Russia Pulls Venezuela and Cuba Deeper Into Its Orbit
A high-level Russian delegation toured the Caribbean this week, signing a raft of cooperation agreements with Venezuela and Cuba, in another indication of Moscow’s deepening influence in the periphery of the United States.
The delegation, led by Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov, traveled first to Caracas on March 30 to meet with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. The two sides signed 12 major cooperation agreements covering a broad range of strategic areas, including energy, finance and military. A plan was also reached for Russia to supply Venezuela with its EpiVacCorona vaccine to supplement Sputnik v doses that have already been provided.
Maduro called the day “historic” and said it lifted Russia and Venezuela to “a new stage” in strategic relations. He said the two sides had also confirmed their determination to build a “multipolar world,” a term understood to describe a global order not mainly dominated by the U.S.
The next day, Borisov’s delegation arrived in Havana, Cuba, where they conducted the 18th Session of the Cuba-Russia Intergovernmental Commission. The two sides laid out a plan to increase cooperation in energy, trade, agriculture, heath, defense and communications.
“Cuba is our key partner and reliable ally in the region of Latin America and the Caribbean,” Borisov said. “We appreciate the strategic nature of Russian-Cuban interstate interaction based on the principles of friendship and mutual respect and not subject to the current external situation,” he said, in a reference to the U.S.’s blockade on Cuba.
The tour marks only the latest instance of Russia deepening its influence—and working to erode that of the U.S.—near America’s Caribbean shores.
In recent years, the Kremlin has docked its warships in Havana’s harbor and given Cuba $50 million to buy Russian military gear and modernize Havana’s state-run defense firms. It has also flown nuclear-capable bombers, a squadron of Russian soldiers and 38 tons of military equipment to Venezuela. And it has sold Nicaragua so many tanks, patrol boats, missile corvettes and light fighters that some 90 percent of Nicaragua’s weapons imports are now from Russia.
The pattern is undeniable. Russia has reemerged in Latin America and is determined to deepen relationships with unstable, anti-U.S. countries led by Communist or socialist governments. And the proximity of these increasingly Russia-aligned nations to the U.S. mainland should sound alarm bells in Washington.
The Trumpet discussed the perils of this trend in a March 2019 article titled “Preparing to Storm America’s Castle.” We wrote:
The United States is being threatened by hostile nations taking over the Caribbean Sea. Major news sources pay little attention to this region, but the Caribbean is vital to U.S. security. This sea not only connects the East Coast with the Pacific Ocean via the Panama Canal, it guards the mouth of the Gulf of Mexico. Half of America’s seaborne trade passes through the Gulf. So a foreign power that controls the Caribbean could cripple the U.S. economy by restricting its access to oceanic shipping.
This geographic reality is why Russia and China want to challenge U.S. dominance in the Caribbean. These aspiring superpowers are forging alliances with socialist governments in Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. If these Latin dictatorships become staging grounds for Russia and China, a coalition of nations could potentially cut off U.S. access to the Panama Canal and seal off the Straits of Florida and the Yucatán Channel.
As disturbing as this scenario sounds, Bible prophecy shows that such a besiegement will soon happen.
Around 2,700 years ago, God inspired the Prophet Isaiah to write about a massive trade bloc that would be built in our lifetime: “a mart of nations” (Isaiah 23:3).
Verse 1 shows that a lead nation in this trade bloc would be “Chittim.” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry explains in his booklet Isaiah’s End-Time Vision that Chittim, or Kittim, is an ancient name referring to modern China. Another leading power in the trade bloc is “Tyre,” which Mr. Flurry explains designates “the commercial center” of modern Europe. A companion passage in Ezekiel 27 mentions ancient names for Russia (Tubal and Meshech), showing that Vladimir Putin’s Russia will also play a major role in this future “mart.”
“The Bible contains many prophecies of that European power attacking America—and many other prophecies of America being besieged,” Mr. Flurry writes. Europe will carry out this besiegement in tandem with the other countries associated with the “mart of nations” of Isaiah 23 and Ezekiel 27, including Russia. Mr. Flurry states, “All of them are going to besiege America, Britain and the Jewish nation.”
“[T]he giants of Asia” will form a “brief alliance” with the European bloc, he writes. “Should Europe, the resurrected Holy Roman Empire, find a way to take advantage—even for a moment—of key resources and strategic holdings of China, Russia and Japan, it would have more than enough power to besiege the Anglo-Saxon nations ….
“This is why Isaiah’s prophecy of an end-time ‘mart of nations’ that includes both European and Asian powers is so intriguing.”
Mr. Flurry draws careful attention to the Latin American region, due primarily to its proximity to the United States. “Herbert Armstrong long prophesied, and we expect, the alliance between Europe and South America to grow extremely strong,” he writes. Europe already wields significant influence in parts of Latin America. And after Russia and China form a “brief alliance” with Europe, the power that Russia is now building in Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua and elsewhere in Latin America will translate into even greater European control over the region.
Additional details about this future besiegement of America are recorded in Deuteronomy 28:49, 52: “The Lord shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flieth; a nation whose tongue thou shalt not understand …. And he shall besiege thee in all thy gates, until thy high and fenced walls come down, wherein thou trustedst, throughout all thy land: and he shall besiege thee in all thy gates throughout all thy land, which the Lord thy God hath given thee.”
“Preparing to Storm America’s Castle” explains the meaning of “gate” in this context:
A gate is a narrow passage of entrance or exit. When speaking nationally, a sea gate is a narrow choke point like the Panama Canal, the Straits of Florida, the Windward Passage or the Yucatán Channel. God gave Britain and America these strategic gates and many others, ensuring that they would become economic and military superpowers. But God also warned that if America and Britain did not obey Him, then not only would these sea gates be taken away, but they would be used against them. This is about to happen.
These are heavy prophecies, revealing that America and some of its allies will soon suffer major chaos. But Bible prophecy reveals that the “mart of nations” and the conflict associated with it are designed as loving correction from God, and that the time of chaos will be immediately followed by an age of unprecedented worldwide peace.
“[T]hat trading partnership won’t last long,” Mr. Flurry writes. “Soon they will clash, just before Jesus Christ returns and destroys both of them” (op cit).
Christ will return to Earth and usher in an era of stability and prosperity for the peoples of Russia, Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua, the U.S. and all other countries. To understand more about these trends and the hope beyond, order your free copy of Mr. Flurry’s booklet Isaiah’s End-Time Vision.