February 1, 2019
Western Hemisphere Regional
- Alan Fram, Andrew Taylor, “Pelosi and Trump Harden Their Positions on a Border Wall” (Associated Press, Time, February 1, 2019).
Democrats offered further details of their border security plan Thursday, unveiling a measure that would provide no wall funds
- Justin Glawe, “Whitaker Eyes Axing Asylum for Victims of Domestic Violence, Child Sex Abuse” (The Daily Beast, February 1, 2019).
Whitaker inserted himself in the case of a Mexican man whose father was threatened by la Familia Michoacána, a drug cartel in the Mexican state of Michoacán
- “Alemania Pide Respetar los Protocolos Firmados Con el Eln” (El Espectador (Colombia), February 1, 2019).
El ministro de Estado alemán, Michael Roth, manifestó su desacuerdo frente a la postura del presidente Iván Duque de desconocer los protocolos con el Eln, ante una eventual ruptura de los diálogos
- “Lo Definido en la Primera Sesion de Comision de Garantias Bajo Duque” (El Tiempo (Colombia), February 1, 2019).
En esa instancia, que no se reunía desde julio pasado, durante el gobierno del expresidente Juan Manuel Santos, tienen asiento representantes del Estado encargados de la política para desarticular la organizaciones ilegales que atacan a excombatientes, líderes sociales y comunidades
- “Editorial: The Best ‘Wall’ Against Central American Migration” (The Christian Science Monitor, February 1, 2019).
The real debate in the US over border security should be about support for ways to reduce corruption in Central America. The best “wall” against migration is found in candidates like Bukele
- Parker Asmann, “How Would el Salvador’s Presidential Candidates Tackle Organized Crime?” (InsightCrime, February 1, 2019).
InSight Crime looks at the security platforms proposed by the three most viable candidates
- Sandra Cuffe, “Hondurans Protest Us-Backed Government as Thousands Flee” (Truthout.org, February 1, 2019).
On January 29, Mexican officials reported a cumulative total under the special policy of 15,552 humanitarian visa applicants, nearly a fifth of whom are children and teenagers
- Sandra Dibble, “As Homicides Spike, Mexican President Announces ‘Special Plan’ for Tijuana” (The San Diego Union-Tribune, February 1, 2019).
The plan includes a lead role for the military, and involves patrolling neighborhoods, detaining suspects and investigating crimes
- David Pion-Berlin, Eva Bellin, “Will Venezuela’s Military Back — or Abandon — Maduro? Here Are the 4 Things It Will Consider.” (The Washington Post, February 1, 2019).
While military leaders do consider their material interests, that’s not the only factor in deciding where to throw their support. Here are four major factors
- “Independent un Rights Expert Calls for Compassion, Not Sanctions on Venezuela” (United Nations, February 1, 2019).
Mr. Jazairy, urged all countries to avoid applying sanctions unless approved by the Security Council, as required by the UN Charter
- Ana Vanessa Herrero, Megan Specia, “Venezuela Voices: ‘We Are Starving Here’” (The New York Times, February 1, 2019).
Anti-government demonstrations are planned for Caracas on Saturday, and with discontent growing, new groups are taking to the streets, including those who were once staunch supporters of Mr. Maduro and his predecessor
- Miguel Gonzalez, “Trump Exigio a Espana y a la Ue Romper Todo Dialogo Con Maduro” (El Pais (Spain), February 1, 2019).
“Tenemos mucha presión, no les voy a decir de quién, pero se lo pueden imaginar, para que votemos en contra de la creación de este grupo”, admitió el ministro de Exteriores, Josep Borrell, en el Congreso. Aludía al grupo de la UE para propiciar el diálogo
- “Venezuela: Amend Amnesty Law Proposal” (Human Rights Watch, February 1, 2019).
Amnesty provisions that grant impunity to those who bear the greatest responsibility for serious human rights crimes contradict states’ obligation to ensure accountability for such violations
- Ciara Nugent, “Venezuela’s Juan Guaido on How He Hopes to Win Over the Military and Remove Nicolas Maduro” (Time, February 1, 2019).
Guaidó worries about being arrested — or worse. There are currently over 350 political prisoners in Venezuela, including his mentor and former leader of his Popular Will party Leopoldo Lopez
- Sen. Dick Durbin, “With Maduro Out, Democracy Is Finally Coming to Venezuela — From Within” (USA Today, February 1, 2019).
The events in Venezuela have understandably raised some concerns of echoes of ill-fated military coups and U.S. intervention in Latin America. But a closer look at what is happening in Venezuela and the region shows it is anything but
- Joshua Goodman, “Steely Huntsman at Helm of Embattled Us Embassy in Caracas” (Associated Press, Associated Press, February 1, 2019).
“How are you Jimmy?,” Maduro said in broken English on state TV Monday night as he welcomed back to Caracas a group of Venezuelan diplomats he had recalled from the U.S. “I Bolivarian President Maduro. I’m still here, in Miraflores Palace, Jimmy”
- Jordan Fabian, “Bolton: Us Military Intervention in Venezuela Not Imminent” (The Hill, February 1, 2019).
The comments suggest the administration intends to stick by its use of soft power, at least for now
- Christopher Woody, “John Bolton Says Venezuela’s Maduro Could End Up in a ‘Beach Area Like Guantanamo’” (Business Insider, February 1, 2019).
Asked about a note he appeared with suggesting 5,000 US troops could be deployed to neighboring Colombia, Bolton laughed, reiterating that all options were on the table
- Franco Ordonez, “White House Surprises Agencies, Industry With Venezuela Sanctions; Few Details Available” (McClatchy DC, February 1, 2019).
Some are concerned that governments who joined the U.S. in recognizing Guaidó may rethink their support of the United States strategy now. They said the administration should have waited until either Maduro retaliated or coordinated something with the international community
- Jose L. Delgado, “Venezuela, a “Black Swan” Hot Spot” (Military Review, February 1, 2019).
Although the United States could easily overpower the smaller Venezuelan combatant forces, the tactics, techniques, and procedures that U.S. combatant units employed in other battlefield scenarios and environments may fall flat in Venezuela and unnecessarily prolong combatant and stabilization operations