One of the remarkable aspects of dictatorial governments these days is how many of them maintain their hold on power using foreign mercenaries. It is true of Iran with the basidji. And it is true in Venezuela where the Cuban government is providing thousands of physicians, teachers, and security forces in exchange for oil, a mutually beneficial arrangement. In her Wall Street Journal column Mary Anastasia O’Grady explains her plan for overthrowing the Maduro government:
Things will go from bad to worse for Havana if Mr. Guaidó is allowed to hold elections. This is why the Cubans are ruthlessly cracking down on the opposition while making the absurd proposal to the Lima Group that Havana ought to mediate a compromise solution. As if the fox ought to decide the fate of the hens. Defectors repeatedly testify that Cubans are behind the Venezuelan police state. It’s why the U.S. and its allies must shift their focus to Havana.
The Trump administration has been adding sanctions against the Cuban regime. Ships that carry oil from Venezuela to Cuba can no longer enter U.S. ports; Americans can now sue in U.S. courts over property confiscated by Cuba; and the ceiling on remittances from the U.S. has been reduced. Havana is feeling some heat. But it isn’t enough.
To persuade Cuba to exit Venezuela, the price of staying has to be higher than any benefits it still receives. That’s a hemispheric project, and it’s the best way to liberate Venezuela from tyranny.
IMO U. S. efforts would be better utilized enforcing the Monroe Doctrine and preventing intervention from outside the hemisphere to intervene to save the Maduro government.
The Cuban government has problems of its own which their symbiotic relationship with Venezuela will not help them to solve. The entire arrangement may well be on the brink of collapse.