US Vice President Mike Pence delivered a bellicose speech before representatives of 14 Latin American countries at a meeting of the Lima Group in Bogotá, Colombia, yesterday. The remarks were timed to coincide with the US-orchestrated provocations at the Venezuelan border over the weekend, resulting in clashes that left several people dead.
Pence rehashed phrases plagiarized from speeches given by George W. Bush in the run-up to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, combining them with denunciations of socialism.
“There is no turning back,” Pence said. “All options are on the table.”
“A new day is coming in Latin America,” he continued. “In Venezuela and across the Western hemisphere, socialism is dying and liberty, prosperity and democracy are being reborn before our eyes.”
Pence issued an ultimatum to the Venezuelan military, threatening that if it did not overthrow Maduro,
“You will find no safe harbor, no easy exit, no way out. You will lose everything.”
Pence announced that the US would place added sanctions on officials in the Venezuelan government and called on the right-wing governments of Latin America to “transfer ownership of Venezuelan assets in your country” to the government of US puppet Juan Guaidó.
In other words, the US is conducting cross-hemispheric highway robbery.
In his speech, Pence gave several justifications for intensifying US war threats against Venezuela. Venezuela exploits indigenous tribes, damages the environment through oil exploration and impoverishes its population, Pence said.
These claims would be laughable were it not for the seriousness of the threats. The United States is the world’s worst offender in each of these departments.
Particularly disgusting was Pence’s attack on Venezuela for refusing “shelter for those displaced” immigrants along its border.
The Washington Post wrote that Pence “embraced a sobbing elderly man,” an immigrant waiting to enter Venezuela. The Post reporters, tears welling in their eyes, wrote that Pence “told the man in English, ‘We are with you.’”
The Post report made no mention of the thousands of immigrants currently sleeping on the streets in Mexican cities along the US-Mexico border after the US barred them from entering the country to apply for asylum.