Wall Street Journal: “Let’s Get Cuba Out of Venezuela”

While El Niuyortain works tirelessly in midtown Manhattan to publish propaganda pieces for the Castro Ministry of Truth, calling Cuba “a tired little country, no threat to anyone, with impressive health care and education,” its downtown rival, El Guolstriyurnal, works hard to shed light on the dangerous criminal nature of the Castro regime and the very real threat it presents to hemispheric stability and global peace.

Senkiu, Guolstriyurnal (Thank you, Wall Street Journal)

Friends of democracy need to target Havana’s control in Caracas

International support for a return to democracy in Venezuela has been growing since Juan Guaidó took the oath of interim president on Wednesday. The crucial but underreported question now is whether dictator Nicolás Maduro’s protectors in Cuba and Russia will intervene to stop this democratic uprising.

The Venezuelan military holds the key to whether Mr. Maduro will step down peacefully. Common sense and reporting in the country suggest that a good part of the army is ready to side with the Venezuelan people. The rank and file have families who are also suffering the privation caused by nearly two decades of socialist rule.

Yet Cuba controls Mr. Maduro’s personal security detail and has built a counterintelligence network around the high command. Venezuela’s 1,000 or so flag officers operate in silos and are spied on by minders. An officer who sides with the opposition is putting his life and perhaps his family at risk. The head of the armed forces expressed support for Mr. Maduro on Thursday, but the real test may come if soldiers are ordered to fire on protesters or Venezuelans trying to protect Mr. Guaidó.

Nations that want better for Venezuela should focus as much on Havana as Caracas. If civilized countries want to end the starvation and mass migration of Venezuelans, they have to convince the Cuban regime to back off. That means targeting Havana with diplomatic pressure, as well as sanctions such as travel restrictions and frozen bank accounts.

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