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Pompeo Attempts to Link Iran, Hezbollah to Crisis in Venezuela

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Written by Whitney Webb; Originally appeared at Mint Press

“People don’t recognize that Hezbollah has active cells — the Iranians are impacting the people of Venezuela and throughout South America. We have an obligation to take down that risk for America and [what we’ll talk about is] how we do that in South America and all across the globe.” — Mike Pompeo

During a Wednesday night interview with FOX Business host Trish Regan, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made several statements that raised eyebrows, such as claiming that Cuba had invaded Venezuela and “taken control” of the Venezuela’s “security apparatus” and that U.S. sanctions illegally imposed on Venezuela “aren’t aimed at the Venezuelan people.”

However, the most surprising claim Pompeo made in the interview was that Hezbollah and Iran were “active” in Venezuela, presenting a national security “risk for America.”

After accusing China, Cuba and Russia of interfering with U.S. efforts to install U.S.-funded opposition figure Juan Guaidó and oust current Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, Pompeo made the following assertion:

People don’t recognize that Hezbollah has active cells — the Iranians are impacting the people of Venezuela and throughout South America. We have an obligation to take down that risk for America and part of what we will talk about next week in Warsaw is certainly how we do that in South America and all across the globe.”

Watch | Mike Pompeo Interviewed by Fox Business’ Trish Regan on Venezuela

Pompeo’s mention of Hezbollah — a political party that has wide support in Lebanon’s democracy — has been noted by many outlets for seemingly providing a justification for the U.S.’ “obligation” to intervene in Venezuela, potentially with military force, by attempting to link the Venezuelan government to the U.S.’ Middle Eastern enemies. What has been entirely overlooked, however, is the fact that Pompeo also signaled a promise of military intervention “all across the globe.”

Indeed, if the U.S. intervenes in Venezuela with Hezbollah as the pretext, it sets a precedent for going to war where Hezbollah is actually located — Lebanon — as well as against Hezbollah’s most powerful regional ally and favorite Trump-era boogeyman, Iran.

A whole doctrine out of whole cloth

Pompeo’s suggestion that Hezbollah is “active” in Venezuela has slowly become a Trump administration talking point over the course of the past two years, largely due to the influence of Pompeo — who publicly made the claim in August 2017 — himself and National Security Adviser John Bolton.

Bolton helped to bolster the claim that Venezuela’s government is connected to Hezbollah, through his connections to the Gatestone Institute, which Boltonchaired from 2013 to 2018 and used to heavily promote the alleged Hezbollah-Venezuela link over that time frame. Bolton, as recently as last January,argued that “Hezbollah, exploiting the long history of expatriate Middle Eastern trading networks in Latin America, remains a murky but continuing threat” in Venezuela, providing no evidence to back up his claim beyond suggesting that Middle Eastern immigrants to Venezuela are indicative of a Hezbollah presence.

Claims of Hezbollah’s links to Venezuela largely revolve around one man, former Venezuelan Vice President Tarek Al Aissami, who is of Lebanon-Syrian ancestry. The claims have been promoted as fact – despite an absence of concrete evidence – by a mix of neoconservative think tanks, such as the Center for a Secure Free Society, and former Bush officials, such as Roger Noriega, along with the Bolton and AIPAC-linked Gatestone Institute.

Similarly, many of these same groups, particularly John Bolton, have been instrumental in asserting that Iran – a strategic ally of Chavista Venezuela –is not in Venezuela for any “normal” alliance but in order to provide cover for alleged illicit activities, including its alleged ambitions to build a nuclear bomb. Bolton has accused Venezuela of harboring and collaborating with Iranian criminals and “smugglers;” and, during a 2013 hearing, Bolton claimed that Iran was operating in Venezuela in order to avoid international scrutiny:

These are expert smugglers with — the largest Iranian diplomatic facility in the world is in Caracas, Venezuela […] they are laundering their money through the Venezuelan banks.”

Bolton has also asserted that Iran uses Venezuela “to retain access to the country’s extensive uranium reserves,” suggesting that Venezuela is connected to Iran’s alleged desire to acquire and develop nuclear weapons. However, independent scientists have long countered that Venezuelan uranium deposits are minimal and likely impractical to extract.

Yet, that didn’t stop the usual pro-intervention think tanks — such as the Center for a Secure Free Society and the Center for Strategic and International Studies, whose board of trustees includes Henry Kissinger, ExxonMobil CEO Darren Woods and notorious neoconservative Richard Armitage — from promoting the claim.

Notably, no concrete evidence of either an illicit Hezbollah-Venezuela or an Iran-Venezuela connection has ever emerged beyond innuendo made by individuals and organizations with a vested interest in demonizing anti-imperialist governments in Latin America and beyond.

Terror here, terror there, terror everywhere

While the lack of evidence should be enough to write off this claim, it is still regurgitated by Trump officials and pro-interventionists because it offers a “terror threat” justification for U.S. meddling and potentially U.S. military intervention in Venezuela, as Hezbollah is considered a terror group by the United States.

Indeed, the potential for U.S. military intervention in Venezuela in order to “support” the parallel government of the U.S.-backed Juan Guaidó has been repeatedly mentioned by top Trump officials, including Trump himself in recent days. With Hezbollah and Iran thrown into the mix, the Trump administration is seeking to link its aggressive Middle East policy with its aggressive Venezuela policy in order to justify intervention in Venezuela because it is in “our hemisphere,” as Pompeo stated during his recent interview.

However, given the attempt to establish this link between Venezuela and Hezbollah/Iran, it must be understood that this is a connection that the Trump administration will seek to use in both directions. Indeed, if the U.S. succeeds in deposing the current Venezuelan government by using the alleged threat of Iran and Hezbollah as pretext, it could then link that intervention in Venezuela to the need to intervene at the source of those pretexts: Lebanon and Iran.

Indeed, the U.S.-backed regime-change efforts targeting Iran are already well underway and the same Trump officials now promoting the alleged link between Iran, Hezbollah and Venezuela are those who have long pushed for a preemptive war with Iran.

In Lebanon’s case, U.S. threats towards Lebanon have failed to derail Hezbollah’s popularity in the country, as evidenced by Lebanon’s most recent elections. However, Israel — whose influence over the Trump administration’s foreign policy has been the subject of numerous MintPress reports — has been actively preparing for war with Lebanon for over a year, with Hezbollah and Hezbollah-supporting civilians as the targets.

As MintPress previously reported, these war preparations have the full support of the United States and top U.S. military commanders have openly stated that — when the war starts — U.S. troops are “prepared to die” for Israel and Israel’s military will have final say over whether or not Americans are deployed to fight and die in this war.

With Pompeo’s recent statement that America is “obligated to take down” the risk of Hezbollah and Iran in Venezuela and beyond, his comments must be seen for what they are: a promise that U.S. intervention and potentially a military invasion in Venezuela will be just the beginning for the new neoconservatives who hold complete control over Trump administration foreign policy.

Whitney Webb is a staff writer for MintPress News and has contributed to several other independent, alternative outlets. Her work has appeared on sites such as Global Research, the Ron Paul Institute, and 21st Century Wire among others. She also makes guest appearances to discuss politics on radio and television. She currently lives with her family in southern Chile.

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  • Joe Kerr

    U.S. regime change efforts targeting Iran have already been underway for the past 10 years, to no effect. Time will tell if Pompeo’s bark has a bite, and the U.S. will bite off more than it can chew if it invades- Venezuela and Cuba will hand the U.S. its death knell.

  • Uwe

    US arguments to start wars increasingly ridiculous. I wonder how much people still belives that crap!

    • BMWA1

      But what about Señor Animal Presidente Nicolás Maduro’s barrel bombing of VZ children’s hospitals with Sarin gas, not to mention his rich store pf Verniftungswaffen???

  • Peter Moy

    Just more imagined, created, hypocritical verbal sewage being emitted from this 150 kilogram, two legged land whale. Reichsminister Dr. Goebbels would be envious of the daily propaganda from the evil, despicable, murderous, brain-damaged freaks that control US foreign policy. (Question: What is the actual tonnage of this Pompeo eating machine beast?)

  • badgery

    Looks like Trump© has found the “National Emergency” excuse to build his Great Wall: the evil socialist Cubano-Iranian terrorists invading from Hezbo-uela.

  • Nowruz

    The Hizbollah is also linked to Bibi’s alleged corruption charges…

  • ©igare☘☘e👽Sm⚽️k🚬ng🦉Man️🎲

    Pompeo is right, Hesbolah is linked to Venezuela…also my left testicle is linked to Saturn’s moon Titan, my right testicle is linked to Zupiter’s moon Ganymede and my 🚀 is linked to Amuaamua…

    [Imgur](https://i.imgur.com/G43XtOo.jpg)

    • You can call me Al

      You are buggered on 13/3/19 then !!.

      • ©igare☘☘e👽Sm⚽️k🚬ng🦉Man️🎲

        What do you mean, what’s going to happen on that date?

        • You can call me Al

          You know something, I think I was trying to be amusing, but I have absolutely no idea now. Apologies.

          • ©igare☘☘e👽Sm⚽️k🚬ng🦉Man️🎲

            hehe ok no worries, no need to apologise.

  • RichardD

    This the foreign policy that Jew puppet Pompeo is implementing in Venezuela.
    https://i.ytimg.com/vi/k7b9Asjs1_E/hqdefault.jpg

  • RichardD
  • RichardD
  • RichardD

    This is what the EU is supporting for the Jews.
    https://cdn.funcheap.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/5329832391.jpg

  • You can call me Al

    STFU you retarded, inbred zio POS.

    • RichardD

      You’re the two faced Jew supporter shilling for an evil Jew blood sucking pedophile mass rape cult that rapes 1,000 children worldwide every week. Some of whom are infected with venereal disease by Jew cannibal prostitutes, brain damaged and murdered.

    • RichardD

      This is the depravity that you support with your pro Jew posts.
      https://jewishbusinessnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Oral-Suction.jpg

  • RichardD

    This is British and EU foreign policy.
    https://i.ytimg.com/vi/aOpBMFs188A/maxresdefault.jpg

  • RichardD

    – Who Controls America? –

    https://thezog.wordpress.com

    “Banking/Finance
    Who Controls the Economy?
    Who Controls Wall Street? (Part 2)
    Who Controls Wall Street? (Part 1)
    Who Controls Goldman Sachs?
    Who Controls American International Group?
    Who Controls the Treasury Department?
    Who Controls the Federal Reserve System? (Part 1)
    Who Controls the Federal Reserve System? (Part 2)
    Mass Media
    Who Controls Big Media?
    Who Controls Hollywood?
    Who Controls Television?
    Who Controls Music?
    Who Controls Radio?
    Who Controls Advertising?
    Who Controls the News? (Part 1)
    Who Controls the News? (Part 2)
    Government/Politics
    Who Controls the White House?
    Who Controls the Senate?
    Who Controls the Congress?
    Who Controls the Supreme Court?
    Who Controls the State Department?
    Who Controls the Justice Department?
    Who Controls the Defense Department?
    Who Controls the Treasury Department?
    Social Engineering
    Who Controls the Ivy League?
    Who Controls the Think Tanks?
    Who Controls Professional Sports?
    Who Controls the Anti-Defamation League?
    Who Controls the Southern Poverty Law Center?
    Who Controls the American Civil Liberties Union?
    Who is Behind Gun Control?
    Who is Behind the Climate Change Hoax?
    “New World Order”
    Who Controls the Group of Thirty?
    Who Controls the Bilderberg Group?
    Who Controls the Trilateral Commission?
    Who Controls the Council on Foreign Relations? (Part 1)
    Who Controls the Council on Foreign Relations? (Part 2)”

    • leon mc pilibin

      ERRR one Guess,it begins with Z

    • Sinbad2

      Did the Jews make America do this?

      On July 8, 1853, Commodore Matthew Perry of the United States Navy, commanding a squadron of two steamers and two sailing vessels, sailed into Tôkyô harbor aboard the frigate Susquehanna. Perry, on behalf of the U.S. government, forced Japan to enter into trade with the United States and demanded a treaty permitting trade and the opening of Japanese ports to U.S. merchant ships. This was the era when all Western powers were seeking to open new markets for their manufactured goods abroad, as well as new countries to supply raw materials for industry. It was clear that Commodore Perry could impose his demands by force. The Japanese had no navy with which to defend themselves, and thus they had to agree to the demands.

      I am no Jew lover, but trying to blame Jews for 200 years of American barbarism is pathetic.

      • RichardD

        I never said that they have a monopoly on evil. They’re just the biggest part of the problem. I’m blaming them for what they’re guilty of.

        • Sinbad2

          No you blame Jews for the crimes of the USA.
          You pretend that America is controlled by Jews, but when a shipload turned up at Miami in 1939, the US sent them back to Germany and the concentration camps.

          • RichardD

            You’re a Jew supporting lame shifter. Fratricidal American Jews wanted those people dead for use in getting Israel admitted to the UN when it never should of been.

          • Sinbad2

            No I am not a Jew supporter, but I believe in the truth, and the truth is the USA was just as bloodthirsty before Jews became a major force in the USA.

            Why do Jews like America so much?
            Because birds of a feather flock together.

          • RichardD

            Jews have been a big problem from the beginning of the US to the present. That’s why they need to be gotten rid of.
            https://www.henrymakow.com/jewish-banker-funded-american-revolutionwish-banker.html

          • Sinbad2

            The original white Americans, the Pilgrims were Puritans, the Protestant version of Wahhabism.

            The thing is religion has fkall to do with it, it’s the culture, a culture based on avarice.

          • RichardD

            The culture is that most Americans don’t approve of what the Jews are doing. The problem is candidates from both parties are screened to weed out the anti Judaics. So all that you’re left with regardless of who you vote for is Israel firsters.

          • RichardD

            You don’t understand religion or American history.

            There were pilgrims from London with my last name on the Mayflower. And while it’s one of the oldest western European surnames still in usage, it’s not particularly common. So they were probably relatives.

            One of them was a signatory to the Mayflower compact. Which is the primary foundational document of American democracy. 150 years before the US constitution. And to a large extent English democracy as well.

          • Sinbad2

            Yes I know who funded the US revolution, but who borrowed the money to take over America?
            Rothschild funded Lincoln, Dutch Protestants funded the south.
            The USA is as Jewish as Israel, you even do I am the victim BS like the Jews.

          • RichardD

            BS? I really don’t think so. Pre internet Americans were lied to from cradle to grave by the Jew monopoly msm and controlled government. The internet is changing that and the Jews are doing everything that they can to control it. But a lot of it is beyond their control and they’re suffering a lot of damage because of it once people find out what scum they are.

            Which needs to be built on and is one of the reasons that I do the type of work that I do.

          • Sinbad2

            So you are saying Roosevelt was a Jew?

          • RichardD

            Search Zionist Nazi collaboration and read up on it.
            https://dissidentvoice.org/2012/07/the-zionist-nazi-collaboration/

          • Kelli Hernandez

            Jews own US of A whether you like it or not and are responsible for the myths and lies that created Israhell.
            Sheldon Adelson Israhelli billionaire bankrolled Trump’s campaign for 124 million. Most of his cabinet are Israhelli dual citizens as they are in Congress too, many of them Democrats.
            Jew bankers own the Fed Reserve and central banks and are part of the oil and drug cartel as well as organ harvesting.
            They are the embodiment of evil and this small minority is over represented IN AMERICA through academia, MSM and the military and politics.
            A bill just passed the house authored. By Zionist Christian extremist Marco Rubio that takes away AMERICANS first amendment rights. It conflates ZIONISM with Judaism and criminalizes any American criticizing Israhelli war crimes or pro BDS with a million dollar fine and 20 years in prison.
            Last year in Dickinson Texas after the flood, residents found out they could not get Fed flood relief without signing a pledge to Israhell first. There are 20 state with this law on the books. Before any Confess snake takes office they must sign pledge to Israhell
            Jews are a huge problem in America, and it needs to STOP

    • Marvin Joel Zavala López

      General Grand must be angry in his grave knowing lady Liberty is in bed with zion!!!

  • KhazarHunter

    It’s only a matter of time until he says Venezuela did the holocaust

  • RichardD

    The Venezuelan military needs short, medium, and long range missiles capable of getting past anti missile systems to do as much damage to Panama as is done to Venezuela until the Panamanians stop supporting attacks on Venezuela from their territory, to disable US bases in Panama, and to hit US ships attacking and supporting attacking Venezuela.

    Preparations need to be made to insure Russian and Chinese resupply of military and humanitarian aid to get Venezuela through the transition from Jew world order domination to multi polar world independence. Hopefully without hostilities.

  • verner

    fatso pompeo has at least given a face to the moronistan (aka usa) obesity sickness which is good and otherwise he lies through his teeth, the habitual liar that he is.

  • Carol Davidek-Waller

    i wonder what Pompeo ‘s drug of choice is?
    Judging by the comments, more adult readers believe in the tooth fairy than believe anything coming out of that man’s mouth.

  • leon mc pilibin

    just a zionist fucking LUNATIC

  • RichardD

    Presidential palace Panama City, Panama
    Are the people here planning to inflict years of death, destruction, deprivation and famine on Venezuela, or prevent it?
    https://www.cardcow.com/images/set211/card00202_fr.jpg

  • iosongasingsing

    Pompeo nullum foresee that Venezuela will become a Scythian nation and therefore to defend Catholicism a crusade he will begin, at the end of which the country will be converted to Christian Zionism.

  • RichardD
  • Sinbad2
    • RichardD

      Have you looked at the recent starvation sanctions that Jew Mnuchin is putting in place?

      • Sinbad2

        Starving the victim is the standard US MO.
        Yes the American Government is full of Jews, and most were voted into office by goy Americans.

        Americans use Jews to do the dirty work for them.

        • RichardD

          Democrats vote Jews into office, republicans with rare exception don’t. Jew gerrymandering of the electoral process to get goy sycophants in office and vast over representation of Jews in unelected control positions is a much much bigger part of the problem than elected Jews.

  • RichardD

    This is exactly what needs to be done:

    “Amid the tightening noose of US sanctions, Venezuela’s state oil company PDVSA is reportedly moving bank accounts of its joint ventures with foreign companies to Russia’s Gazprombank, Reuters reports, citing documents and sources.

    Customers of PDVSA’s joint ventures with US-based Chevron Corp, France’s Total SA, Norway’s Equinor and other projects with foreign companies have reportedly been instructed to deposit their payments into Russia-based bank accounts following the latest crippling round of Washington’s sanctions, Reuters reports.”

    – Venezuela’s oil giant PDVSA moves joint ventures’ accounts to Russia’s Gazprombank –

    https://www.rt.com/business/451078-venezuela-pdvsa-gazprom-accounts/

  • Parisa Zoorgoo

    911 justice would save us all from the thieving zio virus. dont boycows recognize their own killers?

    • RichardD

      911 is going in front of a federal grand jury in southern Manhattan. Whether it gets anywhere remains to be seen. Some of the people bringing the case, A&E for 911 truth, in the past have been part of the cover up.

      Dr. Judy Wood was at the US “Supreme” Court years ago with a credible case that they blew off for “national security” reasons.

  • goingbrokes

    Hezbollah is now everywhere, so US can intervene everywhere too – how convenient. It would be a drag if you would have to find real and existing reasons for random military violence.

  • Xoli Xoli

    All USA jets fly skew because of fat warmonger Pompeo.I wonder whether Pompeo fits in a toilet.

  • Kelli Hernandez

    Last time ZIONISTS tried war on Lebanon IDF were sent home with their tales between their legs. Israhell Bolton and Pompous ass are TERDIFIED of Hezbollah and Iran. They WILL fight back and Hezbollah has grown over the past 12 years into a formidable force.
    They also have ballistic missiles to reign down on Israhell and Israhelli’s will die.
    I say go for it.