The Strategist

The United States threatens Venezuela with intervention

02/25/2019 - 09:15

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo did not rule out that the United States could use military force "to restore democracy" in Venezuela, calling President Nicolas Maduro "the worst version of a tyrant." The list of "concrete measures" to resolve the crisis should be proposed by Vice President of the United States Michael Pence at a meeting of the leaders of the Lima Group in Colombia. Among the negotiators will be the chairman of the National Assembly of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó.

Eneas via flickr
Eneas via flickr
Last Sunday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that Washington does not exclude the use of force to resolve the conflict in Venezuela. "We can use any opportunity," he said on the Fox News channel, answering a question about likelihood of the use of military force against the government of Nicolas Maduro. According to the head of the American foreign affairs agency, the US administration is “ready for any action” in order to “hear the voice of the people of Venezuela” and “democracy triumph” in this country.

Mr. Pompeo also stressed that the United States will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Venezuela, saying that Washington will increase pressure on the government of President Maduro.

"There will be more sanctions and more humanitarian aid," the US Secretary of State promised.

The list of "concrete measures" that Washington is ready to go for should be announced by US Vice President Michael Pence at a meeting of the leaders of the Lima Group, which opens in Bogota very soon. The organization, created in the summer of 2017 to resolve the political crisis in Venezuela, includes 12 countries in Central and South America, as well as Canada and Saint Lucia.

During the meeting, the first negotiations between the Vice-President of the United States and the President of the National Assembly of Venezuela, the self-proclaimed President Juan Guaidó, should also take place. Mister Guaidó managed to secretly cross the Venezuelan border, despite the fact that he was forbidden to leave the country by a court decision.

On the eve of the meeting, the Lima Group, with the participation of the US Vice President in Washington, did not disclose exactly what measures he intened to offer. A senior administration official who answered journalists' questions on condition of anonymity only repeated Mr. Pence’s previous statements in which he promised that the White House is ready to use “the full range of economic and diplomatic opportunities” to make Nicolas Maduro resign.

In January this year, the US Treasury announced introduction of sanctions against the Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA. The sanctions lists included several high-ranking government officials.

A representative of the US administration on Sunday also confirmed that Washington is considering the possibility of conducting a military operation to overthrow the government of Nicolas Maduro. “We understand that we are not dealing with state institutions, but with a gathering of gangsters and thieves,” he said. “The time for dialogue with Maduro has already ended. The only question we want to discuss is the way and time of his resignation.”