Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
February 03, 2019

U.S. Coup Attempt In Venezuela Lacks International Support

There is little doubt where 'western' media stand with regards to the U.S. led coup-attempt (vid) in Venezuela. But their view does not reflect the overwhelming international recognition the Venezuelan government under President Nicolás Maduro continues to have.

The Rothschild family's house organ, the Economist, changed the background of its Twitter account to a picture of the Random Dude™, Juan Guaidó, who the U.S. regime changers created to run the country.


The tweet is quite revealing:

The Economist @TheEconomist - 23:59 utc- 31 Jan 2019

Juan Guaidó and Donald Trump are betting that sanctions will topple the regime before they starve the Venezuelan people

It is quite obvious that Trump’s Illegal Regime Change Operation Will Kill More Venezuelans. The Economist supports that starvation strategy.

The supposedly neutral news agencies are no better than the arch-neoliberal Economist. The Reuters' Latin America office also changed its header picture to Random Dude. It reverted that after being called out.

Agence France-Press stated at 11:10 utc yesterday that "tens of thousands" would join a rally.

AFP news agency @AFP - 11:10 utc - 2 Feb 2019

Tens of thousands of protesters are set to pour onto the streets of Venezuela's capital #Caracas Saturday to back opposition leader Juan Guaido's calls for early elections as international pressure increased on President #Maduro to step down

That was at 7:10am local time in Caracas several hours before the rally took place. Such "predictive reporting" is now supposed to be "news". A bit later AFP posted a video:

AFP news agency @AFP - 15:50 utc - 2 Feb 2019">

VIDEO: Thousands of opposition protesters pour onto the streets of Caracas to back Venezuela's opposition leader Juan #Guaido who is calling for early elections, as international pressure increases on President Nicolas #Maduro to step down

That was at 11:50am local time. The attached video did not show "thousands" but some 200 people mingling around.

Hours later a pro Random Dude rally took indeed place. From what I gathered it was attended by some 50-80 thousand people. (Others calculate less.) Flags of the United States and Israel were raised: 1, 2, 3, 4.


Pro Chavismo rallies took place in several Venezuelan cities. These were not billed as anti-coup demonstrations but as commemorations of the 20 year anniversary of socialist policies. That might have effected their size. The rally in Caracas was attended by some 20-30 thousand people: 1, 2, 3.


The New York Times report on yesterday's events in Venezuela mentions the pro-government rallies only in paragraph 33 to 35 of its 37 paragraph long story.

The shorter Washington Post report puts them in paragraph 15 and 16 with lines that are consciously constructed to make the rallies seem  tiny and Maduro look like a liar:

The pro-government demonstration in central Caracas had drawn about 300 people by 10:30 a.m. Dressed in red and carrying ruling party flags, they were marching toward the presidential palace.

“Our people, once again, overflowing this avenue,” Maduro said, addressing his supporters. “Those who accuse us of being a dictatorship must know that since the foundation of the revolution, we have become a profoundly free and democratic people. Venezuela will never have a dictatorship.”

The rally took place after noon. How many people walked somewhere at 10:30am is irrelevant to the total participation. The pictures prove that the venue where the rally took place was indeed quite full.

During his speech Maduro called for new elections to the Venezuelan parliament, the National Assembly. The parliament, currently not functional as the Supreme Court blocked its power for not following its judgments, is controlled by the opposition.

The U.S. is now trying some gambit over 'aid' it wants to deliver to the opposition in Venezuela. National Security Advisor John Bolton originally planned to deliver it through the Red Cross:

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last Saturday that we would be prepared to donate an initial $20 million dollars to the Red Cross, to the UN High Commission for Refugees. So we’re looking at all this very carefully.

But the Red Cross rejected such politicization of its traditionally neutral role:

Alexandra Boivin, ICRC delegation head for the United States and Canada, said the ICRC had told U.S. officials that whatever plans “they have to help the people of Venezuela, it has to be shielded from this political conversation.”
ICRC director of global operations Dominik Stillhart said the committee would only take part in such coordinated efforts if they are executed “with the agreement of the authorities, whoever the authorities are.”

A new scheme was though out:

[Random Dude] said that in the coming days, the opposition would try to move humanitarian aid into the country by land and sea along three border points, including the Colombian city of Cucuta. He described the move as a “test” for Venezuela’s armed forces, which will have to choose if they allow the much needed aid to pass, or if they instead obey the orders of Maduro’s government.

The 'aid' must be thoroughly checked before it enters the country and the government should take care to distribute it evenly. During the war on Syria so called 'humanitarian aid' from Turkey, Israel and Jordan was used as cover for large scale weapon and munition transports which mostly ended up in the hands of Jihadists.

So far the Venezuelan military proved to be solidly in the camp of the government. Two officers, a military attache in the Venezuelan embassy in Washington DC and an air force general who fled to Columbia, are the only known defectors. Both had office jobs and did not command any operational units. This analysis provides that without military support the coup attempt is unlikely to be successful. As the Venezuelan author concludes:

For now, Venezuela faces a government weak in the economic and social arenas, but with strong judicial and military institutions. This will be the case unless —weakened by international pressure— Chavismo’s emerging fissures gather momentum and are able to undermine the government’s stability. However, as long as the U.S. government’s strategy operates on the basis of threats, Chavismo will have a reason to remain strong and unified.

The U.S. failed to get sufficient international support for its recognition of Random Dude as president of Venezuela. So far only Canada, Israel and 14 Latin American states took its side. A few European nations are slowly following.

But no international organization supports the position. Mexico and Uruguay, both members of the Lima group - a 'coalition of the willing' created by Canada, rejected to recognize Guaido and called instead for new elections. Secretary of State Pompeo's attempt to get the Organization of American States (OAS) on his side failed:

The efforts were unsuccessful, garnering only 16 favourable votes out of the 34 countries, with US allies Guyana, Santa Lucia, and Jamaica abstaining.

The United Nations Secretary General Guterres announced that the UN only recognizes the Maduro government. Italy blocked a European Union recognition of the Random Dude while the EU parliament, which has no power in foreign policies, followed the U.S. position. The EU now only demands new elections to be held sometime in the future. The African Union supports Maduro and spoke out against the coup attempt. Russia, China, NATO member Turkey, South Africa, Iran and Syria spoke in support of the Maduro government.

The media are misleading on the international support. On February 1 Reuters headlined EU states move to recognize Venezuela's Guaido: diplomats. But the piece itself contradicts the headline. It found only four out of twenty eight EU states, Britain, France, Germany and Spain, that were expected to announce support. On February 4 the Washington Post headlined European nations recognize Guaido as Venezuelan leader but the report says that only Spain, France and Sweden took that step. The Guardian also headlines: EU countries recognise Juan Guaidó as interim Venezuelan leader but names only five countries, Spain, France, the UK, Sweden and Denmark, one of which is poised to leave the EU.

In total the 'international support' the U.S. led coup attempt has gained so far is quite thin. It has no international legitimacy. Unfortunately only few if any of the 'western' media will point that out.

Posted by b on February 3, 2019 at 17:31 UTC | Permalink

next page »

"Lacks international support" unfortunately doesnt matter much. Regardless, even if a majority of nations backed the coup doesnt mean its right. Also remember Ukraine coup, majority didnt support that - but it didnt matter.

Posted by: Zanon | Feb 3 2019 17:44 utc | 1

Thanks for the reporting b

Empire is testing the waters of support by its DazzleSpeak about the spinning plate of Venezuela. I hope it is learning that much of the world no longer wants to live in a world motivated by fear.

Threat of US global default on Reserve Currency is coming soon because empire is out of ammunition to maintain and extend supremacy. It will be interesting to see what the fall back status will be and how maintained....the last thralls of would hope.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Feb 3 2019 17:49 utc | 2

Then there's that 'gold' thing.

The Bank of England should be holding closer to 30 tonnes of Venezuela's gold, not the 14 tonnes they're holding from Marudo under U.S. orders. The Venezuelan Central Bank (BCV) just closed a huge gold swap with someone and now should have a total of maybe 2500 gold bars in the BoE dungeons with their original serial numbers and weights. Custodians of gold like this can't melt it down and make new bars - that's why state depositors stamp all of them with serial numbers and precise weights. They want to be sure THEIR gold is there and THEIR gold is returned.

The news isn't the U.S. demand that it won't be returned. The real news is that neither the BCV nor the BoE will show anyone the original or current gold bar inventory list. Usually, nobody cares. But with the U.S. and BoE chosing a new, rightful owner (Random Guy), they should at the very least provide the inventory list.

It shouldn't be a secret - there is absolutely no security risk. The gold belongs to the (starving) people of Venezuela. Or at least it did. What are the BoE and Rothschild BCV hiding? Did they melt it down or sell it to someone else?

Posted by: PavewayIV | Feb 3 2019 17:51 utc | 3

I think the deeper conceptual issues need to be considered, that would place the political and social situations going on around the world, from France, to Venezuela, in perspective.
That money is the social contract enabling mass societies to function, not a commodity to be mined from society and stored as government debt, to finance militaries, as well as making the entire economy subservient to the gambling addictions of Wall St.
Humanity went through s similar evolutionary process, when monarchies, as private, hereditary governments, reached the limits of their effectiveness. As the executive and regulatory function, government is the central nervous system of society, while finance is its circulation mechanism, basically the head and heart.
As monarchs were forced to realize, they served a function to society, in order to be served by it. It was a two way street. Now finance is having a, "Let them eat cake." moment, as they become more predator than organ of society. It is the heart telling the hands and feet they don't need so much blood and should work harder for what they do get. As well as telling the head it better go along, or else.
As it is now, all this government debt is setting the world up for predatory lending/disaster capitalism, when the governments cannot run up more debt and those holding the old debt start trading it for more public properties, from mineral rights to roads.

Posted by: John Merryman | Feb 3 2019 17:54 utc | 4


After watching the whole central meeting in Bolívar Avenue, Caracas,live broadcasted by RTSpanish, which extended for several hours, in which were projected images of other regions´meetings as well, and after watching live too, broadcasted by the same channel, the pro-Random Dude meeting only in that rich neighborhood, which extended for about half an hour and dispersed itslef very fast, I would calculate the numbers at both meetings just in reverse as you have done.

I would say 200-300 thousands for Maduro´s supporters ( and i would say I get it short..) and 20-30 thousands ( in the best case )for the Random Dude....

I notice that that photo you are basing your estimations on corresponds only to the front of the square where the tribune for speechers of the pro-Maduro rallie was placed, but other people has showed the whole Bolívar Avenue ( the longest and largest in Caracas ) full of pro-Maduro people as long as the sight can catch ....See for example, Abby Martin´s capture:

To this numbers, you should add all those collected in the regions...I would say in the hundreds of thousands....

Posted by: Sasha | Feb 3 2019 18:09 utc | 5

A very good supporting read after this.

Thank you.

Posted by: Taffyboy | Feb 3 2019 18:14 utc | 6

The European Parliament voted on the Venezuela issue a few days ago, and naturally, the centre-right wing European People's Party (Merkel, Tusk), the Liberals (Macron), and most of the so-called Socialists voted to recognise the US coup minion as president. The European United Left and most of the Greens along with the far-right wing voted against this, which just shows you that the so-called liberal democrats are bought and paid for employees of US/NATO multinational imperialism.

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Feb 3 2019 18:31 utc | 7

With the "Electoral College" method determining winners not in current favor, perhaps the US MSM may wish to state that by world population, Maduro beats Guaidó by a factor of at least 4 to 1 in public opinion.

Posted by: Enrico Malatesta | Feb 3 2019 18:33 utc | 8

thanks b... it is interesting @5 sashas comments if they can be verified..

@3paveway - it is much as @4 john merryman says, with the additional note that the boe are essentially stealing venezualas gold in a might makes right type of undemocratic and undignified way.. i always thought the federal reserve was an extension of the boe... both of them are privately run, with some minor face saving image that they belong to the respective gov'ts.. they don't... they are controlled and run by the 1% that are quite okay starving off venezuala, or going to the next step - military intervention.. they are one sick group of predators only focused on the god of mammon.. we have to figure out a way to get rid of them before they completely destroy the planet..

Posted by: james | Feb 3 2019 18:39 utc | 9

Italy's argument against the European recognition of Guaidó is emblematic:

Italy warns against ‘another Libya’ if Venezuela is attacked

Posted by: vk | Feb 3 2019 18:48 utc | 10

The rally took place after noon. How many people walked somewhere at 10:30am is irrelevant to the total participation. The pictures prove that the venue where the rally took place was indeed quite full.

This is actually funny. Presumably the Washington Post, either because it no longer maintains foreign "desks" or bureaus, or because it must hew to politically-correct identity-politics ideology, is oblivious to, or in denial of, the well-known phenomenon of "Hispanic Time".

I'm not Hispanic, but I plucked this 2010 "Huffington Post" contribution off the top of my search list:

"Tempus Fugit: The Oddity Known as 'Hispanic Time'" by Daniel Cubias. The subtitle is "It is a cultural trademark of Latinos that we run late, or flake on deadlines, or just wander in at some point during the party."

I don't know, perhaps the Post is accustomed to public rallies in nations where participants make sure to arrive hours early.

PS: I like "Random Dude", B., but we also would have accepted "Presidente En Blanco".

Posted by: Ort | Feb 3 2019 19:01 utc | 11

Why does Maduro allow Guaido to remain at large? Is he afraid to look like a "Bad Guy" should he arrest the Random Guy usurper? I can only hope Venezuelan security agencies are keeping tabs on Guaido and his communications. It seems like a huge mistake to allow him to plan a civil war/golpe.

Posted by: DougDiggler | Feb 3 2019 19:09 utc | 12

"Random Dude" is not bad but I think "Chicago Boy" is more useful as it gives clueless people a useful googling opportunity.

Posted by: CE | Feb 3 2019 19:10 utc | 13

if there truly is a massive grassroots chavista movement in Venezuela, as we so often hear in the alternative media, it needs to realize quickly that defending the bolivarian revolution is not the same as defending Maduro. it needs to get out in the streets in truly massive numbers, overwhelming numbers. That is the only way to stop the coup. This isn't about Maduro. They need to flood Caracas with red. They can still put this US puppet and his coup in the trash heap where it belongs. Get to work Chavistas!! STop the coup and let the rich kids find something else to get entertain themselves with.

By doing this the bolivarians can also achieve leverage vs Maduro, who needs to either get his act together or step down.

Posted by: paul | Feb 3 2019 19:12 utc | 14

The so-called Lima Group will meet in Canada tomorrow to continue to agitate for the removal of Venezuela’s sitting government. A recent interview with Ben Rowswell, a Canadian bureaucrat and think-tanker associated with the Lima Group, reveals that the key event to motivate the Group’s efforts was the election in Venezuela of a Constituent Assembly in July 2017. Rowswell defines this move as the suspension of constitutional order in Venezuela: “ In July, (Marduro) installed a new body with absolute powers to rule over democratically-elected representatives and to stage-manage future elections.” The Lima Group met for the first time shortly after the Constituent Assembly’s election, and animosity towards such Assembly features prominently in its declarations and statements since. (Rowswell claimed this weekend on Canadian television that Guaido has “massive” majority support from Venezuela’s citizenry).

Here is a rather hysterical report by Human Rights Watch on the Constituent Assembly:

Here is an interview with a supporter of the Venezuelan government explaining the motives behind the Constituent Assembly:

He makes a good point that other jurisdictions, faced with parliamentary polarization and paralysis at times of national crisis, have simply cancelled the government altogether. This happened in Egypt, without international groups forming to plot the overthrow of Sisi’s regime. There have been any number of recent unorthodox political activity in the Latin American region - in Honduras, Brazil, Ecuador, Uruguay, etc - without international groups forming to plot the removal of their governments.
Somehow, Venezuaela’s Constituent Assembly became a step too far, an absolute red line, while, apparently, the political rights and freedoms of Venezuela’s opposition is, to the Lima Group, the paramount and primary expression of freedom in all the Americas.

Since the sticking point in Venezuela has been so clearly defined, surely the Constituent Assembly can serve as a focus for international mediation between the government and the opposition. But the opposition refuses to participate in mediation. Perhaps they feel that conceptualizing and initiating the Constituent Assembly was an act of such diabolical wickedness that the current government is forever “illegitimate” and must be directed to imprisonment in Guantanamo rather than be rewarded with mediation.

It would be great if some reporters tomorrow could get representatives of the Lima Group to discuss the unique evil of the Constituent Assembly and why it should not form a basis of mediation in Venezuela if it is indeed the source of all the trouble. Surely the issue with the Constituent Assembly is not merely a pretext for a previously decided policy of regime change? It would also be nice if the Lima Group representatives could explain why Venezuela’s “interim leader” is proposing structural changes to the country’s economic policies and other major political initiatives, when he is only supposed to, according to their interpretation of Venezuela’s Constitution, be facilitating a snap election?

Posted by: jayc | Feb 3 2019 19:18 utc | 15


To tie together some random points I've made previously; The dawn of modern capitalism was when the Rothschild's traded Charles 1 his large debts for running the royal treasury and the Bank of England was born. The problem is that politicians/kings can't be in direct control of the money, because they survive on how much hope they give their supporters and we experience money as quantified hope, so the overwhelming tendency, when all else is grim, is to print more money. Witness the Federal Reserve and its loose money today, given investors and the markets are the primary supporters of this system.

Then that for the Ancients, for whom there was little distinction between religion and politics, monotheism equated to monarchy, as in one god, one ruler, while polytheism equated to democracy, as the gods arguing and loving equated to raucous politics. So the fact monotheism and its Divine Right of Kings prevailed, naturally led to Charles' problems.

The logic is that a spiritual absolute would be that essence of sentience, bubbling up through us as consciousness and desire, not an ideal of wisdom and logic governing all. Yet it is that hard won, not god given, wisdom we develop, through such personal, cultural and civilizational struggles, that makes us strong. Not just momentary power, that often peaks as quickly as it is attained. Brains, not claws, rule.

Posted by: John Merryman | Feb 3 2019 19:34 utc | 16

@denk | Feb 3, 2019 1:06:50 PM | 272

Other than Russia../China/Iran....practically the entire world is under uncle sham's thumb now.
The outlook is very depressing indeed.

Don't worry, China has an enormous amount of leverage:

"Boeing predicts China will need more than 7,200 new aircraft worth over $1 trillion in the 20 years through 2036."

Trump slaps some tariffs, here and there, on a few billion dollars of China's products. But this is trivial compared to what China can do to Boeing, if Trump really annoys Xi. And Boeing is just of many US companies that the Chinese can retaliate against.

Posted by: Cyril | Feb 3 2019 19:34 utc | 17

Guaido now seems to be concentrating on humanitarian aid

>from Guaido's recent tweet --
¡Atención #Venezuela! Estos son los próximos pasos que daremos como parte de nuestra ruta. Vamos a ejercer nuestras competencias para atender la crisis, restablecer la democracia y lograr la libertad. ¡Vamos juntos, que #VamosBien! Pendientes el #12Feb!
1. Crearemos una coalicion e internacional para la ayuda humantaria, con tres centros de acopio.
2. Nos movilizaremos para exigir a la FAN que permitan la entrada de ayuda huanitaria.
3. Solicitaremos a Europa la proteccion de nuestros activos. . .here

>translations --
Attention #Venezuela! These are the next steps we will take as part of our route. We are going to exercise our skills to deal with the crisis, restore democracy and achieve freedom. Let's go together, let's #Good! Feb12 is pending!*
1. We will create a coalition and international for humanitarian assistance, with three collection centers.**
2. We will mobilize to demand that the FAN*** allow the entry of humanitarian aid.
3. We will ask Europe for the protection of our assets.

>notes --
*On 12 February 2014, major opposition protests began with student marches led by opposition leaders in 38 cities across Venezuela simultaneous with the national celebrations for the bicentennial year anniversary of Youth Day and the Battle of La Victoria. --wiki
** Guaido has said that three facilities for collecting foreign humanitarian aid for Venezuela would be created: one in Cucuta Colombia, one in Brazil, and another one on an island in the Caribbean Sea.
***FAN -- The National Bolivarian Armed Forces

Bolton has tweeted:
Answering the call of President Guaido, the U.S. is mobilizing & transporting humanitarian aid for the people of #Venezuela. I applaud the hard work of USAID, the State Department and their partners in preparing critical supplies to move forward this weekend. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 3 2019 19:36 utc | 18

@ DougDiggler | Feb 3, 2019 2:09:22 PM | 12
Why does Maduro allow Guaido to remain at large?
Juan Guaido enjoys legislative immunity to arrest but Venezuela’s Supreme Court barred him from leaving the country, and the court also approved a request that all of Guaido’s financial assets be frozen.
As we have seen he's rather harmless, without any real power in the country, and so the longer he's free and obviously ineffective the better. Plus it enables Maduro to appear reasonable and unafraid of the young man.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 3 2019 20:06 utc | 19

Thanks to the person who sent us the Medium piece on the problem with Venezuela's oil.

Does anyone know what per barrel price the country needs in order to make a profit on its highly viscous oil?
The idea of "molasses in January" comes to mind.

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Feb 3 2019 20:19 utc | 20

Guaidó is also almost certainly under direct US protection; violating the embassy will give them the pretext they're looking for.

Posted by: Ash | Feb 3 2019 20:19 utc | 21

exactly ash, it would be seen as an act of war, an attack on u.s. territory. random dude is chalabi 2.0 (remember, the savior of iraq who most iraqis had never heard off).

Posted by: pretzelattack | Feb 3 2019 20:28 utc | 22

Doug Diggler

He will sure be arrested, what he do is criminal of course, seems like Venezuela wait and see, quite dumb considering the damage he have already done.

Posted by: Zanon | Feb 3 2019 20:28 utc | 23


Posted by: bluedog | Feb 3 2019 20:37 utc | 24

don @ #19

thanks for the explanation, I have wondered the same myself and that sounds reasonable to me.

the military ought to be particularly alert these days about anything and everything that comes across the borders as it might well be the US, Colombia and Brazil and especially their 'intelligence' agencies will be trying to arm the opposition and then turn it into another Libya or Syrian failed state scenario....

the US' main strategy/strategies in maintaining control in the world today has more and more to do with leveraging financial assets and sanctions, and behind the scenes soft power peddling and grabs (see recent Brazil) rather than outright military intervention, which of course the Elites will use, to some degree or another, when all else fails - all those 900-1000+ US bases and lily pads overseas ain't there world-wide just to look pretty, you know

starve and weaken the people with sanctions (a la Iraq and Iran), and then attempt/take over power with a local pawn.......very clever, and very brutal! poor Venezuela...

Posted by: michaelj72 | Feb 3 2019 20:52 utc | 25

Good piece on Guiado from The Grayzone Project: "...this is precisely why Guaidó was selected by Washington: He is not expected to lead Venezuela toward democracy, but to collapse a country that for the past two decades has been a bulwark of resistance to US hegemony. His unlikely rise signals the culmination of a two decades-long project to destroy a robust socialist experiment."

Posted by: Lavrenty | Feb 3 2019 21:06 utc | 26

" The dawn of modern capitalism was when the Rothschild's traded Charles 1 his large debts for running the royal treasury and the Bank of England was born. "
This is wrong. The Bank was founded in the reign of William III who was the Dutch son in law of Charles I's son James II. As to the Rothschilds they were just another obscure family in a south German ghetto at the time. The major investor in the bank was however, a Sephardic Jew, most of the money came from Holland though.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 3 2019 21:15 utc | 27

The 800 lb elephant in the room here is the reality of class struggle in Caracas. Those backing the imperialists seem to constitute the majority of Venezuela's small elite of rich people. Despite their complaints, continual sabotage of the economy and outright treason in their collaboration with its enemies they have been allowed to hold onto their ill gotten, and inherited, wealth.
How long is that likely to last?
On the other side of the divide are millions of poor people, their livelihoods and their democracy at risk. Many of them are having difficulty finding food to feed their families- the deliberate result of sanctions supported by the wealthy, and the light skinned. Many are finding it impossible to find the medicines their sick people desperately need.
If Venezuela is to maintain its independence it will do so because the poor refuse to give it up. Their rewards and the means of rebuilding the economy lie in the wealth of the rich.
The wealthy few have declared war on the many poor. They should not be allowed to lose their bet and maintain their stakes. The world doesn't work that way.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 3 2019 21:24 utc | 28

That @28 is a very small elephant, looking more closely it is probably a gorilla.

Posted by: bevin | Feb 3 2019 21:53 utc | 29

As this regime change process unfolds, it is difficult not to feel deep sadness for Venezuelans.
Chavez failed to lift the poor into a permanent middle class, Maduro failed to protect the accomplishments that had been achieved, and now, the state seems unprepared to cope with what was inevitable.

To assume that the Hegemon would keep its hands off the nation, return the gold, leave the assets in the US untouched, not use the neighboring countries to mount an insurgency, seems naive at best.

The lessons learned from Cuba's 60 year fight for dignity taught the regime nothing.

Watching the tear down of Brazil's socialist leadership (two of them) taught the regime nothing.

Stupidity atop corruption atop a blind belief in an ideology that destroyed the wealth of the nation (or at least crippled it) has led to the moment of truth. Will enough poor people and some middle class defend the sovereignty of the nation?

And will the military leadership and rank and file remain patriots?

It's a tragic moment in Latin American history.

Though Maduro has some backing from the four most Resistant of all Resistors, Russian, China, Cuba and Iran, the nation's geography is too distant for them to flex their full restraint. The lesson of Nicaragua in the 80's should have been learned.

Now he faces invasion of convoys of aid on three borders. He must control his borders. The odds are very long he can.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Feb 3 2019 22:02 utc | 30

quote from
I am not sure if anyone has posted about this, my apologies if it is redundant. I was wondering where our Random Dude was now located and what he was up to:

"For the role of President they chose a “poster boy” who doesn’t represent anything and who shouted out something at a meeting with 30,000-40,000 protesters, and after this he immediately ran to the Embassy of Colombia, where he still sits to this day. This boy refuses any contact with the authorities. But since you are being informed by “different media agencies” and certain authors on “Aftershock” – he communicated with army Generals… on twitter… however the Generals are unaware of this… but he communicated “in secret”. Or he appointed a certain official from among the immigrants in the US… also on twitter…"

Posted by: frances | Feb 3 2019 22:12 utc | 31

The state broadcasters of both the UK and Germany were claiming today that the videos of pro-government demonstrations are faked, but they offer no clear evidence of this.

The BBC's Orla Guerin spoke of "massive crowds that, some claim, were suspiciously large".

Marielle Quiniones on the ARD's Tagesschau highlights an empty stretch of a street but ignores the huge crowd at the other end, and does not say whether the street got any more crowded.

If the allegations about the videos were really true, the manipulation would have been described in detail - by the western state media as well as Bellingcat and others. The fact that they have to really only on insinuation shows that there is no evidence of manipulation.

Posted by: Brendan | Feb 3 2019 22:23 utc | 32

Red Ryder #30

Your analysis of the economic problems is too harsh directed at Chavez/Marduro and their "ideology". Nafeez Ahmed's piece in Medium, which has been shared on this forum, does a much better job describing the perfect storm of coinciding events which have combined to sink Venezuela's economy. Short of two or three of these events, and the situation could be bad but not as terrible as it is. The programs instituted by the government over the past twenty years remain extremely popular, as was acknowledged yesterday when Guaido made a vague promise of government "subsidies" to those in need.

The aid caravans will be entirely symbolic, and offer little to nothing to a population of over 30 million people. The sponsors of the aid caravans are also the same people who have placed harsh economic sanctions on the country, a fact which will not be lost.

Posted by: jayc | Feb 3 2019 22:37 utc | 33

@16 john merryman.. i am not sure about the history of this and @27 bevin disputes some of your post details.. regardless, i do see it much like @28 bevin.. until this parasite / predatory group that are leeching off the masses, is put down - nothing much is going to change.. i don't know how this happens here...

Posted by: james | Feb 3 2019 22:47 utc | 34

Bevin @ 28
"The wealthy few have declared war on the many poor. They should not be allowed to lose their bet and maintain their stakes. The world doesn't work that way. "

Unfortunately Bevin I think that is exactly how the world works. The real never ending war is between the haves and have nots.

Posted by: arby | Feb 3 2019 23:01 utc | 35

Why don't the coup mongers name Hillary president of Venezuela. The biggest sore loser of all time is currently "resting", as they say of out-of-work actors, and desperately wants to be president of SOMETHING. Not being a native Venezuelan should be no drawback in her case. She would simply trade her old Cubs/Yankees hat for a big V and probably discover some Venezuelan great-great-grandmother hanging on her family tree. The coup mongers' current choice, the sock puppet "Guido" Guadio, is about as legit as a Confederate nickel. And coups are by definition NOT legit. So haul out those unused "I'm With Her" signs and ship them down there. In the meantime, she can head for the Venezuelan Embassy and hole up there (a la Julian Assange?) while awaiting the moment to parachute into Caracas. Mission Accomplished!

Posted by: mrtmbrnmn | Feb 3 2019 23:01 utc | 36

Let's remember that the US position is that Guaido is only the interim president of a transitional government, which suggests that (1) the US has its real choice under cover in Miami somewhere, possibly a Rubio house guest, or (more likely) (2) the US really doesn't have a clue about what to do next. Hey, humanitarian aid, that's a good regime change strategy (??).
Meanwhile they can demonstrate all they want, it never accomplishes anything (MLK attendance the exception).

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 3 2019 23:05 utc | 37

I'm a bit more pessimistic. Washington seems united on getting rid of Maduro and installing a friendly regime. While Maduro can hang in there for awhile, the economic sanctions and covert operations (including sabotage, killings, bribery etc.) will cause severe problems for the government. Maduro is not Assad and lacks friendly neighbors--in fact, Latin America has pretty much returned to direct Washington rule.

Posted by: Chris Cosmos | Feb 3 2019 23:06 utc | 38

Don Bacon 37

I suspect the Trump admin does have a plan for Venezuela and will push it through no matter what anybody thinks. Trump's opinion of the bobbling heads or trained seal lot that call themselves heads of state is about the same as he showed the Iraqi's when visiting the US base in Iraq.
Trumps plans will only be stopped by the likes of Russia, China, Iran ect. No matter how outlandish the claims of the lies of Bolton or himself are, MSM seems to take it up with all seriousness.
Like with the attacks on Syria, Trump becomes presidential when he attacks the likes of Iran and Venezuela.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Feb 3 2019 23:38 utc | 39

Don @ 37
I think this is the guy they would like to install--

Leopoldo Lopez

Posted by: arby | Feb 3 2019 23:39 utc | 40

USAMO . Same Old. First, engineer sanctions through compliant UN, then squeeeeze the population until they understand the changing electoral requirements and their howl reaches pitch
-in the meantime picking a favourite pony to front the 'peoples will' regime change op; training him/her up in latest provocateur methodology and introducing them to their master racketeers back in DC
with malevolent mercenary gangs helping stirring street protest
offer emergency security assistance and food A I D thru sanctified UN allowing your chosen one to ride the front of the food wagon, saving the day.
Democracy, Yankee Doodle Dandy style.

Posted by: rem | Feb 3 2019 23:43 utc | 41

jayc | 33

"The aid caravans will be entirely symbolic, and offer little to nothing to a population of over 30 million people."

Yes, and also those of the 30 million who support the Anti-Maduro movement are probably not in need of basic foodstuffs, but will want their iPhone and their Netflix account.

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Feb 4 2019 0:16 utc | 42

Red Ryder @ 30: Venezuela's economy is as much ruined by US economic sanctions against the country and (at US behest) Saudi Arabia's flooding of the global oil market that sent oil prices down in order to crash the economies of other countries like Iran and Russia that were presumed to be dependent on oil exports, as by mismanagement or poor leadership on Chavez or Maduro's part. On top of that, major food importers and producers (several of which are owned by companies or individuals hostile to Chavez and Maduro) have been withholding food from supermarkets to manipulate prices and goad the public into demonstrating against the government.

As for Venezuela's over-reliance on oil exports to support its economy, this is the result of past government policies before Chavez came to power. The US treated Venezuela as a petrol station and pro-US governments in the country turned it into a petrol station.

Chavez did try to encourage local food production and carried out some land redistribution to achieve this. But his efforts did not succeed because importing food was cheaper than producing it locally and farm-workers apparently preferred jobs in the oil industry that paid better and were more secure. I do not know how the collectives were organised, whether they had some independent decision-making abilities or not, or whether they were organised from top down rather than bottom up, so I can't say whether their organisational structures and the internal culture those encouraged worked against them.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 4 2019 0:21 utc | 43

@ arby | Feb 3, 2019 6:39:05 PM | 40
I think this is the guy they would like to install--Leopoldo Lopez
Yes, good chance of that, if they could work it somehow (unlikely) and it would tie into Guaido's reference to Feb 12.

wiki--During the crisis in Bolivarian Venezuela, Leopoldo Lopez called for protests in February 2014. López, a leading figure in the opposition to the government, began to lead protests. . .He was arrested on 18 February 2014 and charged with arson and conspiracy; murder and terrorism charges were dropped. Human rights groups expressed concern that the charges were politically motivated. . .Leopoldo López, a leading figure in the opposition to the government, began to lead protests.. . .In September 2015, he was found guilty of public incitement to violence through supposed subliminal messages, being involved with criminal association, and was sentenced to 13 years and 9 months in prison. He was later transferred to house arrest on 8 July 2017 after being imprisoned for over three years.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 0:44 utc | 44

@ arby | Feb 3, 2019 6:39:05 PM | 40
I think this is the guy they would like to install--Leopoldo Lopez
Yes, good chance of that, if they could work it somehow (unlikely) and it would tie into Guaido's reference to Feb 12.

wiki--During the crisis in Bolivarian Venezuela, Leopoldo Lopez called for protests in February 2014. López, a leading figure in the opposition to the government, began to lead protests. . .He was arrested on 18 February 2014 and charged with arson and conspiracy; murder and terrorism charges were dropped. Human rights groups expressed concern that the charges were politically motivated. . .Leopoldo López, a leading figure in the opposition to the government, began to lead protests.. . .In September 2015, he was found guilty of public incitement to violence through supposed subliminal messages, being involved with criminal association, and was sentenced to 13 years and 9 months in prison. He was later transferred to house arrest on 8 July 2017 after being imprisoned for over three years.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 0:44 utc | 45

A liter of 91-octane gasoline currently costs 1 bolivar, so for a dollar one can get 3 million liters. . here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 0:51 utc | 46

re: Trump's state of the union speech Tuesday night.
on VZ-- from WaPo Trump will
"... actively intervene in the political upheaval in Venezuela, aides said in previewing the speech Friday." here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 0:59 utc | 47

I wonder how many of the pro-USA protesters, willing to take the US coin to protest on the street, are also willing to take the US coin to die on the street. I suspect these protests are paper thin at best, the poor are unlikely to support the rich without financial inducement, but the one thing the coup organisers have is plenty of money. If these are indeed poor people protesting (who knows) then it would be interesting to know what quantity of cash was offered to the participants. Maybe 30 USD for half a day of protesting? Decent money for the protesters, easily affordable to the USA.

Posted by: aspnaz | Feb 4 2019 1:07 utc | 48

Red Ryder

A countries domestic issues need to be kept separate from US attacks on a country. US is not attacking Venezuela for humanitarian reasons. This is aside from the fact as Jen pointed out, that Venezuela's economy has been under attack from the US for some time.
The expectations that a country that is under US attack should have a leader that is far above average in terms of ability to withstand the economic attack of a superpower with perfect, far seeing decisions is unreasonable. People lie that are rare and only occurred occasionally in history.
What does matter is that the Maduro government is doing the best it can for its people, rather than working in the interests of a foreign power to the detriment of its people.
As for a better leader - one that will resist the US and provide a better economy for Venezuela while under US sustained attack....

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Feb 4 2019 1:14 utc | 49

Bart Hansen@20 - Oil production costs are complex, secret and mostly lies. With that caveat, Venezuela was thought to have about $10 - $15 production costs on average. That includes their light and medium crude, and zero investment in repair of their distribution networks.

Well over half of Venezuela's reserves are Orinco extra-heavy, sour crude. Essentially tar sands, but buried 500m - 1500m deep that require solvent or steam extraction. So (guess) maybe $30-range/bbl for production. Those tar sand oils produced are so heavy that they need pre-processing and dilution before they can be refined or exported. Naphtha or other refined products are used as dilutent and cost maybe $55/bbl today, but were around $75/bbl last October.

U.S. refineries were pretty much the only ones paying cash for their 500,000 b/d of Venezuelan crude. Trump's sanctions not only ban those imports, but also ban the 120,000 b/d of naphtha and other dilutents we sold them.

Interesting to note that part of Trump's beat-down of the Venezuela little people is a ban on the 120,000 b/d of dilutent last week. That will completely shut down their exports. They could find another source of naphtha, but that source will be looking for $6.6 million a day hard cash for it.

Maduro needs to sell Venezuela's gold to buy naphtha to export oil for ANY revenue. The $2.5 billion the Bank of England can't find and won't deliver is meant to hasten the food riots and CIA-orchestrated coup. But Mercy Corps is setting up concentration camps on the Colombian border and we're delivering food aid, so the U.S. is really the hero, here. God bless America! Obey, or die.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Feb 4 2019 1:33 utc | 50

Guaido may end up killed by a mob, a twist on Qaddafi's fate in Libya...
"We came , we saw, he died"

Posted by: Virgile | Feb 4 2019 1:33 utc | 51

Where are the drones filming the demonstrations? or the satellite views?

Posted by: Virgile | Feb 4 2019 1:35 utc | 52

@ Peter AU 1 | Feb 3, 2019 8:14:35 PM | 48
expectations that a country that is under US attack should have a leader that is far above average
I appreciate your discussion of leaders, but let's not forget the people. It has been the goal of the US to demonize leaders and go after them. Ho Chi Minh, Saddam Hussein, Bashar Assad, Osama Binh Laden etc. etc.
But it's the people not the leaders that have formed the most resistance. It took the US Army little time to track down big bad Saddam Hussein, but Baghdad wasn't pacified (controlled) for four years, and people elsewhere in Iraq fought the "liberators" like the very devil.
Apply that to Venezuela. Heck, you and me, we'd all respond the same way given a foreign invasion, right?
There are some warnings about avoiding dialogue and pushing a Venezuelan military option. The opposition’s courting of military officers carries potential dangers. If it leads to a schism in the armed forces, that could be disastrous for the country, said Michael Shifter, president of the Inter-American Dialogue, a Washington policy anti-VZ forum.
A U.S. military incursion could have significant unintended consequences, "including a deterioration of our relationship with currently supportive countries in the region." -- Gustavo Arnavat, a former Obama administration official and a senior advisor to the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Juan Guaido hopes that the United States will not use force in Venezuela, instead limiting pressure on Maduro's government to diplomatic and economic measures, the Colombian newspaper Tiempo reported Monday. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 1:58 utc | 53

Don Bacon:

on VZ-- from WaPo Trump will "... actively intervene in the political upheaval in Venezuela ..."

Trump interventionism (humanitarian and otherwise) is now well-established. As is his preference for the swamp.


Posted by: Jackrabbit | Feb 4 2019 2:16 utc | 54


Great info. As usual.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Feb 4 2019 2:20 utc | 55

Don Bacon @52: ... but let's not forget the people.

Good point!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Feb 4 2019 2:24 utc | 56

Red Ryder @ 30, Peter AU 1 @ 48:

If corruption or mismanaging a country's economy were justification for foreign intervention to remove a leader, Israelis should be lobbying Washington DC to remove Binyamin Netanyahu as their prime minister since he and his wife Sara have been charged by police for fraud and bribery.

Indeed, depending on how it defines corruption, whether vaguely or narrowly, and on what criteria, the US would have its work cut out for decades hunting down "corrupt" politicians.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 4 2019 3:37 utc | 57

If I'm not mistaken the front page of the Washington Post, today showed a picture of a large pro-government protest, and claimed that it was an opposition protest.

Posted by: mpn | Feb 4 2019 4:32 utc | 58

This will be something to watch and may be part of the answer to why now, why did the US go after Venezula at this point. I think it is because Venezuela was historically captive to US refineries, but no longer.

India is capable of refining Venezuela oil and has a significant demand for it. If India decides to do ignore the sanctions, I wonder if the US will impound tankers going to India?

And tankers to China as China is building a refinery just for Venezula oil, it isn't scheduled to come online until 2020, but perhaps China will push to make it happen asap?

Posted by: frances | Feb 4 2019 4:42 utc | 59

to Paveway lV and Bart Hansen. It doesn't really matter the breakeven point for Venezuelan oil if they can't access the money. I just read (15 minutes ago) on Seeking Alpha, that Trump et al is blocking payments for Venezuelan oil. He is trying to force the payments into a blocked account such that Maduro's gov cannot access it but Guido can. There are still refineries in the US which need Venezuelan heavy crude to blend w/ the frack=crap. Volero is stated to have two tankers which it cannot unload due to the payments issue. This is an unusual way to provide "humanitarian aid."

Sorry I cannot give a link - the Seeking Alpha site seems to be done.

Re the Indian refineries, I believe they are currently buying Iranian oil so they may resist sanctions against Venezuela. However, according to Paeway lV, without naphtha Venezuela cannot pump oil. Maybe a swap with someone?

Paveway it's nice to see your byline again.

Posted by: Miss Lacy | Feb 4 2019 4:56 utc | 60

@jayc | Feb 3, 2019 5:37:59 PM | 33

The aid caravans will be entirely symbolic, and offer little to nothing to a population of over 30 million people.

I agree, Guaido's aid caravans will probably be something like 5% humanitarian and 95% for smuggling arms into Venezuela.

However, China has the largest container ships in the world. Just one visit from a vessel like the COSCO Shipping Universe could deliver more than 20,000 truckloads of stuff, which would probably dwarf anything Guano is envisaging (even if his "humanitarian" caravans were totally legitimate).

Would the Empire let it happen? I have little doubt that Bolton's sick enough to want to stop a true humanitarian effort, but as I'm not as sick as Bolton is (at least I hope so), I have a hard time imagining what excuse he could use to stop it -- especially after Guano's caravans.

Posted by: Cyril | Feb 4 2019 5:24 utc | 61

@56, Jen,

I don't justify intervention anywhere (except in D.C. where the Tyranny and Hegemon resides).

I point to missed opportunities, failures, corruption and not taking advice from your closest friends (China, Russia, Cuba).
If they had brought in the Chinese petroleum experts and Russian economic experts, much of the disaster would have been avoided.

When you have a huge enemy and you are weak and relatively small, you need help.

Maduro waited until too late.

There were many object lessons for better practices and better preparation for the inevitable.

Now, we can hope and pray that the Venezuelan people demonstrate their own will to resist against intervention and regime change. Because if it comes, their wealth will be stolen completely.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Feb 4 2019 6:34 utc | 62

A sane government which really wanted the best for the people would've launched a crash program to break free of the oil dependency which not only guarantees one remains at best a US-colonized power, but which requires the physical destruction of one's own land and the basis of one's future life.

I'm not just saying this about Venezuela, although destroying the Orinoco rain forest necessary for our very lives in order to extract heavy oil is perhaps the most extreme example on Earth of the self-destroying paradigm.

But any country afflicted with the oil curse ought to treat the deposits like very hot radioactive waste and enforce at all costs a Chernobyl-type non-go zone. This also would conserve critical ecological zones like the Amazon. If enough places did that simultaneously it would prevent the US from "opening them up" by force and accelerate the collapse of the empire and its globalization system. But any place which doesn't do this automatically becomes a de facto colony and a target for aggression intended to turn them into a de jure colony, as we see in this case.

From the evidence it seems that in the end a thing like Bolivarianism isn't offering any real alternative to the US paradigm. Both equally want to burn every last fossil BTU's worth, pump every last CO2 molecule, hack down and burn every last acre of forest. Both are on the same mass murder-suicide ride.

Do the Venezulean people really want a better life than this? The American people sure seem to want the worst.

Posted by: Russ | Feb 4 2019 8:18 utc | 63

Red Ryder @ 61:

It's my understanding that when Chavez was President, he did bring Chinese and Vietnamese agriculture experts to Venezuela to study the country's potential for growing food staples. The Vietnamese experts identified areas which originally had been considered by their former wealthy owners as unproductive but which turned out to be ideal for growing rice.

"Venezuela Uses Recovered Land to Plant Rice with Vietnamese Assistance" (May 15, 2009)

"China interested in developing agriculture in Venezuela’s 30 million hectares of land" (July 23, 2013)

Although Venezuela imports huge quantities of wheat from Russia, it's doubtful that Russians can give much agricultural advice as Venezuela lies in the tropics and Russia does not. On the other hand, the way the Venezuelan government appears to be dealing with Juan Guaido, allowing him to shout in the wilderness and making himself look a fool, seems similar to the way Russia treats Alexei Navalny, letting him make an idiot of himself, and might suggest that Venezuela is taking advice from or copying Russia in this respect. Russia also sold two S300 anti-missile defence systems to Venezuela though I do not know how often the Venezuelans maintain them.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 4 2019 10:44 utc | 64

Thanks for the correction. I tend to skim history. I think the point still stands, that politicians can't be left in control of the money supply. The impulse to abuse it is strong

Posted by: John Merryman | Feb 4 2019 11:20 utc | 65

The Maduro demo seems to have taken place on the Avenue Bolivar which is about 20 meters wide and about 1.25 km long. The demo crowd appears to be packed so there could be 50 to 80 thousand people there. I haven't been able to locate the Guiado demo but it is possibly in the upscale Las Mercedas district not far from the US Embassy. The photos of the Guiado are generally close in and from a low angle which tends to exagerate the numbers. Even so, it does not appear to be as densely packed / extensive as the Maduro event.

Posted by: Yonatan | Feb 4 2019 12:09 utc | 66

More disgraceful news:

Major EU nations recognize Guaido as Venezuela’s acting president

Britain, France, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, Austria, the Netherlands and Germany’s coordinated move came after the expiry of an eight-day deadline set last weekend for Maduro to call a new election. Austria and Lithuania also lined up behind the self-declared interim president Guaido.

Maduro should kick each european nation out, NOW! He cannot wait any longer.

Posted by: Zanon | Feb 4 2019 12:32 utc | 67

Uds son una sarta de gringos comunistas ignorantes, defendendo a Maduro el narco-tirano indefensible. Uds son unos cabrones comprados e imbeciles.

Posted by: Carlos Aguilera | Feb 4 2019 12:57 utc | 68

Re Zanon 67

Self-evidently all the governments which have followed the US are not only agreeing but are acting in compliance with a pre-set US timetable. They all waited for the US to give the signal, then like synchronized swimmers performed according to choreography pre-determined by the US.

These European governments already were illegitimate in that they had surrendered sovereignty to the EU. Now they're doubly illegitimate in that they've openly exposed themselves as nothing but extensions of US policy. These are puppet governments.

So I'm not just joking when I say that any truly radical parties in Europe, "right" or "left", should declare these fake national governments illegitimate and set up their own shadow presidencies/premierships and governments.

Posted by: Russ | Feb 4 2019 12:58 utc | 69

Interesting the way they wrote on one of my Canadian TV channels---

" Maduro remains defiant under EU pressure to step down.

How dare he!

Peak Hubris!

Posted by: arby | Feb 4 2019 13:07 utc | 70

Maduro to his navy---

""Today the future of Venezuela is decided: if it becomes one more star of the United States flag or if it will continue to fly its eight tricolor stars,” said the president.

“You saw the failed coup plotters yesterday ... with the gringo flag behind them. They no longer hide, they no longer hide their identity. They no longer hide what they have inside, they want to deliver our country, in pieces, to the gringo empire and the local oligarchies.”

Posted by: arby | Feb 4 2019 13:14 utc | 71

Haiti is one of the countries that recognize Guano as president of Venezuela---

"Haiti's economy is reeling as unemployment & hunger is on the rise due to corruption & mismanagement under #PHTK ruling party. On Jan. 31 many businesses shuttered in many parts of the country as exchange rate of HT Gourd to US Dollar reached highest inflation yet.

Posted by: arby | Feb 4 2019 13:22 utc | 72

The Canadian government has denied teleSUR press access to cover the so called "Lima Group" meeting.

Posted by: arby | Feb 4 2019 14:20 utc | 73


Exactly. They are US puppets.
Most obviously what we see is the most obvious top puppets in the EU; nordic, western europe and the baltics.

The meddling is apparent, still the corrupt EU/US governments keep on with their aggression:

Russia: European recognition of Guaido foreign meddling in Venezuela

Posted by: Zanon | Feb 4 2019 14:30 utc | 74

Russ: "So I'm not just joking when I say that any truly radical parties in Europe, "right" or "left", should declare these fake national governments illegitimate and set up their own shadow presidencies/premierships and governments."

This, so totally this, so absolutely and definitively this.
All these governments should be discarded and sued for breaching international norms.
Spain is specially ridiculous. Isn't Sanchez supposed to be "left", and not liberal scum?

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Feb 4 2019 14:34 utc | 75

I would not call the puppet character a Random Guy because he was clearly groomed for the role over a number of years. Yet, he is obviously not a very capable guy because his claim to fame is, for example, stringing a metal wire across the road to kill random motorbike riders in a poor part of Caracas. Selection of such an untalented Murky Guy is another sign of the desperation of the AngloZionist empire to grab resources after the Syrian debacle. As usual, the AZ regime change machine is mightily backed up by billions of puff dollars (printed out of thin air), but among the puppets, the tie-eating Saakashvili is Optimus Prime compared with the Murky Guy’s leadership.

Ha, how 40 tons of the “barbaric relic” which disappeared from Ukraine after a similar “revolution” got to be mentioned also in relation to Venezuela. And nobody even remembers what happened to all the Ghadaffi’s gold. You do not really think that hippo’s Wooden Puppet Guido (lol) will ever get to even touch this banksters’ secret favorite? It will just disappear into the Atlantic Ocean on the way to Guido. Just as carpenter Mastro Geppetto carved his Pinocchio out of block of wood, so did the hippo carve his Guido out of another block of rotting wood. This is why only the Italians, of all Europeans, could see through the mischievous acts of the long-nosed Guido and his puppet master.

Posted by: Kiza | Feb 4 2019 14:42 utc | 76

Yesterday I linked to an AP article here on Charge d’ Affaires James "Jimmy" Story who manages the US embassy in Caracas. In the article was: "Chief among his interlocutors is Rafael Lacava, governor of the central state of Carobobo, who presented him with a painting of two joined fists in the colours of the U.S. and Venezuelan flags that now hangs in the entrance to Story’s official residence in Caracas."
So I looked up Rafael Lacava's twitter here which includes some glimpses of local life in the small state of Carabobo just west of Caracas. Carabobo State was the site of the Battle of Carabobo on 24 June 1821, a decisive win in the war of independence from Spain, and was led by Simón Bolívar. The capital city of this state is Valencia, which is also the country's main industrial center.
The tweets include some from Nicolas Maduro, including warnings that Trump wants another Vietnam in Venezuela.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 15:05 utc | 77

Here's Guaido's twitter with the statements from European lackeys who fell under the US spell.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 15:19 utc | 78

Russia has no choice than to boost the military to stand with Maduro. That may bring violence including possibly the physical elimination of Guaido. That may trigger the West to intervene militarily like in Libya without a UNSC approval.
That would rally the Venezualians around Maduro and the army.
As the american ( except the neocons) are against a war at their borders, Trump will have to find a compromise.
Ultimately the Russians may push for a military takeover once they identified a military leader.
Trump will have to accept that if he does not want to invade Venezuela

Posted by: Virgile | Feb 4 2019 15:33 utc | 79

@76 kiza.. thanks.. that about sums it up..

Posted by: james | Feb 4 2019 16:13 utc | 80

Well, the headline of this post is kinda problematic now ("U.S. Coup Attempt In Venezuela Lacks International Support").

I think it was problematic from the start, b, because 1) several countries had already joined with USA; 2) Europe's falling in line was never really in doubt.

Note: The EU poodles have toed the line on Russia, Iran*, and now Venezuela.

* EU countries pretend to support JCPOA but have dragged their feet. Most commercial interests will not cross USA and the EU states have done little to discourage that. It has been announced that EuroSWIFT will be for humanitarian aid only.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Feb 4 2019 16:32 utc | 81

It is important to remain as properly informed and nuanced as possible given the difficulties of access to reliable information in the world of today. I, therefore, contribute this link in which a Venezuelan sociologist presents a different view of the support Maduro has in the country :

I have no way of knowing the de facto situation, as most of us. I do, however, have experience of such turmoil, divisions, rallies and counter-rallies, lies, threats, etc. from a country, my country, that, sadly, no longer exists. I would say - we should listen to the people on the ground, always with a critical mind.

The implications of this barbaric assault for our world as whole, for South America and, of course, for Venezuela, are far reaching. The role of the EU and its largest states in this barbarism has been consistent and in the service of the US and European ruling class. The EU has been supporting, promoting and awarding the Venezuelan opposition for a long time. Now it is recognising the self-proclaimed person who wants to make Venezuela great again. Yet, my fellow Europeans are more or less silent, more or less indifferent and very badly informed. Being European is becoming a source of deep shame and we Europeans are starting to make excuses when we introduce ourselves, just like the better informed Americans have been doing. But there is a good side to this - all the masks have fallen off now. Everyone can see what the US and the EU really are.
If not today, tomorrow their barbarism will be recognised as their defining feature. One would think that change is then inevitable, even if long overdue.

Posted by: JB | Feb 4 2019 16:42 utc | 82

JB 82
Often older articles written before the current Trump US demonisation push are more accurate.

One piece in the article you linked to does not seem to match events. Maduro was elected president in what international observers said were a fair election. A number of opposition figures chose, of there own accord not to run in the election.
Your article says the majority of Venezuelans do not want Maduro as president, yet on a few weeks ago he was elected as president in a fair election.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Feb 4 2019 17:03 utc | 83

@3 PavewayIV The Bank of England gold issue is pretty crazy to think about. If the Bank of England can just give the Gold of a nation to a guy who just declares himself President without running for office than their is no rule of law regarding the gold stored by BoE from other countries. Surely any country that has assets held by other major UK, US banks should be moving towards retrieving their gold after this fiasco. Its very scary to see the highest parts of the banking sector; use of the Swift system; access to the US dollar and seizure of assets by the US courts being increasingly used in the aggressions of the empire. If Maduro is able to weather this storm and Venezuela is returned to some degree of stasis than Maduro will ask to repatriate all of the gold held in Europe in order to prevent its future seizure in case a Chavista is elected again next election. The BoE can't possibly just steal it based on politics can it?

Posted by: Jason | Feb 4 2019 17:20 utc | 84

One sure sign of Maduro's popularity in Venezuela is the calls for a new election in which Maduro is not allowed to participate. This was the same for Assad in Syria. The US know that in any free and fair election, both Assad and Maduro would at anytime gain the most votes.
Although Maduro was only recently inaugurated, the elections were May 2018. Maduro received 67.8 percent of the vote with a 46 percent voter turnout the next runners received 20.9 and 10.8 percent of the vote.
The wikipedia page has the vote numbers, but the article mostly goes on about Maduro blocking opposition. If this were correct, then the US would not be vehemently opposed to Maduro even running in another election.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Feb 4 2019 18:28 utc | 85

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Canada’s foreign ministry has denied accreditation to Sputnik and RIA Novosti for a meeting of the Lima Group foreign ministers on Venezuela in Ottawa.

Posted by: arby | Feb 4 2019 19:32 utc | 86

arby - thanks for these updates.. i really appreciate it..

Posted by: james | Feb 4 2019 19:46 utc | 87

What an embarrassment - Canada refused press credentials to Sputnik, RIA Novosti, and Telesur for its multi-national celebration of "smart power".

"Richard Walker, a spokesman for Canada's foreign ministry, explained to Sputnik's correspondent that the agency was denied accreditation because it "hasn't been cordial" with Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs Chrystia Freeland in the past."

That is, the Russian media published factually correct information which demonstrated Freeland as less than candid regarding her family history. Her feelings were hurt, and her feelings apparently take precedent in her position as Foreign Minister.

The rational and sensible way forward in Venezuela - international mediation - continues to be rejected by the "interim president", the USA, and Canada's pet Lima Group project. Instead, Guaido called for further "pressure", which is at this point limited to a further tightening of the economic isolation of the country. Canada seems to have anticipated this position by announcing a $53 million aid package which will be focussed on assisting current and future "refugees" headed to Columbia and Brazil.

Posted by: jayc | Feb 4 2019 20:08 utc | 88

@Jason 84

Hugo Chavez has repatriated most of Venezeulan gold whilst still alive. This is how the CIA and the Venezuelan Central Bank could invent the story that a part of this gold is being sent to Russia by Maduro. The 41 ton of Venezuelan gold still remain in Bank of England was a necessary collateral for buying naphtha (for pre-processing oil for export) and subsidised food for the Venezurlan population. Once Western sanctions are imposed on a country, the only way anyone would trade with such credit-worthless country, is if hard assets are used as collateral. Maduro will probably be forced to send a part of the repatriated gold to Shanghai gold market, forcing the Venezuelan Centeral Bank by military force to dispatch, or the Venezuelans will go hungry. Having national gold under the Central Bank control is only second worst to having it under control of the Central Bank’s foreign masters in BoE.

I cannot think of one Central Bank in all the countries of the World which is not under the control of the international (Jewish) banking cartel. If the “revolution” succeeds, the gold inside Venezuela will disappear just as the gold in BoE. Since 2017 Bolshevik Revolution, the revolutions are fueled by gold.

Posted by: Kiza | Feb 4 2019 20:08 utc | 89

@Peter AU 1 | Feb 4, 2019 1:28:47 PM | 85
Maduro was elected president in what international observers said were a fair election.

The May 20, 2018 election it self was declared "free and fair" here by four independent committees who had camped outside the polling places but (as in the US and other "democratic" countries) the shenanigans leading up to the election called the fairness into question.
The elections were boycotted by the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) coalition of opposition parties and dismissed as illegitimate by the United States, the European Union (EU), and14 Western Hemisphere nations (the Lima Group). So we can say for sure that the boycott was a tool to later call the elections illegitimate .
[How ironic since the US doesn't even (de facto) allow "opposition parties" (plural) but restricts the quadrennial show to two look-alike parties, which Ralph Nader referred to as tweedledum and tweedledee. Obviously neither of the two parties would ever boycott an election.]
UN rapporteur to Venezuela and expert on international law Alfred de Zayas:
“I believe in democracy. I believe in the ballot box. If you believe in democracy, you can not boycott an election. The name of the game is that you actually have to put your candidate out and expect that the people will vote for you or against you,” he said, referring to the Venezuelan opposition’s decision to boycott the recent presidential election, which saw Maduro re-elected. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 20:45 utc | 90

@Peter AU 1 | Feb 4, 2019 1:28:47 PM | 85
Maduro was elected president in what international observers said were a fair election.

The May 20, 2018 election it self was declared "free and fair" here by four independent committees who had camped outside the polling places but (as in the US and other "democratic" countries) the shenanigans leading up to the election called the fairness into question.
The elections were boycotted by the Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD) coalition of opposition parties and dismissed as illegitimate by the United States, the European Union (EU), and14 Western Hemisphere nations (the Lima Group). So we can say for sure that the boycott was a tool to later call the elections illegitimate .
[How ironic since the US doesn't even (de facto) allow "opposition parties" (plural) but restricts the quadrennial show to two look-alike parties, which Ralph Nader referred to as tweedledum and tweedledee. Obviously neither of the two parties would ever boycott an election.]
UN rapporteur to Venezuela and expert on international law Alfred de Zayas:
“I believe in democracy. I believe in the ballot box. If you believe in democracy, you can not boycott an election. The name of the game is that you actually have to put your candidate out and expect that the people will vote for you or against you,” he said, referring to the Venezuelan opposition’s decision to boycott the recent presidential election, which saw Maduro re-elected. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Feb 4 2019 20:45 utc | 91

@88 jayc.. yes - what an embarrassment.. canada with freeland is sinking lower and lower in mine and many peoples view..

Posted by: james | Feb 4 2019 20:51 utc | 92

Secretary of state John Kerry. "During my most recent visit to Kyiv, I was deeply impressed by all you have accomplished in the more than two years since the Revolution of Dignity."

Secretary of state Pompeo. "The United States stands with the brave people of Venezuela as they strive for a return to dignity and democracy."

This lot haven't much of an imagination. Just reading thev lines that were printed for the Ukraine show.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | Feb 4 2019 20:59 utc | 93

Peter AU 1 @ 92:

Wash, rinse, repeat ... it's a wonder the battery on the laptop or iPad that gets passed down isn't waterlogged.

Posted by: Jen | Feb 4 2019 21:25 utc | 94

The whole US and vassal States plan was for a swift removal of Maduro, that did not happen thus time now runs in Maduro's favor. There won't a military invasion of Venezuela, there is no apetite for that in Latin America at all, nor the vast majority of the Latin Americans would support any sort of military intervention, even if head of States would promote it, thus leaving two options for the US:
1) A cruise missile attack to destroy Venezuela Military and Government building, following a false flag prepared and conducted by CIA's and Guaidó's supporter, such an attempt would be received worldwide as an aggression, though the false flag would be used as justification, that would not be tolerated by many many countries and could escalate in a ugly way, and or
2) An attempt to assassinate Maduro to be blamed on the Venezuelan Military thus leaving Guaidó out of it to legitimize him for power.
The second is a very likely scenario and may be in progress as of now.

Posted by: Canthama | Feb 4 2019 22:17 utc | 95

I don't get all this talk about invasion and intervention. The CIA could just push a couple of buttons, and from 40,000 feet or so, Maduro would go Poof. How long after that would the capos hang on?

Posted by: David R Smith | Feb 4 2019 22:58 utc | 96

Jackrabbit 81
I was thinking the same thing. The first hopeful thing I read was that Italy was holding back on a combo EU recognition but in the news just now, other countries in the EU joined the US and Israel in recognizing Guaido.

Posted by: Curtis | Feb 4 2019 23:13 utc | 97

The Rothschild reference demeans whatever good points you may have had to say. It is gratuitous and irrelevant. And it will attract accusations, rightly or wrongly, of antisemitism and silly myths about central banks controlling the universe.

Posted by: John G | Feb 5 2019 1:05 utc | 98

@ John G who wrote:
.....and silly myths about central banks controlling the universe.
Now there is a specious comment. Notice that it negates itself by referring to the universe and not to planet earth

Please tell us what you think about central banks controlling nations under the Western umbrella. I understand the central banks to be key elements in controlling the economies and governments of nations and I call BS on your comment.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Feb 5 2019 1:21 utc | 99

Spain is playing with fire. If it thinks it can interfere in some other country's internal affairs, then other countries should be free to interfere in Spain's internal affairs: e.g. Catalunya.

Posted by: Cyril | Feb 5 2019 5:25 utc | 100

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