The reports of private military contractors working in Venezuela on the side of President Nicolas Maduro coming at the moment when embattled socialist Maduro strengthen security amid opposition protests and a competing claim to leadership.
The report on January 25, cites two people close to the contractors. A third source close to the contractors confirmed that they had arrived in Venezuela but did not specify their role, Reuters reported. The private military contractors are allegedly belonging to Wagner, an anonymous group allegedly operation on behalf of Russia.
One source said the contractors flew to Venezuela from third countries where they had been conducting operations. The news agency reported that the Russian Defense Ministry and Venezuela’s Information Ministry did not respond to requests for comment about the private military contractors.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said briefly that “they don’t have such information.”
Yevgeny Shabayev, head of the All-Russia Officers Assembly with alleged ties to Russian military contractors, said he had heard the number of Russian contractors in Venezuela could be around 400, although other sources spoke of smaller numbers.
Reuters also quoted sources as saying the private military contractors are under command of the so-called Wagner group. The Wagner consist mostly of former Russian service personnel who have been involved in clandestine operations in foreign countries.
So far, members of Wagner have been reported in other countries, including Syria, Ukraine, and in African nations.
On January 23, Russia Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova confirmed that private military contractors were operating in Sudan after British press reports stated that they were helping to crack down on protesters in that country, which is an ally of Moscow.
“According to our information, representatives of Russian private security companies, who have nothing to do with Russian state bodies, are operating in Sudan,” she said.
Zakharova denied the press reports and said the task of the private security firms “is limited to training staff for the military and law-enforcement agencies of the Republic of Sudan.”
Since the beginning of the Venezuela crisis, an estimated 3 million people have fled the country amid shortages of items like medicine and food.
Cuba claims US deploying Special Forces as part of ‘covert’ plan
U.S. Marines and other Special Operations troops are thought to have flown in from the US to Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic and other Caribbean islands, Cuba believes. The US plans to use Venezuela’s humanitarian crisis as a reason for the intervention, Havana believes. Food is said to have been stockpiled in warehouses on Venezuela’s border with Colombia ahead of a humanitarian mission.
A Cuban government spokesman claimed Washington wants to ”forcibly establish a humanitarian corridor under international protection, invoking the obligation to protect civilians”.
US special envoy for Venezuela Elliott Abrams branded Cuba’s claim “a new lie”. Donald Trump has refused to rule out US military action in Venezuela and insisted “all options are on the tale”. Communist-run Cuba – along with Russia and China – has continued to back under-fire Venezuela president Nicolas Maduro.
Donald Trump has demanded president Maduro resigns and hands power to opposition leader Juan Guaido, the head of Venezuela’s National Assembly. A “Declaration of the Revolutionary Government” from Cuba alleged that recent events in Venezuela amounted to an attempted coup.
A Cuban government spokesman said: ”Between February 6 and 10 military transport aircraft have flown to the Rafael Miranda Airport of Puerto Rico, the San Isidro Air Base, in the Dominican Republic and to other strategically located Caribbean islands, probably without knowledge of the governments of those nations.
“These flights originated in American military installations from which units of Special Operations and Marine Corps operate, which are used for covert actions.”
Cuba claimed US sanctions are causing damage “1,000 times greater” than the aid it is trying to force on the country. The Dominican Republic’s Foreign Minister Miguel Vargas said no US military transport planes had landed in his country. He reiterated his government’s support for a peaceful solution to the Venezuelan crisis.
Venezuela is being rocked by a severe economic crisis with soaring inflation wreaking havoc on the livelihoods of residents. An estimated three million Venezuelans have fled to neighboring countries.
Communist-run Cuba has been a key backer of the Venezuelan government since the Bolivarian Revolution that began under former leader Hugo Chavez in 1998. Most Western and Latin American countries, including the UK, quickly recognized Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate head of state.
They have pledged millions of dollars in humanitarian aid in support. Guaido said on Tuesday the aid would roll across the border on February 23 despite the Maduro government’s objections, setting up a possible flashpoint.
The Things Soldiers do That Command Hates
For all of you, who served, or plan to serve, here is some things that soldiers actually do and the command officers dislike that. Look, if you’re going to give 18-22 year young man unbridled power via rifles, heavy machine guns, high explosives, and shit and let them loose on a country there are going to be some… possible lines crossed that the senior enlisted and officer corps don’t really enjoy. A few things that rookie soldiers do during their time in that got us disgruntled looks will be listed below. Both in country and CONUS, they believe they had a great time.
Best not read on if you’re sensitive and you snitch on your friends like someone who needs stitches if you catch our drift. If you want to be on the good side with command, you might not want to do some of these things. But your command might be cool and love you if you do these things. It’s really a 50/50 toss up gents.
- Refer to a meeting with local tribal elders as “Happy Murder Time.”
- Date the Battalion Commander’s daughter.
- Use common sense and critical thinking skills to solve problems.
- Remind your platoon mates that snitches get stitches.
- Ask your Lt. why we can’t just smoke these detainees.
- Pass out drunk in the XO’s front yard…naked…again.
- Shit on the side of a house while the owner watches at 0300 while on patrol
- Steal the golf cart from hotel security at the Marine Corps ball and give Marines rides to and from the hotel to downtown San Diego
- Set a hotel on fire while at a birthday ball and subsequently get the entire battalion banned from Las Vegas.
- Get shit ass drunk the night before the battalion run
Some of these are real, some of these are fake. We’ll leave it up to you to figure out which ones are which, and you can leave us a comment of something you did that command hated. The inspiration for the article and some things from the list were “borrowed” from AmericanGrit blog.
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