President Trump’s Venezuelan Strategy Will Backfire
Russia and the United States are fighting a proxy war in Venezuela. Russia backs Venezuela’s socialist president, Nicolás Maduro, even though his regime has rigged the election and allowed crime, violence and starvation to rise. Meanwhile, the U.S. backs opposition leader Juan Guaido as the legitimate president of Venezuela until free and fair elections can be held. Russia has sent 400 military contractors to protect Maduro, as well as Russia’s oil investments in the region. But U.S. President Donald Trump is not about to willingly allow Russia to turn Venezuela into one of its puppet regimes.
He has a strategy to fight back.
The Venezuelan military’s top brass, as well as 15,000 Cuban intelligence officers, support Maduro. Cuba props up Maduro in return for cheap oil. On April 5, the Trump administration announced sanctions against 34 ships belonging to Venezuela’s government-owned oil company. This gives a rationale for the U.S. to seize these vessels in an attempt to cut off Venezuelan oil shipments to Cuba, which will weaken both Venezuela and Cuba.
The Trump administration is also working with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro to sow dissent within the Venezuelan military. Since Brazil’s military has open communication with Venezuelan military officers, the Bolsonaro administration is in a privileged position to convince Venezuelan officers to switch sides and support Maduro’s rivals.
President Trump’s strategy is to oust Maduro from office by severing his alliance with Cuba and convincing his generals to defect. This is a well-thought-out plan that has a good chance of successfully installing a new government in Venezuela. But America has always been more successful at toppling regimes than building new ones.
The attempt to keep Venezuela from becoming a Russian puppet state could transform the nation into a puppet state of the European Union.
EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini has condemned America’s half-century-old economic embargo against Cuba, and EU foreign ministers recently decided against expanding their existing sanctions on Venezuela. Spanish oil company Repsol even made a deal with Maduro’s regime to increase Venezuelan oil shipments to Spain. European leaders have joined the Trump administration in calling for free and fair elections in Venezuela, but seem content to let America do the heavy lifting involved in regime change while they apply economic deals rather than economic pressure.
Thus far, Bolsonaro has been more supportive of President Trump’s efforts than EU officials. But Bolsonaro is a devout Catholic being advised on foreign policy by Prince Luiz Philippe de Orleans e Braganza, a royal descendant of both Holy Roman Emperor Francis ii and Brazilian Emperor Pedro ii. More than 1,300 German or German-Brazilian companies generate 10 percent of Brazil’s gross domestic product. So its economic, cultural and religious loyalties belong to Europe far more than to the U.S.
The strategy to topple Maduro and push Venezuela closer to the EU and Brazil may be good news for the U.S. in the short term, since the EU and Brazil are currently U.S. allies. But Bible prophecy shows that this plan will ultimately backfire—not because it wasn’t well thought out, but because God is cursing America.
Revelation 17 and Isaiah 47 refer to the combined religious and political power of the Holy Roman Empire. The church known as “Mystery, Babylon the Great” in Revelation is referred to as the “daughter of Babylon” and “lady of kingdoms” in Isaiah. Because God is “wroth” with the modern descendants of ancient Israel for their sins, He turns them over to this merciless power. The late Herbert W. Armstrong proved in his book The United States and Britain in Prophecy that the U.S. and Britain are the modern descendants of ancient Israel. God will use a final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire to punish the people of these nations for their rebellion against Him.
Since Venezuela and Brazil are subject to the same religious system as the EU, they will likely ally with the Holy Roman Empire. “Herbert Armstrong long prophesied, and we expect, the alliance between Europe and South America to grow extremely strong,” Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry writes in Isaiah’s End-Time Vision. “The most significant factors that will cement this connection are religion and language: Roman Catholicism is the dominant religion of Latin America. … But it will not be a union of equals: The Latin American countries will become vassal states to Europe!”
Until recently, Brazil, Cuba and Venezuela were all more closely aligned with Russia than Europe. The Trump administration is trying to counter Russian influence in Latin America, but in the process, he is helping Europe make deeper inroads into the region. His strategy in Venezuela and other Latin American nations will backfire spectacularly because the American people trust foreign allies more than they trust and obey God.