SOUTH/CENTRAL AMERICA | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


SOUTH/CENTRAL AMERICA

Jan 27 08:45

Pompeo taps Elliott Abrams as State Department Venezuela point person

“Today, I am incredibly excited to announce that a seasoned, principled and tough-minded foreign policy veteran is joining our State Department team,” Pompeo said at a press conference. “Elliott’s passion for the rights and liberties for all peoples makes him a perfect fit and a valuable and timely addition.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Principled?!? This is the guy who had to be pardoned for lying to Congress in the Iran-Contra affair, not to mention being the cheerleader for Bush's war in Iraq!

Jan 27 08:41

The Former US President Carter: The Venezuelan Electoral System “The Best in the World”

Former US President Jimmy Carter has declared that Venezuela’s electoral system is the best in the world.

Speaking at an annual event last week in Atlanta for his Carter Centre foundation, the politician-turned philanthropist stated, “As a matter of fact, of the 92 elections that we’ve monitored, I would say the election process in Venezuela is the best in the world.”

Venezuela has developed a fully automated touch-screen voting system, which now uses thumbprint recognition technology and prints off a receipt to confirm voters’ choices.

Jan 27 08:40

Zakharova Mocks ‘8 Day Snap Election Deadline’ For Venezuela – But There’s More

Statements by the authorities of Germany, France and Spain on the conditions of recognizing the Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president of the country are the same – (that Maduro has eight days to conduct a snap election) – said the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova.

“Statements are made not only identical, but even at the same time,” the diplomat wrote on her Facebook.

She also joked that Germany, France and Spain “look like a choir.”

Jan 27 08:39

Here Are The Top 5 Reasons The Coup-Attempt In Venezuela Will Fall Flat

On Wednesday, the events in Venezuela shook the world. Many wondered if January 23rd marked the beginning of the end of the presidency of Nicolas Maduro and the beginning of a new chapter of American interventionism.

Here are 5 reasons why it is unlikely that this drama will come to the denouement that the mainstream media so much shouted about.

Jan 27 08:39

MAJOR: Maduro Successfully Evicts CIA Infected U.S Embassy

Employees of the US Embassy in Venezuela left the diplomatic mission. This is stated on the website of the Foreign Ministry of Venezuela.

“We inform you that on January 25, the staff of the US diplomatic mission in Caracas was recalled in accordance with the deadlines set,” the statement reads.

Maduro issued an order to the U.S Embassy in Venezuela, that it must ‘evict’ and that U.S citizens must leave. Pretender to the presidency, Guaido, stated to the contrary that the U.S can and should stay. He issued the formal letter on National Assembly letterhead, and signed it ‘President of the Republic’. U.S officials initially recognized this letter as legitimate, and stated their intention to remain in the Bolivarian republic.

Jan 26 20:02

US calls on countries to 'pick a side' on Venezuela

Russia accuses US of orchestrating a 'coup' attempt, as US secretary of state urges support for opposition leader.

Pompeo called for free and fair elections as soon as possible in a speech at the UNSC [Johannes Eisele/AFP]
Pompeo called for free and fair elections as soon as possible in a speech at the UNSC [Johannes Eisele/AFP]
The US secretary of state has called on countries to "pick a side" on Venezuela, urging them to back opposition leader Juan Guaido and calling for free and fair elections as soon as possible in a speech at the UN Security Council.

"Now, it is time for every other nation to pick a side. No more delays, no more games. Either you stand with the forces of freedom, or you're in league with [Nicolas] Maduro and his mayhem," Mike Pompeo told the 15-member UNSC on Saturday.
***
Russia unsuccessfully tried to stop the meeting requested by the United States. Moscow has accused Washington of plotting a coup attempt, placing Venezuela at the heart of a growing geopolitical duel.

"Venezuela does not represent a threat to peace and security," Russia's UN ambassador, Vassily Nebenzia, told the Security Council.

"If anything does represent a threat to peace, it is the shameless and aggressive action of the United States and their allies aimed at the ouster of the legitimately elected president of Venezuela," he said.

Russia, China block US push for UN to back Guaido
Russia, China, South Africa and Equatorial Guinea blocked a US push for a UN Security Council statement expressing full support for Venezuela's National Assembly as the country's "only democratically elected institution".

>>>

Jan 26 18:45

Venezuela's Highest Ranking Military Attaché Flips On Maduro; Urges Armed Forces To Recognize Guaidó

Venezuela's top military attaché at the Washington D.C. Embassy has broken with the Nicolás Maduro regime Saturday, and has urged other members of the Venezuelan armed forces to recognize Juan Guaidó as the legitimate interim president, according to the Miami Herald.

As the Venezuelan defense attaché in the United States, I do not recognize Mr. Nicolás Maduro as president of Venezuela," Silva told el Nuevo Herald in a telephone interview from Washington.

"My message to all armed forces members, to everyone who carries a gun, is to please let’s not attack the people. We are also part of the people, and we’ve had enough of supporting a government that has betrayed the most basic principles and sold itself to other countries," added Silva.

As the Venezuelan defense attaché in the United States, I do not recognize Mr. Nicolás Maduro as president of Venezuela," Silva told el Nuevo Herald in a telephone interview from Washington.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Well, IF this absolutely is true, that didn't take long.

This seems to be set out to a predetermined script, engineered for rapid fire deployment; the other day, when Mike Pence called Juan Guaidó, to tell him what portion of the Venezuelan constitution he could invoke to oust , Guaido claimed himself to be the Interim President of Venezuela.

And today, we get this notice that Venezuela's top military attaché at the Washington D.C, Colonel Jose Luis Silva, announcing to Reuters,in an interview in DC that he could no longer support Maduro.

I have to wonder how easy the US government found it to have him "name his price", in order to get this kind of treatment. I am sure that right now, Silva has had various funds for him and his family, to enable them to create a new life here in the US.

One wonders just what is on the docket for Venezuela tomorrow; violence, or calm demonstrations?!? I know I have said this before, if you are so inclined; the Venezuelan people need that desperately right now.

Jan 26 16:08

'IT'S OUR BACKYARD!': BILL MAHER CHEERS US-LED COUP IN VENEZUELA IN UNHINGED COLONIAL TIRADE

Pro-war liberal pundit Bill Maher endorsed the US-led coup in Venezuela with blatant neocolonial language: “This was the Monroe Doctrine! This is our backyard!”

Jan 26 13:39

'It's almost childlike': Venezuelan foreign minister blasts European threat to recognise opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country's legitimate president unless fresh elections were called within eight days

Venezuela's foreign minister has blasted a European ultimatum to hold elections within eight days as 'childlike'.

Jorge Arreaza insisted that Nicolas Maduro remained the legitimate president despite pressure from Britain, France, Spain, Germany and the US.

'Europe is giving us eight days? Where do you get that you have the power to establish a deadline or an ultimatum to a sovereign people,' Arreaza told the Security Council. 'It's almost childlike.'

Webmaster's Commentary: 

It is obvious that the US government has pushed this timetable on the Maduros Government's questioned legitimacy.

And looking at this 8 days, (or else!)I have to wonder; is this the time the US will need to move troops stationed in South America, and get them positioned for a decap strike on Caracas?!?

Jan 26 13:27

Russia blames 'shameless and aggressive' U.S for crisis in Venezuela while Trump's Secretary of State says country was run like an 'illegitimate mafia state' at fiery U.N Security council meeting

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on allies to 'pick a side' on Venezuela, and described its President Nicolas Maduro as part of an 'illegitimate mafia state' responsible for the country's economic collapse.

Pompeo was addressing the 15-member U.N. Security Council on Saturday, which met at his request after Washington and a string of countries in the region recognized Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido as head of state.

Pompeo urging the U.N council to back Guaido and called for free and fair elections as soon as possible, adding that Maduro must step down.

'Now it is time for every other nation to pick a side. No more delays, no more games. Either you stand with the forces of freedom, or you're in league with Maduro and his mayhem,' Pompeo told the council.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Every time Secretary of State Pompeo spews this kind of codswallop - particularly in public - I am very painfully reminded that citizens of the US are no longer citizens of a democratic republic,but are now the victims of a kleptocracy, masquerading as legitimate country.

Every single action this country does, in regard to international relations, is engineered to return even higher profits to the already monied, while the rest of us are forced to make do with less, just to survive.

Jan 26 12:22

Colombia Won't Provide US With Bases Needed for Invasion in Venezuela

The Colombian government is not going to provide the United States will military bases so that the latter could launch a possible military invasion in Venezuela, the Colombian Defense Ministry told Sputnik.

"No," the Defence Ministry's representative said, answering the question, whether Bogota was going to provide Washington with military bases needed for a possible operation against Caracas.

"The troops will remain at bases, there has been and there is going to be no redeployment of troops," the ministry said on late Friday.

Jan 26 12:18

Trump-bashing Iraq war architect Elliott Abrams to lead US regime change in Venezuela

Washington seems so dead-set on regime change in Venezuela, the State Department has just appointed a former diplomat with a sordid track record in Latin America and Middle East to spearhead “restoring democracy” in Caracas.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Friday the appointment of Elliott Abrams to “help the Venezuelan people fully restore democracy and prosperity to their country.” Abrams is expected to coordinate all diplomatic efforts to replace President Nicolas Maduro with the self-proclaimed president Juan Guaido, recognized by the US, OAS and several EU members.

Jan 26 12:18

Maduro announces military drills to show Venezuela is ‘unassailable’

After US and its allies recognized an opposition leader as president of Venezuela, sitting President Nicolas Maduro announced military drills to show that his country is more than a match to any potential invader.

Venezuela's National Armed Forces will hold massive exercises between February 10 and 15, Maduro told journalists at a press conference on Friday. During the war games, he said, the troops will repel a simulated invasion and enhance their skills in defending the territories, coast and waterways of the Latin American state.

Jan 26 12:16

US FOLLOWS UKRAINE, SYRIA ROADMAP IN VENEZUELA REGIME CHANGE PUSH

Since the decision of the Trump administration on Wednesday to recognize a member of the Venezuelan opposition, Juan Guaidó, as an unelected “interim president,” the situation in the South American country has become increasingly tense, with efforts to force the current government of Venezuela — led by Nicolás Maduro — out of power having grown in intensity over the past few days.

Despite the enormous pressure his government faces from both local and international sources, Maduro has managed to maintain his position thanks to a combination of factors. These include the loyalty of the country’s well-armed military, in addition to popular support from Venezuelans who recently voted for Maduro, as well as Venezuelans who may not like Maduro but prefer him to a politician hand-picked and foisted upon them by the United States.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

On that last statement, you can bet your sweet bippy it will happen, if this regime change attempt does not go as planned!

China and Russia have extensive investments in, and in co-sponsorship of, many projects in Venezuela.

Do you believe that they won't protect those assets, if they see a move toward regime change in Venezuela? I'm afraid that the short answer here, is "HELL yes!"

Jan 26 12:11

The risk of a catastrophic US intervention in Venezuela is real

By declaring himself Venezuela’s president on Wednesday, Juan Guaidó has brought Venezuela to the edge of catastrophe. The hitherto unknown opposition leader’s actions, which appear to be closely coordinated with if not directed by the US, have set in motion a perilous chain of events.

The US recognized Guaidó as president minutes after his declaration. A number of Latin American nations, most with conservative governments backed by the US, have also done so. The growing list includes Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Costa Rica, and Paraguay. Canada and the Organization of American States have also recognized Guaidó. The European Union has reportedly considered such a step, but for now has instead issued a call for new elections.

Jan 26 12:11

US Intensifies Anti-Maduro Push, Trump Says ‘All Options Are On the Table’

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will be heading to the UN Security Council Saturday with a very clear agenda: trying to sell the 15 members on recognizing Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s president, instead of Nicolas Maduro. This is unlikely to happen uniformly, as Russia and China have already expressed support for Maduro.

This is part of an ever-escalating Trump Administration plan to try to sell the world on Venezuela’s regime change. Some US allies are on board, but there are still some countries that are not.

It’s to the point where President Trump says “all options are on the table” against Maduro, with the immediate focus being some way to divert Venezuela’s money from oil exports to Guaido, instead of the Maduro government.

Jan 26 12:10

WHILE THE MEDIA ACCUSES TRUMP OF COLLUSION W/RUSSIA, HE'S FIGHTING RUSSIA IN VENEZUELA

Obama colluded with Venezuela's regime, the way that he had with Putin.

Nine years before the Socialist tyranny became a nightmare of mass murder, repression and hunger, he was pressing its tyrant's flesh.

Jan 26 11:46

Venezuela Opposition Head Declared Himself President After Pence's Call – Report

The report comes a few days after US President Donald Trump tweeted that he "officially recognised" Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country's Interim President.

Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself the country's Interim President after he received a call on Tuesday from US Vice President Mike Pence, who pledged Washington's support for Guaido, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reports.

The WSJ cited an unnamed senior US administration official as saying that Pence promised that the White House would back Guaido if "he seized the reins of government" from President Nicolas Maduro by invoking a clause in Venezuela's constitution.

Jan 26 11:45

Protests in France and Venezuela - Spot the Difference

The ‘Yellow Vest’ anti-government protests in France have received limited coverage in Western media and what coverage there has been has been quite hostile to the protestors.

In Venezuela though it’s a very different story. Here the street demonstrations are a major news event, despite the country being thousands of miles away. Furthermore, the coverage is very sympathetic to the protestors and extremely hostile to the government.

Jan 26 11:42

SearchSearch'Brother, We Are With You': NATO Turkey Emerges as Staunches Defender of Maduro Against Trump

Turkey, Russia, and China came to the aid of Venezuela's leader on Thursday after the United States declared Nicolas Maduro was no longer its president.

The pledges of support came after opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president of Venezuela in an address to tens of thousands of people on the streets of the capital, Caracas.

Jan 26 11:18

Is President Maduro ‘Illegitimate’? 10 Facts To Counter The Lies

the following from 15yUltimo indeed delivers the facts straight. It’s important for those still sharing the ‘democracy = elections’ dream not to wind up in error on the subject of Venezuela – the last election that saw Maduro defeat his opponents was clean, transparent, and fair by the liberal, western standards of late modernity. FRN is not of the view that legitimacy and sovereignty are determined by the specific mechanics of what a particular time and place considers ‘democratic’, or that ‘democratic = legitimate’. This is a larger historical, theoretical, and philosophical question which, however, has deep ramifications if one wants to be consistent. Venezuela is a sovereign state because it asserts itself as such through its actions. Maduro is the legitimate leader of Venezuela for reasons beyond the scope of the below.

Jan 26 11:17

Britain joins bid to OUST Venezuelan dictator Maduro as Corbyn faces fury for refusing to condemn his hard-left friend

Britain has joined the US and Canada in throwing its weight behind moves to oust Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro.

Jeremy Hunt lashed the regime and backed Juan Guaido, who has declared himself interim president after winning elections to the National Assembly.

But Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has refused to condemn his hard-left ally Maduro and instead tore into interference in the country.

And while street riots erupted in Venezuela amid the power struggle, Mr Corbyn hosted a Venezuelan diplomat at Parliament earlier this week.

Jan 26 11:13

AP Exclusive: Anti-Maduro coalition grew from secret talks

The coalition of Latin American governments that joined the U.S. in quickly recognizing Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president came together over weeks of secret diplomacy that included whispered messages to activists under constant surveillance and a high-risk foreign trip by the opposition leader challenging President Nicolas Maduro for power, those involved in the talks said.

In mid-December, Guaido quietly traveled to Washington, Colombia and Brazil to brief officials on the opposition’s strategy of mass demonstrations to coincide with Maduro’s expected swearing-in for a second term on Jan. 10 in the face of widespread international condemnation, according to exiled former Caracas Mayor Antonio Ledezma, an ally.

Jan 26 11:07

The Exceptional Nation Asserts Its Exceptionalism

Washington has chosen a president for Venezuela. I wonder if Trump saw the black humor in doing to Maduro what the Democrats and presstitutes are doing to him.

Few Latin American governments have ever had a government that represents the majority indigenous people or a president who was not of Spanish descent. Chavez in Venezuela perhaps was the longest lasting indigenous leader. His successor Maduro is also indigenous.

Indigenous Latin American leaders are unacceptable to Washington, because they tend to be reformers who represent their country’s people instead of American business and financial interests. Consequently, when a Latin electorate elects a leader who will put them first, Washington overthrows the leader. This is the history of US/Latin American relations.

Jan 26 10:48

Live: UN Security Council - The Situation in Venezuela

Jan 26 10:17

BEX ALERT - Cocaine And Cash: How Maduro Stays In Power

"Cocaine, Payola" reads the headline of a new Bloomberg report detailing why and how Venezuela's top military brass will likely remain loyal, at least for the near term, to the Nicolas Maduro regime. As intense international pressure led by the United States builds aiming to topple Maduro in favor of "interim president" Juan Guaido — and as what's now an "open secret" of Washington's direct attempts at fostering a military coup — a key question is just how cohesive and loyal will the military remain.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The demonization of Maduro continues.

Jan 26 10:16

Exclusive: Kremlin-linked contractors help guard Venezuela's Maduro - sources

Private military contractors who do secret missions for Russia flew into Venezuela in the past few days to beef up security for President Nicolas Maduro in the face of U.S.-backed opposition protests, according to two people close to them.

Jan 26 09:44

TRUMP REJECTED ELLIOTT ABRAMS FOR STATE DEPT IN 2016. POMPEO JUST HIRED HIM FOR REGIME CHANGE IN VENEZUELA

Former U.S. diplomat Elliott Abrams will lead U.S. efforts on Venezuela, where Washington has recognized an opposition leader as the legitimate president, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Friday.

“Elliott will be a true asset to our mission to help the Venezuelan people fully restore democracy and prosperity to their country,” Pompeo said in announcing Abrams’ appointment.

He said Abrams would accompany him to the United Nations on Saturday for a Security Council meeting on Venezuela where the U.S. will press other countries to support opposition leader Juan Guaido as the country’s interim head of state.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Upon reading this, I must confess that I felt a churning tsunami of nausea sweeping across my innards; please, Lord, stop testing, I am unworthy!!

This is the kind of choice which makes me understand, with painful clarity, and as if I already didn't understand, that the inmates in DC have truly taken over the asylum, and refuse to let any voice of reason, responsibility, or logic prevail.

Something wicked this way comes, and most probably very soon. The UN is holding an emergency meeting on Venezuela today, and to hear Mike Pompeo, at his most bombastic, at the microphone, just imagine that everything we have ever done for Venezuela to be the polar opposite of what he is saying the US government has done.

Here are some of the statements he made at the briefing room at the White House yesterday:

Mike Pompeo regarding Venezuela
I am particularly concerned about Abram's CV, which can be found here; Eliot Abrams is a War Criminal.this guy is the Dark Overlord of Dark Overlords, when it comes to designing a misery of hell, damnation, and oppression in those countries where the US either wants to stay friends with a dictator, Like the Shah of Iran, for example, because they have been "useful" to the US, or the US is angling for regime change, because they dislike the current administration, as is the case in Venezuela.

If you have any religious bent of any kind, please start praying for the people of Venezuela; they sure as heck are going to need it, and soon.

Jan 26 08:54

JUAN GUAIDO: IMPERIAL POINT MAN FOR A VENEZUELAN CIVIL WAR

Putting a new face to the Venezuelan opposition then immediately allowed for all sorts of anti-Maduro actors use Guaidó as their man to rally around.

So now that there is a new imperial point-man inside Venezuela the real question is, what happens next?

There are two likely outcomes to the rise of Guaidó, one of which is contingent on him succeeding and the other which would be another complete failure for the imperialists.

Guaidó launches his campaign today following several days or organizing protesters at rallies in Caracas. The protests have already started to turn violent as of this writing with at least four dead and the opposition calling for the military to “rise up” against the Bolivarian government.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I am seeing some very dark, dramatic days ahead for the Venezuelan people, as this situation plays itself out.

The key, here, is will Guaido be able to turn the Venezuelan military around to his point of view, and what kind of access to capital infrastructure he may have.

Remember, Victoria Nuland bragged about how much of your tax dollars were used to overthrown the duly elected President of Ukraine. Victoria Nuland Admits: US Has Invested $5 Billion In The Development of Ukrainian, "Democratic Institutions"

I would rather imagine, to obtain virtual control of Venezuela's vast oil reserves through a compromised Head of State, that the US and other vested interests may well be looking at raising the ante to insure that this happens.

Jan 25 21:31

VENEZUELA’S US-BACKED COUP LEADER IMMEDIATELY TARGETS STATE OIL COMPANY AND REQUESTS IMF MONEY

Unelected U.S.-backed coup leader Juan Guaidó immediately moved to try to restructure Venezuela’s state-owned oil company and seek financing from the neoliberal IMF, reports Ben Norton of The Gray Zone.

Jan 25 15:02

Mike Pompeo just named Eliot Abrams his new special envoy for Venezuela.

Abrams plead guilty to withholding information from Congress about the Iran-Contra affair.

Pompeo says Abrams will be in charge of “all things related to our efforts to restore Democracy in Venezuela.”

Jan 25 15:00

MADURO DENIED ATTEMPT TO PULL $1.2 BILLION IN GOLD FROM ENGLAND

Nicolas Maduro’s embattled Venezuelan regime, desperate to hold onto the dwindling cash pile it has abroad, was stymied in its bid to pull $1.2 billion worth of gold out of the Bank of England, according to people familiar with the matter.

Jan 25 14:41

Trump’s Hawks Seek Aggressive Stance on Venezuela Regime Change

From 2017, the Trump Administration has been angling for regime change in Venezuela. Back during his tenure as CIA Director, Mike Pompeo was talking about trying to orchestrate such a “transition” of power.

This week, President Maduro’s power began to face a serious challenge. Following calls from Pompeo’s State Department, opposition leader Juan Guaido declared himself interim president. The hawkish parts of the Trump Administration are only too eager to embrace this, and are looking to aggressively back the change.

Backing Guaido means open efforts to undermine Maduro, and that seems to be the near-term direction for the administration. John Bolton says that the main focus right now is on figuring out a way to ensure that all money from Venezuelan oil exports goes directly to Guaido. Bolton said this was only consistent with US recognition of him as the legitimate government of Venezuela.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have to wonder just how long the Trump administration is going to wait on this issue; if they are going to move forward, it will have to be done very quickly.

There are numerous US bases in neighboring Columbia, bordering Venezuela, and I would be willing to bet that they are on a state of high alert right now.

Jan 25 14:05

Act of Gangsterism Against Venezuela

You could scour the bowels of US imperial crimes, from the Mexican-American War to the Gulf of Tonkin in Vietnam, and you won’t find a more brazen cynical act gangsterism than that which is now underway against oil-rich Venezuela.

Jan 25 14:01

US RECALLS ‘NON-ESSENTIAL’ DIPLOMATS FROM VENEZUELA, BUT VOWS TO KEEP EMBASSY OPEN

The US has ordered all “non-essential” diplomats and embassy staff to leave Venezuela “for security reasons” after Nicolas Maduro cut diplomatic ties with Washington over its recognition of an opposition leader as president.
The State Department has also warned US citizens in Venezuela that they should “strongly consider” leaving the country, after Maduro said the US should pull their staff out of Caracas “if they had any sense.”

The Trump administration initially rejected Maduro’s ultimatum, claiming he lacks the authority to make such a decision after the US recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido as acting head of state. Guaido, head of the National Assembly, proclaimed himself the rightful president and swore himself in on Wednesday, in a move which was immediately supported by Washington and its allies.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I have to speculate; are those maintaining the US consulate in Caracas going to be the "sacrificial lambs", to be slaughtered at the "right time" to justify an American military response?

Jan 25 13:13

Have Americans learned nothing? As Venezuelans are throwing off the chains of socialism tyranny, Americans keep voting more Left-wing authoritarians into power

The collapse of Venezuela would provide invaluable political and economic lessons for Americans if only our media would accurately report what has happened to the country once considered to be the Eden of South America.

Jan 25 12:38

'Don’t support coup in Venezuela' - protester disrupts Pompeo meeting

A protester carrying a placard reading 'Don’t support a coup in Venezuela' interrupted an Organisation of American States (OAS) meeting attended by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington DC on Thursday.

Many of those in attendance applauded the woman dressed in pink while Pompeo gave a wry smile.

Security eventually removed the woman from the meeting room as she shouted: 'Coups only create more violence.'

Jan 25 12:38

The Coup in Venezuela Must be Resisted

Venezuela has elections. Juan Guaido has never even been a Presidential candidate. Despite massive CIA opposition funding and interference over years as Big Oil tries to regain control of the World’s largest oil reserves, Nicolas Maduro was democratically re-elected in 2018 as President of Venezuela.

The coup now under way is illegitimate. I opposed Maduro’s move to replace the elected National Assembly. Sometimes I read back things I wrote in the past and decide I was wrong. Sometimes I think the article was right, but a bit of a potboiler. Occasionally I am proud, and I am proud of my analysis on Venezuela written on 3 August 2017. I believe it is still valid.

Hugo Chavez’ revolutionary politics were founded on two very simple tenets:

1) People ought not to be starving in dreadful slums in the world’s most oil rich state
2) The CIA ought not to control Venezuela

Jan 25 12:37

New Coup Attempt in Venezuela Led by Juan Guaido

The Venezuelan right-wing, backed by the United States and other right-wing governments in the region, continue with their coup agenda against the Bolivarian government. Meanwhile, in the streets of Caracas, Chavismo mobilizes in defense of peace, democracy and sovereignty of the country in the face of interference and destabilization of the national and international right-wing.

In an unconstitutional event the president of the National Assembly in judiciary contempt, Juan Guaido, sworn himself in on Wednesday morning. After which U.S. President Donald Trump recognized the illegal self-proclaimed president. The same was done by the Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, who has instigated attacks against Venezuela and his Government.

Jan 25 12:34

US fomenting a civil war, coup in Venezuela: Expert

The United States is attempting to push Venezuela in to a civil war by recognizing un-elected opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president, an American human rights expert and peace activist says.

“Clearly they’re trying to foment a coup and possibly push the country into civil war,” said Daniel Kovalik, who teaches international human rights at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in the state of Pennsylvania.

“They’re recognizing someone who wasn’t only not elected, he didn’t even run for office,” Kovalik told Press TV on Thursday.

Guaido, the president of Venezuela's opposition-led National Assembly, declared himself interim president of the country on Wednesday, and was immediately recognized by the administration of US President Donald Trump.

Jan 25 12:32

Coincidence? Venezuela Green Lights Russia to Mine Gold, Days Later US Attempts Overthrow

The decades-long US infatuation with Venezuela came to a head on Wednesday as the United States, Canada, Brazil, and others all declared a man who never even ran for the office of presidency, much less got elected to the office, as the president of Venezuela.

On Wednesday, Juan Gerardo Guaidó Márquez took a public oath of office and swore himself in as the President of Venezuela. He assumed this office with zero democratic process—essentially making himself a dictator—and was immediately declared legitimate by Washington.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

"WE need that gold! We need to replace all the gold that the NY FED depository let out that back door!!!" -- Official White Horse Souse

Jan 25 12:29

Iran backs Venezuela’s President Maduro and rejects US interference

A spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry announced on Thursday that the Islamic Republic backs Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro after the United States announced its support for Juan Guaido, the leader of the country’s opposition-held National Assembly, as the country’s interim president.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran,” explained Bahram Qasimi to local media, “supports the government and people of Venezuela against any sort of foreign intervention and any illegitimate and illegal action such as attempts to foster a coup d’etat.”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has called on Maduro to hand over to Guaido, who is also supported by the European Union, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama and Paraguay. Maduro has the backing of Russia, Iran, Turkey, Uruguay, Cuba, Syria and Palestine.

Jan 25 11:44

AP Explains: What a Venezuelan oil embargo could mean for US

Diplomatic relations between U.S. and Venezuela have hit a new low over President Donald Trump's decision to recognize the leader of the South American country's opposition as its legitimate president. But the two countries have long history of interdependency when it comes to oil that has endured through years of political tensions. Trump has long considered imposing sanctions that would block imports of Venezuela oil. Here's a look at how such a move might affect both countries.

Jan 25 11:44

US orders non-emergency embassy staff to leave Venezuela

The United States on Thursday ordered non-emergency embassy staff to leave Venezuela but refused to comply with a full expulsion demanded by Nicolas Maduro, who Washington says is no longer president.

The State Department mandated the departure of non-emergency US personnel and their family members "based on our current assessment of the security situation in Venezuela," a department spokesman said.

"We have no plans to close the embassy. The United States will maintain diplomatic relations with Venezuela through the government of interim President Guaido, who has invited our mission to remain in Venezuela," he said.

Jan 25 11:28

Brazil dam collapses, releasing deadly flow of mud

A dam in south-east Brazil collapsed on Friday (Jan 25), unleashing a torrent of mud that killed an as-yet-undetermined number of people living in an area close to the city of Belo Horizonte, a local fire service official said.

Emergency services were still responding to the situation in and around the town of Brumadinho and did not yet have a precise toll, the official told AFP.

"According to accounts that we are receiving, there were several deaths," the official said.

Television images taken from the air showed a wide swath of devastation cut through vegetation and farmland. Several homes were seen, many damaged and some destroyed, with nothing but their tiled roofs left sitting on mud.

A rescue helicopter was seen hovering close to two survivors trapped up to their waist in mud, with its crew trying to pull them to safety.

Jan 25 11:21

Regime Change and Speakers of the Legislature: Nancy Pelosi vs. Juan Guaido, Self-Proclaimed President of Venezuela

By endorsing a procedure which proclaims Juan Guaido as president of Venezuela, Trump has opened up a Pandora’s box, which could potentially backlash on his own presidency:

Trump’s endorsement of Venezuela’s speaker of the National Assembly Juan Guaido (which repeals the presidential succession procedures under the constitution) is tantamount to stating that Nancy Pelosi could legitimately from one day to the next replace Trump as interim president of the US. A pretty grim prospect for the Donald.

Juan Guaido is to Venezuela what Nancy Pelosi is to the United States. The opposition to president Maduro controls the National Assembly. The opposition to president Trump controls the House of Representatives.

Jan 25 10:17

The American Empire Pivots Toward Venezuela

Many people are coming to quick takes on yesterday’s extraordinary decision by the U.S. government to recognize an unelected opposition leader as interim President of Venezuela based on their view of Maduro and his government. Similar to the emotional responses to those first clips of the Covington students and Nathan Phillips, such superficial opinions feel good and confirm biases, but don’t tell you much about what’s really going on. From my seat, the move by the Trump administration to choose the leader of Venezuela by diktat is just straight up imperial geopolitics. Nothing more, nothing less.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The bog news today is Roger Stone and Venezuela has all but vanished from the corporate media. From this, I suspect that the overnight internal polls on public support for another war were terrible.

Jan 25 09:58

Graham zings Ocasio-Cortez, says she's 'hell-bent' on making Americans live as ‘Venezuelan socialists'

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., zinged Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., on Thursday for claiming climate change will end the world in 12 years -- and accused her of wanting to make Americans live as “Venezuelan socialists.”

“Let’s bury the hatchet and enjoy the next 12 years because they are going to be our last, right?” he tweeted.

Jan 25 09:43

Congresswoman who fixed Democratic primary for Clinton now ‘fixing’ democracy in Venezuela

Regime change and foreign interventions are things that the two US ruling parties agree on regardless of how much they exchange blows at home. Venezuela is the latest place where Republicans and Democrats have found common ground.

If you watch the US media, you know what is happening in Venezuela: Dictator Nicolas Maduro is brutally suppressing the people he has been robbing for years, and now they have revolted and elected a true representative of their interest, the one true legitimate acting president Juan Guaido. And now it’s up to America to ‘fix’ democracy by whatever means necessary.

Jan 25 09:15

Rep Ilhan Omar Accuses Trump Of Waging ‘Coup’ Against Venezuela

Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar accused the Trump administration Thursday of waging a “coup” against the Venezuelan government by recognizing opposition leader Juan Guaido as president over socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro.

“A US backed coup in Venezuela is not a solution to the dire issues they face,” Omar, a Democrat, wrote on Twitter.

Jan 24 14:32

Ecuadorian ex-president Correa to RT: ?annot rule out US-backed ‘military action’ in Venezuela

Washington’s reckless push for regime change in Venezuela, where the US actively supports a person who “ignores all laws,” might set a dangerous precedent, former president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa told RT.

A situation, in which a man “declares himself an ‘interim’ president” and immediately gets recognition from 11 Latin American countries and the US, is “unseen,” Correa said, commenting on the latest developments in the crisis-ridden Venezuela and referring to the opposition head Juan Guaido.

Jan 24 14:16

Mike Pence Calls for Coup d’Etat in Venezuela

Venezuela is a prime target because of its world’s largest oil reserves. US dark forces want Big Oil controlling them.

They want fascist tyranny replacing Bolivarian social democracy. They’re waging longstanding political, economic, financial, and sanctions war on the country – military intervention an option if current tactics fail.

Previous US coup d’etat attempts failed. Another slow-motion one is underway. On Tuesday, Mike Pence encouraged the toppling of democratically reelected Maduro.

He turned truth on its head calling him a “usurper,” a “dictator with no legitimate claim to power,” falsely adding “(h)e has never won the presidency in a free and fair election, and has maintained his grip of power by imprisoning anyone who dares to oppose him.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: if Pence is making this announcement, the US and allied countries already have boots on the ground, to kick this thing into motion.

Jan 24 13:58

China Joins Russia In Slamming US Interference In Venezuela

Back in March, we asked a simple question: Can Russia & China Rescue Venezuela?

Realistically, and in retrospect, the answer was always no, but the reason we asked the question was simple: both China and Russia have extended massive credits to Caracas, and Maduro's regime in particular. As such, letting the country “die” was never an option that either Beijing or Moscow would gladly accept; neither was it an option to allow a transition in Venezuela's top power echelons, one which replaces the pro-Russia and China Maduro regime, with another regime which would, supposedly, be supported and endorsed by the US, and thus jeopardize Venezuela's obligations to the two nations.

And, as we also said last March, "chances are that Washington is aware of the role that China and Russia play there. Otherwise [Washington] would have already gone ahead with the broad oil sanctions, despite potential headaches for U.S. refineries."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I hope the folks at the White House, Pentagon, and State Department are "reading the tea leaves correctly" here, watching what is happening on the ground here; one, maladroit reading of the teal leaves, and we may well be off an running into another idiotic, headlong invasion of Venezuela, buffeted by China and Russia coming in on Venezuela's side.

This would be pure insanity, on the part of the US. But unfortunately, just because something is so hamfistedly, pigheadedly stupid as to be immediately disregarded, is no guarantee that the US government won't do it.

Apparently, when it comes to idiocy, when it comes to US government decision making, we have a brilliant new example:

And just like clockwork, we have the following article, also from www.zerohedge.com

Poppeo Promises $20 million dollars to Venezuela oppositionGood, People!!

Jan 24 13:49

Canada, Brazil, Peru and Colombia recognize Guaido as Venezuelan president, leaders say

Jan 24 13:03

Venezuela orders closing of embassy & consulates in US

President Nicolas Maduro has ordered the closing of Venezuela’s embassy and consulates in the United States, a day after severing diplomatic ties with Washington over the US recognition of an opposition leader as president.

Jan 24 10:48

Pompeo: US to Take Actions Against Anyone Who Endangers Personnel in Venezuela

The United States does not believe president Nicolas Maduro has the legal authority to break Venezuela’s diplomatic ties with Washington, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a press release.

Earlier, Maduro said Venezuela has severed diplomatic ties with the United States and ordered the expulsion of its diplomats after the Trump administration recognized the opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

This may be why the US ordered the diplomats to remain in Caracas. They may be the sacrificial lambs to get the military intervention going.

Jan 24 10:42

The US Strategy for Regime Change in Venezuela

From economic sanctions to international pressure, how has the US strategy for regime change in Venezuela worked until now?

Jan 24 10:28

US Refuses To Withdraw Diplomats From Venezuela, "Will Take Appropriate Actions" If Harmed

In what may shape up to be a major international incident over the next 48 hours, the United States has refused to withdraw diplomats from Venezuela, saying in a Wednesday evening statement that the US "stands with interim President Juan Guaido," adding "The United States does not recognize the Maduro regime as the government of Venezuela. Accordingly the United States does not consider former president Nicolas Maduro to have the legal authority to break diplomatic relations with the United States or to declare our diplomats persona non grata.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The US Government may be setting those diplomats and their families up to be targets in a false-flag attack to justify US military intervention in Venezuela.

Jan 24 10:19

Russia Warns US Against Military Interference in Venezuela's Affairs

Russia warns the United States against military interference in Venezuela's affairs, it would be a disaster, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Thursday, noting that Moscow stands for the principle of non-interference in internal affairs.

"We warn against this. We believe that this would be a catastrophic scenario that would shake the foundations of the development model we see in the Latin American region", Ryabkov said in an interview with the International Affairs magazine.

Jan 24 10:19

Iran, Turkey, Russia warn US against meddling in domestic affairs of Venezuela

Iran, Turkey and Russia throw their weight behind the Venezuelan government against a bizarre move by the US-backed opposition leader to proclaim himself “president,” warning Washington against interfering in domestic affairs of the South American state.

On Thursday, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said the Islamic Republic “backs Venezuela’s nation and legitimate government in the face of any foreign meddling in the country’s domestic affairs or any illegitimate and illegal measure such as attempts for a coup or moves against the people.”

“We hope that any disagreement and political problem in Venezuela will be resolved by the country’s own people and government as soon as possible via legal and peaceful solutions,” he added.

Jan 24 09:25

Russia STANDS With Venezuela Against U.S. Imperialism, But Who Else Does?

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova criticized the West’s interference in Venezuela’s internal affairs. Earlier, Nicolas Maduro announced the breakup of diplomatic relations with the United States in retaliation for the recognition of Juan Guaidó as interim Venezuelan president.

“The events in Venezuela show how the progressive Western community is actually dealing with international law, sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of states, deliberately changing power there,” Zakharova wrote on his Facebook page.

The situation in Venezuela worsened considerably after the inauguration of Nicolás Maduro, who was re-elected on January 10. Member countries of the Lima Group decided not to recognize the new mandate. Subsequently, Brazil, Paraguay, Colombia, Canada, the United States and other Latin American countries decided to recognize the president of the deported National Assembly, Juan Guaidó as the interim president of the country.

Jan 24 09:23

Venezuela, Giorgio Cremaschi: "No to Trump's fascist coup"

ON THE SIDE OF THE BOLIVARIAN REVOLUTION OF VENEZUELA, WITH THE LEGITIMATE PRESIDENT MADURO ..

No to the fascist coup of Trump, shame to those who support him, we show everywhere the condemnation of the coup, remember Allende, do not have to pass .. The American empire in the trash of history .. NO PASARAN

Jan 24 09:05

FLORES: This Is The Hour, Maduro’s Position Is Strong

For those in Latin America and in Venezuela in particular, the present crisis is a test of historic proportions. For the rest of the world, the stakes may not be as high personally, but it is certainly a test of another kind – one we have had no shortage of in the last two decades – a litmus test for those who believe themselves to be anti-capitalists or anti-imperialists.

As we have seen in Syria, the creation of dual power organs by the foreign government controlled ‘Non-Governmental Organizations’, was then weaponized against the sovereignty, people, and state of Syria. We should expect similar in Venezuela, where for over a year we have seen a rebirth of 2002 levels of wanton provocations by said NGO’s. These NGO’s have been operating for long in Venezuela, and the protest movement we saw was connected to these.

Jan 23 15:05

Venezuelan Defense Minister: Armed Forces Will Defend Constitution, Sovereignty

Venezuelan Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino said Wednesday that the country's military will continue to defend the Venezuelan constitution and national sovereignty, and would not accept an "imposed president."

Jan 23 14:34

‘Totally not meddling’: Reactions to US recognition of Venezuela’s Guaido as ‘acting president’

The Trump administration’s recognition of Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president has provoked criticism from independent journalists but cheers from an unexpected quarter: his domestic foes.

“Donald Trump, Mike Pence and Marco Rubio got to decide who is president of Venezuela. That’s democracy you guys,” tweeted journalist Rania Khalek, who also predicted that the same media outlets hating on Trump all day would applaud the move.

Jan 23 14:33

Trump recognizes US-backed head of Venezuela’s opposition Juan Guaido as country’s interim president

US President Donald Trump has recognized Venezuela's opposition leader Juan Guaido as interim president in a provocative move against the elected government of Nicolas Maduro.

"Today, I am officially recognizing the President of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaido, as the Interim President of Venezuela," Trump said in statement.

He called the Maduro government "illegitimate" and "directly responsible for any threats" posed to the Venezuelan people.

He added he would use "the full weight of United States economic and diplomatic power to press for the restoration of Venezuelan democracy" and encouraged other governments in the Western Hemisphere to also recognize Guaido.

Jan 23 14:21

Venezuela breaking diplomatic relations with US after its attempt to stage coup – President Maduro

Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro said Caracas is breaking off diplomatic relations with the US, giving American diplomats 72 hours to leave the country, after Donald Trump recognized the opposition leader as interim head.
Maduro announced the move to a large crowd of cheering supporters from a balcony of the presidential Miraflores Palace in Caracas, shortly after the US, and then several Latin American countries, decided to recognize the opposition leader Juan Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president.

Jan 23 08:36

U.S. Has Its Gunsights on Venezuela

On January 10—Nicolas Maduro was sworn in for his second term as president of Venezuela. “I tell the people,” Maduro said, “this presidential sash is yours. The power of this sash is yours. It does not belong to the oligarchy or to imperialism. It belongs to the sovereign people of Venezuela.”
***
The gunsights were once firmly on West Asia and North Africa—on Iraq, Libya, Syria and Iran—but now they are focused on Latin America—on Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. These countries face economic sanctions and embargoes, threats of annihilation, covert operations and war. The definition of imperialism is simple: if you don’t do what we tell you to do, we’ll destroy you.

Pressure on Venezuela has been intense. U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly called for the overthrow of the Bolivarian government, led by Maduro. Sanctions have been ratcheted up. Economic warfare has become normal. Threats of a military invasion are in the air.

>>>

Jan 23 02:43

Maduro to revise US diplomatic ties after Pence backs protesters

Venezuela's Maduro accuses US of trying to force a coup after Mike Pence sends video message of support to opposition.

Nicolas Maduro says he has ordered a "revision" of Venezuela's diplomatic relations with the United States, accusing Washington of trying to force a coup after US Vice President Mike Pence threw his weight behind attempts to get rid of the South American country's president.

Maduro said on Tuesday he would announce new measures in the next few hours, in comments that came shortly after Pence declared support for protesters and opposition leaders before widespread anti-government demonstrations planned for Wednesday.

"On behalf of President Donald Trump and all the American people, let me express the unwavering support of the United States as you, the people of Venezuela, raise your voices in a call for freedom," Pence said in a taped video message in English with a few Spanish words and phrases mixed in.

"Nicolas Maduro is a dictator with no legitimate claim to power. He has never won the presidency in a free and fair election, and has maintained his grip of power by imprisoning anyone who dares to oppose him."

>>>

Jan 23 01:55

VENEZUELA ARRESTS ROGUE OFFICERS AFTER MILITARY REVOLT IN CARACAS

Venezuela’s government said on Monday it had suppressed a military revolt after a group of officers stole weapons and kidnapped several officials, as a video posted online showed a sergeant demanding the removal of President Nicolas Maduro.

Some two dozen officers attacked a National Guard outpost in the Caracas neighborhood of Cotiza, a kilometer (0.6 mile) from the presidential Miraflores palace, where they met “firm resistance,” the government said. Witnesses reported hearing gunshots at about 3 a.m. (0700 GMT).

Protesters later burned trash and a car outside the outpost, where the 25 officers were arrested, in a sign of growing tensions following Maduro’s inauguration to a second term that governments around the world have called illegitimate.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The big question here is, how long will Maduro's military stay committed, if they are suddenly seeing massive decline to their quality of life as well?!

Jan 22 16:51

Maduro orders ‘total revision’ of diplomatic ties with US over support for Venezuela’s opposition

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has ordered a revision of diplomatic relations with the US after the White House has openly urged the opposition to unite and overthrow the “dictator with no legitimate claim to power.”

Ahead of the mass street protests against Maduro on Wednesday, called by the opposition-led National Assembly, US Vice President Mike Pence released a video message reaffirming unwavering support for a regime change in Venezuela. Denouncing Maduro as “a dictator with no legitimate claim to power” who has “never won the presidency in a free and fair election,” Pence declared that time has come for the Venezuelan people to take the matters into their own hands, in a speech peppered with Spanish phrases.

“The United States supports the courageous decision by Juan Guaidó, the president of National Assembly, to assert that body’s constitutional powers, declare Maduro a usurper and call for the establishment of a transitional government,” Pence said.

Jan 22 11:38

Surviving in a Venezuelan City: “You have no clue about how people really are when they are faced with hunger”

Surviving in a Venezuelan city is a lot different than it is in a country retreat. Each location has its own problems and benefits. I wrote before about the dangers of rural retreats and today I will write about the dangers in a city. You must not underestimate people because they are different then they deal with hunger and poverty.

I would like to dissect a little bit about the importance of a parameter that is paramount for “the retreat,” or whatever you may want to call it. Location is everything when it comes to your safety, especially when you live in the city.

Jan 22 10:09

Pence Urges Venezuelans To Rise Up Against "Dictator" Maduro After Failed Military Revolt

launched by 27 low-ranking officers and their subsequent arrests in the Cotiza neighborhood of Caracas, which sparked overnight protests and sporadic clashes with police after opposition leader Juan Guaido made a broad appeal to the military in a speech, urging them to demand Maduro step down. Guaido and other opposition leaders in the National Assembly have declared Wednesday a nation-wide protest day seeking to topple the regime — itself a historic date commemorating the end of Venezuela's military dictatorship in 1958.

On Tuesday US Vice President Mike Pence urged the Venezuelan people to "make your voices heard" in follow-up to Guaido's risky appeal, which appears a continuation of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's comments throwing the United States' full weight behind Venezuela's opposition seeking to depose President Nicolás Maduro, which he made over a week ago while in the Middle East after Maduro was sworn in to a widely contested six-year second term.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Mr. Vice President, a word, please; much of the population is starving, sir; and US sanctions have not helped the people of Venezuela very much either.

I am praying (literally) for a peaceful demonstration, but understand that very possibly....the US already likely has some "players in the game" who will do their best to create a pitched, violent battle with the military and police, in images that will be on the net, and floating around the world, to document Venezuela's fall into chaos.

But they will not see the "unseen hand" of the devastation created by US sanctions, and what it has meant to both its working people, and its oil business in particular.

Jan 22 08:07

Venezuela in crisis: How did the country get here?

Venezuela's National Assembly, the opposition-controlled legislative body, declared President Nicolas Maduro a "usurper" last week, deepening the political and humanitarian crisis that has engulfed the country.

The declaration came about a week after Maduro was sworn in for a controversial second six-year term following an election largely boycotted by the opposition and considered fraudulent by many within the international community.

During the ceremony, President Maduro promised to "construct 21st-century socialism" and labelled his opponents as imperialists and fascists.

Jan 22 05:16

Venezuela's top court declares parliament leadership illegitmate

Venezuela's Supreme Court declared the leadership of the opposition-controlled National Assembly illegitimate and its decisions "void" Monday after it repudiated the presidency of Nicolas Maduro.

The latest escalation in the power struggle between Maduro and the new president of the assembly, Juan Guaido, came on the same day as a brief military uprising in Caracas and amid opposition calls for mass protests on Wednesday.

Supreme Court president Juan Jose Mendoza read a statement to the press declaring that the legislature "does not have a legitimate board of directors."

He charged that it was "usurping its authority, and therefore all its decisions are void."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

There is an economic crisis; a military crisis, and a judicial crisis haunting Venezuela right now; the perfect trifecta.

One wonders how much can be endured by the Venezuelan people, until something snaps.

Jan 20 09:55

BUSH RAN A SECRET NATIONAL SECURITY TEAM AS VP, SAYS SEYMOUR HERSH

The veteran investigative reporter writes that George H. Bush, as vice president, ran a covert operations team in the early 1980s that even the CIA didn’t know about. As a former CIA director, Bush had the experience to oversee activities.Hersh says the vice president’s team ran 35 counterterrorism, counternarcotics and assassination operations between 1981 and 1985.

Jan 19 11:02

Trump Sanctions Against Venezuela Have Decimated Oil Production

The Trump administration is evaluating oil sanctions on Venezuela now. The sanctions that are already in place lead to many deaths and make an economic recovery practically impossible, says CEPR’s Mark Weisbrot

Jan 19 10:13

Is US Hubris Taking the World to the Edge?

Another US regime change undertaking is about to begin. Meanwhile, the Syrian misadventure will, hopefully, end soon and Bashar Al Assad’s enduring presence in Damascus is Washington’s failure writ large.

But that is not stopping the neoconservatives. Washington is beating the war drums again, this time in Latin America.

Venezuela, and its Bolivarian socialist revolution has long irked the United States. And, when on 10th January the re-elected Nicolas Maduro was sworn-in for his second six-year term as President, US imperial vitriol was unleashed, unfettered. The pomp and ceremony was attended by 94 international delegations — among them Russia and China — and the presidents of Bolivia, Nicaragua and Cuba, and too the celebrating crowds of Venezuelans. Obviously, neither Maduro nor Venezuela is isolated.

Jan 18 11:42

United States considers hitting Venezuela with oil embargo

The White House National Security Council has told some US refiners that sanctions on Venezuelan crude exports are under consideration, S&P Global Platts reported, citing sources familiar with the issue.

The effort would likely focus on the roughly 500,000 barrels per day (bpd) of crude that Venezuela exports to the United States, according to Joe McMonigle, an analyst with Hedgeye Risk Management.

Jan 17 09:53

How Gun Control Became an Instrument of Tyranny in Venezuela

By José Niño

Is Venezuela paying the price for adopting gun control?

The shocking nature of Venezuela’s economic collapse has been covered ad nauseam. However, one aspect of the Venezuelan crisis that does not receive much coverage is the country’s gun control regime...

Jan 16 11:42

Venezuela opposition tries luring soldiers away from Maduro

Opposition lawmakers in Venezuela are trying to pry the military’s loyalty away from President Nicolas Maduro, offering protection to members of the armed forces who support a transitional government.

Congress passed a declaration Tuesday declaring Maduro’s rulings invalid and giving amnesty to members of the military who help return Venezuela to democratic rule.

Maduro has cultivated a stronghold within the military even as Venezuela collapses in a historic economic and political crisis.

Venezuela analyst Diego Moya-Ocampos says the opposition is offering the armed forces incentives to break away rather than continue supporting Maduro.

Maduro was sworn this month in to a second term following elections critics reject as a sham.

The pro-Maduro Supreme Court earlier had ruled that acts of the opposition-dominated congress are invalid.

Jan 16 11:37

Venezuela And Turkey Unite To Refine Tons Of Gold Amid US Sanctions

Venezuela and Turkey are working on a deal to ship tonnes of gold to refine and certify in the Turkish city of Corum this year.

Facing sanctions and international pressure, Venezuela is increasingly turning to Turkey as a partner in the Middle East. Ankara will provide a host of services to Caracas, including building hospital and schools and providing humanitarian aid as a part of the gold refining deal.

Venezuelan Minister of Industries and National Production Tareck El Aissami will finalise a deal on the gold trade during a visit to Turkey on Wednesday. He will also tour an industrial complex in Corum, where Ahlatci Metal company has a refinery with an annual capacity of 365 tonnes, according to a spokesperson from the Turkish precious metals company.

Jan 16 11:36

Trump Mulls Declaring Maduro Opposition Leader "Legitimate President" Of Venezuela

CNN has cited three unnamed administration sources to say President Trump is considering formally recognizing Venezuela's opposition leader as the legitimate president following Nicolas Maduro's contested inauguration last week for a second, six-year term as the country's leader. And further CNN reports the White House is also mulling a complete embargo of Venezuelan oil.

It's a reference to the 35-year-old head of Venezuela’s opposition-run parliament, Juan Guaidó, who some argue is the rightful president of the country. As the president of the National Assembly of Venezuela Guaidó stirred controversy following Maduro's contested re-election by challenging Maduro's rule in saying he was the only "legitimate power" that the Venezuelan people look to. He said at a political rally last Friday, a day after Maduro's swearing in ceremony:

Jan 14 12:43

Pompeo Calls For Regime Change In Venezuela After "Illegitimate" Maduro Re-election

While standing in a Gulf Arab capital on Saturday, continuing his eight day tour of the Middle East primarily to assure allies that the US hasn't "abandoned" to region to Iran with its impending Syria pullout, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo addressed another "pariah state" problem, but thousands of miles away in Latin America, ironically while standing in an "allied" Gulf autocratic sheikhdom.

Speaking to reporters in the UAE capital of Abu Dhabi he spoke about regime change — this time not in the Middle East — but in Venezuela, another country under various forms of sanctions by the US for over a decade. In surprisingly provocative comments Pompeo threw the United States' full weight behind Venezuela's opposition seeking to depose President Nicolás Maduro, who days prior on Thursday was inaugurated for another, much-disputed six-year term, which many Western leaders have refused to recognize.

Jan 14 09:47

GUARDIAN REPORTS MORE “GOOD NEWS”, KID ARE DYING IN VENEZUELA

The Guardian’s Tom Phillips’ article Venezuela Crisis Takes Deadly Toll on Buckling Health System (January 06, 2019) is more good news for US psychopaths, such as Trump, Bolton and Pompeo. Children are dying in Venezuela. Sanctions are working!

Tom is becoming the Luke Harding of Venezuela. Luke…err, Tom blames all of Venezuela’s problems on president Nicolas Maduro. Tom has piled on, repeating the Washington Consensus vilifying Maduro…...that is what “repeaters” do.

If Maduro is illegally and violently removed from office, what will come after? Probably chaos, since there is no united opposition. Chaos is what the US desires, because chaos gives the US an excuse for interventions. A dysfunctional opposition then gives the US the power to be the kingmaker. The US has a self-proclaimed “right” to intervene anywhere, anytime in Latin America, according to the 1823 Monroe Doctrine, and the 1904 “Big Stick” Roosevelt Corollary.

Jan 14 08:55

State Department Calls on Venezuelan Opposition to Oust Maduro

The US State Department is calling on Venezuela’s National Assembly to impose regime change following the election of President Nicolas Maduro to a second term in power. US officials say that Maduro is “illegitimate.”

To that end, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has promised that the US will restore “real democracy” to Venezuela, which is to say removing the president from power. Venezuela’s General Assembly president has suggested he could invoke the constitution to name himself as interim president.

That seems to suit the State Department just fine. Vice president Mike Pence had said the US won’t recognize the most recent Venezuelan election, and says democracy will prevail in the country, which again means replacing Maduro.

During recent South America visits, Mike Pompeo has been courting other nations to support regime change in Venezuela. Both Brazil and Colombia appear to be on board with the US demands.

Jan 13 18:25

GUARDIAN REPORTS MORE “GOOD NEWS”, KID ARE DYING IN VENEZUELA

The Guardian’s Tom Phillips’ article Venezuela Crisis Takes Deadly Toll on Buckling Health System (January 06, 2019) is more good news for US psychopaths, such as Trump, Bolton and Pompeo. Children are dying in Venezuela. Sanctions are working! Tom is becoming the Luke Harding of Venezuela. Luke…err, Tom blames all of Venezuela’s problems on president Nicolas Maduro. Tom has piled on, repeating the Washington Consensus vilifying Maduro…...that is what “repeaters” do.

Jan 13 12:56

‘Time for new govt': US openly throws weight behind Venezuelan opposition seeking to depose Maduro

Washington has explicitly expressed its support for a potential coup against the elected Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, by offering its backing to the opposition and stating outright it was time for a “new government.”

"The Maduro regime is illegitimate and the United States will continue ... to work diligently to restore a real democracy” to Venezuela, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told reporters on his trip to the Middle East on Saturday, adding that Washington would attempt to make the Latin American nations “come together to deliver that.”

Jan 13 10:41

Brazil says it recognizes Venezuelan opposition leader as president

Brazil's government on Saturday issued a statement saying it recognized Venezuela's Congressional leader, who opposes President Nicolas Maduro, as the rightful president of Venezuela.

Maduro, who started a second term as president this week, has found himself increasingly isolated as countries around the world have called his continued leadership illegitimate.

Juan Guaido, the head of Venezuela's opposition-led Congress, said this week he was prepared to assume the country's presidency on an interim basis and call elections.

Jan 13 10:30

Opposition-controlled Venezuela legislature calls for protest to oust Maduro

Venezuela's sidelined opposition-controlled legislature is calling for a mass protest against President Nicolas Maduro in a bid to oust the socialist leader in favor of "a transitional government."

Maduro, 56, was sworn in for a second term on Thursday, having won a controversial election in May that was boycotted by the opposition and branded a fraud by the United States, European Union and Organization of American States.

The president of the National Assembly, Juan Guaido, said Friday that the constitution gives the legislature the right to assume transitional power after declaring Maduro a "usurper," but said it would need military backing and for people to take to the streets to demand change.

"Is it enough to lean on the constitution in a dictatorship? No. It needs to be the people, the military and the international community that lead us to take over," said the 35 year-old Guaido, speaking to a crowd of around 1,000 opposition supporters in Caracas.

Jan 12 12:01

Venezuela Supreme Court judge Christian Zerpa flees to US

Venezuela Supreme Court judge Christian Zerpa has fled to the US to protest over President Nicolás Maduro's second term in office.

Last year's election "was not free and competitive", the former Maduro loyalist told a Florida radio station.

And he accused President Maduro of systematically manipulating the affairs of the Supreme Court.

In response, the court said Mr Zerpa was fleeing allegations of sexual harassment.

Opposition parties boycotted the 2018 vote, calling it a sham.

Jan 11 08:28

Record rainfall, widespread flooding hits Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Bolivia

A severe storm produced very heavy rain and strong winds over parts of Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay and Bolivia over the past couple of days, causing widespread flooding and leaving at least 4 people dead.

The storm caused major flooding in northern Argentina, disrupting traffic, submerging cars and forcing thousands to evacuate homes on January 8 and 9, 2019. Winds gusted to 90 km/h (60 mph), downing trees and power poles.

The worst hit cities in Argentina were Corrientes and Resistencia on the Parana River.

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