I’m slightly more optimistic today, and I’ll tell you why in a moment. But first let me explain why I keep changing my mind about the matter, and why it’s impossible, as with anything, to make predictions about the future with any certainty.
One reason I keep changing my mind is because I am doing daily reporting. A second reason, and the key one, is that no one knows what’s going to happen — not the Pentagon nor the oil companies active in Venezuela nor the American hedge funds promoting regime change nor Marco Rubio, the pro-war, corrupt Florida senator more or less raised by drug dealers — except for President Donald Trump.
And there is no way to predict with certainty what Trump will do about anything. I personally think he is opposed to war in Venezuela, which he is to dumb to find on a map, because he knows, from his decades-long corrupt business career on numerous continents, that war is bad for business. If he invades Venezuela and it fails, the Trump Organization won’t get a contract to build the Trump Caracas, and such a possibility must weigh on the president far more than heavily than the dead Venezuelan children he is killing via sanctions weighs on his conscience.
Rubio, an ignorant, amoral sociopath, has no conscience so he’s probably drinking champagne every night to commemorate the fresh kids’ corpses he’s responsible for.
Anyway, I’m a little more optimistic today because today I communicated with several Venezuelans, people I met on my recent trip there, and they say the situation is scary but for now they are fine. “Por los momentos todo tranquilo,” one dear friend said in a WhatsApp message.
The other reason I am mildly optimistic is that despite all the war talk by the Trump administration and the sycophantic American media’s pathetic endorsement of whatever belligerent step his administration takes, there’s not been the sort of government propaganda blitz you typically see before the U.S. overthrows a sovereign nation.
For example, just prior to the United States invasion of Panama between December 1989 and January 1990, codenamed Operation Just Cause, the George H. W. Bush adminsitration feverishly used the press to “reveal” that military general and dictator Manuel Noriega was heavily involved in the international drug trade.
This was true, of course, but the CIA had known about it and approved of it for years — just as it approved and facilitated the trafficking of crack in the ghettos of Los Angeles to support the evil Nicaraguan contras. The only reason the Bush administration used the U.S. media to “reveal” it — which was like revealing that blue jeans are blue — was that Noriega was opposing the contra’s efforst to topple the Sandinista government in Nicaragua.
So the U.S. invaded and captured Noriega and sent him to the United States to receive “justice.” Meanwhile, the banker and new president, Guillermo Endara was sworn into office on an American military base.
Thus far, even though criminal lunatics like Rubio, John Bolton and Elliott Abrams, are doing all they can to kick off an invasion, there hasn’t been a propaganda blitz like the one that preceded the war in Iraq — when Jeffrey Goldberg, Eli Lake and other stenographers parroted George W. Bush administration talking points that Saddam Hussein was besties with Osama bin Laden and that he had WMDs. (Saddam was evil, but he kept ruthless order in a country now virtually destroyed by sectarian fighting.)
Or let’s take two other examples. Prior to the 2011 U.S.-led NATO intervention in Libya, dreamed up by the pathetic Barack Obama and the hideously corrupt Hillary Clinton, there were a series of Big Lies, like the one that Muammar Gadaffi was supplying his troops with Viagra to encourage mass rape, according to Susan Rice, the US ambassador to the UN.
So far, the Trump administration has not been making such extravagant and clearly false claims about President Nicolás Maduro. Sure, they lie about him starving the country and allegedly killing a lot of people — and the media repeats this bullshit — but they haven’t dummied up fake evidence to show it, like when Colin Powell went before the UN to claim that Saddam was an imminent threat and former CIA director George Tenet called the case against Saddam having WMDs a “slam dunk.”
Nor has Trump claimed, like the Reagan administration preposterously did about Grenada before invading that island nation of about 100,000 people and alleging it was a threat to “American national security,” that it planned to murder a bunch of U.S. citizens. In that case, it was U.S. medical students in Grenada and after they were saved by Reagan, the New York Times admitted they “had not been directly threatened or endangered by the turmoil and fighting, and some said they believed their safety had been used as an excuse by the United States to invade Grenada.”
To sum up, it usually requires a U.S. government to launch a propaganda blitz, echoed by the “free press,” before launching an invasion. Since that hasn’t started yet, perhaps there is still time to avert a catastrophe by having a doctor up Trump’s dose of sanity pills.
But you just never know.