Tuesday, September 24, 2019

The Slow Way is the Best way for Venezuela

One of the strangely incoherent natsec issues of 2019 was the clamor in some quarters for the USA to take some kind of military action against Venezuela. I still am trying to understand what foundation these people based their saber rattling on. No objective person with even a wikipedia thin understanding of Venezuelean geography/demographics, the history of USA involvement in Central/South America, or even a modest appreciation of our post-WWII record of invading other nations for their own good - would think this a good idea.

As distasteful the Maduro regime is, it is primarily up to the people of that nation to fix the mess they voted themselves in to, secondarily that of her neighbors, and tertiary at best the USA.

There are a lot of other - and better - tools to use. Diplomacy and sanctions ... always a good start.

It is solid news.
The member countries of the Rio Treaty agreed on Monday in New York to impose sanctions against members of the Nicolás Maduro regime in Venezuela, but for the moment refused to consider using military force.

The approved resolution establishes that member countries may sanction and extradite members of the Maduro regime who participate in drug trafficking, terrorist activities, organized crime and human rights violations, as well as freeze their assets.

Don't underestimate how hard it is to get these nations to turn in to the wind like this. Simply great progress. Imperfect? Sure ... but better than the alternatives in hand.
The resolution was approved by 16 countries. Uruguay voted against, and Trinidad and Tobago abstained. Cuba was not present at the meeting, as it was expelled from the inter-American institutional system and has not formally requested its reinstatement.
The meeting of foreign ministers of the 18 active members of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance — known as TIAR for its initials in Spanish — which includes the United States, is the first in 18 years. It was convened at the request of the president of the National Assembly of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó — recognized as interim president of Venezuela by the United States and more than 50 countries — to increase regional pressure on the Maduro regime.
“It has been a very arduous process to get countries to adopt these sanctions,” said Julio Borges, Guaidó’s envoy to the Lima Group, a Latin American organization founded to try to resolve the Venezuelan crisis. “You have to take things intelligently, gradually.”
Read it all.

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