Venezuela – there was a riot at the border but what else did the “aid” stunt achieve?
Yesterday’s “humanitarian aid” stunt at the Colombian-Venezuelan border was supposed to achieve four points:
1) to breach the border and thereby open venues that could later be used for the passage of arms and fighters,
2) to incite large scale defections from the Venezuelan army and police forces,
3) to demonstrate to the outside world that the Random Guyaido, who declared himself president, has a large following and is thereby legitimate enough to support him,
4) to deliver justification for further steps against Venezuela.
Point 1 was clearly not achieved. A few hundred young men attacked the Venezuelan National Guard force that closed off the border. Attempts were made to ram “aid” trucks through. Random Guyaido was nowhere to be seen. The whole thing ended in a minor riot. The violent attackers received gasoline and made Molotov cocktails to attack the guards and set the “aid” trucks alight. The riots continued (vid) until about midnight but neither any rioters nor the aid passed through the border.
The New York Times headlines, and Guaido claimed, that some “aid” passed into Venezuela from Brazil:
Down in paragraph 17 of its story the NYT admits that its headline is fake:
But as of Saturday night, the trucks remained stranded on the border, according to Jesús Bobadillo, a Catholic priest in Pacaraima, the Brazilian border town.
Bloomberg’s bureau chief in Venezuela confirmed that the “aid” never entered the country:
The attempt to incite defections of Venezuelan security forces largely failed. A handful of National Guard foot soldiers went over to the Colombian side. But the National Guard lines held well even under a hail of stones and fire and the units were quite disciplined in taking and holding their positions. The military of Venezuela stays firmly on the side of the state.
The “aid” nonsense did not help to brush up Guaido’s legitimacy. Defying a court order Guaido left Venezuela and entered Colombia. If he ever goes back he will have to go to jail. The large mobilization inside and outside of Venezuela he had promised completely failed to appear. The melee at the border crossing only showed that his followers are a gang of brutal thugs.
Guaido also lost his original legal position. He claimed the presidency on January 23 under this paragraph of article 233 of the Venezuelan constitution:
When an elected President becomes permanently unavailable to serve prior to his inauguration, a new election by universal suffrage and direct ballot shall be held within 30 consecutive days. Pending election and inauguration of the new President, the President of the National Assembly shall take charge of the Presidency of the Republic.
That the “elected President becomes permanently unavailable” was never the case to begin with. But if article 233 would apply Guaido would have had 30 days to hold new elections. The 30 days are over and Guaido did not even call for elections to be held. He thereby defied the exact same paragraph of the constitution that his (false) claim to the presidency is based on.
All the above will not change the U.S. urge to “regime change” Venezuela. But it will certainly lower Guaido’s support within the country as well as his international standing. It demonstrated aptly that he is nothing but an empty suit.
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