‘US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during a television interview on Wednesday that the United States was prepared to take military action to stem the ongoing turmoil in Venezuela.
“Military action is possible. If that’s what’s required, that’s what the United States will do,” Mr Pompeo said in an interview with Fox Business Network, but added that the United States would prefer a peaceful transition of power in Venezuela.
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido earlier called for a massive May Day protest to increase the pressure on President Nicolas Maduro after a day of violent clashes on the streets of the capital.
Mr Guaido said Wednesday’s rally would be “the biggest in the history of Venezuela” as he presses his attempt to unseat the president.
“Across all of Venezuela, we will be in the streets,” said the National Assembly leader, recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries, as he repeated his call for the armed forces to join “Operation Freedom” to overthrow the socialist leader.
Mr Maduro however remained defiant after Mr Guaido’s call on Tuesday for the military to rise up appeared to have largely failed.
Following a day of clashes between demonstrators and police on the streets of Caracas, Mr Maduro on Tuesday evening said he had defeated an attempted coup.
Mr Maduro, who is also due to lead a May Day rally in Caracas, declared victory over the uprising – congratulating the armed forces for having “defeated this small group that intended to spread violence through putschist skirmishes.”
“This will not go unpunished,” Mr Maduro said in an address broadcast on television and radio.’
Read more: US says military intervention ‘possible’ in Venezuela as Guaido calls for massive May Day protest
Ron Paul Warns: “Hapless” Guaido Now “Worth More Dead Than Alive” To Washington’s Venezuelan Coup-Creators
Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido failed to kick-start a military uprising on Tuesday. After this fizzle, his life may be in danger from his own CIA backers, the director of the Ron Paul Institute argued in a debate.
Daniel McAdams and Ron Paul, the former libertarian representative from Texas, discussed the repeated attempts by Guaido to oust Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro with the backing from the US government. Despite all the efforts, Maduro remains in power, supported by many Venezuelans and in control of its military and police forces.
Paul said he was concerned that the Latin American country may be plunged into large-scale violence by some provocation.
“The big danger is a hard war breaking out. I’d still bet it won’t be too bad, with thousands of troops moving. But it could be a guerrilla war or something like that. If there is a false flag or some important official on either side gets killed, you can’t tell what might happen,” he said.
McAdams pointed out that Guaido himself, with his record of failing to mobilize the protest against the Maduro government, could be a target for such a provocation.
He has been a kind of a hapless figure so far. He calls for mass protests and no one shows up. I don’t think he realizes right now that he is actually now worth more dead than alive not only to the CIA, but also to his own opposition people. A shot in the crowd or something like that to take Guaido out. It might shock you, Dr. Paul, but the CIA is pretty good at this kind of things.
He said Tuesday’s events, when Guaido declared a military-backed coup to be underway in Caracas which as of now seems to have led to little consequence for Maduro, seemed like an act of desperation.
“[Guaido] said: ‘this is the final phase of [the] plan to overthrow the government’. It sort of smacks of desperation because he declared himself [interim] president in January and nothing happened. He kept trying to do things to get the military to turn and he was unsuccessful,” he said.’
Read more: Ron Paul Warns: “Hapless” Guaido Now “Worth More Dead Than Alive” To Washington’s Venezuelan Coup-Creators