Starvation, horror in Venezuela

1 minute ago, Jan van Eck said:

Or in the alternative, those Antifa guys get scooped up and dropped off at Guantanamo, there to enjoy breakfast with the mujaheddin. Should keep them on ice for the duration.  Nobodies lunching with nobodies.  Bunking arrangements should be interesting. 

I have always had mixed feelings about conjugal visits, but you've cleared that up for me.  Let them have it.

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As much as I like Jan's plan, I do have one question that seems to have been overlooked in this discussion.  That is, since China, Russia, and apparently even the EU have distributed so much $$$ to the Venezuelan government, then if the US invades Venezuela (even if it is only to save the starving masses), these government's might use such actions to justify false claims against the US, such as that the US is simply invading to take the oil.  Moreover, these governments probably now view Venezuelan oil as their's by right, and any action taken by the US would be seen as an attempt by the US to steal "their" assets, not Venezuelan assets.   My fear is that any type of military action against Venezuela, no matter how justified on humanitarian principles, would be twisted by the foes of the US, and thereby act as a uniting force with them, and manipulated into a dis-unifying force with the people of the US. 

Invasion would likely be perfectly fine if the Dems and Reps were unified in the plan, but many factors, both domestic and foreign, have worked wonders to prevent that from happening, at least in the near future.  I think what the world needs most as well as what foreign powers fear most is a truly united USA.  If the US could elect a president who could put the 'U' back in the US, then I think we might start to see some real progress in the world. 

Peace, protection and prosperity for all...at least that is what I think a united United States would mean for the people of the world (but maybe not for the rulers of the world).    

Any thoughts about either of my points?  

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10 minutes ago, Epic said:

As much as I like Jan's plan, I do have one question that seems to have been overlooked in this discussion.  That is, since China, Russia, and apparently even the EU have distributed so much $$$ to the Venezuelan government, then if the US invades Venezuela (even if it is only to save the starving masses), these government's might use such actions to justify false claims against the US, such as that the US is simply invading to take the oil.  Moreover, these governments probably now view Venezuelan oil as their's by right, and any action taken by the US would be seen as an attempt by the US to steal "their" assets, not Venezuelan assets.   My fear is that any type of military action against Venezuela, no matter how justified on humanitarian principles, would be twisted by the foes of the US, and thereby act as a uniting force with them, and manipulated into a dis-unifying force with the people of the US. 

Invasion would likely be perfectly fine if the Dems and Reps were unified in the plan, but many factors, both domestic and foreign, have worked wonders to prevent that from happening, at least in the near future.  I think what the world needs most as well as what foreign powers fear most is a truly united USA.  If the US could elect a president who could put the 'U' back in the US, then I think we might start to see some real progress in the world. 

Peace, protection and prosperity for all...at least that is what I think a united United States would mean for the people of the world (but maybe not for the rulers of the world).    

Any thoughts about either of my points?  

Chad, there are always, always, going to be small-minded and manipulative cretins in the world who are going to criticize the USA.  You cannot let that get in the way, or you might as well abandon all US leadership anywhere and retreat to Fortress America, and leave the rest of the planet to the abusers including the Russians  (take a hard look at Ukraine) and the Chinese (take a hard look at Tibet and the South China Sea, the Islands of Quemoy and Matsu, the threats against Taiwan, crashing up that US recon plane over the ocean, and a host of other aggressive behaviors including placing anyone and everyone in jail, and 6,000 executions of dissidents by a pistol shot to the back of the head, each year).  Either there is Leadership, or there is default acquiescence. 

As for Putin and Xi, you stare them down and say, "How dare you, your chum Maduro is starving 25 million, here are photos of the skeletal babies, and you do nothing, and you have the nerve to criticize?  Get lost!"  

As for complainers inside the USA,  I have no solution except to show exemplary leadership.  When you are airlifting the starving to hospitals inside the USA and the cameras are rolling on the airport aprons as fleets of ambulances are lined up for the emaciated victims, I defy some malcontent to criticize. 

As far as your observation of a quality President, I don't see that happening any time before the next five election cycles, so you are at least 40 years out for a serious President.  In the meantime, the factions will continue to put forth mediocre candidates - which the public will elect.  Personally, I like the Ballot which has an additional line:  "None of the above."  If "none" wins, then all the other guys get scratched off, and you have to start with a fresh slate, a do-over.  Makes sense to me!

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I favor a military intervention and I think President Trump would love to go that way. What do you think the world reaction would be? What would our mainstream media do? What would the American left do. The President is under more attacks than Nixon, and probably is just behind Lincoln in the vitriol constantly spewed in his direction. His hands are tied to some extent. He would have little to no support from Democrats in Congress or anywhere else. The RINOS and libertarians would not be with him either. He is like Gulliver right now. Once Mueller is gone and he is in a second term he may have the backing to go ahead. Right now he will have to work around the edges. 

So far President Trump has humbled Russia,Turkey, and Iran and is working onChina. He is running the most effective foreign policy I have ever seen. He is making real progress in overcoming part of our trade deficit. The economy is booming especially the oil and gas industries. Yet with all of his accomplishments he gets little credit from the left. If you want our President to fix Venezuela back him up. 

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(edited)

32 minutes ago, ronwagn said:

I favor a military intervention and I think President Trump would love to go that way. What do you think the world reaction would be? What would our mainstream media do? What would the American left do. The President is under more attacks than Nixon, and probably is just behind Lincoln in the vitriol constantly spewed in his direction. His hands are tied to some extent. He would have little to no support from Democrats in Congress or anywhere else. The RINOS and libertarians would not be with him either. He is like Gulliver right now. Once Mueller is gone and he is in a second term he may have the backing to go ahead. Right now he will have to work around the edges. 

So far President Trump has humbled Russia,Turkey, and Iran and is working onChina. He is running the most effective foreign policy I have ever seen. He is making real progress in overcoming part of our trade deficit. The economy is booming especially the oil and gas industries. Yet with all of his accomplishments he gets little credit from the left. If you want our President to fix Venezuela back him up. 

Ron, we are getting a bit far afield.  To reply generally, my thoughts, and remember that  my two cents is worth precisely nothing, I would say as follows:

1.   A real Leader, a tough Leader, does not much give a damn what the rest of the world says, what the mainstream media says, what the "lefties" say.  He acts, that is what Leadership is all about.  And again, once the starving are being airlifted out and the cameras roll on the skeletons of the little children, nobody is going to say anything except Bravo Trump! 

2.   They way to go is to bring back the serious, balls to the wall generals, including General Petraeus (commanding general, 101st Airborne) and General Shinseki, Army Chief of Staff, OK he's 75, so what, find him and say, "Your country needs you (again)," he'll answer the call, those guys know what they are doing, put them in charge and see just how fast this goes.  Remember that General Petraeus was canned for having an affair, a no-no in the Army if you are married.  Look, if you start canning every guy who has some affair with some chickie, you end up with nobody. Let's get real here and go back to raw talent, you need guys like that.  Put Petraeus and Shinseki in a Command Room, let them do the equivalent of Eisenhower in WWII, they don't have to go fast-roping down into some hot LZ,  bring in the Vice Admiral of the fleet, and they will do that invasion and securing of the port and airfield in Barcelona in a flash. You have fifty hovercraft loaded with marines storming the beach there, do you seriously think anybody is going to engage in a firefight?  No chance, those useless peasant militia guys will dump the rifles down some alley, strip off the uniforms and run home in their underwear.  Take the city without firing a shot. 

3.   Trump's biggest problems are his own personality, which includes such totally awful behaviors as calling his daughter "a real piece of ass" on public broadcasting, some interview with  some moron host, and feeling up women in bars, sleeping with prostitutes in Prague, and then the whole world talks about it. Then he stuffs the White House with incompetent louts and big-mouth morons, and you wonder why nothing happens.  He has no serious talent on board.  That is his real problem. (For openers, he doesn't have me as his Chief of Staff, shows you how backward the White House personnel selection process is these days).  Cheers!

Edited by Jan van Eck
insert "real"
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(edited)

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Edited by jaycee
cant be bothered with the discussion

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wow amazed at how my country draws much attention in this forum, appreciate this! Some few thoughts here: first of all, i think all what has happened in Venezuela needs to teach us as people many lessons to learn from, it has to come from within, venezuelans got used to the old myth that venezuela has everything, and has oil, thanks to the resource curse, so we got used to receive all from oil revenues and never realised about the hell what that brings to a country uneducated, at least without a general and integral education about oil since the very first stages of child education, it never existed.

I learned about oil a little when my career of political science and when i was doing my masters in international oil politics in Venezuela, that's it. That needs to change. Also we need to stop blaming others for all our vices and mistakes, Venezuela needs to overhaul all its society and cultural deviations (not saying venezuelan people does not have virtues of course, it has many to my view), but it needs to take things more seriously, such as for example this, prompting once and for all a regime change and not waiting for miracles for that to happen. The U.S. wont come to invade Venezuela, that will not happen in my belief, the people in Venezuela is too much pro U.S. so I dont think Washington will do such a foolish thing. And to restructure the economy definitely we ought to endure painful reforms without doubts in order to change our entire mindset and to finally in the long term transition ourselves from a cursed oil economy to a renewables based or any other source, since Venezuela has many important mineral and natural resources that can bring the country and its nation important wealth. We need to redesign ourselves venezuelans (i was born here proud of being raised here though my parents are from Lebanon but for more than 60 years living in this great country) in order to overcome this chaos. 

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10 hours ago, Jan van Eck said:

I also argue that no one who makes even the most distant claim to adherence to Christianity can stand idly by and watch this unfold, with the excuse that it is "not our country, thus not our problem."  Human obligations extend beyond borders. 

Why do you keep bring religion (Christianity) into this?  You are an Ivy League debater, and know better than to keep inserting irrelevant emotional points into a rational discussion.  

Since you brought religion into this mess, let me bring science into this mess.

The Socialist driven collapse of Venezuela might be likened to a large scale Darwin Award.  Venezuelans by and large were enthusiastic about Chavez "free stuff for everyone" Socialism, and subsequently enthusiastic about "more free stuff for everyone" under Maduro's Socialism, even after Chavez had already drained most of the country's production.

What about the millions of underpriveledged people in Africa?  Should the USA be obligated to intervene in every mess in the world?   No.  The USA is inching closer to another civil war, pushed by huge divisions within the country, and instigated in no small part by a relentless and hysterical Mainstream Media.

I will reiterate, China and Russia have invested heavily in Venezuela.  Why don't you demand that China and Russia intervene with military force to "rescue" Venezuela?

Why not demand Canada intervene?  The Canadian PM appears determined to create his own version of Socialist Darwin Award for Canada, through forced redistribution of wealth.

Why not demand Germany intervene?  Merkel appears determined to push cultural and economic suicide for Germany and EU by encouraging uncontrolled economic migration.  Why not bring in a few million people from Venezuela to add to the cultural disintigration party?

Final note, I'm quite sure many of you will not like many of the things I mentioned above.  And I have no problem about that.  As far as I know, I have not broken any forum rules.  You are free to dispute, refute or attack any ideas I mentioned, just please don't attack me.  This comment was in large part an exercise to point out in Jan's arguments that all sorts of extraneous ideas can be pushed into a debate, that needn't belong in the debate.  By the way, I'm not Christian, so the irrelevant emotional push for Christians to intervene pretty much fails.

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12 minutes ago, Qanoil said:

Why do you keep bring religion (Christianity) into this?  You are an Ivy League debater, and know better than to keep inserting irrelevant emotional points into a rational discussion.  

Since you brought religion into this mess, let me bring science into this mess.

The Socialist driven collapse of Venezuela might be likened to a large scale Darwin Award.  Venezuelans by and large were enthusiastic about Chavez "free stuff for everyone" Socialism, and subsequently enthusiastic about "more free stuff for everyone" under Maduro's Socialism, even after Chavez had already drained most of the country's production.

What about the millions of underpriveledged people in Africa?  Should the USA be obligated to intervene in every mess in the world?   No.  The USA is inching closer to another civil war, pushed by huge divisions within the country, and instigated in no small part by a relentless and hysterical Mainstream Media.

I will reiterate, China and Russia have invested heavily in Venezuela.  Why don't you demand that China and Russia intervene with military force to "rescue" Venezuela?

Why not demand Canada intervene?  The Canadian PM appears determined to create his own version of Socialist Darwin Award for Canada, through forced redistribution of wealth.

Why not demand Germany intervene?  Merkel appears determined to push cultural and economic suicide for Germany and EU by encouraging uncontrolled economic migration.  Why not bring in a few million people from Venezuela to add to the cultural disintigration party?

Final note, I'm quite sure many of you will not like many of the things I mentioned above.  And I have no problem about that.  As far as I know, I have not broken any forum rules.  You are free to dispute, refute or attack any ideas I mentioned, just please don't attack me.  This comment was in large part an exercise to point out in Jan's arguments that all sorts of extraneous ideas can be pushed into a debate, that needn't belong in the debate.  By the way, I'm not Christian, so the irrelevant emotional push for Christians to intervene pretty much fails.

Q, I would respond with the following.

1.   I am trained as a  physicist. I see no incompatibility between science and Christianity for thinking people. There is nothing inherently contradictory.  Christianity is inherently a set of guiding principles of going through life, and although in its commencement was specifically for poor people, over centuries has broadened to include entire societies.  Indeed, Europe is profoundly a Christian identity. That identity followed to both America and Canada.  And parenthetically, you do not need to have a belief in God to be Christian. 

2.   I find it hard to accept that any intervention in the horror that is Venezuela can have any basis other than a Christian one.  There is no legal basis except by an extension of the Monroe Doctrine.  I grant that that might be viewed as flimsy as a foundation. Christian decency is not flimsy.  There is no territorial-dispute basis, as for example over some "economic zone" in the ocean.  There is no land border dispute.  There is no dispute that Maduro is some outside conquering enslaver from one of the ancient Barbary States. So the basis for breaking in there and taking over is, when you come right down to it, a function of decency -  a religious foundation. 

3.   Treating the Venezuela "collapse" as a "Darwin Award" is profoundly antithetical to who we are as a people.  The USA does not treat the world as exercises in Darwin Awards.  By that standard it should have left Japan as a bombed-out wreck, its people ruled by some carpetbagging overlord from Dallas. That is not us.  Americans stand for personal freedom, and the Four Freedoms include Freedom from Want. When you have an entire country starving, that is when the Americans step up to the plate. Darwin is not our thing.

4.   The "free stuff for everyone" actually has some merit.  There is a solid rationale for vending gasoline/diesel at five cents a gallon; it acts as a social program equivalent to US-style food stamps or SSI or spousal benefits of social security, or the earned income credit. The ongoing problem with South American countries is the entrenchment of a landed rich that control everything and the peasants stay screwed-over.  That is not the basis for a healthy country nor a healthy democracy. Even though I am a staunch capitalist, I have sympathy for the Venezuelan discounted fuel and food programs. 

5.  Neither China nor Russia are democracies, and they have zero interest in self-government.  Invite those communists in and you will have a communist State, run by a carpetbagger, and the assets of the country will be heavily looted. To understand this, I invite you to examine the fate of the Donesk and Luhansk Oblasts, in which Russian paramilitaries under the Wagner Group have killed and looted with impunity. Or ask the Tibetans about their experiences under Chinese occupation.  Not a pleasant prospect. Meanwhile, the American Army does not loot or slaughter civilians (at least, not a lot of civilians, I grant you some do end up killed, but Americans feel badly about that.  For example, family members of civilians killed in Iraq were paid compensation payments.  You don't exactly see the Russians doing that.)  Americans are exemplary warriors, they conduct themselves with great dignity even towards adversaries.  In that, they and European combatants conduct themselves decently.  You need that if you are going to do this invasive rescue mission. Otherwise it is a failure out of the box. 

6.   Canada has no blue-water navy.  The biggest ship they have is the John Diefenbaker, a 43-year-old, worn-out icebreaker.  That's it. their destroyers are decommissioned scrap, they have zero support supply ships, they have zero frigates, basically the navy has nothing. They are incapable of even patrolling the sub-Arctic, forget about going to Venezuela, nothing they have would even survive the trip and would have to be towed back. The last destroyer sent to the Caribbean broke down and was towed to Halifax, and will be scrapped, no money to fix. 

7.   Germany has no military assets capable of moving materiel in any volume.  Britain and France do have credible naval forces, and credible troops, but the logistics are daunting.  The reality is that there is one country with the abilities, and the personnel and materiel, than can do the job, and that is the USA.  So, in sum, it is the Americans or it is nobody. And it is a short distance.  Americans can fly C-17 transports in to Venezuela airfields and back without refueling. That is a major logistical advantage. 

If the American leadership and the American people decide to collectively shrug their shoulders and say, "Not my problem," then the Venezuelans will starve.  You can argue that the Americans have no legal duty of care, and you would be right, but are you prepared to walk away from your moral responsibilities? 

 

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19 minutes ago, Jan van Eck said:

Q, I would respond with the following.

Well done, Jan.  You are an intelligent, articulate, Ivy League trained debater.  I hold you to a higher standard for debating than most others here, simply because you are an Ivy League trained debater... a professional level debater.

You rose to my pin prick pushback, and dismantled my points quite well, in proper debate fashion.

Back on track, I honestly don't know what to do about Venezuela.  But a military invasion by the USA to "rescue" the country has not worked out well in the past in the Southern Americas.

Sounds too much like the hype years ago that Iraqis would welcome with hearts and flowers a USA military invasion to topple Saddam.  A military incursion into Venezuela to topple Maduro would likely have similar disasterous results, regardless of the intentions. 

Iraq did not improve after Saddam was hanged.  I doubt Venezuela would improve if a foreign country sent their military into Venezuela and hanged Maduro.

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(edited)

The OAS still exists, and as a member the United States has a duty to respond.

Military action is not the answer, the people of Venezuela must speak.

My father was there in Caracas, as Vice-President - Engineering of Mid-Continent Supply Co. & Export Service Mgr. of Mid-Continent - Cummins Export Corp.

In 1948 while HQ at the Hotel Nacianal downtown the revolution began.

After it was over we relocated to the Hotel Avila, which he made his HQ.

The owner, Nelson Rockafeller, had private hotel security plainclothes detectives.

The President of Venezuela lent soldiers to establish security.

The revolution lasted three days until the army put a stop to it and the civilian Police restored order.

As a young child I have seen what happened so long ago.

History repeats itself for those whom fail to learn its lessons.

May the good people of Venezuela, take heart that the free peoples of the world stand ready to assist.

We must support their right to self determination.

The Chavez & Maduro families own most of the land and agricultural assets.

Rameriz is guarding cash registers in Monaco at last report.

Propped up by the Chinese, and the Fidelistas, Maduro is holding on.

Rosneft, the Russian oil giant owns 49% of Citgo.

PDVSA assets are being seized in the Carribean, subject to court order in favor of Plaintiff Conoco Phillips.

The United States will never let the Russians control Citgo.

Conoco Phillips has it in their sights.

We shall see it in play shortly.

Meanwhile, hopefully later this year we may yet see a free Caracas & Havana.

VENEZUELA SI ! MADURO NO!

 

 

Edited by Glenn Ellis
SPELLING
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1 minute ago, Qanoil said:

Well done, Jan.  You are an intelligent, articulate, Ivy League trained debater.  I hold you to a higher standard for debating than most others here, simply because you are an Ivy League trained debater... a professional level debater.

You rose to my pin prick pushback, and dismantled my points quite well, in proper debate fashion.

Back on track, I honestly don't know what to do about Venezuela.  But a military invasion by the USA to "rescue" the country has not worked out well in the past in the Southern Americas.

Sounds too much like the hype years ago that Iraqis would welcome with hearts and flowers a USA military invasion to topple Saddam.  A military incursion into Venezuela to topple Maduro would likely have similar disasterous results, regardless of the intentions. 

Iraq did not improve after Saddam was hanged.  I doubt Venezuela would improve if a foreign country sent their military into Venezuela and hanged Maduro.

Well, see, here's the difference:  peoples' children were not starving en masse in Saddam's Iraq.  And the US Army will have learned important lessons from the Iraq debacle. You don't put lunkhead bureaucrats like Paul Bremer in charge of anything, not even the latrines. You incorporate their army by simply putting them on the US payroll, in US Dollars.  Right now, what are they paid, the equivalent of two Euros a month?  OK, so pay them fifty dollars a month and the army is totally loyal, and that loyalty transfers to the new civilian government. 

And again, I reiterate that the US does not need to go arrest Maduro, although they should.  The residents of Caracas (or the army) will do that for you.  Just as Mussolini was hanged by the citizens, so is that the fate of Maduro if they get their hands on him.  What you need to inspire social and political change in Venezuela is a fleet of milk trucks and bread vans. You unload a fleet of them from the ferries, and every few hours they go back to the docks to get reloaded with fresh supplies, and they fan out to distribute the food, and packages of potatoes, carrots, veggies, sliced cooked meats, cottage cheese, regular cheese, and even cases of Coca Cola, why not.   Nothing like stories of food trucks to change the allegiances of the starving.  One day flat, Maduro has no friends.  He best start thinking of a skedaddle to Cuba. 

You can do this deal without firing a shot.  Invasion, yes.  Conquest, no. 

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6 minutes ago, Jan van Eck said:

Well, see, here's the difference:  peoples' children were not starving en masse in Saddam's Iraq.  And the US Army will have learned important lessons from the Iraq debacle. You don't put lunkhead bureaucrats like Paul Bremer in charge of anything, not even the latrines. You incorporate their army by simply putting them on the US payroll, in US Dollars.  Right now, what are they paid, the equivalent of two Euros a month?  OK, so pay them fifty dollars a month and the army is totally loyal, and that loyalty transfers to the new civilian government. 

And again, I reiterate that the US does not need to go arrest Maduro, although they should.  The residents of Caracas (or the army) will do that for you.  Just as Mussolini was hanged by the citizens, so is that the fate of Maduro if they get their hands on him.  What you need to inspire social and political change in Venezuela is a fleet of milk trucks and bread vans. You unload a fleet of them from the ferries, and every few hours they go back to the docks to get reloaded with fresh supplies, and they fan out to distribute the food, and packages of potatoes, carrots, veggies, sliced cooked meats, cottage cheese, regular cheese, and even cases of Coca Cola, why not.   Nothing like stories of food trucks to change the allegiances of the starving.  One day flat, Maduro has no friends.  He best start thinking of a skedaddle to Cuba. 

You can do this deal without firing a shot.  Invasion, yes.  Conquest, no. 

I listened to the same "debate" over 45 yrs ago in SE Asia.

"There are NO American Forces in Laos" ~ Tricky Dick ~

At the time I flew/hauled every grain of rice in SE Asia somewhere.

"When you have their stomachs, their hearts & minds will folllow."

Medical supplies, Coca-Cola & coffee pots, "Anything, Anytime, Anywhere ~ Professionally"

We really didn't fly 400 missions a day, from the base that did not exist, on the Plane of Jars either.

"They won't shoot at an unarmed cargo plane" the bullethole in my leg isn't there either.

WE have no business invading Venezuela.

I can already see how that will work out just great for the Venezuelans and the U.S.

WE need to restore order, power, and business to Puerto Rico, and St. Johns.

A YEAR LATER, American citizens treated by their own government, as a third world country.

Instead, our solution is to invade Venezuela, depose Maduro, remake the country into our own image by force.

Yeah, I know of several continents where that strategy worked out just great.

Having been on five continents, in some form of government service, I have seen that plan executed before, the results are always the same.

Neither WE or even bilaterally with the British, can do it for another country.

We can give all aid, supplies, training etc. but in the end it is up to the Venezuelans themselves.

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2 minutes ago, Glenn Ellis said:

 

We can give all aid, supplies, training etc. but in the end it is up to the Venezuelans themselves.

Starving people,  with not even the energy to walk to the hospital, cannot do anything for themselves.  I invite you to take a hard look at the Der Spiegel article and photographs.  

I live in a town with a Volunteer Fire Department.  Even at my advanced age, I still am a volunteer firefighter, and although I can no longer go running on the top of burning roofs, I can still drive the truck and man the pumps.  The USA is the volunteer fire department, and Venezuela is burning.  If you want to sit on your porch and shrug your shoulders and say, Hey, that house is my neighbor's problem, I don't see any reason to get up off the porch and go man the truck, let my neighbor's family figure out how to fight the fire, then you are entitled to take that attitude.  However, you might wish to ponder that your neighbor has no fire truck.  That would leave them to put out their fire with a lunch pail. 

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1 minute ago, Jan van Eck said:

Starving people,  with not even the energy to walk to the hospital, cannot do anything for themselves.  I invite you to take a hard look at the Der Spiegel article and photographs.  

I live in a town with a Volunteer Fire Department.  Even at my advanced age, I still am a volunteer firefighter, and although I can no longer go running on the top of burning roofs, I can still drive the truck and man the pumps.  The USA is the volunteer fire department, and Venezuela is burning.  If you want to sit on your porch and shrug your shoulders and say, Hey, that house is my neighbor's problem, I don't see any reason to get up off the porch and go man the truck, let my neighbor's family figure out how to fight the fire, then you are entitled to take that attitude.  However, you might wish to ponder that your neighbor has no fire truck.  That would leave them to put out their fire with a lunch pail. 

I'm a retired Law Enforcement Officer, Federal, County, and Two Municipal Police depts.

That does not mean, I'm going to go out with two Colt .45 automatics, a drum magazine Thompson, and clean up the town all by myself.

If you wish to attack me personally, fine but be warned, it never ends well.

Since you seem so gungho, about the situation, I will be happy to fly you to Caracas personally, and you can be the first one out the door @ 15,000 ft or so.

Having lived in Venezuela, I know something of the people, the culture, the language, and drilling in the land of contrasts.

A beautiful country, from Margarita Island, to Angel Falls.

Down the Orinoco, and the Magdelana Rivers.

A fight with a band of nomadic indigenous indians called the Motolones.

With their unfeathered black palm arrows, they left signs in the jungle that the drilling crews should go no farther.

Of course, they were no match for D5 CATs and Colt revolvers and Thompsons.

But in their own language they could be heard "Yanqui go home."

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(edited)

15 minutes ago, Glenn Ellis said:

Since you seem so gungho, about the situation, I will be happy to fly you to Caracas personally, and you can be the first one out the door @ 15,000 ft or so.

 

The last time I packed a chute was fifty years ago.  I am not qualified beyond 2,500 feet, and that on a static line. 

Besides, nobody does that these days.  Big hovercraft with 10,000-hp turbines are the current vogue. And  none of that is really necessary, you simply sail up to the ferry docks, lower the ramp, and the troops, the trucks, and the bread vans simply roll off.  This is not D-Day at Normandy, or the landing at Guadalcanal, that stuff is passe.  What do you think is waiting at the ferry dock in Barcelona?  Three divisions of Maduro's tanks?  Hardly likely.  Probably six port militia with a captain.  Nobody is going to go scatter lines of paratroopers across the city, that is silly. You motor up and you drive ashore.  Park two aircraft carrier task forces right offshore and the resistance is zero from Maduro.  The locals will be delighted to have bread and milk and a hospital ship and cash for the doctors and diesel for the generators and bandages and soap and toilet paper, of which there is none in the East. 

Do try to grasp how desperate these people are: there is Nothing. No food. No toilet paper. Little transport. No jobs. No money.  One tin of baby food is one million bolivars. Nobody has one million bolivars. Babies literally starve.  The flesh hangs from a thin bone structure.  They die. What do you think, these people can overthrow Maduro and his Cuban thugs?  You are looking at the starvation of 25 million people. That is what is at stake here. The USA has mountains of surplus food, and a Navy that is fine-tuned in distribution.  Sure, you can keep them in port in Newport News, spend your time arresting and deporting some Guatemalan dairy worker from the milk farm, hey why not, stick to Fortress America. You are entirely free to take that road, as you wish. Simply avert your eyes. 

Edited by Jan van Eck
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6 hours ago, jaycee said:

can't be bothered with the discussion

Fair enough, jaycee.  Your reason for editing says enough I should think.

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3 minutes ago, Jan van Eck said:

The last time I packed a chute was fifty years ago.  I am not qualified beyond 2,500 feet, and that on a static line. 

Besides, nobody does that these days.  Big hovercraft with 10,000-hp turbines are the current vogue. And  none of that is really necessary, you simply sail up to the ferry docks, lower the ramp, and the troops, the trucks, and the bread vans simply roll off.  This is not D-Day at Normandy, or the landing at Guadalcanal, that stuff is passe.  What do you think is waiting at the ferry dock in Barcelona?  Three divisions of Maduro's tanks?  Hardly likely.  Probably six port militia with a captain.  Nobody is going to go scatter lines of paratroopers across the city, that is silly. You motor up and you drive ashore.  Park two aircraft carrier task forces right offshore and the resistance is zero from Maduro.  The locals will be delighted to have bread and milk and a hospital ship and cash for the doctors and diesel for the generators and bandages and soap and toilet paper, of which there is none in the East. 

Do try to grasp how desperate these people are: there is Nothing. No food. No toilet paper. Little transport. No jobs. No money.  One tin of baby food is one million bolivars. Nobody has one million bolivars. Babies literally starve.  The flesh hangs from a thin bone structure.  They die. What do you think, these people can overthrow Maduro and his Cuban thugs?  You are looking at the starvation of 25 million people. That is what is at stake here. The USA has mountains of surplus food, and a Navy that is fine-tuned in distribution.  Sure, you can keep them in port in Newport News, spend your time arresting and deporting some Guatemalan dairy worker form the milk farm, hey why not, stick to Fortress America. You are entirely free to take that road, as you wish. Simply avert your eyes. 

What you do not seem to grasp is that the situation is not our doing.

I saw 50,000 young people give their lives in the same kind of "humanitarian" effort you propose. For much the same reasons. We don't learn from other countries mistakes.

I had those folks, in country, work for me in the daytime, then put their black pajamas on and shoot at us at night.  More "put 'em on the payroll, and they will quickly be on our side BS." EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYMENT. The other team, in the pointy hats, shot at us all the time. Not to mention the NVA regulars, Laosian forces also. But I digress.

I feel for the people, but we have our own citizens, that are not back to normal a year later.

You seem not to grasp that Venezuela is a  independent nation.

Free elections, in our finest tradition, democratically elected both Chavez and Maduro.

Only the people of Venezuela can change that.

What is needed is another Simon Bolivar, the "George Washington" of South America.

I am convinced he or she is out there somewhere.

Time will tell, but help wont come, from the U.S. Military. That failed logic, is what got us on the wrong side, after the French lost @ Dien Bien Phu in 1954.

Congress would have to authorize such a plan, military or otherwise.

The WAR POWERS ACT only allows the president to act for 30 days without congressional approval. In a mid-term election year, I don't see that happening.

In Iraq and Afganistan.

In a dozen or so other places I don't care to remember.

Help wont come from Erik Prince, or his sister Betsy DeVoss, the Secretary of Education either.

Prince's current hustle is to go back to the Afgannies with 6,000 private mercenaries under the supervision of the CIA.

Trump just may go for it. Not committing regular U. S. forces

Yeah, I can already see how that's gonna work out just fine.

 

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2 minutes ago, Glenn Ellis said:

What you do not seem to grasp is that the situation is not our doing.

 

Whoever suggested that "the situation" as you call it, was "our doing?"  [By "our," presumably you mean to say, "America's"].  

I assuredly said no such thing. 

None of that alters the current horror unfolding in Venezuela. That said, you are entirely free to sit on your porch, pontificate about Vietnam, say its not your problem, devote yourself to your municipal policeman work or pension, whatever it is, and ignore it all. In any event, I shall not debate it further with you, I note that you have indulged yourself in red-arrows, and in this forum that is gauche.  Mr. Ellis, you are on your own.  

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3 minutes ago, Jan van Eck said:

Whoever suggested that "the situation" as you call it, was "our doing?"  [By "our," presumably you mean to say, "America's"].  

I assuredly said no such thing. 

None of that alters the current horror unfolding in Venezuela. That said, you are entirely free to sit on your porch, pontificate about Vietnam, say its not your problem, devote yourself to your municipal policeman work or pension, whatever it is, and ignore it all. In any event, I shall not debate it further with you, I note that you have indulged yourself in red-arrows, and in this forum that is gauche.  Mr. Ellis, you are on your own.  

Ah, the sound of silence..........BTW I have not worked in Law Enforcement for some years now, finally forced to retire medically, from a cumlative effect of on duty injuries over a 45yr. career.

I really do hope that the situation rights itself in Venezuela, as I had planned long ago to retire there. But for Chavez and his Clown/Clone Maduro I would already be there.

The only "red arrows" indulged here, are from an armchair mercenary, rattling the saber for armed "invasion" by the USA, and pontificating on the "humanitarian" efforts thereof.

THAT my good sir, is truely gauche.

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2 minutes ago, Glenn Ellis said:

 

The only "red arrows" indulged here, are from an armchair mercenary, rattling the saber for armed "invasion" by the USA, and pontificating on the "humanitarian" efforts thereof.

 

Go back and look at your post, you put on that red down arrow.  I do not discuss with people who do that, I consider it rude. 

Incidentally that arrow is disabled by the Administrators.  You can be as venomous as you like, you are on your own. Good day to you, Mr. Policeman. 

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Jan,

Why is it that when there is a crisis, anywhere in the world, that America (and American money) is expected to rush in and allieviate the situation? Where is Russia, China, the EU or the Arab countries? Do you remember when President Reagan said, '...we will no longer be the world's policeman', and the rest of the world cheered? Do you remember the disintegration of Yugoslavia and the Balkan War? That was much closer to Europe than to the US and was essentially a European issue, but once again the US had to get involved. The US has been a 'charitable organization' for decades and Americans are sick of it. Decades of trade imbalance with Europe, China, Canada, etc..., running into the billions of USD. Of course other nations are happy with this! They are making money hand over fist at the expense of the American taxpayer. How about the US essentially subsudizing NATO and the UN? American's would be quite happy if the rest of the 'global community' would step up to the plate and start providing money, action and resources instead of just standing on the sidelines complaining.

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39 minutes ago, Glenn Ellis said:

You seem not to grasp that Venezuela is a  independent nation.

Free elections, in our finest tradition, democratically elected both Chavez and Maduro.

Only the people of Venezuela can change that.

What is needed is another Simon Bolivar, the "George Washington" of South America.

I am convinced he or she is out there somewhere.

This sounds like a better option than a unilateral military intervention by the USA, which would probably get blocked anyway by Congress.

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1 minute ago, Douglas Buckland said:

Jan,

Why is it that when there is a crisis, anywhere in the world, that America (and American money) is expected to rush in and allieviate the situation? Where is Russia, China, the EU or the Arab countries? Do you remember when President Reagan said, '...we will no longer be the world's policeman', and the rest of the world cheered? Do you remember the disintegration of Yugoslavia and the Balkan War? That was much closer to Europe than to the US and was essentially a European issue, but once again the US had to get involved. The US has been a 'charitable organization' for decades and Americans are sick of it. Decades of trade imbalance with Europe, China, Canada, etc..., running into the billions of USD. Of course other nations are happy with this! They are making money hand over fist at the expense of the American taxpayer. How about the US essentially subsudizing NATO and the UN? American's would be quite happy if the rest of the 'global community' would step up to the plate and start providing money, action and resources instead of just standing on the sidelines complaining.

All true, Douglas. 

The short answer is: the rest of the countries on the planet, with the exception of Britain and France, are failures.  Some are simply too small to undertake anything of substance, such as Denmark or Belgium. But, they can certainly contribute money. Some are simply useless, such as the troops from Nepal that brought disease with them to Haiti.  And the ones that could be useful simply have incompetent politicians and a venal ruling class. So, the burden falls to the Americans, simply because they are the only ones that can. 

Now, if you like, you can take the Reagan approach  (although he did not follow his own advice, I would point out), and dismantle the US Military, go back to a small-boat navy, shut down the Borders to anybody and everybody, and walk away from the world scene. And you can assuredly do that.  But Americans don't.  They shoulder that burden, at enormous expense, simply because they are Americans. They are the world's "policemen" because they can.  And also, because they are the only ones that can. 

What it comes down to is that there are people on this planet who are both depraved and profoundly evil.  It is their nature to band with others who are evil and then take over the instruments of power, typically at gunpoint.  They can and will hurt and kill not just thousands, but millions. When you look at Russia you see a whole series of these deeply disturbed psychopaths in charge there, a pattern that continues to today with Putin. Murder, invasion, killing, is what those types of people do.  Once they control the levers of force, the guns, they become impossible to unseat.  The only ones that can do that are the Americans. 

To argue that Maduro is other than a deeply disturbed killer is to ignore the truth. At this point, only the generals of the Army can unseat him, and they are of the looter class in Venezuela, so they do not. OK, eventually the game runs out even for them, but by that point, there will be 25 million dead.  You can say, Hey, let nature run its course, but that is not in the nature of the American spirit. Even when Americans are tired of it, are fed up with the constant criminal behavior around the planet, to their eternal credit they rise to the task.  Nobody else will. 

And that is why the Poles, the Latvians, the Estonians, the Lithuanians, the Slovaks, the Ukrainians, the Greeks, the Bulgarians, the Romanians, they all look to protection by the Americans.  Nobody else can save them. Can the Germans do more?  Sure they can - and they must. Do these other countries need a swift kick in the ass?  You bet. But that will not happen overnight, although Mr. Trump has raised the bar. Right now, the facts on the ground are that the Americans guarantee the security of the planet.  It is a burden that has fallen uniquely on the Americans - simply because they can. 

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Italy, Spain, France, Britain, and Germany were all once great world powers. Why have they all returned to their own little countries and abandoned nearly all their land grabs? It is incredibly expensive to travel to other lands and fight unending wars. America will meet their same fate if it continues to actually fight and spend our blood and treasure in unending wars and then rebuilding what was destroyed in those same wars. Our economy is on the brink of bankruptcy if we continue our profligate spending. We need to take care of our own needs and push other nations to do their part. Please take a minute to look at our debt clock: http://www.usdebtclock.org/

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