first published on January 29, 2019 by Will
While announcing US sanctions against Venezuela at a press conference, National Security Advisor John Bolton exposed a notepad with a handwritten memo that may have revealed an upcoming troop deployment to Latin America.
The words inscribed on the notepad read, “Afghanistan -> Welcome the Talks. 5,000 troops to Colombia.”
Are we looking at one of the most bone-headed OPSEC failures in history, or was this some sort of power play to add more pressure on Maduro to step down as the Venezuelan president?
The news media asked for clarification from the White House regarding the notepad, to which a spokesman replied, “As the President has said, all options are on the table.”
The reference to Afghanistan comes as the US is conducting peace talks with the Taliban. Public relations talking points keep pushing the narrative that those talks are going successfully, even as the Taliban continues to crush the Afghan government on the battlefield. The US appears to be on the verge of handing Afghanistan over to the Taliban and claiming “mission accomplished.”
In regards to the current issue of Venezuela, one would likely infer that the note is suggesting that a drawdown from Afghanistan would free up several thousand troops to facilitate the power handover demanded of Maduro by the US… but is it legit or a bluff?
It’s definitely not hard to visualize, considering US Special Operations Forces have been in Colombia for decades, and could easily have laid the ground work for a rapid deployment. Venezuela and Colombia share almost 1,400 miles of border, which would allow the US military to sustain whatever type of military operations necessary to implement the power handover in Venezuela.
Colombian officials claimed to be unaware of any impending US deployment to their nation, but did say that they will be taking both a political and diplomatic role in the removal of Maduro so that democratic order can be restored.