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Venezuela Protests

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by robbie380, Jan 22, 2019.

  1. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Hopefully this leads to something, but there are major protests planned for tomorrow that are already starting in some places. The military is starting to turn their back on Maduro and Colombia, Brazil and the US have continued to ratchet up pressure against him. The US has officially recognized Juan Gauido as the legitimate president as well as Colombia, Brazil and other Latin American countries. Pence also gave a speech supporting the Venezuelans today.

    Pence Tells Venezuelans That U.S. Backs Efforts to Oust Maduro

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/22/world/americas/venezuela-usa-nicolas-maduro.html

    WASHINGTON — Vice President Mike Pence on Tuesday declared the United States’ “unwavering support” for planned mass protests in Venezuela against President Nicolás Maduro, the most explicit backing yet by the Trump administration as opposition leaders try to unseat Mr. Maduro.

    The declaration, the first in which Mr. Pence used a video to directly urge Venezuelans to take action, came after months of statements by senior Trump administration officials, including several strongly worded ones from the vice president, that said Mr. Maduro’s rule was illegitimate.

    “We are with you,” Mr. Pence wrote on Twitter on Tuesday in both Spanish and English, adding, “We stand with you, and we will stay with you until Democracy is restored and you reclaim your birthright of Libertad.”

    The post, which came as Venezuelan opposition leaders were calling for citizens to take to the streets on Wednesday, was accompanied by a video in which Mr. Pence said he and President Trump were united with them in their “call for freedom.”

    originated with the head of the National Assembly, Juan Guaidó, an opposition leader. Mr. Guaidó was sworn in to office on Jan. 5 and soon invoked an article of Venezuela’s Constitution that transfers power to the leader of the National Assembly, the nation’s legislative body, in the event that the presidency becomes vacant. The assembly has declared Mr. Maduro’s re-election last year illegitimate and called for new elections.

    On Jan. 15, Mr. Pence spoke with Mr. Guaidó by telephone to express the “United States’ resolute support for the National Assembly of Venezuela as the only legitimate democratic body in the country.”

    John D. Feeley, a former diplomat to Latin American nations who is now a consultant to the television network Univision, said that while “the vice president’s tweet stopped short of formal recognition of Guaidó as interim president,” the statement was “a nudge to Guaidó to keep pushing on an open door.”

    Members of Congress from Florida met with Mr. Trump on Tuesday and discussed Latin America policy, including on Venezuela.

    “We encouraged the president today to follow through with what he’s already declared, which is that Maduro is illegitimate,” said Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican. “The next logical step is to recognize the president of the National Assembly as the rightful president.”

    Mr. Trump and other top American officials, including Mr. Pence and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have consistently used harsh terms to criticize Mr. Maduro, a leftist politician who has exercised authoritarian powers and guided his country into an economic collapse that has led millions of Venezuelans to leave for neighboring countries.

    The New York Times reported in September that the Trump administration held secret meetings with rebellious Venezuelan military officials to discuss overthrowing Mr. Maduro, though American officials eventually decided not to help the plotters.

    “All options are on the table,” Mr. Trump told reporters in late September at the United Nations General Assembly meeting. “Every one. The strong ones, and the less-than-strong ones. Every option — and you know what I mean by strong.”

    Mr. Maduro made a surprise visit to the General Assembly and railed against the United States in a 50-minute speech, calling Americans “imperialists.” He and Mr. Trump did not meet.

    Beforehand, Mr. Trump had said that he was willing to meet with Mr. Maduro if the opportunity presented itself. “We’re going to take care of Venezuela,” he said.

    Many citizens of Latin America recall a long history of the United States’ supporting coups in the region by right-wing military leaders who then quashed democratic processes and rule of law to maintain power for years and sometimes decades.

    In November, Mark Green, the head of the United States Agency for International Development, said in an interview that his agency was trying to provide help for the millions of refugees who have fled the economic collapse in Venezuela.

    The United States announced several times last year that it was giving millions of dollars in aid to the country’s neighbors, notably Colombia, to help the refugees. At least $96 million intended mainly for food and health aid has been dedicated to the effort. Some observers have argued that the United States should be providing more aid.
     
    #1 robbie380, Jan 22, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2019
  2. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    As Venezuela Crumbles, Opposition Led by Juan Guaidó Sees an Opportunity

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/22/world/americas/who-is-juan-guaido.html

    [​IMG]
    Juan Guaidó speaking at a gathering this month in Caracas.

    CARACAS, Venezuela — A group of soldiers turned against the government and declared allegiance to the opposition. Foreign officials say the government could soon run out of money to meet bare-bones needs. And countries across the region have called the president an illegitimate dictator.

    Conditions in Venezuela have deteriorated to a point where the opposition — gutted by the jailing and exiling of many of its leaders and discredited after several failed efforts to oust President Nicolás Maduro — is seeing an opportunity. Leading them is a virtually unheard-of 35-year-old, Juan Guaidó.

    His debut as opposition leader and head of the National Assembly this month has captured the attention of those within the country and outside of it — mainly for his striking claim that Mr. Maduro is not a legitimate ruler and his willingness to take charge of a transitional government.

    “The relationship between Venezuela and its state today is one of terror,” Mr. Guaidó said in an interview. “When this happens, the voices and hopes of the world, their messages, are the encouragement for the daily struggle to resist — to dream of democracy, and for a better country.”

    bloody crackdown against demonstrators in 2017 left more than 100 people dead in clashes with security forces, according to the United Nations.

    “He’s breathed new life into the opposition,” said David Smilde, an analyst for the Washington Office on Latin America, a human rights group. “The opposition has finally put forward a fresh face that has courage, new ideas and leadership skills that has started to revive them.”

    Already, some in the military have taken up Mr. Guaidó’s call, staging a brief act of resistance at a military base in Caracas, which was followed by violent protests after it was put down.

    Mr. Maduro called the opposition a bunch of “little boys,” saying they were pawns of the Trump administration. María Iris Varela Rangel, a top politician in Maduro’s party, wrote on Twitter: “Guaidó: I have already gotten your jail cell ready with the right uniform, and I hope you name your cabinet quickly to know who will keep you company, you stupid kid.”

    Mr. Guaidó’s challenge to Mr. Maduro comes at a time when his presidency faces mounting challenges of legitimacy. On Jan. 10, the president was sworn in for a second six-year term after a disputed election in May that many countries did not recognize.


    Mr. Guaidó has captured the attention of those within Venezuela and outside of it — mainly for his striking claim that Mr. Maduro is not a legitimate ruler and his willingness to take charge of a transitional government.CreditManaure Quintero/Reuters
    [​IMG]
    Mr. Guaidó has captured the attention of those within Venezuela and outside of it — mainly for his striking claim that Mr. Maduro is not a legitimate ruler and his willingness to take charge of a transitional government.
     
  3. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Mr. Maduro’s leftist government, which faces sanctions from countries including the United States, is now surrounded by right-wing leaders in Colombia and Brazil. At home, hyperinflation led the president to instate a new currency, which in recent months has been losing value as well. More than three million Venezuelans have fled the country for lack of food and medicine.

    Yet if Mr. Maduro has been unpopular, the opposition has been almost equally imperiled during the crisis.

    Since 2017, the National Assembly has been effectively sidelined by a new legislative body created under Mr. Maduro and packed with his supporters. Last year the opposition was so divided over how to confront the president that two parties broke with a boycott to participate in the elections while the rest sat it out.

    “People have been frustrated with the opposition, and tired of the same old faces of the politicians of the old establishment that have failed,” said Margarita López Maya, a retired political scientist in Caracas who taught at the Central University of Venezuela.

    Mr. Guaidó’s rise may mark the opposition’s last, best chance to revive itself, many believe.

    “He’s a hard worker, he’s humble and he can unite us,” said Lilian Tintori, whose husband, Leopoldo López, is Venezuela’s most well-known political prisoner and Mr. Guaidó’s mentor. “But the risk for him is enormous. They may do the same to Juan as they did to Leopoldo, to put him in jail.”

    Mr. Guaidó was already briefly detained by masked members of Venezuela’s intelligence service on Jan. 13, two days after declaring his intent to oust Mr. Maduro from power. Accounts differ on the nature of the arrest: The government said he had been detained by rogue officials who were later disciplined, while Mr. Guaidó maintained the agents who detained him had seemed sympathetic to the opposition.

    Foreign officials, particularly in the United States, who want to see a transitional government in Venezuela, say they saw in Mr. Guaidó a fresh-faced leader from humble origins who contrasted with previous opposition leaders, whom Mr. Maduro disparaged as oligarchs and right-wing extremists.


    While the United States has not recognized Mr. Guaidó as Venezuela’s leader, in recent days senior American officials have denounced Mr. Maduro as a dictator and made clear their support for Mr. Guaidó’s effort to oust Mr. Maduro and set up a transitional government. Last year, Trump administration officials met in secret with rebellious members of the military to discuss their plans to overthrow Mr. Maduro.

    Vice President Mike Pence spoke directly to the Venezuelan people in a video released on YouTube and Twitter on Tuesday, calling Mr. Maduro a “dictator with no legitimate claim to power.” Mr. Pence said he recognized the National Assembly, led by Mr. Guaidó, as “the last vestige of democracy in your country,” and stated that, “we are with you, we stand with you, and we will stay with you until democracy is restored and you reclaim your birthright of libertad.”

    In response, Mr. Maduro said Tuesday evening that he had ordered a “a total and absolute revision” of relations with the United States. He provided no details on what that might produce, but said decisions would be imminent.

    “Who elects the president of Venezuela? Mike Pence?” Mr. Maduro asked during a live address on state television.



    [​IMG]

    Mr. Guaidó, second-from-left, at a news conference in Caracas in 2015. He was holding hands with Antonieta Mendoza, left, the mother of his mentor, the jailed opposition leader, Leopoldo López, and the wife of Mr. López, Lilian Tintori.

    The opposition has used the show of support from the United States to urge people to take to the streets on Wednesday.

    Ahead of the planned protests, opposition leaders feel buoyed by the large crowds that have already arrived at town hall meetings along with numerous street protests this week. High-profile military defections to their side could mark a point of no return in their bid to oust Mr. Maduro.

    But a new crackdown on demonstrations and a wave of arrests targeting opposition leaders — including Mr. Guaidó — are also plausible.

    It’s also possible Venezuelans, still soured on opposition leaders or simply fearing a government crackdown, do not rise in large numbers to Mr. Guaidó’s call to protest.

    With a tall, wiry frame and a penchant for dancing in public and speaking outdoors, Mr. Guaidó became politically active as a student leader in Caracas. There he headed protests against then-president Hugo Chávez after Venezuela’s oldest broadcaster was closed, part of broader efforts to muzzle the press.

    After college, Mr. Guaidó, who had studied engineering, was offered a job in the private sector that would have taken him to Mexico, said Juan Carlos Michinel, a friend. He didn’t accept the position.

    “He wanted to start change here,” said Mr. Michinel. “He decided to stay here in Venezuela.”

    Voluntad Popular, Mr. Guaidó’s party, is one of the more hard-line of the opposition’s parties, favoring marches against Mr. Maduro in the streets. Mr. López, the jailed mentor of Mr. Guaidó, was sentenced to more than 13 years in prison after leading street protests in 2014 to challenge Mr. Maduro.

    Mr. Guaidó’s ascendance as the face of the opposition could herald a new, more confrontational stance with the government, where the military will be actively courted as allies, said Ms. Tintori.

    “We don’t have arms so we need the military,” she said.

    Reached after Mr. Guaidó’s brief detention by the government last week, Norka del Valle Márquez, Mr. Guaidó’s mother, said her son’s entry into politics at such a critical juncture in the country’s history has left her nervous about his well being and that of his opposition colleagues.

    “Do you ask me if I’m scared? Of course,” she said. But she added that he has worked hard for this moment.

    “It’s been years of struggle for Juan,” she said. “He’s never wanted to leave this country. He is rooted to his land.”
     
  4. Bobbythegreat

    Bobbythegreat Member

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    Venezuela is unfortunately suffering the unavoidable consequences of Democratic Socialism and nothing will get better for them until they get rid of the socialists.
     
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  5. CCorn

    CCorn Member

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  6. Cohete Rojo

    Cohete Rojo Contributing Member

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    Goes to show that democracy is not perfect.
     
  7. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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  8. HTM

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    The Maduro regime is a disaster. I'm always concerned regarding regime change though. What comes next?
     
  9. REEKO_HTOWN

    REEKO_HTOWN I'm Rich Biiiiaaatch!

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    Because this has nothing to do with sanctions meant to cripple an already struggling economy....
     
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  10. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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  11. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    It doesn’t have to do with sanctions. The sanctions are very specifically against Maduros inner circle. If you didn’t know we still buy a huge amount of oil from VE. Plus VE has other economic outlets. Maduro deepened his ties with Putin recently in a trade deal.
     
  12. REEKO_HTOWN

    REEKO_HTOWN I'm Rich Biiiiaaatch!

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    And oil has been beaten down to **** for over 3 years now. Can you blame Maduro for reaching out to the Russians just like Castro did? Don't be surprised when All these other Central American countries start getting hit with sanction too since they are teaming up with China. The U.S. has to stop its colonist bullshit.
     
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  13. dachuda86

    dachuda86 Member

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    I don't like colonialism either. What do you think about China's African colonialism? Should we stop while China goes wild and starts getting all of these countries in its sphere?
     
  14. pgabriel

    pgabriel Contributing Member

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    Venezuela is suffering from the price of oil.

    Countries that got rich off $80 and up oil have to adjust. Fracking is changing the world
     
  15. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    What are you even talking about? Do you even understand what has been happening down there?
     
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  16. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Hopefully they can go down a similar path to what has happened in Colombia. They have completely turned around that country.
     
    Buck Turgidson likes this.
  17. REEKO_HTOWN

    REEKO_HTOWN I'm Rich Biiiiaaatch!

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    I'm not defending Maduro but Trump's sanctions are only hurting the Venezuelan people. It does nothing to a dictator.
     
  18. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    The people were already suffering and there was MASSIVE emigration away from VE before the oil price collapse.
     
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  19. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    Which sanctions?

    https://www.state.gov/e/eb/tfs/spi/venezuela/

    You tell me which ones because they all pretty much target govt officials.
     
  20. robbie380

    robbie380 ლ(▀̿Ĺ̯▀̿ ̿ლ)
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    My girlfriend just said they shut off power to her home city, Maturin. I’ve seen other Venezuelans tweeting about google being cut off too.
     
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