Monday, February 18, 2019

Trump's Venezuela policy: Cubans to the Left, Cubans to the Right

John Feeley,; John Feeley was US Ambassador to Panama and is a Univision political analyst.

Image from article: 
President Trump signing a new Cuba policy order in Miami, June 16, 2017. Left to right: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, Florida Governor Rick Scott, Senator Marco Rubio, Vice President Mike Pence.

Cubans are playing a key role in the Venezuelan crisis, on both sides.

President Trump is bringing the Venezuela road show to Miami on Monday in an attempt to keep the pressure on Nicolas Maduro. He will no doubt repeat his State of the Union dig at Democrats, when he raised the specter of socialism in that long-suffering country and linked it to his domestic political opposition.

"Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country," the president said in his speech to Congress. "Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country," he added.

The truth is, Maduro is an old-fashioned corrupt dictator. He's not a Marxist nor a socialist. But it's a message that plays well, especially in Cuban Miami. ...

Encouragingly, U.S. Special Representative for Venezuela, the wily Elliott Abrams, has all but taken a U.S. military invasion option off the table, while dutifully engaging in the theater of public diplomacy [JB emphasis] and insisting “all options remain on the table.” That's good Diplomacy 101 and no points should be deducted for purposeful obfuscation. My reading between the lines: the Marines aren’t hitting the beaches of Maiquetia anytime soon. ...

No comments: