Mexican politicians are up in arms over allegations that Cuba-backed Venezuela has been, or continues to meddle in various political campaigns that are sympathetic to the socialist cause in Latin America including Mexico’s Andrés Manuel López Obrador or AMLO. This is not a new allegation, but it has taken on a fever pitch because a member of the Venezuelan opposition Congress is requesting an immediate investigation.
In a letter to the leadership of her party, Venezuela Congressman Marialbert Barrios Slother is urging colleagues to investigate Venezuelan dictator Hugo Morales for interfering in various elections throughout Latin America including Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, and Paraguay. There may be several others nations including Nicaragua, Bolivia, and Ecuador.
If any of this turns out to be true, it is a great political volley for the cause of liberty in the Americas. The only addition I would’ve made would be adding Cuba to the list of countries that should be investigated. There is absolutely no way that Venezuela is doing this on their own.For years we’ve been hearing from politicians in the region that Cuba, through Venezuela, has been meddling in regional politics by funding left-wing political parties.
The youngest member of the Venezuelan Congress, Barrios is a new generation politico who in 2015 defeated a radical leftist in a staunchly pro-Maduro stronghold of the country. Rather than cut and run an abandon the country, Barrios is one of several new politicians that have toughed it out and fought for a new way forward. These people want their country back, and they are willing to put a lot on the line to make it so. She and other opposition members are taking significant risks to their safety to expose Venezuelan corruption.
Over the weekend the Mexican newspaper El Sol De Mexico published a document that was supposedly signed by Barrios. In her capacity as vice-chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Barrios outlines a series of disturbing, but not surprising, alleged activities undertaken by the Venezuelan regime to interfere in elections throughout Latin America. Among other things she argues that:
It is an election year in Latin America with elections scheduled in countries such as Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, and Paraguay; the populist wave that maintains close relations with the government of Nicolás Maduro is supporting candidates within the electoral processes.
Barrios also details various examples of earlier interference in other regional elections and others outside of the Western Hemisphere, including how Russia and Venezuela helped separatists in the Catalunya region of Spain. The allegations are serious and based on my knowledge of the region and of the Venezuelan regime, believable. And this is not just a Venezuela-driven effort. I can just about guarantee that Raul Castro and his ilk are in on this and have been for some time.
Remember that Venezuela regime leaders learned from the master manipulator of regional affairs, dictator Fidel Castro. Without the tutelage of the Cuban Communists, Hugo Chavez’s takeover of the oil-rich economy would’ve never happened. Fidel wanted to keep Cuba’s socialist revolution on the move, and he also needed access to oil. Chavez needed a political patron to take on the Venezuelan monied interests. It was the perfect relationship.
Fidel, Raul, and many other Cuban advisors taught Hugo and other populist left-wing leaders in the Americas how to take and hold on to power through sham elections. They engage in lawfare to discredit political opponents and confiscate property without compensation. Fidel and Hugo are dead, but the socialist revolution is very much alive and well.
With the possible assistance of Russia and China, they’ve also tried to set up parallel regional economic and political systems to undermine or weaken the many institutions and processes that make up the inter-American system. These fellow travelers are united in one cause, undermining and weakening U.S. national security and economic interests.
Even though I’ve never been a huge fan of former Mexican President Vicente Fox, the #NeverTrump Mexican politician reacted to the story on his Twitter feed with a lot of swagger that was long overdue:
.@lopezobrador_ con que traicionando a los Mexicanos. Por lo “oscurito” quieres convertir a MX en un Venezuela. Mexicanos todos, NO lo permitamos!! HOY conocemos la verdad oculta “lopitos” NO nos engañaras. NO al vende patrias!! VIVA MX pic.twitter.com/BBtaAMRjh3 — Vicente Fox Quesada (@VicenteFoxQue) January 14, 2018
I guess it is better late than never for Fox to see the political light that Mexico’s soft foreign policy of the last 20 plus years would result in these shenanigans. Fox coddled Fidel Castro and other leftist leaders when he was president. Fox should remember that Socialism and Communism are different ends of the same snake. Whichever end you grab it is still a snake.
Anyhow Barrios allegations are spot on and timely. I hope that her colleagues, and the Americans, take it seriously.