Venezuela coup attempt 2019

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January 23 2019: Juan Guaidó declares himself president of Venezuela

On January 23, 2019, the just installed president of the defunct national assembly Juan Guaidó declares himself president of Venezuela and gets recognized by US-President Trump and the governments of Canada and most of South America.

Some background

Hugo Chavez shows a copy of Noam Chomsky's post-9/11 book "Hegemony or Survival" at the UN General Assembly on September 20, 2006
  • U.S. Interventions in Latin America 1846-1996
  • US ‘Regime Changes’: the Historical Record
  • 1989 Thousands of people die at the hands of the military in mass protests against the government in an event remembered as "Caracazo".
  • 1999 Hugo Chavez Frias wins the presidential election in Venezuela with the stated intent to end the frozen two-party-system that ruled the country since decades. This follows a coup attempt he led in 1992 but called off when it was clear that it would fail, taking public responsibility for it. While going to prison for some years, he gained the respect of many.
  • 2002 Coup attempt. Rogue military elements kidnap Chavez and some right-wing politicians declare themselves the new leaders and suspend the constitution. Western media cheers. The poor come down in masses from the favelas and demand their president's return. A helicopter brings him back to the presidential palace from the island he was hold upon. The putschists go largely unpunished. The events are covered in detail in the documentary film The Revolution will not be Televised See also
  • Warm relations with Cuba; good relations with Iran, under Chavez
  • 2004 Chavez and Castro form the The Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America (ALBA) partnership for economic development with principles opposed to neo-liberal 'free trade'. Alongside other left wing governments such as Nicuagua,Bolivia and Ecuador. What is the Alba?
  • 2005 On initiative of Chavez, Venezuela, Cuba and other ALBA countries form teleSUR as international media voice broadcasting in Spanish as well as in English. teleSUR About Us
Then-Foreign Minister Maduro meets President Assad in Damascus
  • 2013 Hugo Chavez dies of cancer and then-vice president Maduro becomes acting president, then elected president
  • 2014. Two-fold drop in oil prices, after events in Ukraine (possibly following USSR - Afghanistan scenario or otherwise), having serious impact on countries whose main hard currency income is coming from oil, such as Venezuela and Russia
  • February 2015 Alleged coup plotters arrested: Syria Backs Venezuela In Condemning Alleged US-Supported Coup Attempt
  • March 2015: President Obama issues executive order "declaring a national emergency with respect to the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States posed by the situation in Venezuela" and placing sanctions on leading Venezuelan officals
  • August 2017 Sees the formation of the Lima Group from OAS governments opposed to the Maduro presidency. Some commentators argue the Lima group violates the OAS charter.
  • December 2017. Koch brothers sue Venezuela over the expropriation of their industrial interests by Chavez in 2010. See Twitter thread on links to Koch brothers of the regime change gang Rubio, Pompeo and Pence. Greg Palast had previously looked at the Koch's need for heavy crude as found in Venezuela.
  • 2018 Attempting to circumvent financial sanctions the government launched the 'petro', an oil and gold backed crypto currency, the petro was targeted for further sanctions by the White house.
  • 4 August 2018: At a rally, the stage with Maduro on it is attacked by drones, one of which explodes prematurely, causing no damage. While this is seen as assassination attempt by the government, in "the West" it is alleged that the footage was staged or the event a "false flag" by "the regime". In March 2019, CNN airs a segment on how they met the plotters of that suddenly very real attack. (teleSUR article, CNN video segment)
  • November 2018. Venezuela misses $200m of interest payments on some of its $63bn of outstanding foreign bonds.
  • 5 December 2018. Maduro visits Moscow, seeking investments or aid. $6bn of investments and deals announced.
  • 10 December, 2018. Russia flies two Tu-160 strategic bombers to Venezuela, with some talk about military base plans.
  • January 2019. Venezuela assumes the rotating presidency of OPEC for one year. Maduro declares that one central goal will be to push for oil payments in non-dollar currencies or in cryptocurrencies.

Timeline of the coup attempt

Opposition march in Caracas on 23 January 2019

January

February

The Venezuelan National Guard on Wednesday blocked the Tienditas international bridge. (No, they did not. This is fake news!)
  • Feb 6, 7: A convoy of 'humanitarian aid' approaching Columbian border city of Cucuta provides propaganda opportunities for Pompeo and Guaido
  • “The US will consider sanctions off-ramps for any Venezuelan senior military officer that stands for democracy and recognizes the constitutional government of President Juan Guaido,”...“If not, the international financial circle will be closed off completely. Make the right choice!” said John Bolton.
  • Feb 7: The EU instigated International Contact Group met in Montevideo without coming to unanimity
  • Red Cross, UN Slam ‘Politicised’ USAID Humanitarian Assistance to Venezuela - Paul Dobson, February 11, 2019
  • Feb 12: The BBC interviews Maduro (transcript).
  • Feb 14: AP interviews Maduro who "reveals secret meetings with US envoy". Euronews also interviews the Venezuelan president (transcript).
  • Feb 16: More "aid" is delivered to Cucuta in three US military C-17 cargo planes.
  • Feb 17: Six members of EU parliament who came for meeting Guaido are deported from the country, just as they were told they would before entering. Marco Rubio tweets a video of himself standing on the Colombian side of the now-famous bridge with the containers in the background, demanding entry.
  • Feb 19: Trump and Bolton threaten Venezuelan military officers with sanctions on their families living abroad.
  • Feb 22: Elliot Abrams flies with US military to Cucuta to meet Ivan Duque and to accompany USAID.
  • Feb 23: Juan Guaido flees to Colombia, Venezuela stops diplomatic relations with the neighboring country.
  • Feb 25: The Brazilian military opts-out of any "adventurism" at a meeting of the Lima group. US calls for a UN security council meeting on Venezuela
  • Feb 25: Maduro reportely detains and expels Univision journalist Jorge Ramos after confrontational interview. ABC interviews the president without problems, asking all the questions Ramos allegedly did as well, including about people eating out of garbage trucks. Jorge Ramos has form in such provacative stunts.
  • Feb 26: Jorge Arrezea counters accusations at the UNSC, whilst Russian envoy and Elliot Abrams clash (UN briefing). New board of Citgo severs its relationship with PDVSA.
  • Feb 28: The UNSC votes on two opposing draft resolutions sponsored by the US and Russia, which both are predictably not adopted.

March

  • Mar 1: Venezuelan vice president Delcy Rodriguez visits Moscow and holds a joint press conference with Lavrov.
  • Mar 4: Bolton announces that Guaido will return to Venezuela and threatens escalation if he isn't allowed to. Pence echoes the threat. In the evening he lands at Caracas airport without any complications.
  • Mar 6: The German ambassador, who was at the airport to "protect" Guaido at his arrival and called for "free elections", leaves the country after being declared persona non grata by the government.
Infamous Russian pranksters Vovan and Lexus publish recordings of a call they had with Elliott Abrams, successfully making him believe that he's speaking with the president of Switzerland. Abrams assures "him" that the talk of "all options on the table" is only to make the Venezuelan military nervous, and military action will not happen unless "they do something completely crazy like attacking the US Embassy".
State Dept and Marco Rubio protest after Venezuelan authorities question american journalist Cory Weddler
  • Mar 7. Major electric power failure, with some reports suggesting 'sabotage'.
    Maduro: The electric war announced and directed by US imperialism against our people will be defeated.
  • Mar 14. Vovan and Lexus call with Juan Guaido. Open him a personal Swiss account, nominate Navalnyi the president of Russia, Russian snipers to protect Maduro, and other fantasies (Eng), (Rus).
  • Mar 17: Venezuelan Military Deserters Abandoned by Colombian Government
  • Mar 18: The US allows some random people acting in the name of Guaido to overtake two buildings in New York and one in Washington, used by Venezuela for diplomatic purposes, blatantly violating the Vienna convention.
  • Mar 20: CODE PINK activists sleep over at the Venezuelan embassy in Washington to prevent it from being taken over like the three diplomatic buildings before.
  • Mar 21. Guaido said preparing operation for the final seizure of power in Venezuela (Gabriel Bastidas),(freenews), (TASS Rus.)
    On the arrest of Roberto Marrero: Guaido, UN HR, John Bolton; VP Mike Pence.
  • Mar 23. Two RU AF flights, IL-62 and AN-124 arrived to Venezuela. Some men in military style fatigues seen - Cassad 1, 2. First assistant commander of the Russian Army, General Vasily "Thin skin" Tonkoshkurov, arrived at the Maiquetía Airport with a delegation of 99 military personnel, according to journalist Javier I. Mayorca. "35 tons of cargo delivered on board of the An-124 . Earlier, Maduro said that Russia will soon begin the supply of medicines to Venezuela"- Cassad.
  • Mar 24. TASS Rus., 21:28 Msk: "Guaido urges Venezuelans to prepare for an operation to seize power in the country." (The article refers to an Instagram post by Guiado, which is presently unavailable or not easy to find).
  • Mar 27. Asked by a member of parliament if the "ambassador" of Guaido, a person involved in the 2002 coup attempt, would be accepted as diplomatic representative of Venezuela, the German government said no. Despite the fact that it has verbally "recognized" Guaido, no measures have been taken to change something in the representation of Venezuela. The same has (not) happened in other EU-countries.
    "Trump: the United States will consider all means to force Russia to leave Venezuela"-TASS Rus. That statement on video: 1, 2.
    S-300 deployment apparently shown on satellite photos. It also claims to show SU-30 fighter planes, however such planes has been sold to Venezuela earlier.
  • Mar 28. Venezuela's Comptroller General Elvis Amoroso barrs Juan Guaido from holding public office for 15 years over irregularities in his financial activities.

April

  • Apr 2. The National Constituent Assembly strips Guaido of his parliamentary immunity.
    After several blackouts during the week before, blamed by the government on sabotage, Maduro announces a rationing plan to combat especially the water shortages caused by the ongoing electricity problems.
  • Apr 9. The OAS recognizes Guaido associate as a representative, prompting Venezuela to quit the OAS
  • Apr 15. Mike Pompeo (video)visits warehouse holding USAID in Cucuta Columbia at the end of his three day trip to South America
  • Apr 24. US activists are still protecting the Venezuelan Embassy in Washington DC from a take-over by Guaido's people. State Dept publishes a fact sheet of US actions on venezuela, later picked up by the Greyzone despite its being removed.

April 30 Military Coup attempt

  • Video of soldiers who fled from the coup plotters
NOTAM closing Venezuelan Airspace

May

June

July

  • July 24. In the afternoon, another large electricity breakdown affects 17 out of 23 states. Seven hours later, 80% is restored with Caracas 100%. The government and an engineer involved blames an "electromagnetic attack" likely originating from US planes flying along the border.

August

  • Aug 7. The US seizes a cargo ship in the Panama Canal carrying soy cake for food production to Venezuela.
  • Aug 28. The US announces the creation of a "Venezuela Affairs Unit" in the US embassy in Bogota, Colombia, as "the interim diplomatic office of the U.S. Government to Venezuela".

September

  • Sep 10. Trump fires John Bolton.

Fake News?

See talk: When and where did the oath ceremony take place?
The "soldiers" presented as just defected on CNN are wearing uniforms with batches of pre-Bolivarian times.

US Aid scam

Elliot Abrams on his visit to Cucuta

Weapons smuggling

Power grid sabotage

Did a Stuxnet type virus take over the hydroelectric Guri Dam.
It's just a conspiracy theory!

Diplomatic recognition

To do

Embassy standoff

To do

Non-recognition

US war plans

Analysis

February 6, 2019: 48 governments made statements recognizing Guaido, while 141 governments didn't. Source
US Strategy in brief: Use the aid to get Venezuelans on the border to welcome the US proxy forces to cross over. Set up political and military structures thereafter just inside the Venezuelan borders with Colombia and Brazil, from which to launch further similar efforts deeper into Venezuela. Repeat this province by province, step by step,

Public figures statements

Official statements

  • Venezuelan Foreign Minister declared Maduro's readiness to begin negotiations with the opposition. Jorge Arreas also expressed the hope that the Venezuelan opposition will be freed from dependence on the US. TASS Rus., Robo-Eng., April 8, 2019, quoting a statement made on Union Radio 90.3 FM - Caracas (live stream, but not statement recording, here).
    (TASS): Juan Guaydo... said earlier that he would not engage in "fake dialogue" with the executive branch. Previous negotiations between the government of the republic and the opposition took place in the Dominican Republic with the participation of international mediators. Without any result, they ended in early 2018.

Aggregate sources