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Secretive meeting on US ‘military option’ in Venezuela reveals key figures of invasion push

‘Military options in Venezuela’ discussed at US secret meeting – docs obtained by Grayzone reveal.

RT

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Via RT…


A hawkish US think tank has hosted a secretive meeting on Venezuela, bringing together American and South American officials to discuss the “use of military force” in the country, investigative journalist Max Blumenthal told RT.

The exclusive piece shedding some light on the secretive gathering was published by the Grayzone portal on Saturday. Blumenthal has obtained a check-in list of a private roundtable dubbed ‘Assessing the Use of Military Force in Venezuela,’ which was hosted by the DC-based think tank the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS).

The roundtable was held on April 10, yet its check-list was misleadingly dated as April 20. The fact the meeting had actually taken place was confirmed to Blumenthal by its participants, whom he has reached for comment. They were not very eager to talk, though.

“We talked about military… uh… military options in Venezuela. That was earlier this week though,” research associate at CSIS’s Americas Program Sarah Baumunk said. She promptly grew nervous, adding that she didn’t “feel comfortable answering these questions” and hung up on the journalist.

Another listed attendee, a research associate with international strategy firm Hills & Company, Santiago Herdoiza, simply said it was a “closed meeting” without providing any details.

“They were extremely nervous that somebody in the media knew about the existence of this event. It was a very high-level meeting with basically the main people in Washington involved in making the sausage of Trump’s Venezuela policy and they wanted to keep it as private as possible,” Blumenthal told RT on Sunday. “It really does show that military options are being seriously considered at this point, after all other mechanisms that Trump has put into play seem to have failed.”

The list of participants is surely impressive – the roundtable has brought together former and incumbent military and civil officials from the US and South America, representatives of USAID and Organization of American States (OAS) as well as analysts from various think tanks. Several figureheads ‘appointed’ by the self-proclaimed interim president Juan Guaido were also in attendance.

Arguably the most high-profile participant of the gathering was Admiral Kurt Tidd, who until recently used to head the US Naval Forces Southern Command. Another listed participant – Roger Noriega – is basically Elliott Abrams-lite. Noriega is a veteran US meddler, with his activities dating back to the notorious Iran-Contras affair. He did not get the notoriety of Abrams and quietly held senior positions within the US administration throughout the years, focusing on Venezuela and coordinating the OAS.

Last October, he urged US President Donald Trump to appoint former Ambassador to Venezuela William Brownfield to lead the plans for a military invasion. The latter, also known for his involvement into murky meddling schemes against the country, participated in the roundtable as well.

The meeting was also attended by self-styled officials of Guiado’s “government” – public policy advisor Daniel Sierra and ‘ambassador’ to the US Carlos Vecchio. Participation of said “officials” sounds ironic given their previous efforts to advertise Guaido’s so-called ‘Plan País’ to reconstruct the country’s economy.

When the plan was officially unveiled a month ago, the two have spoken a lot about “reestablishing Venezuela’s democracy,” protecting “individual economic rights and freedoms” and ensuring “citizen security.” Given the topic of the CSIS’s discussion, the figureheads of Guaido’s “government” don’t actually mind to bring this ‘prosperity’ to their homeland through a foreign invasion. It should not be surprising, though, since even the Plan País itself was unveiled at the Atlantic Council – the US and NATO funded think tank.

While the closest supporters of Guaido are pushing for foreign intervention, Blumenthal believes that regional partners of the US are quite reluctant to partake in it.

“Any US invasion of Venezuela would be contingent on the consent from the Colombian and Brazilian governments and its very unclear that they’ll get that consent,” Blumenthal said.

“Both governments are extremely worried about increasing the migration crisis, they are deeply worried about destabilizing the entire region and that’s absolutely what this would entail. And they are also worried about a counterattack from the Venezuela military, which is very competent.”

While talking of the “use of military force” in secrecy, the US continues to tempt Venezuelan citizens and officials with promises of lavish aid – which, of course, would only be possible if the legitimate President Nicolas Maduro is ousted. On Saturday, US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Washington will lead the effort to salvage Venezuela’s economy – which it has so far been strangling with sanctions.

“We’re going to be working on trying to put together a consortium of about $10 billion of trade finance that would be available for the new government to spark trade,” Mnuchin said.

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Olivia KrothNorah DeanFood for ThoughtContemplate the templateHmph Recent comment authors
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Sally Snyder
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Sally Snyder

As shown in this article, the war in Syria is also likely a template for a war in Venezuela:

https://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2019/04/syria-template-for-war-in-venezuela.html

At the very least, it appears that the current civil unrest in Venezuela is following the pattern set by Syria back in 2011 and that it is part of America’s new template for starting a regional war which will allow it to meet its global hegemonic agenda.

Contemplate the template
Guest
Contemplate the template

All copies of MS Word supplied to Washington have multiple regime-change and wars of intervention templates included. It’s specified in the GSA licensing agreements.

Olivia Kroth
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Venezuelan national militia to become part of armed forces — Maduro World April 14, 6:24 UTC+3 The Venezuelan president earlier called on people to join the national militia to defend the country CARACAS, April 14. /TASS/. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has sent a request to the Constitutional Assembly to integrate national militia into the Bolivarian Armed Forces. “I am asking the Constitutional Assembly and the General Staff to review the main charter of the Bolivarian Armed Forces, in order to grant a constitutional status to the Bolivarian national militia, to make it a part of the Armed Forces,” Maduro said… Read more »

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Is all of this scaremongering really necessary?

Olivia Kroth
Guest

Constant pressure by scaremongering, that’s all it amounts to.

AriusArmenian
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AriusArmenian

What is left of ‘western civilization’ except for its vile elites that plot more plowing and plundering at the cost of immense suffering, death, and destruction.

Food for Thought
Guest
Food for Thought

Did God just punish France for its multiple sins today? If so, then what awaits the rest of us?

Norah Dean
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Norah Dean

The problem is that not a lot of people get it, and if we’re to baldly state what is obvious to us about the worst of these ‘ elites ‘ most people think you are crazy or a conspiracy nut. The worrying thing now is that these so-called elites don’t seem to care that a small percentage of the public know the score, they don’t believe that they can be stopped in their desire to totally dominate the World. The US based World military / financial Empire is almost certainly going to make a move on Russia within the next… Read more »

George A. Wrigley jr
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George A. Wrigley jr

The US needs to be Taken out. It should be a world decision; the world has to grow some balls and charge the US with all of the war crimes it is guilty of for the past 70 years.

Norah Dean
Guest
Norah Dean

The US needs to be broken up like Germany was after WW2. The powers-that-be in the US, Rothschilds and Rockerfellers need to be held to account and neutralized.

Hmph
Guest
Hmph

Never hankered much to Chavez. Never hankered much to turning Venezuela into another Algeria under French occupation either. Wouldn’t much want to be a newly installed ‘democrat’ walking the streets of a Guaido Caracas.

The Venezuelans could always say ‘It’s a mess but it’s our mess.’ No more of that, looks to me.

And don’t kid yourselves, even pre-Chavez, Venezuela was always an oil-rich basket-case. Two-Pence and Pompey just shinin’ folks on.

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Germany Wants Nuclear Bombers

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them.

The Duran

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Via VoltaireNet.org:


Germany’s armed forces are currently studying the possibility of acquiring nuclear bombers capable of using the new American B61-12 atomic bombs.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon itself plans to deploy these new atomic bombs in the German region of Eifel, in violation of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

The German air force already has multi-tasking Tornado warplanes, which are already capable of deploying American atomic bombs. But those aircraft are going to be replaced, possibly, by European-developed Eurofighters, or by United States manufactured F/A-18 Super Hornets.

Either way, the warplane that Germany selects will have to be equipped with the AMAC (Aircraft Monitoring and Control) system, which allows the use of the new American atomic bombs and enables the regulation of the power of the explosion as well as at what height the bombs explode after they are launched.

Germany does not manufacture atomic weapons but has come to consider itself as a nuclear power because it has vectors to use them, and believes that this gives it the right to sit on the UN Security Council sharing the permanent member position occupied by France.

Both countries would thus represent the European Union, under the auspices of NATO.

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1st since Notre Dame: Yellow Vests back despite ‘unifying’ disaster & they are angry

‘Yellow Vests’ march in Paris for 23rd straight week.

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Via RT…


Yellow Vests protests brought clashes and tear gas back to the streets of Paris, despite politicians’ calls for “unity” in the wake of the Notre Dame fire. For protesters, the response to the fire only showed more inequality.

Saturday’s protests mark the 23rd straight weekend of anti-government demonstrations, but the first since Notre Dame de Paris went up in flames on Monday. Officials were quick to criticize the protesters for returning to the streets so soon after the disaster.

“The rioters will be back tomorrow,” Interior Minister Christophe Castaner told reporters on Friday. “The rioters have visibly not been moved by what happened at Notre-Dame.”

For many of the protesters, grief over the destruction of the 800-year-old landmark has made way for anger. With smoke still rising from Notre Dame, a group of French tycoons and businessmen pledged €1 billion to the cathedral’s reconstruction, money that the Yellow Vests say could be better spent elsewhere.

“If they can give dozens of millions to rebuild Notre Dame, they should stop telling us there is no money to respond to the social emergency,” trade union leader Philippe Martinez told France 24.

Saturday’s protests saw a return to scenes familiar since the Yellow Vests first mobilized in November to protest a fuel tax hike. Demonstrators in Paris’ Bastille district set barricades on fire and smashed vehicles, and police deployed tear gas to keep the crowds at bay.

Sporadic incidents of vandalism and looting were reported across the city, and some journalists even reported rioters throwing feces at police.

60,000 police officers were deployed across the country, and in Paris, a security perimeter was set up around Notre Dame. A planned march that would have passed the site was banned by police, and elsewhere, 137 protesters had been arrested by mid afternoon, police sources told Euronews.

Beginning as a show of anger against rising fuel costs in November, the Yellow Vests movement quickly evolved into a national demonstration of rage against falling living standards, income inequality, and the perceived elitism and pro-corporation policies of President Emmanuel Macron. Over 23 weeks of unrest, Macron has made several concessions to the protesters’ demands, but has thus far been unable to quell the rising dissent.

After Notre Dame caught fire on Monday, the president postponed a television address to the nation, during which he was expected to unveil a package of tax cuts and other economic reforms, another measure to calm the popular anger in France.

Macron’s address will be held on Thursday.

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O Canada! The True North Strong and Free – Not

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence.

Jim Jatras

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Authored by James George Jatras via The Strategic Culture Foundation:


Canadian visitors to Washington sometimes wonder why their embassy stands at the foot of Capitol Hill.

The answer? To be close to where Canada’s laws are made.

A main showcase of Ottawa’s craven servility to Washington is Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s complicity in the US-led regime change operation being conducted against Venezuela. Not content with ruining his own country with multiculturalism, polysexualism, and the like, Li’l Justin has acted in lockstep with Big Brother to the south inslapping sanctions on Venezuelan officials and serving as a US agent of influence, especially with other countries in the western hemisphere:

‘A Canadian Press report published at the end of January revealed that Canadian diplomats worked systematically over several months with their Latin American counterparts in Caracas to prepare the current regime-change operation, pressing [Venezuelan President Nicolás] Maduro’s right-wing opponents to set aside their differences and mount a joint challenge to the government. “The turning point,” said the Canadian Press [Global News], “came Jan. 4, when the Lima Group … rejected the legitimacy of Maduro’s May 2018 election victory and his looming January 10 inauguration, while recognizing the ‘legitimately elected’ National Assembly.” The report cited an unnamed Canadian official as saying the opposition “were really looking for international support of some kind, to be able to hold onto a reason as to why they should unite, and push somebody like Juan Guaidó.”

‘One day prior to Maduro’s inauguration, [Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia] Freeland spoke to Guaidó, the newly-elected National Assembly speaker, by telephone to urge him to challenge the elected Venezuelan president.’

But that’s not all. Canada is out front and center in the “Five Eyes” intelligence agencies’ war on China’s Huawei – with direct prompting from US legislators and intelligence.  As explained by Col. Larry Wilkerson, former chief of staff to Gen. Colin Powell, it’s not that Huawei violated any law when circumventing US sanctions but it is the US that is acting illegally by unilaterally imposing sanctions that were never agreed to internationally. But that’s OK – when it comes to Washington’s claims of jurisdiction over every human being on the planet, Justin and Chrystia are happy to oblige!

Also, let’s not forget Chrystia’s role in keeping the pot boiling in Ukraine. It would of course be cynical (and probably racist) to attribute anything relating to Ukraine to her own interesting family background …

To be fair, the lickspittle attitude of Canadian officials towards their masters south of the 49th parallel is hardly unique in the world. Also to be fair, it’s natural and would be generally beneficial for Canada to have a positive relationship with a powerful, kindred neighbor rather than a negative one. Think of Austria’s ties to Germany, or the Trans-Tasman relationship of Australia and New Zealand, or the links that still exist between Russia and Ukraine despite efforts by the west to set them against each other (as, for example, Spain and Portugal were at loggerheads for several centuries, when the latter was a loyal ally of Spain’s foe, Great Britain, to such an extent that Portugal was sometimes shown on maps and globes in the same pink as British possessions; a similar situation existed between Argentina and British ally Chile).

A close and mutually advantageous relationship is one thing, but Canada’s de facto loss of independence is another. Not only does the US control Canada’s diplomacy, military, and intelligence but also her financial system (with, among other levers, the notorious FATCA law, which places Canadian institutions under the supervision of the IRS, with Canada’s revenue service acting, care of the Canadian taxpayer, as a cat’s paw for not only the IRS but the NSA and other snooping agencies). As explained by one Canadian nationalist (yes, they do exist!), the redoubtable David Orchard, trade is also a critical issue:

‘Canada …, after almost three decades of “free trade” with the U.S., has more than $1.2 trillion in federal and provincial debt, large deficits at every level, no national child or dental care, high university tuition, miserly old age pensions, years of massive budget cuts, and giveaway prices for its exports of oil, gas, timber and minerals.

‘For 150 years, great Canadian leaders have warned that without an economic border with the United States, we would soon no longer have a political border.

‘We once owned the world’s largest farm machinery maker, Massey Harris, headquartered in Toronto; built the world’s largest and most respected marketer of wheat and barley, the Canadian Wheat Board, based in Winnipeg; created a great transcontinental railway system, beginning in Montreal, which tied our country together; and saw Vancouver’s shipyards produce the beautiful Fast Cat ferry.

‘Instead of spending hundreds of billions on foreign-made machinery, electronics, automobiles, ships, fighter jets and passenger aircraft (even payroll systems for federal employees!), we can build our own, both for the domestic and export market.

‘We once designed and built the world’s most advanced jet interceptor, the Avro Arrow, so we know it can be done. [Emphasis added] With Canada’s resources and ingenuity, it could create a prosperous, domestically controlled economy that would give Canadians multiple benefits, security and pride of ownership. All that is required is some of the will that drove our ancestors to create an alternate power in North America. As George-Étienne Cartier, the great Québécois Father of Confederation, put it, “Now everything depends on our patriotism.”’ [Note: Orchard is the author of the must-read book The Fight for Canada: Four Centuries of Resistance to American Expansionism. To begin at the beginning, in the late 1680s, as part of English-French rivalry in North America, Massachusetts Puritans sought to root out the nest of popish deviltry known as Quebec. Following their disastrous 1690 defeat, they decided to fight Satan closer to home by hanging witches. The rest, as they say, is history…]

Scratch a Canadian patriot and you’ll hear about the Avro Canada CF-105 Arrow. As a watershed moment in Canada’s downward slide into subservience, the cancellation of what by all accounts was a magnificent aircraft – and a snapshot of what Canada’s international competitiveness (including in advanced aerospace) could have looked like had it been able to develop independently – might have been the point of being sucked into the American vortex. As noted by one response to my suggestion that Ottawa’s stance on Venezuela amounted to Canada’s annexation by the US: “Canadian here…unfortunately, the above is true (not literally of course, but in practice). It goes back even before the time of Diefenbaker, who canceled our Avro Arrow program on demand from the US – thus destroying our aerospace industry and causing brain drain to the US/Europe.”

To this day, the decision of then-Prime Minister John Diefenbaker to kill the Arrow project (and “put 14,528 Avro employees, as well as nearly 15,000 other employees in the Avro supply chain of outside suppliers, out of work”) on what came to be known as “Black Friday,” February 20, 1959, remains controversial and shrouded in mystery. A mix of budgetary, political, technological, and personality factors has been cited, none of them conclusive. Pressure from the US side, including unwillingness of Washington to purchase a Canadian aircraft when the US could pressure them to buy American planes and missiles, no doubt played a key role: “Instead of the CF-105, the RCAF invested in a variety of Century Series fighters from the United States. These included the F-104 Starfighter (46 percent of which were lost in Canadian service), and (more controversial, given the cancellation of the Arrow) the CF-101 Voodoo. The Voodoo served as an interceptor, but at a level of performance generally below that expected of the Arrow.”

While we may never know reliably why Diefenbaker cancelled the Arrow or how Canada or Canadian industry might have followed a different path, there’s no question of the superior capabilities of the Arrow. As it happens, one of the few pilots who had a chance to test the Arrow in an impromptu friendly dogfight is now-retired USAF fighter pilot Col. George Jatras, later US Air Attaché in Moscow (also, this analyst’s father). As he related in 2017:

‘I’ve received a number of messages in the last couple days about this bird, including some that say it may be revived. I don’t know how The Arrow would compare to today’s aircraft, but I had a first-hand lesson on how it faired against the F-102.

‘In 1959, I was stationed at Suffolk County AFB on Long Island with the 2nd Fighter Interceptor Squadron. We had an informal exchange program with a Canadian fighter squadron stationed near Montreal. From time to time, two or four aircraft from one of the squadrons would fly to the other’s base on a weekend cross country.

‘On one such exchange, I was #3 in a four ship formation led by [former Tuskegee airmanErnie Craigwell (I don’t recall who the other pilots were). As we entered Canadian airspace, cruising at about 40,000 ft., we spotted a contrail well above our altitude (probably at 50,000ft.) and closing very fast.  As the other aircraft appeared to be passing by, we could clearly see the delta shaped wing and knew it was the Avro Arrow that the Canadian pilots had told us about. Then, instead of just passing by, he rolled in on us! Ernie called for a break and we split into elements. When we talked about the encounter afterwards we all agreed that our first thought was, “This guy is in for a surprise; he doesn’t know that he’s taking on the F-102.”  Well, we were the ones in for a surprise. Even with two elements covering each other, not one of us could get on his tail. His power and maneuverability were awesome.  After he had played with us for a few minutes, like a cat with four mice, he zoomed back up to about 50K and went on his way. What an aircraft! What a shame that it never went into production.’

What is perhaps most curious about the Arrow’s demise is that “everything was ordered brutally destroyed; plans, tools, parts, and the completed planes themselves were to be cut up, destroyed, scrapped and everything made to disappear.”  Why? Well, security of course! Don’t engage in conspiracy theories …

The Canadian national anthem finishes with a pledge: “O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.” It should be noted that understandably resentful Loyalists fleeing the US following the American Revolution were a major contribution to the growth of Canada’s English-speaking population. American troops – back when we were the plucky underdog fighting the mighty British Empire – invaded Canada in 1775 and during the War of 1812 but were defeated. Relations got testy during the American Civil War as well, and even afterwards the US was wary of a proposed united “Kingdom of Canada,” hence the choice of the name “Dominion” in 1967. If today’s Canadians think we-all down here don’t know whom they’ve mostly had in mind to “stand on guard” against all this time, they’d better think again.

Maybe it’s past time for Canadians to get serious again about their independence – eh?

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