Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 03, 2019

Venezuela - Forensics Of A Clownish Coup - (Updated)

Tuesdays clownish coup attempt in Venezuela failed. The Trump administration got snookered. It will have to either change its tactic or leave the issue alone. National Security Advisor John Bolton is pressing for a war on Venezuela.

While the Pentagon and the countries neighboring Venezuela are against the use of military force, it is Bolton who has President Trump's ear. The planning for a war seems to progress fast.

Lucas Tomlinson @LucasFoxNews - 00:18 utc- 3 May 2019

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and national security adviser John Bolton just left Pentagon following meeting with acting defense secretary Patrick Shanahan in secure conference room known as ‘The Tank’ to discuss military options for Venezuela, per senior defense official

A similar meeting took place on Wednesday May 1 in the White House.

The head of U.S. Southern Command admits that plans are ready but plays down the chance for a war:

Admiral Craig Faller insisted that the U.S. wanted a peaceful transfer of power but declared that his Southern Command was ready for any scenario. He said his military staff had made 'Day Now' plans to prepare for an immediate change of power as opposition leader Juan Guaido tries to topple Maduro.

'We call it Day Now because there is going to be a day when the legitimate government takes over, and it's going to come when we least expect it - and it could be right now,' Faller said. But Faller, the head of the Southern Command in Latin America, insisted: 'Our leadership's been clear: It has to be, should be, primarily a democratic transition.'

---
UPDATE (May 5):

In a very unusual move U.S. Southern Command put out a press statement about the Pentagon meeting:

Yesterday the commander of U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) was asked by Acting Secretary of Defense, Patrick M. Shanahan, to remain in Washington D.C. to provide a current assessment on the situation in Venezuela and the status on planning for military options
...
U.S. Southern Command stands with the people of Venezuela who are suffering at the hand of the illegitimate Maduro regime and remains prepared to support all options, when requested by senior leadership.

That U.S. Southcom was told to release this, lets me believe that it is part of scare tactic, not of serious war planning. Then again - the last sentence is somewhat confusing. Which "senior leadership" is meant here. The U.S. one or the wannabe leaders Guaidó/López? As Guaidó is recognized as 'interim President' by the U.S. could he ask the U.S. military to help him to 'restore democracy', i.e. request an invasion? Would that be a way for Trump to avoid a Congress vote?

Politico seems to confirm that the current talk of military planning is a head fake:

Two U.S. officials told POLITICO these actions are designed more to rattle Maduro — and Venezuelan military leaders who have been a key source of support for him — than to foreshadow an American military effort in Venezuela.

One can not "rattle Maduro" by tough talk. He hails from a tough neighborhood and has a working class and trade union background. Even the threat of an aircraft carrier offshore of Caracas, as the insane Senator Lindsay Graham demands, would not rattle him.

But even if the current tough talk and military planning is just for show, what happens when the White House recognizes that it does not have any effect? What will be the the next step after that?

End Update
---

Venezuela is not an easy target. Colonel (ret.) Larry Wilkerson, the former Chief of Staff for Secretary of State Colin Powell, writes:

I know the Venezuelan military; I’ve trained some of them.
...
The majority of them, if the U.S. military arrives in Venezuela, will take to the hills – very formidable hills, with jungle-like backdrops – and they will harass, kill, take prisoner from time to time, and generally hold out forever or until the “gringos” leave. We might remember how the North Vietnamese and the Taliban accomplished this; well, so will the Venezuelans.

The opposition is wary of a U.S. intervention:

Many believe U.S. troops could ignite internal conflicts within the military, irregular forces linked to Maduro and criminal cartels. Intervention would also undermine Guaidó’s claim to be a grass roots Venezuelan leader by seeming to confirm that he’s exactly what Maduro has claimed: A puppet of the United States.

A U.S. military intervention would “bring more problems than solutions,” said Carlos Valero, a Guaidó supporter in the National Assembly.
...
Political analyst Felix Seijas, director of the Delphos polling agency in Caracas, says fewer than a fifth of the Venezuelans he has surveyed this year support a military intervention. The numbers have gone up only slightly since the beginning of the year.

There were more warnings from Russia during a Trump-Putin phone call today:

While exchanging views on the situation around Venezuela, the President of Russia underscored that only the Venezuelans themselves have the right to determine the future of their country, whereas outside interference in the country’s internal affairs and attempts to change the government in Caracas by force undermine prospects for a political settlement of the crisis.

The planning and decision making for the next phase of the U.S. attack on Venezuela will take time.

Meanwhile we can continue to analyze why the U.S. coup plan failed so devastatingly.


To arrange for the coup attempt the administration and its Venezuelan proxies, Juan Guaidó and Leopoldo López, talked with many senior Venezuelan officials and officers. They made offers and threats and tried to arrange deals. There was even a written 15 point paper. Most the officials and officers seem to have agreed to cooperate, only to turn around to inform their higher ups.

By talking to so many people the coup plotters made way too much noise. The Venezuelan government seems to have been well informed about the whole plot. It likely was convinced that a coup would fail and let it run its course to embarrass the people behind it. Allowing the coup attempt to happen would also reveal turncoats and spies within the government structures.

Of the many people the coup plotters thought they had convinced to come to their side only one man followed through. It was Manuel Christopher Figuera, the director of the national intelligence service SEBIN, who ordered the release of opposition leader Leopoldo López who was under guard of SEBIN agents.

From a new forensic piece by Bloomberg:

The Trump administration and Guaido’s team are still trying to figure out what went wrong.
...
Lopez’s clandestine release from house arrest by the feared Sebin intelligence agency was but one step in a complex transition negotiated with top aides to Maduro, not all of whom were speaking to one another, according to people in Washington and Caracas familiar with the negotiations and who insisted on anonymity because of the sensitivity of the talks.

And within hours, the deal between the opposition and the Maduro camp was dead. Lopez ultimately sought refuge in the Spanish ambassador’s residence in Caracas, emerging briefly Thursday to talk to reporters. U.S. officials expressed fury at the Venezuelans close to Maduro who they believe double-crossed them.

Those singled out by National Security Adviser John Bolton -- the defense minister, the supreme court president and the head of the presidential guard -- were central players in a large cast discussing how to abandon Maduro and recognize Guaido as the interim president, according to the people familiar with the negotiations.

Lopez was released because the Sebin intelligence chief, General Manuel Christopher Figuera, was fully on board, the people said. As part of the arrangement, Figuera’s wife flew to safety in the U.S. on Sunday. On Tuesday night, after Figuera released a letter explaining his decision, Maduro replaced him as intelligence chief. Figuera has left Venezuela, according to two opposition officials, though they said they don’t where he has gone.

It was also Figuera, the head of SEBIN, who arranged for additional soldiers to augment the 25 or so mercenaries Guaidó had at hand:

Some of Guaidó’s soldiers took the first opportunity to defect, claiming they had been tricked. One of them explained how officers had given them weapons at the Helicoide, the SEBIN headquarters, and told they were going to put down a mass jailbreak.

The Jim Dore Show has video of the soldier explaining how he and his comrades were tricked.

Figuera might also be the source for a "secret dossier" that was peddled to the New York Times. It claims without evidence that Tareck El Aissami, a former vice-president and now industry minister of Venezuela, arranged passports for the Lebanese Hizbullah and was involved in drug dealing. Tareck El Aissami is of Syrian descent:

The dossier, provided to The New York Times by a former top Venezuelan intelligence official and confirmed independently by a second one, recounts testimony from informants accusing Mr. El Aissami and his father of recruiting Hezbollah members to help expand spying and drug trafficking networks in the region.

The quality of the dossier is likely as good as the one the former MI6 agent Christopher Steele created about Donald Trump.

Back to the Bloomberg piece:

Many of us thought, as the weeks went by, that it was astonishing Maduro hadn’t discovered it already but that may be because so many on the inside wanted it to succeed,” one person familiar with the matter said. “They believe Maduro began to get an understanding of what was happening on the 29th and they had to move on the 30th or it would all collapse.”
...
Other speculation falls on Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez who, according to one person close to the situation, was engaged in the negotiations while informing Maduro and his Russian and Cuban allies of the talks. The defense minister was with Maduro when the president gave a speech at the military academy in Caracas Thursday.
...
But it may be that many more balked. There was confusion over who would make the first move, according to a person close to the situation. It could be that there were so many participants that one hand often didn’t know what the other was doing.
...
Elliott Abrams, the State Department’s special envoy for Venezuela, told a Venezuelan television station Wednesday that “a majority of the high command were talking with the Supreme Court and Juan Guaido about a change in government with the departure of Maduro and with guarantees for the military.”

He said the negotiations had created a 15-point document that included a “dignified exit” for Maduro and recognition by the high court of Guaido as interim president with elections within a year. It had been widely assumed that Leopoldo Lopez, a former mayor of a wealthy district in Caracas, would be a leading candidate.

The whole arrangement sounds extremely amateurish. Why talk to so many people? Why not concentrate on the few that really matter? Why not get some guarantees from them? The SEBIN chief who supported the coup had no other choice left as his wife was already in the U.S. and could have been used as hostage. Why were there not similar arrangements for other officials?

Back in March the U.S. withdrew all its staff from its embassy in Caracas. That must have weakened the CIA's capabilities on the ground. It also seems that much of the coordination was done by Elliot Abrams and others in the White House. They were obviously guided by wishful thinking and not by a realistic analysis of Venezuela and of the people leading it.

To believe that a Leopoldo López could win in fair presidential elections in Venezuela is pretty absurd. He has treid to overthrow the government six times. He led the brutal protests in 2014 and is known as an ruthless rightwing operator. His party, Voluntad Popular, describes itself as progressive social-democratic but is at best hard right if not fascists. It holds only 14 of the 163 seats in the National Assembly.

López is for now out of jail but isolated:

On Thursday, a Caracas court issued a warrant for Lopez, revoking his house arrest and ordering him to spend the remaining eight years of his 13-year sentence in Ramo Verde military prison; he was convicted of charges including arson and instigating violence after spearheading anti-government protests. The Spanish foreign ministry said on its website that Lopez would “under no circumstances” be handed over to Venezuelan authorities.

López can stay in the embassy. But as long as he is there Spain will not allow him a political role:

Spain will not permit its embassy to be converted in to a center of political activity by Mr Lopez, or anyone else,” [Spain's acting Foreign Minister Josep] Borrell said on the sidelines of a conference in Beirut.
...
“Lopez has not asked for political asylum because, according to our legislation, for that you must request it while on Spanish territory,” Borrell said adding that while he was at the embassy, there would be a limit to his political activity.

The delusion of the coup plotters in the White House can be seen in their newest spin:

The U.S. is pointing to the breadth of the failed plot as evidence that, no matter how badly it went, Maduro’s days are numbered with the country having plunged into dysfunction and the economy in a shambles. “This was just the tip of the iceberg,” said a senior administration official who asked not to be named. Many close to Maduro were in on the endgame, the official said, and their eagerness to send him packing shows how isolated he is.

The logic makes little sense: "Many people told us they would take our side but stood with Maduro. That shows us that Maduro has lost them and that we will win."

Unfortunately U.S. mainstream media deliver similar stupid analysis:

Talks between opposition leaders and senior Maduro officials that have come to light this week suggest deception in [Maduro's] inner circle. And despite Guaidó’s actions, neither prosecutors nor the pro-Maduro Supreme Court have issued an arrest warrant for him — a sign, his allies say, of just how weak Maduro is.

There was a lot of deception within Maduro's inner circle. But it was the opposition and its backers who were deceived, not Nicolas Maduro.

Putting Guaidó into jail would only make him a martyr. The U.S. would use it to for further bashing. Guaidó running continues to turn himself into a clown.

An energy-balance bracelet wearing model doing soft-erotic photo shootings for GQ (vid) will hardly be taken seriously when it calls for a general strike.

Posted by b on May 3, 2019 at 01:50 PM | Permalink

Comments
« previous page | next page »

The person is a troll who first started off with a completely different accusation about Maduro also without evidence.
Now it is trying to act the helpless innocent who just doesn't know but continues to insert unfounded accusations in every post

It is a liar.

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 8:39:38 AM | 101

@ William Gruff 97

1. I can understand that CNN and Washington Post are mouth pieces for neocon propaganda. But for propaganda to be effective, there must at least be some element of partial truth in what they regularly dish to their subscribers, hence my inquiry.

2. I am wary that the neoliberal hyenas will do to Maduro what they did to Lula in Brazil, hence my advocating for the former to man up and be careful.

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 8:45:40 AM | 102

Witnesses, who must remain anonymous for obvious reasons, have now come forward to verify the claims about Jane's child raping. Since paedophilic monsters would be expected to deny their crimes Jane's insistence of innocence must be disregarded. Is there any proof of innocence? Only links to "credible" sources like the Washington Bezos Post are acceptable.

Really Jane, this isn't an attack or accusation, it is just an honest inquiry.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 4, 2019 8:47:48 AM | 103

@William Gruff, Vasco de Gama, Arby et al

I take it to mean, ladies and gents, that based on your responses so far, you really don't have definitive answers to my inquiry. Thanks for your efforts and time anyway. Have a great day.

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 8:56:28 AM | 104

Several people linked to something called: "Top secret plan to overthrow the Venezuelan dictatorship"

It is a piece by Eric Zuesse who claims to have found a top secret U.S. SouthCom paper that orders SouthCom to create all kinds of trouble in Venezuela. THAT PAPER IS OBVIOUSLY FAKE!

Consider just this part:

Maduro’s corrupt regimen will collapse but regrettably, the divided opposing forces, legitimate defenders of democracy and the well-being of their people, do not have power enough to put an end to the Venezuelan nightmare and the awakening of theirs beloved nation at a luminous dawn, in which the vision of fortune, true peace and tranquility predominate for their fellow citizens.

- The above was not even written by a native English speaker.
- It is abstruse to believe that the U.S. military would use the situational language that is used in the paper in any high command level communication. That would never happen, not even in an informal advice.
- The paper claims to be a "plan" but it does not even have the structure of a "plan" which in the military is a well defined formal document.
- It is abstruse to believe that the U.S. military would be tasked with undefined generalities like "Undermining the decadent popular support to Government."

Eric Zuesse tried several times to become attached to this blog or published here. My answer was always "No way!" The reason is that he pushes out nonsense like the above. I for one don't trust anything he writes.

Please stop linking him here.

Posted by: b | May 4, 2019 9:01:47 AM | 105

Jane @105

So you are basically admitting that you are a child rapist? Please do not have a great day as that likely involves abusing children.

It is unfortunate that the model provided illustrating the rhetorical and logical flaw in your posts did not lead you to understanding where you went wrong. Perhaps, though, it helped tune other readers into how bad logic is used to try to emotionally manipulate them.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 4, 2019 9:04:49 AM | 106

Re the May 5 update.
I'm with b and Politico. The Pentagoons don't want to look as though their plot has lost momentum and felt the need to say SOMETHING. But, having no coherent plan, they decided to publish a list of the doofuses, clowns and daydreamers in charge(?) instead. And when the list was printed out they realised that they still had NOTHING to say, so they published the list and hoped no-one would notice that it isn't a plan.
It's 'interesting' that they didn't even talk about Russian and Chinese meddling in Venezuela.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 4, 2019 9:09:43 AM | 107

Jane 74

Seems to repeating the nonsense that the MSM has been puttin gout since at least January, to wit:

A regime change is justified because Maduro is corrupt.
It beats me how anyone can fall for such an obvious canard and illogic. This was spouted to me repeatedly by some very intelligent college classmates (Ivies) who were getting their "news' and their "views" and also their "logic" from the NYT.

You can lelad a horse to water but you can't make him or her drink. there are plenty of links here for Jane to follow up an dinform herself. But if she is determined to follow the "Maduro is corrupt and this jsutifies the USA removing him" meme there is not much more to be done to help her, other than to suggest that she keep quiet and not rile others here who have successfully worked their way, mentally and logically, through the "maduro is corrupt" meme as a justification for regime change. Just go to the NYT if you want to read all about Maduro's "corruption." Does Jane also have "questions" about "withholding humanitarian aid" as a "reason" for regime change?

There may well be corruption in Maduro's administration---there is corruption in every single government on earth; that is one reason why people are ambitious to become part of governments---but it is not germane to the current events in Ven, except when used as trollbait, which must be called out as such.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 9:21:37 AM | 108

@ Really 109

Hints of corruption. Insinuations of corruption. Those can be fatal weaknesses if not addressed or refuted because a determined enemy will milk that for all its worth to serve their objectives. Look what happened to Lula in Brazil

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 9:32:28 AM | 109

b 106

Huh.

I have often wondered about Eric Zuesse.
This is the first time I have seen someone come out and say to stay clear of him.
I have also wondered about what his own mother tongue is, and where he "comes from" both literally and figuratively. His writing often verges on the unreadable.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 9:34:50 AM | 110

RE
"I take it to mean, ladies and gents, that based on your responses so far, you really don't have definitive answers to my inquiry. Thanks for your efforts and time anyway. Have a great day."

Well, that does sound a bit snarky.
I doubt that Jane is actually a woman.
Not that it matters, but the feminine "Jane" handle might be part of the "ignorant little woman" pose of asking, Candide-like, with big baby blues blinking, for information regarding Maduro's corruption.

I certainly hope that women and men here are assumed to be equally intelligent and capable of logical thought and self-education. We are all learning.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 9:42:06 AM | 111

@99 Jane

1. Is Maduro corrupt? Yes. No. Maybe.

2. Does he have connections with drug syndicates? Yes. No. Maybe.

3. Does he bribe his military officials for their loyalty? Yes. No. Maybe.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

You've just described 2/3 of the Latin / South American nation leaders or for that matter the world especially the US. Do you really think the US has been in Afghanistan for 20 years to bring freedom and democracy? The Taliban had completely eliminated poppy growing until the USA arrived. Within a couple of years they were having bumper crops.

If your questions are answered 'yes' then the US need to invade the world at large,,,,,,,,,,,, including itself.

Posted by: ken | May 4, 2019 9:42:11 AM | 112

"Jane" came here to push FUD (Fear Uncertainty and Doubt). That's what exactly what the 'handmaidens' of the CIA intended when they published the smears against Maduro. I see "Jane" as another 'handmaiden'.

The 'tell' is how "Jane" reacts to Gruff's comments. LOL. Great work Gruff!

She is clearly articulate and is smart enough to have found her way to MoA. She likely knows exactly what she's doing.

The logical place to make inquiries is the people who are making the accusations. Thus, she should be / would be asking her questions to NYTimes, Washington Post, CNN, etc. if she really wanted answers about the evidence-free accusations.

Instead she comes here - and to other alt-media sites?.

<> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>

Sasha is another recent commenter that has also pushed FUD. Are Sasha and "Jane" the same person? There are similarities in writing style.

@b can you check the logs to see if the IPs match?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 9:52:47 AM | 113

@ken 113

Thank you for your response. That's the closest to a straight answer to my inquiry so far.

And no, I do not in any way subscribe to the neocon rationale for intervention/aggression in Venezuela. I've been unduly misinterpreted here, perhaps because I wasn't clear enough, in which case I apologize.

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 9:55:23 AM | 114

The objective of US is disrupt destoy rebuild repeat

Posted by: jared | May 4, 2019 9:58:02 AM | 115

Jared, I think you have the "rebuild" part wrong. I know that sometimes there are mentions of funds for rebuilding but I actually never see any rebuilding happening.

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 10:10:16 AM | 116

@jackrabbit 114

Geez, what's with you folks around here? Can we not even have an honest conversation about Maduro's weaknesses as President, offer suggestions on how to mitigate those weaknesses and thus prevent the neoliberal takeover without being branded a CIA plant?

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 10:14:45 AM | 117


"The NOZ also published that Berlin is responding to a request of Spain's government, which has asked its European partners not grant diplomatic status to Guaido's representatives."

https://www.telesurenglish.net/news/Germany-Wont-Recognize-Guaidos-Envoy-as-Ambassador-20190327-0018.html

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 10:25:07 AM | 118

Accusations of 'child rape' and "drug trafficking" are constantly being aimed at socialist reformers. Daniel Ortega was, I recall, accused of 'raping' his adopted daughter or some such nonsense. Like the allegations against Assange, these charges of sexual 'crimes' are a handy escape route for political hipsters (see Jacobin @15 above) to extricate themselves from alliances with people of whom their bosses/patrons/employers disapprove. Thus putting their salaries in jeopardy.
The 'drug trafficking' allegations are classic projection- drug trafficking has long been controlled by the CIA and narcotics gangs double as fascist death squads all over Latin America (as well as elsewhere).
Underneath the hysterical attacks on Maduro and Venezuela is the rarely acknowledged reality, which is that the Bolivarians are engaged in a very mild experiment in social reform. It is almost municipal socialism, with the great emphasis being put on practical improvements in the lives of very poor people. The literacy campaign, one of the great enthusiasms of that educational enthusiast Chavez, designed to enable people to make up their own minds is a typical example. Another is the work done with Cuba to build a health care system for millions who lived far away-literally and figuratively-from modern medical practise. The Constitution and the voting system-proof against all outside or state tampering- were other simple commonsense improvements.
Chavez really could not bring himself to believe that such basic reforms would actually bring down on Venezuela the wrath of the Empire-remember when he gave Obama a copy of Eduardo Galleano's 'Open Veins..'? A good and generous man Chavez simply didn't understand that anyone but a monster could be against what he was doing.
And that attitude persists. The Empire is a monster, evil organised into a system.
As to rape: Latin America is founded on centuries of rape, going back to the first Spanish 'conquistadors'. Rape is the basis of the entire demography of Latin (and not just Latin) American society.
It is one of the saddest commentaries on the debauched nature of our politics that, just as 'feminists' are cheerleaders for imperialist aggression so too are congressional 'leaders' of the black communities in the United States who seem indifferent as the most successful risings by slaves and their descendants in history are being put own by an Empire which understands the danger of allowing the precedent of popular democracy to exist. And then there is Bernie Sanders-imperialism is political cholera, it infects everything that touches it.

Posted by: bevin | May 4, 2019 10:36:26 AM | 119

Jane @119

Yes, we can have an honest discussion about Maduro's weaknesses as president. It happens quite a bit, in fact. He should nationalize Empresas Polar and other capitalist power bases in Venezuela. He should give more attention to building public enterprises that can diversify Venezuela's economy and make it more resilient to blockade. He can work more with the Russians and Chinese to build a broader domestic petrochemical industry so Venezuela is less dependent upon exports of crude oil to countries with refining capabilities. There are plenty of legitimate criticisms of the Venezuelan government, but drug trafficking and corruption do not make the list because they are not presented with any supporting evidence.

Consider:

"I've heard Maduro never changes his underwear! That's gross! How can he stay president if he smells bad all of the time? Let's have an honest discussion about Maduro's underwear."

How can we have a discussion about such an obviously bogus request? Far more meaningful is a meta-discussion about why you would make such a request in the first place.

1. Is Jane a neocon astroturf troll? Yes. No. Maybe.

Of course a neocon astroturf troll would claim not to be a neocon astroturf troll, so your assertions to the contrary are pointless. Please provide a link to a "credible" source like the CIA News Network that proves you are not a neocon astroturf troll.

I am surprised that you have yet to figure out the flaw in your logic... unless you actually are a neocon astroturf troll and are thus deliberately avoiding logic. If your post was an honest mistake and you are not a troll then prove it by explaining the flaw that I referred to above and that I have modeled multiple times now.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 4, 2019 10:42:35 AM | 120

Way back in this thread Jane asserted that for propaganda to be effective there must be an element of truth.

Huh?

Jane: Spot the "element of truth" here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmfVs3WaE9Y

Posted by: Evelyn | May 4, 2019 10:43:42 AM | 121

@arby
The disrupt brings power to bureaucrats who well serve their masters
The destroy funds the MIC
The rebuild serves the needs of banks and (other) globalists as we rebuild it as it serves our preferences (yes this part is more tricky but money is made)
The repeat is because why not

I dont know that I have it right in every detail but people who route for the opposition... I question who's interests they are truly serving.

Some people became very rich in all our "failures"

Posted by: jared | May 4, 2019 10:52:54 AM | 122

next!!

Posted by: james | May 4, 2019 10:54:44 AM | 123

Here is an optimistic anticipatory PR shoot of Random Guy-do.

In the spirit of light relief and fun times, and drinks all round on me at the bar, and maybe some tangential insights, let’s take a look :)

https://youtu.be/n2Isx60WhUA

I found the symbolism curious and weak.

He is clearly not very happy and is rather ill at ease with the whole biz. Which makes him look like Mr. Normal, so is calculated — but that is a terrible idea for a ‘Leader’ unless it is accepted pop PR - like drinking beer with the proles ha ha yippee I’m here crowd mingling.

The action element of this script shows him getting dressed up - the standard white shirt with cuffs rolled up (Everyman, again) is augmented with rolling them down, donning a tie, and a suit jacket (bespoke, very obviously so, but not matching the pants > Everyman but maybe not..)

Which matches the ‘Random’ nickname attributed: here is an ordinary person, a regular Juan, Joe, who takes on ‘power’ by donning ‘upper-class’ clothes, in public; a New role, a New life, awaits him around the corner. The attempt at proletarisation is not effective or interesting.

Juan is wearing a bead-letter bracelet, which is a kiddo-young teen thing. It reads VZLA. This clashes with the standard ‘donning the suit’ narrative - nobody who is trying to ‘smarten up’ with ‘good suits’ would wear such a thing.

The only other leaders in the world who are associated with such bracelets are Obama and Biden, who have (reportedly) exchanged them as gifts. (I won’t go into that here.)

The pin he wears in his lapel is most likely the Venez. tri-color flag without other additions (stars, etc.) One can’t be sure because B_W, colors awol, but it could hardly be anything else.

The tie he puts on sports a quatrefoil (the official term, = 4-leaf) pattern. Symbolic in many areas, fields, see wiki link, the tie, in this context, was probably just chosen as a ‘regular, neutral’ thing, signalling simplicity (e.g. 4 corners, 4 directions), good luck (e.g. 4 leaf clover), etc.

Guaido is an evangelical, he was baptised in Jerusalem, …. I could not find ANY reference to that thru search engines, scrubbed, but it is true, afaik. In any case he Mega-supports moving the embassy to Jerusalem, wants closer ties, etc. (Goog: Guaido Jersusalem.) Isr. was the first to ‘recognize’ him.

The exploiting (some time ago..) for some PTB of an evangelical adherence to then obscure it and cover it up is also not a good sign for future trajectory.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quatrefoil

Posted by: Noirette | May 4, 2019 10:57:09 AM | 124

bevin: imperialism is political cholera

At the heart of imperialism is an accident of history that unscrupulous opportunists elevate into a doctrine of supremacy. It then becomes "political suicide" to dispute the doctrine.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 10:57:44 AM | 125

Jared, the only actual rebuilding I have seen in any of their ventures is the rebuilding of the poppy fields in Afghanistan.

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 10:58:52 AM | 126

@ Evelyn with the link of human atrocity to other humans.....thanks.....I don't go down that rabbit hole very often because I am a sensitive person with a TBI but tickling the dragon's tail is cathartic at times.

Please understand that there are centuries of people being inhumane to others because it is built into the "social contract" that is only defined by the reality we find ourselves in. My one note Samba at MoA has been that the core inhumanity we face is the jackboot of global private finance.

Thank you Venezuela for that last swipe of paint that puts the elite of centuries in a corner where they blow us all up or learn to play well with others

Thank you China and Russia for Showing the world a different and more humane way to organize ourselves on this fragile planet

And thanks to all of the compassionate, sharing, caring, loving people still left in our world

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 4, 2019 11:00:46 AM | 127

Gruff @120

FYI: That last comment from the 'handmaiden' seemed to me to be a parting shot.

Good riddance.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 11:07:37 AM | 128

Here one article about Bolsonaro and evangelicals, imho Random Guy-do, similar or even identical scene, shunted down / surpressed from 'top' news links.

Reuters re Bolsonaro

Posted by: Noirette | May 4, 2019 11:09:48 AM | 129

@Arby
OK, you got me. I cant think of recent examples of the rebuild phase - maybe oil fields of iraq and former syrian. But I still think thats part of the concept. Maybe Colobia and Ecuador and Panama would be exaples of where we disrupted and are now rebuilding.

OK so just disrupt and destroy - it still works.
Empire of Chaos

Posted by: jared | May 4, 2019 11:28:10 AM | 130

Noirette

Very interesting and important. Thanks.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 11:33:48 AM | 131

@psycho

Russia, China, compassion.
One of these things is not like the others.

I suggest, dont look for a hero.
There will be none.

That is the mistake that Maduro made (he is Trumps brother) - he took that thing about "international law" a litle too literally, they are more like suggest applicable in an alternate universe.

Posted by: jared | May 4, 2019 11:38:55 AM | 132

Barovsky says:

What must these gringos think of? I think they live on another planet, composed entirely of their own propaganda

well, in a way, they do...having been geographically isolated and subjected to the likes of a hundred years of Hollywood and Madison Avenue, a phenomenon unprecedented in the human story.

the super heroes trope is quite apt, actually, and i think when they breathed nuclear fire in 1945 our national ethos was crystallized. now we have super powers, too!

and underlying the fiction of all this exceptionalism was a sugar pill called the American Dream, but…

What if the dreaming part is actually driving us insane? What if we have engineered a society in which fantasy has so grotesquely over-run reality that coping with daily life is nearly impossible (link)

Posted by: john | May 4, 2019 11:42:37 AM | 133

@119 bevin.. interesting and thought provoking comments.. thanks.. i like your opening lines especially as it applies to the ot thread at hand..

@ noirette.. thanks for all that.. i think that is relevant and important too as jr notes..

Posted by: james | May 4, 2019 12:04:47 PM | 134

@Noirette Here is an optimistic anticipatory PR shoot of Random Guy-do.

I remarked on it and linked it at the end my piece above.

Posted by: b | May 4, 2019 12:06:34 PM | 135

caitlin johnstones article this morning Venezuela: Establishment Talking Points Translation Key is fun to read..

b, i saw the picture, but i missed watching the vid.. noirette was further prompting and i found the comments about evangelical connections and etc especially interesting in light of these mother fuckers pompeo and etc looking to spill more innocent blood for their born again craziness..

Posted by: james | May 4, 2019 12:13:26 PM | 136

Jane is obviously a propaganda tool or troll.

When she uses "Maduro's weakness" it implies that he has some. Typical "Fear, uncertainty, doubt" tactic.

Just don't bother with that Jane character.

Posted by: b | May 4, 2019 12:16:04 PM | 137

"Jair Bolsonaro, has abruptly cancelled a US trip to receive a prestigious award following a storm of protest over his history of homophobic, racist and misogynist remarks and plans to erode environmental protections in the Amazon."

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/may/03/jair-bolsonaro-brazil-us-visit-cancelled-protest

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 12:24:32 PM | 138

@William Gruff 120

You're bringing up lots of non-sequiturs. The accusations about Maduro's corruption are either perfectly probable or falsifiable, him being a public official wherein a duly constituted body could make a fair determination if allowed as such.

Absent that for the time being, you are right to assert there is no proof for such a narrative. Nonetheless that's the same exact narrative being constantly peddled by mainstream media supporting the neocon aggression as well as, of course, the opposition party in Venezuela; and over time after relentless repetition it seems to be getting some traction. So what do agnostics such as myself do to counter such damaging narratives to some friends who actually believe it? I came to this site hoping that there are folks here who might have inside real ground knowledge on Venezuelan affairs.

And what do I get for doing that? Accused of being a CIA plant and an astroturf troll among others. Isn't that wonderful?

Have a nice day again Mr. Gruff.

Posted by: Jane | May 4, 2019 12:27:10 PM | 139

Juan Carlos Monedero interviews Venezuelan ambassadro to Spain Mario Isea

Juan Carlos Monedero: Ambassador, are there dialogue plans ?, because the situation in Venezuela does not seem sustainable, the confrontation, fed from outside and from within.... seems sensible that the dialogue plans reach a good port and seek an institutional solution....

Ambassador Isea: The president has ratified the call for dialogue. The "self-proclaimed" raised that he did not believe in dialogue, obviously is directed by those who do not want dialogue. But I think the failure they have had at this moment is moving to discussion many of the factors that had been supporting them and some that allowed themselves being carried on by the American pressure, the Lima Group etc ... They have to be reflecting, because it is clear that there is no internal leadership ...

Juan Carlos Monedero: Ambassador, those of us who know Venezuela and Latin America deeply regret that our country, that Spain, is not collaborating in the dialogue, except by the figure of former President Zapatero, but the current government of Pedro Sánchez does not seem to be helping much....

Ambassador Isea: If you really want to help us, you should ask for the blockade and sanctions on us to be lifted, and encourage them to facilitate dialogue.

Juan Carlos Monedero: Well, it does not seem too radical a call ... To raise the blockade so that people can eat, so that there are medicines, so that there is economic stability, and dialogue, so that they reach an agreement.

Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 12:27:38 PM | 140

@ james with the discussion about evangelical influence.

This is the interesting Gordian knot in the Western social way. I posit the deadly embrace of the monotheistic religions with the God of Mammon one to rule them all (so to speak) was locked in at the end of the Enlightenment period that humanity didn't quite make it through.

I say didn't make it through to speak to the evolution from the Might-Makes-Right/Faith based structure to one that put reason and logic ahead of faith. That faith bias is being played for all its worth today by the God of Mammon folk and it is sad to see the rest of the monotheistic religions staying "stupid" about their fealty to the God of Mammon cancer in their beliefs.

Thankfully the rest of the world can see the inhumane hypocrisy at evidence between the talk/walk of monotheism.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 4, 2019 12:34:55 PM | 141

@140 I believe Spain is going to be key to resolving the situation in Venezuela. As an ex-colonial power they have a responsibility to facilitate negotiations. Of course they may argue that Venezuela is independent and should take care of it's own affairs but the Spanish government was very quick to endorse Guiado. That makes one wonder how independent Spain is from the US.

Posted by: dh | May 4, 2019 12:44:53 PM | 142

@90 BM

Thank you for taking the time to write out the currents and layers of the mileu in which the Venezuelan security state monitored the US approach to its own self. I was kind of thinking all that but couldn't put it into words. Allow me to quote you, because we're on page 2 of comments now, and I'd like it to see more daylight:

Therefore I think that this is just another clever aspect of the snookering. Probably in the initial stages of the dialogue, the Defense Minister and Supreme Court Chief Justice deliberately and fully as part of the deception encouraged the putschists to consider making contact with 2 or 3 officials "who might I think be interested in cooperating" but actually trusted colleagues. Together they gradually persuade the putschists to talk to a couple more, a couple more, including trusted core, somewhat untrusted officials to be tested, and maybe also a larger band of somewhat trusted but not altogether sure. The most trusted core are in on the plot and have horizontal communications, while the others are on their own and have only vertical communications so they cannot see the overall picture. Al the while the intelligence services are monitoring all the communications and discussing the results with the core, to make sure everything is under their control. It is all one big and thorough counterintelligence operation, including Russian advisors. Excellent job done!

Very well illustrated. If anyone missed that comment there's more, worth going back to.

Posted by: Grieved | May 4, 2019 12:53:35 PM | 143

@91 BM

Part of the reason we're on page 2 of the comments of course is the flow of interruptions that b has now formally advised us not to respond to, and which you called out in this comment. I'm sorry that I interacted with that disruption - I thought it would end there with my request for sources, and I miscalculated the time and effort it would eventually waste. My apologies to all commenters. The first lesson the Internet ever learned was not to feed the flames.

I was trying to enact a maxim of Caitlin Johnstone's which is essentially that, when challenged to supply links or explanations, always make the challenger perform more work first. Always throw it back on the challenger or disruptor to provide sources or reasons, instead of volunteering all your own good work, which will prove to be pearls cast before swine. And so it was today.

Again, my apologies to all for not simply staying silent.

Posted by: Grieved | May 4, 2019 12:56:50 PM | 144

Thanks to b for this post and to many commenters for links - I seem to have lost my previous comment, will be back when time allows to read. I don't want to repeat in case it appears, but just was adding that repeated failed attempts at a coup don't always succeed - Cuba and Russia are examples of what I would call successful nationbuilding resistance to efforts to overthrow and/or undermine. As karloff1 pointed out, an educated population actually consolidates behind leadership in such situations - and even though conflict is ongoing, I would place Syria in that grouping also.

Posted by: juliania | May 4, 2019 1:15:38 PM | 145

Everyone – “Jane” is deliberately trolling the site.

She is using a logical fallacy – demanding that others on the site prove a negative, which is impossible to do. Because it cannot be done, and individuals continue respond to her without pointing that out, she gets to keep putting up post after post after post including the phrases “Maduro is corrupt” and "has ties with drug syndicates.”

She knows what she's doing, and what she's doing is NOT seeking after the truth. Her constant retreating into injured innocence is a standard sock-puppet device.

She won't get paid any more if no one responds to her. Let's just let her dangle . . .

Posted by: AntiSpin | May 4, 2019 1:16:44 PM | 146

"Pence Tries to Dismiss Ilhan Omar on Venezuela, Fails Miserably"

link

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 1:22:32 PM | 147

now that you mention it, "why haven't you stopped beating your grandmother?" is an inquiry.

so? why haven't you?

Posted by: Jim R | May 4, 2019 1:30:40 PM | 148

Jane @139

True, the CIA's "Operation Mockingbird" mass media will reinforce false narratives with "relentless repetition". CIA and State Department social media trolls and hasbara crusaders also force false memes in various online fora utilizing "relentless repetition". This, by the way, is precisely what you are doing, thus the accurate conclusion that you are an astroturfing troll. Isn't that wonderful?

B @137

I apologize for the tangent and I acknowledge that, in general, it is a bad policy to feed trolls. This kind of FUD is relatively subtle and pernicious, though, and can take root if it isn't destroyed. While I doubt that any of the regular posters here would be taken in by this technique, I suspect that there may be several times as many casual lurkers as posters scanning the discussion and I fear they could be infected by this manufactured uncertainty if it isn't addressed. Furthermore, I think highlighting the techniques used by professional trolls to spread FUD, even though it results in a (hopefully brief) divergence from the principal discussion topic, could be useful for inoculating lurkers against these techniques. In other words, I do not make these posts to convince the trolls of the evil of their ways, but rather to neutralize their narrative payloads and to hopefully equip a few other readers to spot similar disinformation operations elsewhere in their Internet travels.

If you choose to prune the discussion to rid it of these digressions I will not take offense in the slightest.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 4, 2019 1:32:39 PM | 149

also, how can I delete my own comment?

was responding to a troll post in the first page, and now I see that it is quite redundant.

Posted by: Jim R | May 4, 2019 1:36:03 PM | 150

"Venezuela: Socialist Party Headquarters Torched, Attacked"

On teleSUR

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 1:41:51 PM | 151

@b, thanks for putting in your take on the Zuesse piece.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 4, 2019 1:45:13 PM | 152

donkeytale @ 96 said;"Global capitalism is rushing headlong towards a worldwide fascist takeover and alt media is consumed with a fake "new cold war" which amounts to nothing more than business competition between competing Military Industrial Complexes for arms sales among fascist US and fascist Russia."

That's kinda' my take also. Especially the "business competition" part, which, IMO, is the driving force behind most of the globes struggles. Add religious intolerance to the mix, and there ya' go, a very potent problem.

Posted by: ben | May 4, 2019 1:48:56 PM | 153

Missing link:
Venezuela: Socialist Party Headquarters Torched, Attacked

Broken link:
Pence Tries to Dismiss Ilhan Omar on Venezuela, Fails Miserably

Posted by: William Gruff | May 4, 2019 1:51:17 PM | 154

@ Jane

According to the principle of Rule of Law, the burden is on the accuser, not the accused. Innocence is presumpted.

But seriously, it is highly unlikely Maduro and, by extension, the whole high command of the Bolivarian Revolution, is some kind of narco-conspiracy government.

There are two main reasons that corroborate to this:

1) if you're a marco-state, you basically operate on patronage. Well, money is not a problem to the USA, so ot wouldn't be a problem for the Americans to demolish them in Latin America. Put in simpler words, if Maduro's government depended on bribery/corruption, the USA would've already outbid it.

2) history shows us that the corrupt members of the Maduro government were precisely the ones who turncoated, thus being successfully coopted by the USA (CIA + NSA). If the Bolivarian Revolution wasn't a revolution at all, April 30th coup attempt would've been successful.

Posted by: vk | May 4, 2019 1:54:10 PM | 155

"Have a nice day again "

Why keep repeating that?
Again, it sounds like snark. This is not how one addresses those from whom one is genuinely trying to learn. At least, not in my book. Not polite. One should show respect for those who are more knowledgeable than one is, and also those whom one is asking for help. If the ask is genuine and not a pose or provocation.

As for what to tell friends who regurgitate the nonsense they hear on the MSM, you can provide them with good information to replace the garbage they are regurgitating: that is, links and references to solid analyses, of which there are many out there. If you had asked for advice as to what some good sources of such analyses are (many linked here, but there are others not so often linked here), then it would be easier to take you seriously.

However, "we must discuss Maderos' weaknesses" is not a good place to start. That is accepting the framing of the MSM, which would have news consumers and MSM junkies think that this ongoing coup is about "Madero's weaknesses." It is not. So, you tell them that (if you actually understand it yourself, which you seem not to). It is about implanting ridiculous pretexts and outright lies used to build support for regime change in the brains of people who normally think of themselves as small-d democrats. This is the job of the MSM, to "turn" those people into supporters of international crimes by use of buzzwords such as "drug cartels" and "weaknesses," and "chaos," and "humanitarian disaster." In order to counter the BS you must yourself grasp that it is BS, and how it is being used. You do not seem to have that grasp.

People who don't recognize the garbage and lies they are consuming are very hard to influence with "good" information. They keep coming back with some kind of "Gotcha!" argument (a syndrome very much on view in connection with the Mueller hoax--now many of these have gone strangely silent . . .).

In the case of the Venezuela coup they will start to see the "light" not because of anything you say or suggest they read, but when they notice that the rest of the world is starting to pull away from the nonsense narrative provided. These types of people, informing themselves via the WaPo and the NYT, take a looong time to clear their systems of the toxics info and self-regard. If they ever do. They are followers, not leaders. They are addicted to their idea of themselves as liberal and "informed." Despite the huge weight of evidence that the MSM are not reliable and purvey lies, they continue to be addicted to injecting bad info into their brains.

You look a bit the same. Pretending to be sincere. The more you say "Have a nice day" the more plastic and sarcastic you sound. It is not hard to differentiate between someone who asks a genuine question and one who had some kind of agenda behind the line of questioning.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 2:00:04 PM | 156

Russia appears to be taking the threat of a US attack on Venezuela seriously.
In Syria, Trump's first missile attack was pure show, the second direct attack on Syria was intended to do as much damage to Syrian forces as possible, though still carefully to avoid Russian installations and Troops. The cleanup of Idlib was called off after US threats to attack if Syria and Russia went ahead with the offensive. Part of the reason for calling it off in the face of US threats may have been that Erdogan would have joined the US.
Although Obama commenced hybrid war against Syria, there were no direct US military attacks on Syria - even the attack on Deir Ezzor which I believe was pre approved by Obama was a covert operation rather than overt with the US claiming it made a mistake.

Posted by: Peter AU 1 | May 4, 2019 2:00:08 PM | 157

WG @ all. Thank you...

Posted by: ben | May 4, 2019 2:04:52 PM | 158

"As Guaidó is recognized as 'interim President' by the U.S"

and by the EU... puke!

Posted by: Mina | May 4, 2019 2:06:47 PM | 159

WG @154

Thanks, I tried

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 2:14:16 PM | 160

136
Loved the Caitlin Johnstone list.
Great laff break.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 2:24:36 PM | 161

At the risk of beating a dead troll, Jane's approach is classic "concern troll": the commenter who purports to seek information and clarification in good faith about matters that cause them "concern".

They come in various flavors, but generally present themselves as well-meaning innocents who merely seek to "learn", or introduce "troubling" information or possibilities that they want to better analyze and understand.

One of many "tells" is that they typically begin with a familiar ostentatious deference, modesty, and humility, paradoxical as this sounds-- either explicitly or implicitly asserting that their only bias or agenda is to seek honest dialogue to clear up those troubling concerns and advance a discussion that curiously failed to address them.

This ingenuous posture sets up Phase Two of the concern troll's incursion: when the troll's ruse is recognized and "outed", the troll then retreats to a defensive posture. The original "concerns" are augmented by either a plaintive or self-righteous protest at being mistaken and attacked for bad-faith participation.

The concern troll thus attempts to leverage justifiable criticism to go one up and continue the incursion from the moral high ground. The critics are in turn accused, usually more in sorrow than anger, of demonstrating their own ill-will and insular biases.

Determining if a new commenter is a concern troll is not an exact science, but the Duck Test is a reliable method: if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck. Jane passes the Duck Test with flying feathers.

Posted by: Ort | May 4, 2019 2:25:04 PM | 162

@ William Gruff with the link to the Venezuela vandalism

Thanks for the link. The story is a bit small in the big picture. A couple of tires set on fire by chickenshits at 3AM does not make a revolution.

I suspect the propaganda media will make into something bigger but that is what they do now.

It is also good to see Pence put in his place and made to look so hypocritical by a woman. Fortunately or unfortunately, whichever suits, Pence is a big incentive to keep Trump alive.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 4, 2019 2:37:37 PM | 163

@Jane

Well I suspect you have left the site rather than attempt to continue a rational discussion with the individuals who are now policing the discussion.

I would not myself know if it was your intention to "troll" it did not particularly appear that way to me. Many people here seem to equate difference of opinion with trolling. Not going to dwell on it.

This site could do with a bit more tolerance. There is very limited allowed range of opinion.

My suggestion would be do not respond to personal attacks, that is what the self appointed moderators rely on to frustrate other view points. Simply state your point and move on.

On the point of Maduro and corruption, Id say incompetence is in itself a form of corruption (eg Trump administration). I believe he is guilty of incompetence too bad becsuse Chavez seemed pretty adept. Sadly I also have no links to prove my point.

If Maduro is genuine I suggest he would offer to step aside at the end of his term.

Have a wonderful rest of your day.

Posted by: jared | May 4, 2019 2:42:18 PM | 164

@141 psychohistorian.. hopefully this evangelical nightmare will end some time soon.. it is amazing how the have created this bond with israel-zionism and want to act like vampires on the world stage together..

@143 grieved.. thanks for highlighting one of the many posters here at moa that i enjoy reading - BM - almost always insightful..

@154 wg... thanks for your posts and the links @154 too.. interesting reading..

Posted by: james | May 4, 2019 2:42:23 PM | 165

The wannabe historian Eric Zuesse is often published by Strategic Culture Foundation and elsewhere. IMO, his heart's in the right place but he makes too many errors to be a credible historian. Unfortunately, I don't have any specific examples I can link to at the moment; but he seems to supply at least one important error per essay. The result for me is I don't read his stuff anymore. Yes, I know we all make mistakes; but, we are in an information war with BigLie Media and its allies within several governments, which makes it paramount that we get our facts correct and stories freed from fallacies.

As with every previous Outlaw US Empire folly, it comes to believe its own propaganda; thus, the attempt to "scare" Maduro. I've suggested this before: Go to Maduro's Twitter page and look at the videos showing his activities out in the open with basically no protection as with the May Day festivities. As opposed to being "scared," Maduro exudes absolute confidence which as a vibe is picked up by the citizenry at large--"Nothing to fear but fear itself" could easily be his Mantra. Or put another way: The Force is with Him--bigtime.

I submit that it's the Neocons who are timid and fearful for their plans backfire and they have no choice but to substitute lies for truth--they are 100% puffed-up by their delusions of grandeur. But when we see them, they're as naked as jay-birds--quite the obscene sight!

Posted by: karlof1 | May 4, 2019 2:45:59 PM | 166

Everything right re: b's analysis of this typical US-interventionism affair in Venezuela. You can't help but smile at the realization that some Latin America countries will not be able to be undermined by the US any longer.

Venezuela is no Arab country in the MENA with religious fundamentalism and at the geographical cradle of civilization where it seems every country is reaching its hand in to stir the pot in their own way. Venezuela, OTOH, is a tightly-controlled with narrow entries and with strong, secular bases who have been introduced to the power of labor organization over decades.

In the Tao Te Ching, the supple is always the victor over the rigid because the hard is likened to the corpse, drained of life. I see in Venezuela, even with the sanctions being leveled at them and these horrific, globalist tactics which harken back to the Melian Dialogue of Thucydides, that they will remain victorious. It is the dying, rigid empire which must suffer what it must right now. Just have a look at the US leaders in the last thirty years. They are all rigid and stiff ideologues wrt the American empire and its essentialism. They have been thoroughly unable to parse the egregious effects of their immoral stance and how it spells a horrifc reckoning for Joe the Plumber and myself.

Irrespective of my opinion that capitalism and socialism will still not get the fair treatment of a world-histoical Hegelian dialectic to come to a superior framework for human organization, which would hopefully spell the death of the worse limits of both forms of thought, I am happy that the US is still getting punched in the mouth since Syria but am saddened that we were unable to disentangle ourselves from the Sauds and their Yemen-excursion.

Trump is proving that, although able to maneuver himself out of boondoggles to avoid looking as dumb as Bush, Jr., in the end he will prove to be the biggest fool of all: gifted with the golden opportunity to prove himself a hero (and who else could have done this but an absolute maverick who was smart enough to elude the massive warchests of Estab. Dems amd Rethugz in 2016) but squandering it all because, as in nature with the chameleon, the man is unable to bring his true colors forward, tragically destined to wander all the way to his end in utter disguise.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 4, 2019 2:46:21 PM | 167

ben @153

Don't feed the asstroll!

The asstroll's false equivalence is just as damaging as the Jane's FUD. The asstroll says: don't bother with Venezuela, don't fight militarism or zionism you're missing the big picture!

But there IS a Cold War, and the West is the antagonist. The new McCarthyism and new arms race are undeniable. And Venezeula IS important. Just as Syria and Yemen are as well. These are the front lines in global struggle for supremacy.

It never happened. Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn’t happening. It didn’t matter. It was of no interest. The crimes of the United States have been systematic, constant, vicious, remorseless, but very few people have actually talked about them. You have to hand it to America. It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant, even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.
- Harold Pinter. (2005) Nobel Prize Speech.

The asstroll carries water for the Empire. Beware his 'tale'-wagging trickery.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 2:52:53 PM | 168

@Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 12:27:38 PM | 140

Whole interview of Venezuela Ambassador to Spain Mario Isea by Juan Carlos Monedero

I will transcript and translate another section where he suggests thinking of what would had happened if the attack in the surroundings of a US military base had ocurred and also, something nobody has reported so far, he is giving information on what the plans are for Venezuela by Guaidó and his minions and masters in the US, as it is already scripted in an statute which includes the ousting of president Maduro and all of chavistas, dismantling of the Bolivarian Constitution voted in referendum by the people, a remote and blurred possibility of elections, without any pre-established date in the horizon, extendable to "whenever" in case of "technical difficulties", and the reasignation of all the Venezuelan riches. Just a similar scenario to that of the dismantling of the USSR ( no wonder designed by the same looters ) which included the illegalization of the CPSU, rewrititng of Soviet constitution at US style and convenience, and reasignation of USSR riches to oligarchs under control of and designation by the US. Another point he makes is that the accommodation of Leopoldo López at the Spanish Embassy in Caracas could have a secondary gain related to the coming municipal, regional en European elections, in order to cover analyzing the causes of the debacle suffered by the PP. ( I would add a long term goal on prejudizing Spanish interests in Venezuela, which are many, y rotting hisotric diplomatic relations amongst brother countries, in order to diminish Spanish influence there, in case of success in toppling the legitimate Bolivarian government ).


Ambassador Isea: They were not in La Carlota, they never occupied the military base, they were in the vicinity of the military base, on the Francisco Fajardo highway, in a kind of large roundabout, which is the Altamira Distributor.
Imagine what would happen if someone next to the US military base of Rota in Spain does something like this, what would happen to him. Well, but the "murderous regime of President Maduro treats them with silk gloves and tries to dissuade, orders that there be no attacks against the few military personnel who were there, that after they realize the truth, they withdraw for the most part, 80%, and leave them alone.
The convocation of the people, of the family of the armed forces, has no effect, it is one more desperate attempt to provoke a social outbreak, a military uprising that does not arrive, because there is too much people's conscience.

This is silenced, for example, that on the 1st of May, unlike what happens in other countries where workers march against the government, or pressuring the government ( in Argentina there is a general strike, in Brazil, I do not tell you, for the freedom of Lula and everything that is happening there, in France the Yellow Vests ), but in Venezuela the workers march with President Maduro and fill the streets of Venezuela, this happened on May 1st, one day after the call to the insurrection against President Maduro.

Juan Carlos Monedero: We humbly invite Antena 3, Tele 5, or Prisa Group, to give real information about what is happening in that country, especially to prevent you from continuing to feed lies to justify the bloodbath that if the will of the US would prevail, would take place in that country.

Ambassador Isea: The true voceros of the Venezuelan opposition are Trump, Mike Pence, Bolton, Marco Rubio, among others, Elliot Abrams, Pompeo...Marco Rubio says here on a Twitter that "the doors of La Carlota were opened for the people to go to support its president, Guaidó". If the Venezuelan government were really a repressive, authoritarian government, in front of the siege of a military base, it would had shoot, right? That's why there have been a lot of deaths, maybe what they wanted....

Evidently it is a new failure of this convocation desperate to seize power with international help to install a de facto government. They do not want free elections, absolutely, it is fully demonstrated. Guaidó, violating our Constitution, they say legitimize him in application of Article 233, which contemplates the absence or absolute lack of the elected president. In case the elected president does not take the oath, he is replaced by the president of the National Assembly. The first contradiction, there is a president elected or not? Saving even that, suppose that this violation of the article was validated, they recognized it for a month, I remember textual words of Spanish authorities, with a horizon, to call elections in a month. It has more than 3 months, encouraging a coup d'état and a foreign invasion. Selfapproved a transitional statute that states that there will be elections after President Maduro and all Chavistas leave, no time limit of course is given, and then add an article that says that if there are technical impediments, that period will run one year. Obviously they want a de facto government a la Temer to dismantle the constitution approved in referendum by the people and dismantle all social programs, redeliver the Orinoco belt, all oil reserves, reserves of diamonds and coltan, etc ...

....they are discredited because they promote only violence, the guarimba, which we call street terrorism there, since 2002 they have rehearsed it, then in 2014 with "La Salida", in 2016 and 2017, and the people rejects it.

Juan Carlos Monedero: Ambassador, I have the feeling that it is increasingly more complicated for the government of Spain to continue maintaining the recognition of a person who yesterday called for a military coup, a military intervention, to break any type of rule. I understand that the former Minister Margallo (PP far-right) has defended the coup, has justified it, but from the government of the Socialist Party every time it seems more unusual for me to defend it, especially when, as you said, Minister Borrell acknowledged that they had recognized Guaidó in turn because of US pressure but knowing that it was foolish.

Ambassador Isea: Look, Minister Borrell declared that he ratifies that Spain opposes a military intervention, a blood solution, a military coup. The spokeswoman for the cabinet made by President Sanchez also said things that, of course, I do not share, but ratified that the Spanish Government would not support any coup d'etat. Then, here a reflection is necessary. On behalf of my government, I transmit a call to the Spanish government and to all the governments of Europe. When the Mexican government resumed the independent foreign policy that had characterized Mexico for decades, and dissociates itself from the Lima Group, and proposes the Montevideo Mechanism ( Mexico, Uruguay, the Caribbean countries, CARICOM ...) with the framework of the Secretary General of the UN, Mr. Guterres, says that there must be dialogue, even Pope Francis, it was a moment, a turning point to review that recognition to Guaidó. Then, what just happened yesterday, the day before yesterday, is a moment to reflect, again, a summons to a military uprising, which is not assumed by the military or civilian people of Venezuela, the people do not go to the streets, on the contrary, On May 1st, the Venezuelan people turned to the streets to support President Nicolás Maduro.

<>Juan Carlos Monedero: ....Leopoldo López at the Embassy of Spain, I even read that Spain had not ratified any international treaty that could justify that before the absolutely reasonable claim of the Venezuelan Justice to Leopoldo Lopez, who not only has broken the house arrest by prison, but also wanted to participate, again, as in 2002, in a coup d´etat, what is the diplomatic situation right now in this regard?

Ambassador Isea: Well, first he is a fugitive, he is a person who is serving a sentence, for the crimes he committed in 2014, and now he goes much further, instigating a coup and a military intervention. I think he will try to provoke, complicate diplomatic relations between Spain and Venezuela, put them at maximum tension. And that's part of the script designed from Washington. I do not want to think badly, but I also think about instrumentalizing it in the internal Spanish and European electoral code. We have municipal, autonomous and European elections on May 26....

Juan Carlos Monedero: The PP, presents in its lists the father of Leopoldo López ....

Ambassador Isea: We saw Mrs. Cayetana Alvarez de Toledo, who is very strong against Venezuela always, who had no fortune in her electoral adventure in Catalonia, who does not think to seek an explanation to the electoral problem they suffered, but immediately attacks Venezuela , it is the red cloth, to always distract, no matter what happens, they do not deal with the great injustices, the humanitarian crisis caused by the events in Iraq, in Syria, in Afghanistan, in Libya, in looted Africa, etc, etc, but they look for a shortcut, an scape, a can of smoke, and we get tired of being a can of smoke. And we are not going to break, we are right, it is not true that "the international community" supports Guaidó, the UN has 193 accredited countries, 50, 52, say they have recognized this man, the majority, more than 100, no.

Juan Carlos Monedero: Why they do not interview you in other channels, ambassador?

Ambassador Isea: Well, I have been here as ambassador for more than 5 years, I've been to TVE ( Spanish public national channel) twice. There have been statements from social communicators, from social leaders, claiming that, parity. Today they went to interview me in the embassy for a few minutes, which I welcomed with pleasure. And I saw in some spaces that there were plural spokesmen, at night, in a couple of programs... I hope that continues, because one really looks at the headlines of the big newspapers and sees the space dedicated by the television stations against Venezuela, to be victim of the media war, the first victim of which is truth.


Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 3:05:59 PM | 169

Nemesis @167

Your 'Trumptard' apologist POV fails because your last paragraph could have been written by an 'Obamabot':

[Trump/Obama] is proving that, although able to maneuver himself out of boondoggles to avoid looking as dumb as Bush, Jr., in the end he will prove to be the biggest fool of all: gifted with the golden opportunity to prove himself a hero (and who else could have done this but an absolute maverick who was smart enough to elude the massive warchests of Estab. Dems amd Rethugz in 2016) but squandering it all because, as in nature with the chameleon, the man is unable to bring his true colors forward, tragically destined to wander all the way to his end in utter disguise.

Wake up! Trump and Obama BOTH follow the same faux populist political model. You got played, chump. Just as the lefties got played by Obama. Trump is no hero, he's a member of the Deep State team.

gifted with: LOL - illusion of democracy mean anything to you?

true colors: LOL - he's shown his true colors, you just can't accept it.

=
Welcome to the rabbithole.

Posted by: Jackrabbit | May 4, 2019 3:12:28 PM | 170

So, today Pompeo pretends to advise the people of Venezuela. It should be clear few listen. Pompeo begs they should "demand a return to democracy," but of course they already have a very strong, vibrant Bolivarian brand of democracy which is seen in action every day. Pompeo urges "the time for transition is now," and he's correct except the transition to make isn't the one he's peddling--an expansion of Bolivarian Socialism is the necessary transition to rebuild Venezuela's economy as democracy the citizenry already has. And of course, Pompeo the Yankee Gringo's message is delivered in English!!! Just how many are actually listening to that creature, 2-3%?

The one chance the Outlaw US Empire had to negate the Bolivarian Revolution was in 2002 and it blew its opportunity. An entire generation of people have come of age raised with a Revolutionary ethos and were taught what life was like before 1998. Then there're those coming of age now while the Yankee Empire attacks Venezuela for its democratic institutions and demands it "return to democracy." Their response must really irk the Neocons (although I very much doubt they watch) as they laugh in their faces while dancing in the streets in celebration of their Bolivarian democracy.

Meanwhile, a lesson's being learned by all of Latin America's democratic popular forces--that standing together in solidarity generates strength and dignity to become masters of your own destinies while the corruption of the oligarchies is further exposed thus increasing the motivation for popular participatory democracy. Yes, a time for transition indeed!

Posted by: karlof1 | May 4, 2019 3:27:58 PM | 171

“Well I suspect you have left the site rather than attempt to continue a rational discussion with the individuals who are now policing the discussion.”
Posted by Jared @ 164

I say “amen” to that. I think it a good thing that individuals stepped forward to “police” the discussion because there were very obvious Logic Crimes being committed by that poster, not to mention good reasons to question “her” motives.

In addition to the logical fallacy of demanding proof of a negative, the rhetorical device being employed is a form of argument from ignorance used by manipulators. Although the poster was careful not to assert that Maduro is corrupt because contributors to this site cannot prove that he is not, the purpose (betrayed by repetition in almost every post) was merely to insinuate the notion that he may be corrupt, therefore weak and unsuited to carrying on the great struggle.

The “troll bonus” was the pot shot at the MOA contributors themselves for not being quite as smart as they think they are because they cannot advance proof to educate the allegedly Maduro-ignorant poster and put “her” mind at rest that he is not, in fact, corrupt or vulnerable to corruption allegations. The poster uses ignorance as a shield to protect "her" from advancing the burden of proof that properly falls on “her” for advancing the theory of Maduro’s possible corruption in the first place.

Posted by: Activist Potato | May 4, 2019 3:28:52 PM | 172

Video on the smoking gun on deep planning of the overthrow of the Venezuela government by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR ) in 2012.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQdzsW_Epko

See referenced document at: “Political Unrest in Venezuela”
Contingency Planning Memorandum No. 16 (see also update)
https://www.cfr.org/report/political-unrest-venezuela

Posted by: Krollchem | May 4, 2019 3:29:36 PM | 173

@ Sasha with the translation of the Venezuelan ambassador to Spain...thanks

It is great to read some of the backstory about the Spain/Lopez situation.....the world (except for many Americans...sigh) is watching and that is a good thing.

Society needs to have the conversation these events are forcing.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 4, 2019 3:33:15 PM | 174

"Jane's approach is classic "concern troll":

Also don't want to beat dead horse, but:

Exactly! This is one description of the concern troll:

" “I'm with you,” the concern troll says. “But surely you must see how this looks to people. Not me, of course. But other people. They might think ..." This was *exactly* Jane's message.

(quote source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/compost/wp/2014/.../enter-the-concern-troll/)

There is a very good material to help in understanding and identifying trolling at WhoWhatWhy.org.

https://whowhatwhy.org/2016/02/02/disinformation-part-2-detailed-tips-for-trolls/

Jane used a number of the techniques described at the above link.

See also parts 1 and 3, linked at WhoWhatWhy.org.

Posted by: Really? | May 4, 2019 3:36:39 PM | 175

Jared @154

"If Maduro is genuine I suggest he would offer to step aside at the end of his term."

Wow, you and Jane have some strange ideas and suggestions.

Interestingly they all seem to point a nasty finger at Maduro with no evidence whatsoever.

Hmmmm

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 3:37:32 PM | 176

Sasha, I second psycho's thanks.

Posted by: spudski | May 4, 2019 3:38:22 PM | 177

@Posted by: AntiSpin | May 4, 2019 1:16:44 PM | 146

Yes, but one would wonder why the so experienced, seasoned, intelligent commentariat here in MoA, remains feeding her so that she has managed to hijack the thread totally, allowing even so intelligent ubiquotous 24/7 here commenters like Jackrabbit take advantage to attack me once more time by suggesting this obvious CIA/Israeli/Leopoldo López´s Voluntad Paramilitar´s house troll is indeed me.

One wonders what part of my whole 1st May day off I passed here posting trancripts and translations of statements and twitts by politicians and activists who are in favor of the Bolivarian government and project, as me myself widely proved I am, he has lost.

Also, what part, of the whole more than three hours I have passed today, losing even my time to exercise for today ( well, what is that with all what the Venezuelan people is facing so far? ) transcritpting and translating alomst the whole 21 minutes interview to the Ambassador of Venezuela to Spain by Juan Carlos Monedero I have posted today, he has lost.

As he is here time enough to test all this and see the difference, and is enough intelligent to understand the clear difference amongst me and Jane, the US troll, one gets only with the option to think that who is most probably working along with this clearly US state troll and spreading FUD is really Jackrabbit.

It is very telling, Jackrabbit, that, because I do not trust Assange, and so tried to debunk his theatre, as it does many well informed people in the left, at least in Europe, you continue slandering me here. That you, today, instead of searching for information to support the legitimate government of Venezuela, who, with all its faults, has done much more for its people than any other around the world for decades already, dedicate to try to discredit me here, when i am doing all what I can since days ago in support of that government and its people, says much more about you than about me.
About me it says all my posts here, be it that you like it or not.
Really, I am here in support of the truth, a true socialist future world and fighting fascism in all its forms and the take voer of popular will by impostors sold to foreign or spurious interets, not to please you, moron.

Finally, and since this is a bar, I will let myself a bit lose, in harsh contrast to my usual custom, and I am going to send Jackrabbit directly to fuck himself off in his rabbit hole!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPPdiXIy9ro

P.S: I apologize to the rest of fair and polite commentariat, but i am so, when someone definitely touch me the balls by using abd faith with me, I am sorry, but I lose all the respect for this person and I have no contemplations with it any more.

Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 3:48:33 PM | 178

This board must be upsetting some propaganda pushers.

Posted by: arby | May 4, 2019 4:00:54 PM | 179

@Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 3:48:33 PM | 178

And, btw, this seems to me another kind of "sophisticated trolling", now that your are talking about the topic, to try to discourage a person who is providing interesting information, obviously very tired for the effort, by getting its last breath to an sterile fight, so that it lose its precious time instead of on looking for more information to debunk the US rogue state´s lies, fighting a fake slander thrwon.

It´s the same play Jane does, she does on Maduro, Jackrabit does on me.
It seems to me the same school, that of Porompompero, "we cheat, we lied, we looted", US Trade Mark all the way.

Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 4:38:06 PM | 180

Pres. F D Roosevelt officially repudiated the arrogant and fiat Monroe Doctrine in the 1933 Montevideo Convention, declaring recognition of sovereign states and deligitimatizing outside interference in domestic affairs. Ain't it so?

Of course, that resulted in 75 years of on-going attacks on his legacy by the die-hard, plutocrat landlords who would lose their grip on the 99%.

The accumulation of assets by families over generations is a force not easily comprehended. Those are awesome forces that are being ignored, nearly as difficult to comprehend as grasping the estimates that there are more stars [suns] in the known universe than grains of sand on all of planet Earth's beaches [roughly 10 to 28th power and 10 to 27th power, respectively].

Posted by: chu teh | May 4, 2019 4:49:29 PM | 181

Letting Guaido and MoA trolls wander freely.
If I can be indulged in a perhaps too strained parallel, the decision to let one wander the streets and the other wander the comments pages might depend on the level of maturity we assign or (presume) when considering the respective domains.

The calculus in Venezuela may at least partly derive from a trust in the demos, combined perhaps with a commitment to Bolivarian principles (not forgetting of course that arresting that troll may trigger an adverse reaction).

Here, my reading of the MoA commenters is that they are typically sufficiently thoughtful and informed to detect and appropriately evaluate an ill-informed (and potentially insidious) comment.

Egregious breaches must still be called out, but for the most part, calling out every weak or possibly disingenuous post simply pulls down the overall quality of the entries.

For what it's worth.

Posted by: Paul Damascene | May 4, 2019 4:56:16 PM | 182

b -

Eric Zuesse is a terrific investigator who constantly comes up with important revelations about important topics.

That said, I will admit that his writing style leaves much to be desired. He has no organizing ability, his syntax is atrocious, etc, etc. I have had many combative email exchanges with him about his writing (related to posts on other sites), which he always defends absolutely. He actually believes that everything he writes is perfectly written, and that it is impossible to improve even the smallest detail, and he has a white-hot hatred for editors, whom, he says, are all stupid and incompetent.

I know that it is difficult to slog one's way through much of Zuesse's tangled writing, but doing so can lead one to many glittering jewels of revelation and exposition.

Posted by: AntiSpin | May 4, 2019 4:58:38 PM | 183


That Jane could have a writting similar to me could well be due to that her mother language is Spanish, as it is mine, with which we could probably conclude that she is located at "Voluntad Paramilitar" HQs, Altamira, Caracas.

Although, she could well be too the lazy of Lilian Tintori, passing her idle time with all expenses paid by Spanish taxpayers, without previous consultations, with all chutzpah by "socilaist" government being precisely tax payement time here, posting from Spanish Embassy, Caracas.

Posted by: Sasha | May 4, 2019 5:15:35 PM | 184

Eva Bartlett has been putting out some great Venezuela videos lately on her YouTube channel: Eva K Bartlett. If you have time for just one video, watch this one: Venezuelan: "People that never had a voice now have one and will never give it up again" (8 min).

Posted by: S | May 4, 2019 5:25:13 PM | 185

I would just like to say on the troll issue that I am glad we did not fall into the trap of exhausting ourselves in trying to prove a negative while the troll did not have to do any work, which is why I asked the troll to present evidence to support his/her statements about Maduro. Turns out he troll could only provide very general, even archetypal sources like WaPo and CNN in the end.

The troll must have been phishing for links to pursue and expected barflies to eagerly rush to Maduro's defence by providing references and sources demonstrating his innocence. The potential trap here is that the more links to references and sources that do so, the troll can shift the goal-posts towards attacking some other aspect of Maduro's supposed bad behaviour which would be harder to disprove, for example, his ability and competence in dealing with Lopez and Guaido, and why he does not send police on a man-hunt for Guaido.

Furthermore the way the troll petulantly reacted to some commenters here reminded me of a troll who might still occasionally infest Off-Guardian comments forums, a guy who claimed to be a Venezuelan student studying in Canada (yet having the time to post long comments frequently) and sending money back to his family in Venezuela (even though his folks were supposedly paying his school or college fees). He was a commenter on Reddit forums as well with the hashtag #DownWithAssad. I would not be surprised if the troll here and that other troll were the same.

I rather think our temporary visitor will turn to Off-Guardian and start tying up the comments forums there.

Anyway, thanks to all here who flushed out the troll so quickly.

Posted by: Jen | May 4, 2019 5:27:53 PM | 186

to quote a friend: "AS FAR AS I KNOW....I DON'T KNOW" (and to quote Samuel Beckett: I can't go on....I will go on)

Posted by: EDWARD MYCUE | May 4, 2019 5:32:42 PM | 187

@184 AntiSpin

His disorganized writing was the first thing I noticed about Zuesse, and it's really a shame. Losing one's way in the middle of an article is distressing enough. But retracing one's steps to realize that the author himself has run all the paths into dead-end walls is mind-boggling.

I agree that Zuesse is an amazing researcher. He is very frequently "on to something" in his researches. It's too bad if as you say he dismisses the notion of editors, because I never ran into an author who more urgently needs one.

Time is so short, and there are so many facts and circumstances to evaluate, from so many sources. When I see Zuesse, I find it worth noting the aim of his article, and then perhaps looking for better writers or sources who may achieve that aim. It is very unfortunate.

Posted by: Grieved | May 4, 2019 5:37:07 PM | 188

@186 S

I was gone but had to come back to endorse that 8-minute clip you linked to - thank you for Eva Bartlett and that clip. It's a mind-changing witness to how the race war under the class war is clearly understood in Venezuela by the natives and the former slaves.

I believe this man completely when he says that everybody in Venezuela knows what's going on. That's 30 million people the US is trying to trick, and they all see it for what it is.

It's an amazing testimony, and it should impact anyone's strategic analysis of what happens in the future for Venezuela.

Thanks again.

Posted by: Grieved | May 4, 2019 5:56:11 PM | 189

S | May 4, 2019 5:25:13 PM | 186

Thanks for the Eva Bartlett vids!!

Posted by: Desolation Row | May 4, 2019 5:58:14 PM | 190

It may surprise some of the European participants here, but USA is quite religious country, although recently it is slipping a bit. There was a time when two Congressmen admitted to be gay, but none would admit to be an atheist -- you cannot be caught being a covert atheist. In any case, religion still guides political view of many, so what does it say about Venezuela? The following clip was broadcasted around USA on the TV channel devoted to shows of various preachers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DykgMyTjWU4

Caedite Maduro! Deus Vult!

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 4, 2019 6:00:57 PM | 191

grieved @189 re Zuesse

Well put. I arrived at the same conclusion.

Posted by: pogohere | May 4, 2019 6:06:58 PM | 192

So phase 1 is over
Coup failed
Guaido is useless
Let's go to phase 2
Kill Guaido, put the blame, using MSM ,on Maduro
Create a coalition of thieves, oh sorry, of democrats
Invade
It's only rock and roll

Posted by: aleksandar | May 4, 2019 6:13:29 PM | 193

Re: changing corrupt regimes in Western Hemisphere. Perhaps US should start from something easier, like replacing the corrupt regime in Canada that refuses to resign in spite of uncovered corruption. Logistics would be much simpler etc. Moreover, there is some chance of getting an uncorrupted government, something that seems impossible in Brazil. [I am not serious, but there are corruption stories about Canada, while in Brazil the parliament is very fragmented and invariably, a large fraction of deputies refuse to support ANYTHING without being paid for their votes.]

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 4, 2019 6:20:58 PM | 194

@170 jr

I stand by my post. In your case, your frequent appeals, I notice, are not grounded in logos or ethos, but pathos...feeling. You feel that this is the case, but the frequency of these posts, unfortunately, do not correspond to the depth of your insight.

Trump is no true-believer. He is getting stymied at every juncture listening to his ideologue ministers, but could have risen to greatness had he followed his revolutionary campaign promises. But as it stands, his rhetoric during the campaign has already opened the floodgates on antiglobalist thought. He should be commended for this, and as the empire burns, the focus and crystalization for the blame will be properly directed at anational elites, which Trump has always in some way alluded to.

You think he is part of THE club, but there are many different clubs. All bad of course, but your insight can not wrap itself around this.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 4, 2019 6:22:51 PM | 195

So, yesterday Pompeo called Lavrov, today Trump calls Putin...

That is alarming....

That sounds much like this, from 0:42 to 1:38
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wv_OJBBaF48

Posted by: Arioch | May 4, 2019 6:26:05 PM | 196

Here is JR, the Trump Re-election Disinfo Specialist and Conformity Patrol


But there IS a Cold War, and the West is the antagonist. The new McCarthyism and new arms race are undeniable. And Venezeula IS important. Just as Syria and Yemen are as well. These are the front lines in global struggle for supremacy
.

No JR, the front lines are in your head and in the heads of all the demoralised dormerly leftist "intellectuals" who have succumbed to this false narrative, bought and paid for by the global capitalist elites currently fronted by Trump and Putin and Netanyahu and MBS.

Shameful and sad.

Posted by: donkeytale | May 4, 2019 6:31:13 PM | 197

Fellow barflies,

As one actor who once upon a time worked diligently to thwart the aims of
Washington on a small country, I am scared at the prospects of having to counter
Washington expressed aims.

Because, as in La Fontaine`s Fable ¨le Loup et l 'Agneau¨(the Wolf and the Lamb)
once the US mind is set and especially when it has been proffered by the POTUS
the US will spend fortunes and existences in order to achieve its aims.

The argument is that ¨might makes right¨.

Indeed, Washington´s Neocons live the fantasy/reality that the US will is infaillible
and must be sustained against all until the end is achieved. There is a one percent
chance that they will abort their aims, if the designs have not been voiced by
high authorities.

There is no pain for those that propitiate mayhem on others when they are not
subjected to retaliation. They will indeed pursue their aim to your end and demise.
In this sense, the US are ruthless and unrelenting.

Picture a numerous and well armed gang assaulting an isolated household. Unless there is an external intervention, the gang will succeed in looting the household.

The US is just that, a well armed gang assaulting communities of lambs. Knowing that
they are the strongest, they will pursue their goals relentlessly.

The only thing that will make them stop in their tracks is the prospect of painful
retribution.

Such retribution could be sabotaging their electrical infrastructure, blowing dams and other such targets, exploding levees, and eventually,:

An ultimatum by a nuclear armed State that sanctions will receive a nuclear response.

Short of that, maybe Maduro and the Bolivarian Constitution will continue to exist but
will be the target of unending vexations.

Somebody suggested that Maduro should nationalise Polar, one of the promoters
of all coups, commercial, financial or otherwise. He should start there and nationalise
as many important hostile concerns as he sees fit. Deprive the upper classes from their income and their ability to cause harm to the Bolivarian State.

In the case of US designs there must be a counter attack if one wishes to remain alive.

Posted by: CarlD | May 4, 2019 6:36:15 PM | 198

Posted by: Arioch | May 4, 2019 6:26:05 PM | 197
(So, yesterday Pompeo called Lavrov, today Trump calls Putin)

Not so alarming.
Sic Semper Tyrannis has a brief note on why it's a good idea...

>HARPER: AN OVERDUE START OF US-RUSSIA DIALOGUE.

There's also a short piece on Trump's +56% polling on the US Economy and the lack of viable Trump opponents for 2020...

>A Field of Dreams or Nightmares?

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | May 4, 2019 6:47:46 PM | 199

@ CarlD who wrote
"
Somebody suggested that Maduro should nationalise Polar, one of the promoters
of all coups, commercial, financial or otherwise. He should start there and nationalise
as many important hostile concerns as he sees fit. Deprive the upper classes from their income and their ability to cause harm to the Bolivarian State.
"
Thanks for your comment and the concurrence with the Might-Makes-Right meme of the West

I want to suggest upgrades to your comments about nationalization.
The most power the upper classes have is ownership of the Central Bank. That is the first thing that should be nationalized but is part of a bigger public/private finance nationalization issue
Nationalizing companies like Polar should be done according to some general plan for sectors of the economy that should be public/common versus regulated commercial. Nationalizing companies just because of the attitude of the ownership is not the best approach but I feel your pain....people should not be allowed to use commercial enterprise for political purpose.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 4, 2019 6:54:37 PM | 200

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