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As reported in the Trends Journal, on 23 January 2019, the U.S. recognized Juan Guaidó as the legitimate president of Venezuela, despite the election victory of Nicolás Maduro. The U.S. claimed at the time Maduro had rigged the election, even though a number of international observers confirmed it had been conducted fairly.
Throughout last year and continuing into 2020, Mr. Guaidó, supported by increasing U.S. sanctions along with his attempts to win over the Venezuelan military, failed to gain enough support to take over as president. And, as reported, Guaidó’s popularity among the populace has dramatically declined, despite his continuing effort to gain both international and national support.
Now, in the midst of the global disruption caused by government policies in response to coronavirus, last Thursday, the United States initiated a new threat to force Maduro from power by charging him and some of his officials with “narco-terrorism.”
The Department of Justice announced a $15 million bounty for information implicating him in the charge, and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) listed a wanted poster on its website.
The specific charge against Maduro and his officials was announced by Attorney General William Barr, stating the Venezuelan president conspired with the Columbian guerilla group FARC to “flood the United States with cocaine.”
In the indictment, Mr. Barr made the connection between this indictment and the U.S. invasion of Panama in 1988: “We do not recognize Maduro as the president of Venezuela. Obviously, we indicted Noriega under similar circumstances, we did not recognize Noriega as the president of Panama.”
Back in 1988, under orders from President Ronald Reagan, the U.S. invaded Panama, seized Noriega, extradited him to Miami for trial on drug charges, and jailed him for 17 years.
In response to the charges, Mr. Maduro called President Trump “a racist cowboy,” adding, “Donald Trump, you are a miserable human being. You manage international relations like a New York mafia extortion artist you once were as a real estate boss.”
The following day, one of the indicted Venezuelan officials, retired Venezuelan army general Cliver Alcalá, surrendered in Columbia and will be flown to New York by DEA agents to face charges.
FARC, the group the U.S. claims President Maduro is conspiring with, is a guerilla force in Columbia that has been fighting a decades-long battle against the country’s ruling leaders who have had close relationships with American corporate interests.
War On The People
Also covered in detail in the Trends Journal, since 2017, the United States has been seeking regime change in Venezuela by imposing severe economic sanctions.
In a report published last year, the Center for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) detailed how U.S. sanctions were responsible for some 40,000 civilian deaths and the suffering of an estimated 300,000 more from shortages of food and medical supplies.
On 29 January 2019, Alfred de Zaya, former Secretary of the UN Human Rights Council, prepared a UN report after investigating the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela. In the report, he called the U.S. sanctions “economic warfare” that could amount to “crimes against humanity” under international law.
This past February, Venezuela initiated legal action to have the International Criminal Court investigate the U.S. sanctions, citing the devastating humanitarian crisis they have caused amount to a “weapon of mass destruction.”
It should be noted that U.S. sanctions against Venezuela were started in 2015 by the Obama administration and then increased substantially under President Trump.


Last Tuesday, Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, called for a loosening of economic sanctions on countries such as Iran that have inadequate medical contingencies for dealing with coronavirus.
Ms. Bachelet stated, “It is vital to avoid the collapse of any country’s medical system – given the explosive impact that will have on death and suffering.”
In response, the U.S. added more sanctions.
Last Thursday, the U.S. Treasury Department blacklisted more companies, including three construction companies and a business that produces petrochemicals. The Treasury Department said these companies were supporting the actions of the Quds Force, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.
It should be noted the Quds Force previously were led by Major General Qasem Soleimani, whose assassination ordered by President Trump on 3 January brought the U.S. and Iran to the brink of an all-out war.
Iran’s medical system has been devastated due the Trump policy of “maximum pressure,” which began on 8 May 2018, when President Trump pulled the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
In 2015, before Trump was elected, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani agreed to limit his country’s nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of the sanctions at the time. The agreement was made with the U.S., Russia, China, France, the UK, Germany, and the rest of the European Union.
According International Atomic Energy Agency (IAE), despite Iran abiding to the agreement, Trump broke that agreement, claiming in May 2018, “The heart of the Iran deal was a giant fiction: that a murderous regime desired only a peaceful nuclear energy program.”
Also, in the second quarterly report after President Trump pulled out of the agreement, the IAE stated Iran had in fact remained within allowable levels of enriched uranium: “Timely and proactive cooperation by Iran in providing such access facilitates implementation of the Additional Protocol and enhances confidence.”
Currently, the combination of U.S.-led “maximum pressure” sanctions and plummeting oil prices, in part due to the global shutdown caused by the coronavirus scare, have created a massive humanitarian crisis in Iran, which depends heavily on oil exports to boost its economy.
Since the U.S.-imposed sanctions, Iran’s GDP contracted some 5 percent in 2018 and nearly 10 percent in 2019, according to the International Monetary Fund.
In addition to the United Nations, a number of countries, including Russia, China, and Pakistan, have been calling for the U.S. to ease the sanctions. Even countries which have been going along with the U.S. against Iran, such as Germany and France, have been encouraging a reprieve due to the medical and humanitarian situation there.
But on 20 March, Brian “Captain” Hook, the U.S. Special Representative for Iranian Affairs, claimed Iran’s medical problems were due to poor leadership, not sanctions, claiming, “Iran spends billions on terrorism and foreign wars.” He added if the Iranian regime put more resources into better healthcare rather than terrorism, “the Iranian people would have been much better off.”
TREND FORECAST: As Gerald Celente has continually noted, “When all else fails, they take you to war.” The United States and many of the world economies are collapsing into the “Greatest Depression.”
Again, history is repeating itself: Currency Wars, Trade Wars, Great Depression, World War II.
Currency Wars, Trade Wars, World War III.
America has, in effect, launched war against both Iran and Venezuela.
Its latest economic terrorism attack on these two oil-rich nations coincides with the global collapse of the oil market.
Both countries are among the top ten oil exporters in the world, and their economies depend on income from oil more than any other commodity or industry.
As of yesterday, Brent Crude oil prices sank to an 18-year low due, in large part, to politicians closing down entire economies in their War against COVID-19.
As we have long reported in the Trends Journal, the economies of Iran and Venezuela were already severely weakened by President Trump’s “maximum pressure” economic sanctions responsible for massive humanitarian suffering.
But even this suffering will pale to what’s coming next: the complete collapse of the global economy, a tidal wave that will spread across the globe faster and with far more devastating power than any coronavirus.
Welcome to the New World Order of Fear & Anxiety brought to us by those “brilliant” and “heroic” political leaders – most of whose popularity ratings were in the toilet before declaring themselves supreme leaders – who dramatized COVID-19, accelerating and escalating the “Greatest Depression.”
TREND FORECAST: When the next military shot is fired, be it another assassination of a nation’s leader, an attack – cyber, missile, etc. – the people’s attention will divert from the COVID-19 War to the war against their new enemy… once again obediently marching to their leaders’ orders.

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