Venezuela: More Mercenaries Arrested

| Educate!

Above photo: From Twitter.

A number of mercenaries had been killed and others arrested in La Guaira on 3 May while trying to disembark in Venezuela as part of a plot against the Maduro government. On 4 May, another eight mercenaries were arrested in the coastal town of Chuao in Aragua state, amongst them two former US special forces veterans.

As we explained yesterday, one of the organisers of the plot is US mercenary and former US Army Green Beret Jordan Goudreau, who claims to have signed a contract with Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó to organise the military incursion. Goudreau claims that Guaidó reneged on the contract and that he was never paid but decided to go ahead with the plan regardless. According to Goudreau, who is currently in Florida where he runs mercenary agency Silvercorp US, those detained or killed on Sunday in Macuto, La Guaira, were part of a larger group of 60 mercenaries, mainly Venezuelan army deserters. They had infiltrated the country in an attempt to kidnap Maduro and trigger a military coup, in what has become known as Operación Gedeón – after the biblical military leader who led a troop of 300 men to defeat a much-larger Midianite army.

Part of the group that was intercepted in La Guaira on Sunday managed to escape and they were seized in Chuao, Aragua on Monday 4 May. Local fishermen organised in the Bolivarian Militia alerted the authorities to the presence of the men in a boat and the eight mercenaries were captured. Amongst them were two US special forces veterans who had been mentioned by Goudreau: Luke Denman and Airan Berry.

A third group of mercenaries was arrested in the secluded beach of Puerto Cruz, in La Guaira state, not far from Chuao. They had a large cache of weapons, bulletproof vests and communications equipment, which had been stored on land ready for the disembarking forces.

Amongst those arrested in Chuao is one of the leading figures of this military adventure: Antonio Sequea Torres, a former captain of the Bolivarian National Guard, who played a key role in the 30 April 2019 botched military coup led by Juan Guaidó and Leopoldo López. He appeared in a video published on Sunday describing himself as being in charge of Operación Gedeón.

Speaking to Bloomberg by phone, Goudreau admitted his operation had suffered losses, but that it was not over: “The main mission was to liberate Venezuela, to capture Maduro, but the mission in Caracas failed,” he said. “The secondary mission is to set up insurgency camps against Maduro. They are already in camps, they are recruiting and we are going to start attacking tactical targets.”

In the next few hours and days, there might be more arrests related to this mercenary incursion. There are already a few questions that need to be answered. First of all, what’s the implication of the Colombian government? These mercenaries were trained in Colombian territory by their own admission and according to the AP investigation. A cache of arms was seized by Colombian police and the main leader of the operation Alcalá Cordones gave himself up. Why weren’t the rest of the Venezuelan military desterters being trained arrested and their camps dismantled?

Second is the implication of the Venezuelan opposition around Juan Guaidó. Goudreau has shown a copy of the contract he claims was signed between his mercenary company and Juan Guaidó and he has provided audio recordings of discussions about the contract. The main leaders of this mercenary attack were the same military officers who took part in the botched 30 April 2019 military coup fronted by Guaidó and fellow opposition leader Leopoldo López. Goudreau organised security for Guaidó during the “humanitarian aid” concert in Colombia in February 2019. On Sunday, Guaidó claimed that the whole affair was a “regime smokescreen”, a false flag operation to distract attention from other matters and justify repression against the opposition. Now the opposition has issued a statement demanding respect for the “human rights of the members of Operación Gedeón.” However, Guaidó has remained silent about the details of the contract he is claimed to have signed with Silvercorp.

An imperialist plot

Third is the level of implication of US imperialism. It is clear that nothing moves in the different factions of the Venezuelan opposition without Washington knowing about it. The so-called “democratic” opposition is funded and promoted by the US. In the AP report published just before the current mercenary attack, Goudreau is described as boasting about having high-level contacts in the Trump administration, as well as having worked for Trump’s security. The report states that Goudreau “had been introduced to Keith Schiller, President Donald Trump’s longtime bodyguard, through someone who worked in private security,” and it adds that, in May 2019 “Goudreau accompanied Schiller to a meeting in Miami with representatives of Guaidó. There was a lively discussion with Schiller about the need to beef up security for Guaidó and his growing team of advisers inside Venezuela and across the world, according to a person familiar with the meeting.” This points to Goudreau being involved, and linked both to Guaidó and the Trump administration.

It is clear that, if you launch an assault against the government of a sovereign country, threaten military invasion, introduce brutal sanctions and an oil blockade, seize that country’s assets, publicly call on military officers to rise up against the government and offer a 15 million dollar reward for the capture of that country’s president, you can hardly be surprised if a group of military deserters and mercenaries decide to take matters into their own hands.

For the last 48 hours since the “Operación Gedeón” was launched, no US official, usually quick to tweet about Venezuela, has said anything. Mike Pompeo, John Bolton, Marco Rubio, Elliot Abrams and the rest have all remained silent, after having promised that “morning is coming to Venezuela – again” two days earlier. They have not denounced the mercenary attack, they have not officially distanced themselves, they have not commented on the arrest of US special forces veterans as part of the attack and they have certainly not taken any measures against Goudreau and his mercenary agency Silvercorp US which is based in Florida.

Finally, from the point of view of the revolutionary movement in Venezuela, the position of those who over a year ago demanded the arrest of Guaidó and revolutionary measures to respond to counter-revolutionary plotting has been vindicated. A statement issued yesterday by Lucha de Clases, the Venezuelan section of the IMT raises the following necessary demands: “Strengthening of the Bolivarian militia! Weapons and supplies for the Bolivarian militias! Creation of soldiers committees within the FANB! Jail Guaidó and all those involved! Enough impunity! Expropriation of the imperialist monopolies under workers control! For a workers’ government!”

  • Maduro is afraid to imprison Guaido for treason due to the USA or what? Seems Guaido shoiuld’ve been locked up a year ago.

  • V4V

    Very good! Now, put them on trial, convict and sentence them. Put them in a Guantanamo-like detention.

  • iowapinko

    The attached photo reveals the strategy of the U$ terrorists. Notice the one individual not wearing a mask.

    Irony of ironies, if the hooligan gets sick, he will receive much better care in Venezuela than he would in the U$.

  • kevinzeese

    It is hard to read their minds. Venezuela has a complex government and Maduro does not control the judiciary section which would prosecute Guido. They are reportedly investigating.

    But, there could be political implications which is causing caution. The US and west would use the prosecution to describe Maduro is a tyrannical strong man who is locking up the president. That is what they would say, even though it is absurd.

    And, Guaido has very little power in Venezuela and difficulty leaving the country. His chief of staff and body guard were arrested for their role in planning terrorism inside Venezuela, so he does not have much of a circle of supporters inside the country. He can do very little. He may do more damage being arrested then he is doing as an incompetent person outside of prison.

  • Ort

    As an aside, it’s gratifying to see these criminals straightforwardly referred to as “mercenaries” in this report. I noticed that some mainstream media reports remarked in an implicitly quizzical or incredulous way that Maduro himself referred to the miscreants as mercenaries– as if there were something quaint or curious about this locution.

    In the US/West, the pejorative term “mercenary” has been officially replaced by the Newspeak euphemism “contractor”.

    In 2004, Iraqi insurgents attacked a convoy and killed four Blackwater USA employees in Fallujah. The mainstream/corporate mass-media uniformly referred to the deceased as “contractors”. At the time, I ignorantly assumed at first that they were, you know, civilian “contractors” in the usual commercial sense– maybe a couple of electricians, a plumber, and a first-class drywall man.

    The euphemism was obviously created by the US government and promulgated by its mass-media consent manufacturers, to give the sordid “profession” of soldiers-for-hire undeserved respectability. To paraphrase hotel toilet-seat wrapper terminology, this locution serves to sanitize them for their protection.

    So it’s good to see an, er, garden implement being called a garden implement. That said, we would also have accepted “assassins” or “death squad”.

  • Jon

    Good comments all, and an excellent, timely report.

  • Southern

    Not so fast my friend – I’d suggest to use them as leverage to secure the safe release of Julian Assange

  • Southern

    From my perspective it would solve the problem for once and for always – just look at what they’ve done to Julian Assange – two can play that game – those two US military caught holding their passports and military ID ought to be considered in exchange for the safe release of Julian Assange to for example Venezuela.

    Don’t reply I’ll understand – I’m just uttering my two cents.

  • Southern

    Their masters bragging and posting pictures on social media sure didn’t help – yet now – no ”Western” nation is advocating to hold those responsible for this latest attempt to destroy the Venezuelan Democracy to account.

    However that is what one might come to expect from the poodle clubs scattered around global suburbia.

    Where’s the uproar?

    Where’s the loud objection from the masses?

    In the end – I hear nothing – meaning it’s both painfully and frighteningly silent at a time when we should stand united for the benefit of mankind.

  • Blaine

    Start rectal feeding these terrorists once they go on hunger strike….its for their own safety.

  • Dan

    Must be frustrating to have Venezuelan officers, non-commissioned officers, and soldiers resist betraying their people and country for the almighty dollar. Venezuelan armed forces cannot be compared with the deceiving, double-crossing Bolivian armed forces which betrayed their people and government to please the American military-industrial complex to their eternal shame. ¡Bravo a las leales Fuerzas Armadas de Venezuela! ¡Qué vergüenza para la traición de las Fuerzas Armadas de Bolivia!

  • Who D. Who

    “The US and west would use the prosecution to describe Maduro is a tyrannical strong man…”

    It’s what they’re doing already, so, in my opinion, Maduro would have nothing to lose but a dangerous stooge of the Yanks.

  • BraveNewNormal

    Why is it that the mainstream media and corporate democrats always talk about disarming or controlling the arms of the little people, taking the pikes and pitchforks away from the serfs, but never talk about controlling the arms of the 1%’s mercenaries?

  • Southern

    Unrelated however I noticed your reply to Marcus on the Hill.

    From memory I only ever posted one comment on the topic of Yemen before being permanent denied the freedom to express my opinion.

    The more one digs all the less freedom of expression that will be ”permitted”

    I know a few more sites that have falling into that category.

  • Southern

    Remember the recent coup in Bolivia which showed that even though Bolivia re-elected a Socialist President with a clear majority of the votes [600K] in what was considered a fair election – what ultimately brought this people’s government down was the greed low morals of the high army command who after being bribed $50K each turned on Evo Morales.