Unknown Guaido: pawn in a high-stakes game

By Raffique Shah
February 06, 2019

Raffique ShahSitting as we are in Trinidad and Tobago on ringside seats watching the political crisis in Venezuela unfold, events are moving so quickly they appear to be spiralling out of control.

The apparent chaos was scripted in Washington over more than a decade, with only the key actors’ names and roles changing to suit the dynamics of regime-replacement. The aim of the exercise, as one of my lecturers in military warfare used to prefix his sessions, is to remove Nicolas Maduro from the presidency of Venezuela by any means necessary, and replace him with a compliant candidate, once the puppet understands that when he is installed in office, he complies with the dictates of the US State Department.

As the Venezuelan economy all but imploded, igniting a social crisis of humungous proportions that, in turn, triggered an exodus of refugees that overwhelmed neighbouring states and grabbed global attention as a humanitarian crisis. Washington hastily implemented its regime-change blueprint with Adolf Hitler’s blitzkrieg-like tactics that caught even some of the more sober world leaders by surprise, trapping them into supporting an initiative that is manifestly illegal.

Two months ago, who in Venezuela, or here in T&T, or anywhere else in the world, knew of 35 year-old Juan Guaido? Media reports suggest that fewer than 20 percent of Venezuelans knew anything about the leader of the obscure Popular Will party who, in the wake of a series of coincidences, emerged as President of the National Assembly.

It seems that the far-right activist’s comrades and associates, who were involved in violent anti-Chavez activities from their university days (circa 2005), fled the country to escape prosecution. In the vacuum that was left in the opposition-controlled Assembly, Guaido, whose party had won 26 percent of the popular vote in the 2015 elections, was selected as President-I imagine their equivalent of our President of the Senate.

There is very little information on him on the Internet, the most in-depth being an article in a publication named Grayzone titled ‘The making of Juan Guaido’, co-authored by two credible journalists, Max Blumenthal and Dan Cohen. Its opening paragraph says: “Before the fateful day of January 22, fewer than one in five Venezuelans had heard of Juan Guaidó. Only a few months ago, the 35-year-old was an obscure character in a politically marginal far-right group closely associated with gruesome acts of street violence. Even in his own party, Guaidó had been a mid-level figure in the opposition-dominated National Assembly…”

With the crisis appearing to take a life of its own, Washington decided it was opportune to intervene more directly than it had been doing ever since Nicolas Maduro succeeded the deceased Hugo Chavez in 2013. The unlikeliest of candidates to replace Maduro, Guaido received a phone call from US Vice President Mike Pence that set in motion one of the biggest hoaxes in history when Guaido proclaimed himself interim President.

Supposedly sophisticated democracies like Canada and the United Kingdom rushed to recognise and legitimise Guaido, about whom they knew nothing. European Union countries were marginally more guarded: they gave Maduro eight days to hold fresh presidential elections, failing which they would go with Guaido. And even more incomprehensible, editorials in respectable publications such as the New York Times, Bloomberg News and the Wall Street Journal were singing hosannas to Guaido.

A long list of nation states and regional alliances (the Lima Group, some members of the OAS) were trampling each other in their rush to breach the United Nations charter on the recognition of the legitimacy of heads of governments and states. And predictably, politicians such as T&T’s Leader of the Opposition and other nonentities rushed to be counted among pilgrims kneeling at the altar of power in Washington.

It is no coincidence that almost all the high priests of that diocese have been publicly proclaimed as liars of legendary proportions, with several of them already indicted on serious felonies, and their pope, Donald Trump, leading the lies-per-day stakes, and also very likely to be impeached or indicted.

As I wrote last week, I am not about to defend Maduro or Chavez whom I admired when he won presidential elections and seemed set to right the wrongs that plagued resource-rich Venezuela for far too many years. His Petrocaribe initiative and close ties forged with Caribbean countries were laudable. But things went awfully wrong at home, and when that happens, the leader must pay the ultimate price—loss of power, maybe even life.

But America and its neo-liberal, sometimes neo-Nazi allies must not arrogate unto themselves the power to inflict change as they see fit, as is clearly the case in Venezuela. The US is hell-bent on installing the unknown Guaido as a puppet-president who will not go to the toilet without seeking his master’s permission. Watching him on television, I see Little Boy Lost who hasn’t the foggiest idea about what to say or do to extricate Venezuela from the mess it’s in. All he does is offer inducements to his compatriots who will abandon Maduro and support him instead, or threaten to sic his bullying big stepbrother on those who oppose him.

I pity the poor sod: little does he know he’s an expendable pawn in a high-stakes game of global chess. In that arena, the winners will always be brawn over brain, the powerful over the meek. Sadly, the beleaguered people of Venezuela will be no better off under Guaido than they have been under Maduro. Plus ça change…

6 Responses to “Unknown Guaido: pawn in a high-stakes game”


  • Spot on Raff. You definitely have to be the pundit in reading these high priests minds. Just as how Gadaffi and Sadam became dispensable to US doctrine hey have met the stumbling block of Assad. The Kurds must definitely be learning what’s about to happen to them if and when the US departs from Syria.

  • As a former Soldier , trained supposedly to create gov’t and uphold Laws , DEFENDING Chavez and his successor should be one of your norms . We know so little about Venezuela , a stone throw from this former Spanish colony , no wonder. Can you imagine none of main stream media Trinidad , having a news desk in Venezuela ? we are left with PROPAGANDA , the art of fighting without the guns and bombs . It all started in 1998 when Hugo Chavez took control of oil rich Venezuela , within all the riches , a vast percentage of Native Venezuelans lived in abject poverty , the remnants of European conquest , controlled every aspect of Nation building , the Nationalization of oil was the Death nail. Black woman Condoliza Rice , initiated regime change under Bush #2 , Chavez was killed under Obama , now Trump hopes to bring the baton to the finish line ,classical US policy . 20 yrs and counting , US policies are always generational somewhat , in Trumps case , he wants 50% of Venezuela’s vast oil reserves . Today , Exon Mobile is siphoning oil from Venezuela , in the name of Guyana great oil find . Did not the USA and England remove Chadi Jagan from elected power and replace him with Forbs Bhurnham ? Wasn’t Mitchel a lecturer at Howard , when he was hand picked to govern Grenada after Bishop’s demised ? the Lima group are descendants of conquest , all the supporting European Nations have benefited from said conquest , cheap venezuelan oil is their vision . I keep Dr Rowley in my prayers 24/7 as this scenario continue to unravel , in retrospect, some of his Governmental decisions is giving him some sleepless nites , while Kamla , who is suppose to be Gov’t in waiting , seem to know nothing about anything , so much for Colony trained intellectuals. As a team lead , working at the National Military Hospital in Bethesda Md , a fellow White worker called me out asking, if i was from Trinidad , then he revealed to me , the he was part of the US Army battalion sent to invade Trinidad , during the peoples rebellion of 1970 , in his words , they were just waiting for the orders to come in and kick some ASS , the look i gave him was one of defilement . Eric Williams was a marked man because of his intellectual rebelness , the FBI and CIA files will show that fact . Message to Br Shah , had the US forces invade in 1970 , he would have been executed ala Sadam . Mudero must be commended for being a truthful deputy and believing in the Bolivarian Revolution , he is willing to DIE with that belief , when Toussaint of HAITY was taken to Franch to be murdered , his fellow leaders did not cave in , Haity is still paying the price of subjugation today , and finally, when Abraham Lincoln was killed , his Vice President renege on everything that was agreed upon , Slavery was reintroduced under JIM CROW , Trump descended from this concept , with the BIG stick of IMPERIALISM in hand , any and everything is possible .

  • Its amazing, All these Experts/Pundits/Know it all’s, and Folks who read and see. {Their eyes are WIDE SHUT}. America,and their Cronies/Rectorm friends, Some kiss bottom folks and Countries.See the Distructions that are left behind by these REGIME CHANGERS,and still singing the same stupid song. Ie, we want FREEDOM.well folks Everything So call FREE, cost. This New appointed none Leader Guaido, was trained by the CIA. He was, before the training a Thug, A BOTTOM FEEDER, in a movement that was pushing for War/ disruption, and the over trow of the Government.In come’s John Bolton. And now the War Machine,and oil takeover, are set in motion. Do all these Bright Minds, see ant pattern?? Do they want to see?? Be careful Folks. All they would say, after the Fact,— ITS COLLATERAL DAMAGE.??—-T&T–How far away?????

  • Elisabet Thor-Larsen

    More current analysis from Ven https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ph7jVQf5DSQ

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