuelan armed forces, much less the Venezuelan people,” Guaido said. The Spanish government confirmed to The Associated Press that Lopez, a prominent opposition activist, was at Spain’s embassy in Caracas. Subscribe to our YouTube channel: TICTOC ON SOCIAL: Follow TicToc on Twitter: Like TicToc on Facebook: Follow TicToc on Instagram: Watch all of TicToc’s videos: Listen to TicToc’s podcast: Subscribe to our newsletter: TicToc by Bloomberg is global news for the life you lead. We are a 24/7 news network that covers breaking news, politics, technology, business and entertainment stories from around the globe, supported by a network of Bloomberg’s 2,700 journalists across 120 countries.

Venezuela’s fate is in the hands of the military but this fragile economy is not a lost cause | The Independent

So, as many a failing state before it, Venezuela lies not in the hands of its leaders, its would-be leaders, its people or even some CIA-led Trump-inspired conspiracy. (Or at least not so far as we yet know). Instead, a broken, impoverished nation that still holds a future of huge potential will be in the hands of its generals.

How an Elaborate Plan to Topple Venezuela’s President Went Wrong – Defense One

The United States thought all the pieces were in place for Maduro to leave. Then everything came crashing down.

Opposition Protesters Gather in Venezuelan Capital

Hundreds of opposition supporters have rallied in a neighborhood of the Venezuelan capital, after opposition leader Juan Guaido called for more antigovernment protests.

Head of Venezuela’s secret police breaks with Maduro | Fox News

The head of Venezuela’s feared secret police has turned his back on disputed President Nicolas Maduro in an open letter made public Tuesday night.

New York Post: Venezuela’s fight for freedom | Fox News

Venezuelans took to the streets by the thousands again Wednesday in response to rightful President Juan Guaidó’s call for an uprising to remove hopelessly corrupt Nicolás Maduro from power. But no clear end is in sight.

Cubans protest new sanctions as Trump threatens embargo | TheHill

Millions of Cubans took to the streets during Wednesday’s May Day protests to rally against new U.S. sanctions as President Trump threatens an embargo over Havana’s support of embattled Venezuelan leader Nicolás Maduro.

Venezuela’s President Maduro claims victory over attempted coup in defiant TV address – YouTube

Venezuelans can’t see the end to this crisis – The Washington Post

One thing we know for sure: Venezuela will remain unstable for a very long time.

Despite setbacks, Venezuela’s opposition wary of U.S. intervention – The Washington Post

Senior opposition leaders remain largely opposed to U.S. military intervention, according to opposition officials and people familiar with their thinking.

Opinion: Venezuela’s Juan Guaidó In For Long Haul To Oust Nicolás Maduro : NPR

Juan Guaidó is 0-for-3 in his attempts to incite a military uprising in Venezuela, but the opposition’s broader effort to oust President Nicolás Maduro is still alive, writes WLRN’s Tim Padgett.

Daniel Davis: US troops should stay out of Venezuela – military intervention would fail | Fox News

America shouldn’t send troops to Venezuela because we have a history of failure when we try to impose regime change.

Opinion | A Treacherous Stalemate in Venezuela – The New York Times

Foreign meddling, coup plotting and bloody demonstrations heighten the tension.

Venezuela’s Suicide: Lessons From a Failed State

Venezuela was once one of Latin America’s most prosperous, thriving states. Today it is one of the region’s most impoverished nations and its newest dictatorship. According to these authors, the toxic leadership and bad economic policies of Hugo Chávez and his successor, Nicolás Maduro, and the unprecedented level of Cuban influence they have invited into the country are to

Trump’s Sanctions Can’t Spark Regime Change in Venezuela and Iran

The Trump administration will not be able to use sanctions to provoke regime change; its efforts to do so, moreover, will likely weaken the force of sanctions as a U.S. foreign policy tool.

Venezuela Is Armed to the Hilt – Foreign Policy

The country has assembled one of the largest stockpiles of weapons in the Western Hemisphere. Here’s how to prevent it from falling into the wrong hands. 

Omar: US policy ‘helped lead the devastation in Venezuela’ | TheHill

Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) said Wednesday that U.S. policy in Venezuela “helped lead the devastation” in the South American country.

Pompeo: Omar’s Venezuela comments ‘disgusting’ | Fox News

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo didn’t hold back Thursday when reacting to Minnesota congresswoman Ilhan Omar’s comments insinuating the U.S. was to blame for the political crisis in Venezuela, calling her comments “ignorant” and “disgusting.”

Wrong, Rep. Omar: Socialism, not America, caused Venezuela’s suffering

Rep. Ilhan Omar blames the US for Venezuela’s penury. Go figure. She of all people should know how Marxism can trash a country. Her birth country, Somalia,…

Jesse Watters challenges Rep. Omar: ‘Please say one good thing about America’ | Fox News

Fox News’ Jesse Watters took on Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., over her criticism of the U.S. government’s role during the ongoing push for regime change in Venezuela.

AOC defers to Caucus when asked if Maduro regime is legitimate: report | Fox News

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-NY, is refraining from weighing in on the uprising in Venezuela, saying she’ll “defer to caucus leadership.”