US and Allies Look to Military Intervention in Venezuela

Photo by Joka Madruga | CC BY 2.0

The Bolivarian social and political movement first led by former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and holding state power since1999 has long faced U.S. assaults.  They’ve ranged from U. S. support for an unsuccessful military coup in 2002, backing for violent street disturbances, U.S. moneys assigned to political opponents, and U.S. economic sanctions against Venezuelan political leaders. Now the U.S. government may be on the verge of blocking Venezuelan oil sales in the United States.

One avenue for altering Venezuela’s government seems to be closing. Political forces rooted in Venezuela’s business class and mobilized against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro are flailing. But another has yielded results. Years of shortages at the hands of bankers and commercial interests have led to suffering and distress such that serious destabilization, their goal, may be at hand. Terrible inflation and real hardship for most Venezuelans may be the cue for military intervention billed as humanitarian.

It’s evident from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s visit February 1-8 to Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Argentina, and Jamaica that the United States sees action ahead, and soon. In Austin, Texas, en route, he noted that, “The corrupt and hostile regime of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela clings to a false dream and antiquated vision for the region that has already failed its citizens.” He noted that, “In the history of Venezuela and in fact…

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