Thu Feb 7th, 2019 at 07:52:03 PM EST
From Cuban exiles in Florida and Marco Rubio to the leading elites from Venezuala lobbying U.S. Congress and the White House. Undoubtedly a plot engineered in CIA HQ and the Pentagon's Southern Command. Many countries have succumbed under the onslaught of right-wing politicians and the deep pockets with money from oligarchs. The announcement in January took me by surtrise, I was aghast as a dozen or so nations immediately recognized Juan Guaidó as new interim president. EU countries followed suit after a ridiculous condition placed on Maduro to immediately hold new presidential elections, or else.
Leopoldo López led the opposition's challenge to Maduro from house arrest but could his protege thwart his own ambitions?
Under cover of the "shutdown" and bickering between Republicans and Democrats about building the Trump Grand Wall on the border with Mexico ...
More below the fold ...
This man plotted Guaido's rise -- and still dreams of leading Venezuela | The Guardian |
Published: February 07, 2019 16:23 By Joe Parkin Daniels, Tom Phillips and Sabrina Siddiqui
When Juan Guaidó declared himself Venezuela's interim president last month, he appeared to leapfrog a generation of rival opposition leaders and offer a dramatic way past the infighting and tactical differences that had hobbled previous efforts to unseat Nicolás Maduro.
But the rise of the fresh-faced opposition leader was orchestrated by a Harvard-educated economist with a checkered history in Venezuelan politics, who continues to direct opposition strategy and coordinate with US and regional officials from under house arrest in Venezuela.
Interviews with Venezuelan opposition figures and officials in Washington have confirmed that Leopoldo López, a divisive former mayor of a Caracas borough, helped engineer Guaidó's meteoric rise - and still harbours ambitions to become Venezuela's next president.
López has long been a polarising figure, advocating a more confrontational approach than some other opposition leaders. "He is often described as arrogant, vindictive, and power-hungry - but party officials also concede his enduring popularity, charisma, and talent as an organiser," a Caracas-based US diplomat wrote in a 2009 cable published by WikiLeaks.
After anti-government protests in 2014, López was given a 14-year prison sentence for inciting violence, following a trial activists denounced as politically motivated and flawed.
Winning over Trump
Convinced that support from the White House would be crucial to toppling Maduro, López and his allies have made a concerted effort to win over the Trump administration.
Sources confirmed scores of meetings between US officials and López surrogates - including Tintori - in Washington and around the globe.
The campaign was further boosted last year when Brazil and Colombia elected rightwing leaders, Jair Bolsonaro and Iván Duque, both of whom had campaigned promising a harder line towards Maduro.
The multi-pronged diplomatic assault yielded the results López had been waiting years for when Juan Guaidó received a call from Pence on 22 January.
A US official with knowledge of the call said Pence promised Guaidó that the Trump government would back him if he took the presidential oath amid mass demonstrations planned for the next day.
○ Venezuela: who is Juan Guaidó, the man who declared himself president? | The Guardian |
○ Trump packs foreign policy team with Cuba hardliners from Florida | Politico – Aug. 31, 2018 |
Florida's Worst Politicians Are Crafting Trump's Plan for Venezuelan Regime Change
Where does Donald Trump get his ideas for the crackdown on Venezuelan strongman Nicolás Maduro?
From this group of unfeeling toad-people hell-bent on nothing except abusing the political process to accumulate power, money, and prestige: Iran-Contra veteran and war hawk John Bolton, death-squad backer Elliott Abrams, Vice President Mike Pence, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo — and a massive coven of Florida's top lawmakers including Sens. Marco Rubio and Rick Scott, Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and former Miami State Rep. Carlos Trujillo, who is now the U.S. Ambassador to the Organization of American States (OAS).
○ Trump stumps to Bay of Pigs vets in Little Havana | Miami Herald – Oct. 25, 2016 |