Small Wars Journal

With Maduro Entrenched in Venezuela, Trump Loses Patience and Interest in Issue, Officials Say

With Maduro Entrenched in Venezuela, Trump Loses Patience and Interest in Issue, Officials Say by Karen DeYoung and Josh Dawsey – Washington Post

Last winter, the ouster of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro seemed a sure bet to President Trump, a quick foreign policy win at a time when other initiatives in Asia and the Middle East appeared stalled or headed in the wrong direction.

Then came spring, when Juan Guaidó, the opposition leader Trump had recognized as Venezuela’s legitimate president, called for the Venezuelan military to rise up and switch sides. But while the White House had received opposition assurances that many in the upper echelons of the security forces and government had pledged to flip, virtually none answered Guaidó’s call.

A frustrated Trump believed that national security adviser John Bolton and his director for Latin American policy, Mauricio Claver-Carone, “got played” by both the opposition and key Maduro officials, two senior administration officials said. As the president “chewed out the staff” in a meeting shortly after the April 30 failure, in the words of one former Trump official involved in Venezuela policy, he mused that he might need to get on the phone himself to get something done…

Read on.