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U.S.: Hands Off VenezuelaRalph E. Stone, Salem-News.com Commentary
What’s next — an invasion and occupation?
(SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.) - I am sure everyone would agree that Venezuelans deserve a better government.
Let’s face it, the late Hugo Chávez's vision of a modern day “Bolivarian revolution” — a Latin American political block with a socialist bent as an alternative to U.S. hegemony — has descended into repression and economic decline under Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.
About 5 million Venezuelans have migrated elsewhere.
As the past should have demonstrated, our present interference in Venezuela will do more harm than good. The U.S. shouldn’t be the ones to determine what Venezuela should look like.
In 2019, the Trump administration called Maduro “illegitimate” and recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the interim president of Venezuela.
So far this year, Washington has indicted Maduro on charges of narco-terrorism; refused to suspend crippling sanctions on Caracas despite the spread of Covid-19; and deployed U.S. warships near Venezuela in what has been described as "one of the largest U.S. military operations in the region since the 1989 invasion of Panama to remove Gen. Manuel Noriega from power."
Given our embrace of strongmen around the world, especially in Latin America — for example, José Efraín Ríos Montt in Guatemala; Gen. Augusto Pinochet in Chile; and Gen. Jorge Videla in Argentina, it should surprise no one where the U.S. hawks stand. However, even with backing from the Trump administration, Juan Guaidó has failed to oust Maduro.
After a failed uprising attempt last year and a failed coup attempt this year, what’s next — an invasion and occupation?
Finally, it is no coincidence that Venezuela has the largest proven oil reserves in the world.
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