May 4, 2019

Sure. Let’s invade Venezuela. Another jolly little war. It’s full of commies and has a sea of oil. The only thing those Cuban-loving Venezuelans lack are weapons of mass destruction.

This week, leading US neocons openly threatened that if the CIA’s latest attempts to stage a coup to overthrow Venezuela’s Maduro government failed, Washington might send in the Marines.

Well, the coup was a big fiasco and the Venezuelan army didn’t overthrow President Maduro. The CIA also failed to overthrow governments in Moscow, Tehran and Damascus. Its only ‘success’ to date has been in overthrowing Ukraine’s pro-Moscow government and putting a bunch of corrupt clowns in its place at a cost near $10 billion.

The US has not waged a major successful war since World War II – unless you count invading Grenada, Panama and Haiti, or bombing the hell out of Iraq, Syria, Somalia and Libya. That’s a sobering thought given the Pentagon’s recent announcement that it is cutting back on little colonial wars (aka ‘the war on terror’) to get ready for real big wars against Russia and China, or even North Korea.

Venezuela is in a huge economic mess thanks to the crackpot economic policies of the Chavez and Maduro governments – and US economic sabotage. But my first law of international affairs is: ‘Every nation has the absolute god-given right to mismanage its own affairs and elect its own crooks or idiots.’

Now, however, the administration’s frenzied neocons want to start a war against Venezuela, a large, developed nation of 32.7 million, at the same time we are threatening war against Iran, interfering all around Africa, and confronting Russia, China and perhaps North Korea. Large parts of the Mideast and Afghanistan lie in ruins thanks to our ‘liberation’ campaigns.

Invading Venezuela would not be much of a problem for the US military: half the population hates the current government and might welcome the Americans. Venezuela’s military has only limited combat value. Right-wing regimes in neighboring Colombia and Brazil might join the invasion.

But what then? Recall Iraq. The US punched through the feeble Iraqi Army whose strength had been wildly exaggerated by the media. Once US and British forces settled in to occupation duties, guerilla forces made their life difficult and bloody. Iraqi resistance continues today, sixteen years later. The same would likely happen in Venezuela.

There is deep anti-American sentiment in Latin America that existed long before Col. Chavez. Recall, for example, the large anti-American riots that greeted Vice President Nixon’s visit to Caracas in 1958.

‘Yankees Go Home’ is a rallying cry for much of Latin America. Blundering into Venezuela, another nation about which the Trump administration knows or understands little, would stir up a hornet’s next. Their ham-handed efforts to punish Cuba and whip up the far right Cuban-American vote in Florida would galvanize anti-American anger across Latin America. Beware the ghost of Fidel.

Talks over Venezuela are underway between Washington and Moscow. Neither country has any major interest in Venezuela. Moscow is stirring the pot there to retaliate for growing US involvement in Russia’s backyard and Syria. Both the US and Russia should get the hell out of Venezuela and mind their own business.

Instead, we hear crazy proposals to send 5,000 mercenaries to overthrow the Maduro regime. How well did the wide-scale use of US-financed mercenaries work in Iraq and Afghanistan? A complete flop. The only thing they did competently was wash dishes at our bases, murder civilians, and play junior Rambos.

For those who don’t like the American Raj, a US invasion of Venezuela would mark a step forward in the crumbling of the empire. More aimless imperial over-reach, more lack of strategy, more enemies generated.
The big winner would, of course, be the Pentagon and military industrial complex. More billions spent on a nation most Americans could not find on a map if their lives depended on it, more orders for ‘counter-insurgency’ weapons, more military promotions, and cheers from Fox News and wrestling fans.

Worst of all, the US could end up feeding and caring for wrecked Venezuela. How did we do with storm-ravaged Puerto Rico? It’s still in semi-ruin. Few want Venezuela’s thick, heavy oil these days.

Venezuela could turn out to be a big, fat Tar Baby.

Copyright Eric S. Margolis 2019

This post is in: Venezuela

6 Responses to “ANOTHER ‘JOLLY LITTLE WAR’?”

  1. “The only thing those Cuban-loving Venezuelans lack are weapons of mass destruction.” Based on the outcome for Hussein and Gaddafi, Maduro needs some. If the US has nuclear arms, I don’t see why anyone else shouldn’t have them; the US is no longer trustworthy, IMHO, and the others need protection.
    As far as staging a coup in Venezuela, I suspect the CIA has long been involved… since before Chavez. He created his own problems, but, I suspect there was an active American fifth column. It would have been interesting to see what the long term outcome of Chavez’s actions would be… an interesting approach to social engineering.
    The marines could walk in next week to create yet another mess. Pompeo and Bolton are a couple of dangerous loose cannons. The coup, as a disaster, is an understatement. It does not appear that the general population is behind this. Unlike the ‘successful’ Ukraine coup, where the elected ‘ruler’ was thrown out and a corrupt ‘puppet’ was put in place. People in Crimea, possibly with Russian ‘guidance’, decided to leave and re-join their ‘motherland’. The ‘right’ to do so legally was established by the UN with the separation of part of Sudan. The separation of Crimea is ‘different’ because it is not in keeping with American strategic goals. It’s nice to have a missile defence system in Russia’s backyard.
    I don’t know who the elected ruler of Venezuela is, but the UN seems to think that Maduro isn’t it. I don’t know if this is at the American ‘urging’; the UN has to cease being the American ‘lapdog’. First thing is to establish who the real ruler is and if Venezuela is still a democracy, I guess.
    The Americans are involved in so many skirmishes throughout the world, I’m surprised they can keep track of them all. Their success rate has been less than stellar, from as far back as their rout in Vietnam. I’m not sure how they would handle a ‘real war’. They have been fortunate in that, with the exception of 9-11, the fallout has never affected their country. I’m not sure how they would take to a real war, for example, the carpet bombing of New York. I suspect it would be a real ‘eye opener’. It’ s OK for this sort of thing to happen elsewhere. The UN, in the meantime, seems to let this warlike activity mount, and, in the process, the UN may be harbouring WWIII.
    The Americans are now threatening Venezuela, Iran, North Korea, Russia, China, and, who knows how many others. They are interfering in the Middle East, Africa and Pakistan. They have permanently messed up Afghanistan, Iran and Libya, and, they never seem to run out of money or weaponry. Imagine ‘rattling’ aircraft carriers instead of sabres in the Middle East against Iraq. Their support for the war in Yemen also comes to mind.
    Just of late, from the news:
    “The Trump administration warned China and Russia on Monday that the U.S. won’t stand for aggressive moves in the Arctic region, which is rapidly opening up to development and commerce as temperatures warm and sea ice melts.
    U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is calling Canada’s claim over the Northwest Passage “illegitimate” in a major speech that is being criticized for being provocative and inaccurate.
    A leading international-security expert says Pompeo’s branding of a longtime disagreement on Arctic policy between the Canada and the U.S. is a “stunning rebuke” of the 1988 Arctic Co-operation agreement between the two countries.”
    Another front… The Americans don’t have many ‘friends’ left and they are isolating themselves from those they ‘have’. If Canada doesn’t own it, then, Russia and China should have free access, since the Americans, clearly, don’t own it. Another issue for the failed UN to resolve.
    I’m not sure that half the population hate Maduro. I think it may fall into the ‘One-Third Rule’ where one-third ‘hate’, one-third ‘love’, and one-third ‘don’t care’. We were taught this ‘rule’ in grade school with respect to the American Revolution. Invasion of Venezuela would be easy, but, the aftermath may be more problematic. The Americans never seem to bring things to fruition. They are continuing on their path of fossil fuels, not realising, or caring, that they are putting the rest of the world in jeopardy. As I’ve noted in past, fossil fuels are the dinosaurs of the 21st century and, if the human race is to survive, the use of them has to stop in the immediate future. We have a similar problem in Canada, where there is a ‘political push’ for advancing the Western Provinces fossil fuel objectives.
    When you state that, “There is deep anti-American sentiment in Latin America that existed long before Col. Chavez.”, you are selling yourself short. I believe that there is a deep anti-American resentment around the world; it’s not just limited to South America. I was impressed by the actions of Fidel Castro and how he resisted his next door neighbour for decades.
    I suspect the Americans would look after the Venezuelans much like they look after the Puerto Ricans… OK as baseball players, but, not much more.

  2. Steve_M. says:

    I doubt that the US will invade Venezuela, contrary to the threats being uttered by Pompeo and Trump. Russian troops were put in that country recently to deter an American invasion and the Trump administration is unlikely to want a confrontation with Russia anytime soon, so any US military threats against Venezuela are probably just a lot of hot air. The same can be said about the possibility of an invasion of Iran, if Russia were to send some troops in there in answer to US and Israeli threats.

  3. John M says:

    In Norway before WW II there were the usual Communist and Nazi parties that all western nations had. When Hitler invaded and occupied Norway in 1940, Communists, as one would expect, joined the underground.

    As few would have guessed, so did some Nazis. They were so angry that Germany had invaded Norway they cast aside political affiliations and joined the resistance.

    Invading a country opens up a whole new galactic can of worms that can’t be planned for and I suspect any US invasion of any Latin American country could bring a boatload of unintended consequences down upon the foundering giant.

    Of course I’d put the odds of the US invading, particularly under Trump at around 500:1. The US already has 9 million veterans being served by the VA medical services. A staggering number. Mind you Vietnam vets should start dying off now at a high rate. Maybe the war advocates want to keep the VA tank topped up.

    • You might note that there was a very strong Nazi movement in the United states before their involvement in WW2… American firms were actively supplying Nazi Germany with war materials. This is something that seems to have ‘glossed over’ in American history.
      WW2 likely started for economic reasons, not because Germany marched into Poland. The allies gave Poland to the Russians at the end of the war.

  4. It is my eternal shame how our prime minister Justin Trudeau has shown himself to be America’s obedient little lapdog and has fallen in line. His father never would have.

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