On Sunday, opposition politician Juan Guaidó posted a video on social media claiming the Venezuelan government was moments away from issuing an arrest order against him, inadvertently expressing the hopes of the majority to see him behind bars once and for all.
Reactions to the video were of the hilarious variety, with one user saying he wouldn’t be able to sleep that night while another one wrote: “usurping [government] functions, allying with foreign powers and stealing the nation’s assets is a crime. I'm telling you in case your lawyers haven't.”
Comments came from both opposition and Chavista followers who coincide on one thing (and this does not happen often!): Guaidó and acolytes have been greatly responsible for the Venezuelan people’s suffering by endorsing Washington’s economic warfare, which has enabled the mass killing of the population.
But being supposedly unaware of one’s crimes while openly confessing to them, especially when you are a US puppet or warmongering imperialist, seems common these days. Just recently, US Senator Marco Rubio gave an interview with fake news propagandist Fox News. There he expressed concern about the US dollar losing its position as the world’s dominant currency after China and Brazil struck a deal to trade in their own currencies.
Rubio’s concerns were centered on one specific thing as he eloquently explained it: “We won’t have to talk about sanctions in five years, because there’ll be so many countries transacting in currencies other than the dollar that we won’t have the ability to sanction them.”
“Marco Rubio accidentally makes a great argument against US dollar hegemony,” wrote Australian journalist Caitlin Johnstone, who recalled how Washington has historically used its currency “to fund a war machine of unprecedented might and to inflict starvation sanctions on disobedient nations around the world.”
Truth is, the Florida senator’s comments come amidst the slow rising of a multipolar world that increasingly rejects Washington’s economic terrorism. The fall of the US dollar might not be immediate, but it could potentially take away a mass murdering weapon from the hands of psychopaths like Rubio, who has unwittingly put the US dollar on trial for its crimes against humanity.
In a similar fashion, former US president Donald Trump also stood in front of a jury recently. This is the corrupt oligarch who imposed devastating economic sanctions against Venezuela to trigger regime change in 2017 later targeting the oil industry in 2019, exacerbating an ongoing economic crisis that has seen tens of thousands of Venezuelans killed.
On April 4, an angry-looking Trump entered a New York courtroom and pleaded not guilty to 34 felony charges related to an alleged scheme to influence the 2016 presidential election. He could face trial in spring 2024 just as he seeks to recapture the White House.
While Trump might be the first ever US president to be prosecuted, he is certainly not the only one who should be. In a just world, Trump, alongside Barack Obama (the creator of Venezuela’s “unusual and extraordinary threat” status), George W. Bush and Joe Biden (the list could go on and on), would be charged for the endless wars waged against people everywhere, from military interventions to murderous sanctions.
None of these things seem likely and Trump will most likely get off scot-free and possibly gain more popularity among his far-right following. Nonetheless, it is still wonderful to see him treated as a criminal, even if it is for the wrong crimes, as well as seeing the US dollar exposed as the bloody weapon that it has always been.
However, neither Trump nor the US-dollar-funded war machine would have been able to perpetrate their felonies against Venezuela and other countries if it wasn’t for imperialist lapdogs such as Juan Guaidó. When it comes to criminals, this US puppet should be the next to face trial.
We have seen some good signs in that direction of late. Guaidó’s recent babbling video about his fears of being arrested was actually published a few days after Venezuelan government officials reiterated that his crimes would not go unpunished.
On March 26, President Nicolás Maduro said "Guaidó should have been behind bars a long time ago by now” and demanded justice “against those who asked for sanctions.” Similarly, National Assembly (AN) President Jorge Rodríguez has stated that the hardline opposition would not escape responsibility for the damages done to the country, including pocketing Venezuelan resources and being accomplices to the hijacking of 31 tons of gold held in the Bank of England.
But if the last four years are any indication, no arrests are imminent. Most likely everything comes down to Washington conditioning any sanctions relief to the continuation of political talks between the Maduro government and the Guaidó-led camp as well as Guaidó running for the opposition primaries and, potentially, the 2024 presidential vote, as part of the US definition of “free elections.”
Guaidó, however, has already begun a press tour with all the usual US-friendly outlets denouncing his looming detention to supposedly “shift the attention” from a recent corruption scandal within the oil industry that has sent shockwaves of outrage across the country. While nothing excuses such a shameful scheme, especially as people have endured multiple hardships under an economic blockade, the anti-corruption operation has been broadly broadcast on state media, with high-level state officials being prosecuted.
An image of dozens of accused walking in line with orange jumpsuits to be arraigned for stealing possibly billions in siphoned-off oil sales was posted endlessly on social media and one question came up repeatedly: Why is Guaidó not there?
The Venezuelan people’s attention to detail and real justice is spot on!
In a recent interview with Spanish CNN, Guaidó said his arrest would be pinned on the “false accusations” that he has stolen $2 billion since 2019, saying the Maduro government lacks “real evidence.” He is partially right because he has in fact caused much more suffering and done far worse than pocketing a couple of billion.
From creating a parallel illegal government to calling for US sanctions and attempting to foster foreign interventions, Guaidó has committed serious crimes worthy of life imprisonment. The failed military putsch of April 30, 2019, even saw oligarch coup plotter Leopoldo López escaping house arrest and fleeing the country. Most recently, he was seen in front of the US Senate begging for more economic sanctions against the Venezuelan people. While the thwarted mercenary invasion in 2020 (“Operation Gideon”) included the assassination attempt of President Maduro.
If the above it’s not sufficient for the so-called politician to stand trial, then perhaps the plundering of Venezuelan assets abroad will finally convince the proverbial jury.
Turns out, the gig of being Venezuela’s fake president came with multiple rewards: an unlimited supply of money drawn from foreign-held assets which the Maduro government estimates at US $40 billion, including bank accounts and proceeds from companies such as US-based Venezuelan oil subsidiary CITGO and Colombia-based agrochemical producer Monómeros, both handed to Guaidó in 2019.
Under the Guaidó administration, CITGO has become easy prey for US corporations looking to collect arbitrational awards after the opposition leader and his lawyers failed to protect the asset in US courts, from not showing up to striking under-the-table deals with creditors. The second enterprise, Monómeros, was brought to the brink of bankruptcy before being rescued and returned to the Maduro government last year.
It is also worth recalling that the figure of “interim president” does not exist in the Venezuelan Constitution, making Guaidó’s claim to rule as artificial as his speeches about democracy and freedom.
Despite all this, Guaidó remains free, so we can only hope this will change in the near future, and that he joins Trump and the US dollar in this long-awaited trial.
True justice for the Venezuelan people means that the Maduro government will finally root out corruption and that the judicial system will jail all traitors who steal from the people in times of economic siege. Justice will also come with the imprisonment of Guaidó and his associates for allying with Washington in this war without bombs against working-class Venezuelans.