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News from yesterday’s OAS debate - or How stupid is gringo diplomacy? Printer friendly page Print This
By Artuto Rosales writes from Caracas | Axis of Logic
Axis of Logic
Friday, Jan 25, 2019

In yesterday’s vote at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington on a declaration to intervene in Venezuela sponsored in practice by the US, 18 countries refused to support this motion signaling another diplomatic failure by the US.
The motion was aimed at not recognizing the constitutionally elected government of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela and in favor of the self-proclaimed “president” Juan Guaidó.
The main sponsor of the motion was the Argentine delegation and this was seconded by the US but the sponsors had obviously misjudged the attitude of many countries towards Venezuela and its government and simply had not done their homework.
If 18 countries refused to support the motion, then only 16 supported it. For the motion to be taken up, a 2/3 majority of the 34 votes are required and the US and Argentina fell well short of the 24 votes needed.
This begs the question on how unprepared and stupid is US diplomacy since it is obvious to all that the real proposer of the motion was the US, using Argentina as its poodle to sponsor it.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke at the meeting and somehow tried to justify that an unknown 35 year old elected to the presidency of the Venezuelan National Assembly in a null and void session, could be preferred as President by Washington. Guaidó then swore himself in as the head of the Venezuelan state and government in a street rally and then was recognized by President Donald Trump.
All this sounds like a second rate novel but it really happened just a couple of days ago. Pompeo also had the support of the OAS General Secretary, Luis Almagro, who was telling the members how to vote but he also ended up with a carton of eggs on his face.
Several members of the Lima Group - as US poodles - also supported Guaidó as the “new president” of Venezuela. But this group has no legal standing as it is just a pressure group trying to oust the Maduro government and force humanitarian aid on the country.
Accepting the $20 million humanitarian aid offered by Pompeo would indirectly allow US personnel – military or otherwise – into Venezuela and effectively be a beach head for intervention in the country when in fact it has been the US with its raft of sanctions and attacks on the Venezuelan economy that had caused the humanitarian crisis in the first place.
The US has been trying to oust the Bolivarian government in Venezuela since its first attempt in April 2002 when Chávez was deposed for 47 hours and this play using Guaidó as a puppet is the latest ploy.
With support from the OAS (which the US probably never expected), Mexico and Uruguay recognizing Maduro as president and proposing dialogue, China and Turkey voicing their support for Maduro, and most importantly the strong support from President Putin warning the US not to intervene in Venezuela as this could have “catastrophic consequences” – which is open to many interpretations - this attempted coup is on shaky ground.
Despite Pompeo’s bluster saying that he would not withdraw consular and diplomatic staff from the US embassy in Caracas just 24 hours ago since he “recognized Guaidó as president” and would therefore not obey Maduro’s order to get out of the country, he caved in and now it looks as if all “non-essential” staff and their families will be sent back to the US and a few key officials left in the embassy – probably CIA officers.
Pressure on Venezuela has been ratcheted up by the US and Secretary General Almagro at the OAS for months as Venezuela is due to definitively leave this organization in April after a two year notice period.
At a guess, the smaller members of the OAS such as defenseless Caribbean islands that support Venezuela and receive oil at favorable price conditions from Venezuela based on the Petrocaribe program, were either thinking of their own economic interests or most probably in what happened to Manuel Noriega of Panama and Maurice Bishop of Granada. Both of these countries were invaded by US forces under the George H.W. Bush administration. “It could happen to us,” probably passed through their minds while having to listen to Pompeo’s arrogance and superiority backed by massive military power.
To conclude let’s review what has happened during this latest coup attempt by the US against Venezuela:
  • Maduro broke off diplomatic and political relations with Washington
  • He closed the embassy there as well as the regional consulates in the US and is bringing all the staff back to Caracas
  • The US is running down its staff at the embassy in Caracas and we will have to wait and see how long the remaining officers remain there
  • Russia issued a stark warning to the US not to intervene in Venezuela as there could be catastrophic consequences.
  • US got slammed by an adverse vote in the OAS when trying to de-recognize Maduro as the legitimate president of Venezuela and recognize the puppet Guaidó.
  • The state powers and military all back Maduro so Guaidó is isolated as a key part of the plan was to split the Venezuelan military that never happened.
Unconfirmed reports indicate the Guaidó is negotiating his exit from Venezuela before the Attorney General’s office can have him arrested but we need confirmation on this point.
Generally we know that arrogance oversteps itself. In this latest episode at the OAS we can safely say that, in Pompeo’s case, that stupidity has overstepped itself.
We really are victims of the media as well since we give these clowns too much credit.

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