EspañolThis weekend was Venezuela’s Army Day, marking the 196th Battle of Carabobo, an important victory that led to the country’s independence.
The event celebrating it — which took place Saturday, June 24 in the capital of Caracas — was attended by the entire military high command and the leader of the dictatorship: Nicolás Maduro.
As expected, Maduro attacked the Venezuelan opposition and accused them of violence and disturbing the nation’s peace. He asked commanders and troops present to “always, under any circumstance, remain an anti-imperialist, anti-colonialist and anti-oligarchic army.”
Yet the week leading up to the event was filled with violence and confrontation caused by the Bolivarian National Guard, not protesters. One officer reportedly killed a 22-year-old member of the opposition. But Maduro dodged responsibility for it.
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“Those who are faithful to the legacy of Bolivar and Chavez love this land and are incapable of harming, burning, destroying and killing,” he said, trying to divert attention away from his country’s crisis. The opposition, he claimed, was seeking an invasion of imperial forces to overthrow the government.
“I am not exaggerating when I say that a chain of events of this type that were planned to be initiated this week was going to involve the arrival of US fleets and troops to Venezuelan seas, to Venezuelan land, to justify a humanitarian military operation to occupy our country.”
Maduro called for the imprisonment of anyone linked to plans for a coup, and claimed arrests had already been made to prevent one. Protesters on the streets count as supporters of the coup, Maduro said. It appears his regime will continue to use all tools at their disposal to try to “maintain the peace.”
Maduro announced that he will be naming new generals and admirals on the regional level in order to strengthen this effort.