While freedom lovers everywhere expressed delight at the ongoing implosion of the brutal Maduro regime oppressing the people of Venezuela, concerns about the foreign-backed interim president’s own socialist pedigree are growing within the nation and beyond. Especially alarming to non-interventionists is the prospect of U.S. government intervention in the Venezuelan struggle between opposing socialist camps.
Granted, Interim Venezuelan President Juan Guaidó is, by all accounts, much more moderate in his socialism than the barbaric Maduro-Chávez regime. But Guaidó’s political party, known as “Popular Will,” is nevertheless a leftist member of the Socialist International, the largest and most powerful alliance of socialist and communist political parties in the world. This dangerous network has openly called for a global socialist government. And its members include parties with the blood of millions on their hands.
Of course, claims by dictators, communists, and socialists around the world that Guaidó is illegitimate appear to be unfounded. Some of the claims have been downright absurd, such as a remark by Muslim U.S. Representative Ilhan Omar claiming that the Trump administration was attempting to “install a far right opposition.” In reality, the democratically elected National Assembly, in accordance with Venezuela’s Constitution, declared dictator Maduro a “usurper” and demanded his removal. The Trump administration and governments around the world accepted the elected legislature’s decision and recognized Guaidó as interim leader while fresh elections are prepared.
While the consensus virtually everywhere is that Guaidó and free elections would be a massive improvement over the status quo, Guaidó’s affinity for the socialism that wrecked his nation has caused concerns among freedom fighters in Venezuela and beyond. Domestically, the anti-communist opposition, which has long been brutally suppressed by the regime, is divided on whether Guaidó can be trusted. One major sticking point among critics is the allegation that Guaidó and his party are too closely linked to Maduro — especially ideologically.
Indeed, Guaidó’s political party manifesto reads much like the political principles of any tinpot socialist dictatorship. For instance, the Popular Will’s platform embraces the communist notion of pseudo-“human rights” promoted through the United Nations. Among the socialist “rights” advocated by the party are “the right to a comfortable home,” the “right to fresh food, potable water, health care, and medicine,” and “the right to education.” Cuban and Soviet citizens also had those “rights,” on paper. True human rights, though — as America’s Founders made clear — come from God, not government. And true rights involve freedom from coercion, not government-granted privileges that require the government to redistribute wealth.
Also concerning to critics is Guaidó’s offer of amnesty to criminals in the collapsing regime, many of whom would continue serving in high positions of power. Opponents said this would amount to impunity for horrifying crimes perpetrated by the regime, which has murdered and tortured its opponents while destroying and looting the once-prosperous nation. Meanwhile, more than a few former regime officials have expressed their full support for Guaidó — a fact that could be interpreted as rats fleeing a sinking ship, or a troubling sign that socialism will continue to ruin Venezuela in some form.
Perhaps the single most troubling fact is Guaidó’s party membership in Socialist International. Often referred to as SI, the outfit includes many re-branded “former” communist parties from the Cold War era that murdered and tortured huge numbers of people. Every year, the parties come together and demand “global governance,” a stronger United Nations, international wealth redistribution, and more of the very same policies that destroyed Venezuela, Cuba, and other national victims of socialism. At its 1962 conference in Oslo, the SI came out and said it: “The ultimate objective of the parties of the Socialist International is nothing less than world government.”
To understand just how extreme Socialist International is, consider that, in 2012, the alliance unapologetically held its annual Congress in an African nation led by a Marxist-Leninist member political party that, according to leading genocide experts, was at that very moment engaged in the planning and preparation phase of genocide to exterminate an embattled minority group. The then-leader of that party, known as the African National Congress (ANC), had gone on national television that same year to sing genocidal songs in front of his military about massacring members of the minority group with his machine gun. SI profusely praised its hosts nonetheless. More recently, it has thrown its full support behind Guaidó.
Inside Venezuela, critics have noticed all this. Communications Director Rafael Valera with the pro-liberty movement known as Rumbo Libertad, for instance, blasted the idea of having Maduro and other senior regime officials in any transition government. “Guaidó is a member of the Socialist International, along with three other pseudo-opposition parties,” he was quoted as saying in news reports. “Guaidó’s Popular Will party has also supported dialogue tables with Maduro in the past and has called on the Venezuelan population to participate in rigged elections. They are also proposing that dangerous Chavistas be part of the transition, continuing their systematic impunity. They want to pardon mercenaries, criminals, and prominent Chavistas…. Guaidó’s party can tell us, by its background, that it doesn’t want to really tear the Communist system down but to give more life to it.”
In the United States, anti-communist analysts have also expressed major concerns. Prominent anti-communist Cliff Kincaid with America’s Survival, for example, wrote a column headlined “Fighting Communism With Socialism Won’t Save Venezuela.” In it, he noted that Guaidó is an unapologetic socialist, and that President Trump has called on all nations of the world to resist socialism and the misery it brings. Trump reiterated his opposition to socialism in his State of the Union speech just this week. And yet, his advisors — primarily, it seems, Council on Foreign Relations operative John Bolton — have convinced Trump to rally behind an “alternative” socialist in Venezuela.
“The crisis in Venezuela is what happens when the State Department uses its funding agencies, including USAID, to support ‘opposition’ groups. Rather than promote anti-communist groups which embrace American ideas of limited government and free enterprise, USAID programs subsidize left-wing political figures and movements, often described as ‘civil society,’” Kincaid warned, echoing longtime concerns about the lawlessness and oppression being funded by U.S. tax dollars. “The National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a federally-funded entity, does the same thing on a much larger scale. It spends more than $150 million a year on ‘democracy assistance’ in foreign countries.”
The highly influential news service Breitbart has also sounded the alarm, with Latin America-focused reporter Frances Martel noting that the opposition’s members have “deep ties” to the Socialist International. Martel also explained that many other leading opposition figures aligned with Guaidó, even from other parties, are likewise members of the Socialist International. “If socialism destroyed Venezuela, socialism cannot save it, and the leaders of the opposition appear to be learning this the hard way,” she wrote.
And if left unaddressed, the future may not be as bright as supporters of a free Venezuela hope. “This socialist infiltration has not only paralyzed the opposition but threatens to deform the future of a Venezuela without Maduro into something that looks quite a bit like the country’s present and recent past,” she added. “Without abandoning socialism, Venezuela will never save itself from socialism, and the sooner opposition leaders realize that the more damage to the nation they can prevent.”
Among the most alarming elements of this saga to Americans is the fact that President Trump, who has expressed largely non-interventionist views over a period of many years, has said U.S. military intervention could be an “option” for Venezuela. Asked during a TV interview, Trump said: “Well I don’t want to say that. But certainly it’s something that’s on the — it’s an option.” U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, meanwhile, in rounding up international support for Guaidó, referred to Guaidó and his socialist allies as “the forces of freedom” while blasting Maduro and the motley assortment of regimes that are backing him.
Ironically, after having helped the dictatorship disarm law-abiding citizens in Venezuela, the UN urged against foreign meddling in Venezuela. Instead, UN boss António Guterres, a former leader of the Socialist International, offered UN assistance in negotiating between the two socialist factions. “I think it’s important that the U.N. reaffirms the availability of its good offices to support any negotiations between the two parties for a solution to be found,” said the former SI boss and current UN chief, a well-known socialist and globalist extremist.
In an interview with The New American, prominent anti-communist leader Frank De Varona, who invaded Cuba at 17 and serves as the director of press and information for the Bay of Pigs Veterans Association Assault Brigade 2506, celebrated recent developments in Venezuela as the beginning of the end for the regime. He explained that the Veterans Association and all Cuban American anti-communist organizations in the United States supported Trump’s decision to recognize Guaidó as interim president. Because elections will be held soon, and Venezuela has already experienced the ruinous effects of socialism, De Varona said he was not overly concerned about Guiadó’s party membership in SI. He also expressed support for U.S. sanctions that would “bankrupt the mass-murdering regime of Nicolás Maduro.”
Noting that more than 20 national governments have recognized Guaidó as the temporary president, De Varona said the regime “simply cannot survive” under the growing pressure. “Venezuela will be soon a free, democratic, and sovereign nation with the help of God,” he added. De Varona has worked to persuade the Trump administration to stand up against what he described as the “Troika of Tyranny” — the regimes ruling Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. He has met with Florida’s Governor Ron DeSantis, U.S. Senator Rick Scott, National Security Advisor Bolton, Organization of American States Secretary General Luis Almagro, and others to make his views clear — these regimes are not legitimate governments and should not be treated as such.
In the end, De Varona and other anti-communists are encouraged by the developments. “Cuba is the cancer and Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Bolivia are the metastasis,” he said, adding that if the Cuban regime were to collapse, the other regimes would fall, too. And that may be coming soon. “The end of the Maduro regime will mean the end of Cuba receiving free oil. I am optimistic that a free Venezuela will have a very negative impact upon the regime in Cuba. Communist Cuba is nearly bankrupt…. It will be very hard for the Cuban bloody regime to survive, especially if the Trump administration stops the cruises and air flights to Cuba, reduces remittances, enforces the Helm-Burton Law including Title III, and adds Cuba to the black lists of nations that support terrorism and human trafficking.”
As this magazine has documented extensively, the establishment in the United States — especially the globalist Council on Foreign Relations — played a key role bringing Castro and other brutal thugs to power. The shadowy support for such movements has continued, with CFR globalists and the Deep State establishment backing a Marxist mass-murderer in El Salvador’s previous elections, as just one example. Just a few years ago, the CFR’s Latin America director at the time, the Castro apologist Julia Sweig, was described as an “agent of influence” for the Havana regime by a U.S. counter-intelligence officer in charge of routing out Castro’s spies in the United States.
The Trump administration and the U.S. Congress should follow the wise advice of America’s Founders and resist the temptation to engage in more foreign interventionism. Not only would intervening to replace a socialist with another socialist be harmful to America, it could also be devastating to genuine anti-communist opposition movements in Venezuela and beyond. In short, U.S. intervention on behalf of the opposition would discredit the opposition and give credence to Maduro’s claims that his enemies are simply stooges of the “Yankee Empire.” It could also legitimize the crackdown — after all, any government in the world would claim it was justified in stopping hostile foreign powers from overthrowing it.
The socialist regime in Venezuela is likely going down anyway — it is bankrupt, illegitimate, and hanging to power by a thread. Even its close allies are abandoning it. The U.S. government should mind its own business while the people of Venezuela work to free their own nation.
Alex Newman, a foreign correspondent for The New American, is normally based in Europe but grew up in Latin America. Follow him on Twitter @ALEXNEWMAN_JOU or on Facebook. He can be reached at email@example.com.