On February 3rd, US President Donald Trump said that military intervention in Venezuela is “still an option,” during CBS’ Face the Nation.
“MARGARET BRENNAN: What would make you use the U.S. military in Venezuela? What’s the national security interest?
PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: Well I don’t want to say that. But certainly it’s something that’s on the- it’s an option.”
When asked if he would personally negotiate with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to convince him to exit, Trump said that Maduro had requested a meeting “months ago,” but the US was “very far along the process,” at that point.
“Well he is requested a meeting and I’ve turned it down because we’re very far along in the process. You have a young and energetic gentleman but you have other people within that same group that have been very very – if you talk about democracy – it’s really democracy in action,” the POTUS said.
Now, when Venezuela is at a crisis point, Trump would possibly say the following:
“I would say this. I decided at the time, “no” because so many really horrible things have been happening in Venezuela when you look at that country. That was the wealthiest country of all in that part of the world which is a very important part of the world. And now you look at the poverty and you look at the anguish and you look at the crime and you look at all of the things happening. So, I think the process is playing out – very very big tremendous protests.”
— Salvados (@salvadostv) February 3, 2019
“Stop. Stop, Trump! Hold it right there! You are making mistakes that will leave your hands covered in blood and you will leave the presidency stained with blood,” Maduro warned during a combative interview with the Spanish journalist Jordi Évole. “Why would you want a repeat of Vietnam?”
Maduro disregarded the EU’s ultimatum saying that there will be elections in 2024 and people will be able to exercise their votes then.
“I do not refuse to call elections, there are elections in 2024. We do not care at all what Europe says about Venezuela, Europe that takes care of its problems such as unemployment or migration,” Maduro said.
“Why does the European Union tell a country in the world that already had presidential elections in accordance to its constitution, its laws, its institutions, with the international observers, that they have to repeat their presidential elections? Why? Because their right allies in Venezuela didn’t win,” he said.
The reporter then asked if the situation in Venezuela “ends badly,” would Maduro take responsibility?
The president of Venezuela claimed that the situation “will not end badly”: “We have experience of 20 years of struggles, we are really, a popular force with a historical character with a project and with the leadership of the country.”
In any case, Maduro affirms that, “for good or for bad”, he assumes “all responsibility”, for which he always tries to “act in good will”. Asked if the situation is likely to end in a civil war, the president of the country responds that “nobody can answer now with certainty, everything depends on the level of madness and aggressiveness of the northern empire.”
“The military option is on the table of Donald Trump, we have to prepare to defend the right to peace,” Chavez’ successor pointed out. “Thousands of innocent Venezuelans may end up paying with their lives,” the journalist urges Maduro, but the President responds that this will only happen “if the US empire attacks the country.”
To conclude the interview, Maduro denied any journalist arrests. He claimed that the problem is the existence of a “campaign” to make “look like Venezuela as a monster in a dictatorship”: “Any event that happens is magnified to add to the permanent campaign of slander and justify against our government and country anything that may happen.”
On January 30th, Nicolas Maduro published a video on Facebook in which he asks people from the world, and mostly the US to not allow Donald Trump to start another “Vietnam War” in Latin America.
LET US NOT ALLOW ANOTHER VIETNAM WAR IN MY HOMELANDPeople from #USA, I ask for your support in order to reject the interference of Donald Trump's administration which intends to turn my Homeland into a "Vietnam war" in Latin America. Don't allow it!
Posted by Nicolás Maduro on Wednesday, January 30, 2019
On February 2nd, USAID Administrator Mark Green announced that the US is mobilizing and transporting humanitarian aid for Venezuela. This was also confirmed by US National Security Adviser John Bolton.
Answering the call of President Guaido, the U.S. is mobilizing & transporting humanitarian aid for the people of #Venezuela. I applaud the hard work of USAID, the State Department and their partners in preparing critical supplies to move forward this weekend. https://t.co/JR9poraxWl
— John Bolton (@AmbJohnBolton) February 3, 2019
The Red Cross warned that there are risks with sending aid to Venezuela, without coordinating the effort with the country’s military. It could spark a provocation.
Earlier on the same day, Bolton tweeted that the US urges all Venezuelan military to follow defected Air Force General Yanez.
Otro oficial de alto rango reconoce al Presidente legítimo de Venezuela. Los EEUU insta a todos militares venezolanos a seguir el liderazgo del General Yanez, y a proteger a los manifestantes pacíficos que apoyan la democracia hoy. https://t.co/22d8vkcQJj
— John Bolton (@AmbJohnBolton) February 2, 2019
He also used the chance to urge the Venezuelan top brass to abandon ship and join US-proclaimed Interim President Juan Guaido. Added is a tweet by Eva Golinger.
I wonder if we’ve ever witnessed such open and direct calls by the White House for a military coup in a foreign nation before. Usually they do this covertly, but this is as overt as it can get. Trump’s team is starting to look desperate to overthrow Maduro. https://t.co/cNBjztrHQu
— Eva Golinger (@evagolinger) February 3, 2019
John Bolton also suggested that Nicolas Maduro and his aides may end up in Guantanamo if they don’t accept Guaido’s offer of amnesty if the Venezuelan President steps down.
NSA John Bolton suggests Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro could end up in Guantanamo. Also seems like the Trump administration is expecting tomorrow to be showdown day in Venezuela as protests expected nationwide. Crazy interview: https://t.co/3lnZEUj7ch
— Eva Golinger (@evagolinger) February 1, 2019
I wish Nicolas Maduro and his top advisors a long, quiet retirement, living on a nice beach somewhere far from Venezuela. They should take advantage of President Guaido’s amnesty and move on. The sooner the better.
— John Bolton (@AmbJohnBolton) January 31, 2019
Meanwhile, US Vice President Mike Pence is going around the US attempting to gather more supporters for what is to come in Venezuela.
This is literally an outright call for a coup d’etat in Venezuela by the Vice President of the United States. https://t.co/UOB17oBczJ
— Eva Golinger (@evagolinger) February 2, 2019
Nicolas Maduro’s dictatorship is destroying Venezuela. For too long, the people of Venezuela have suffered under the heavy hand of oppression. But now, there is hope. We are with the people of Venezuela, we stand with them, and we will stay with them until democracy is restored. pic.twitter.com/eDlKWjXNiC
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) February 2, 2019
As you make your voices heard tomorrow, to all the good people of Venezuela – You go with the Author of Freedom, who said “do not be afraid; stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today,” “for where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” pic.twitter.com/OsSHNHs5ek
— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) February 1, 2019