BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:00 P.M.) – U.S. National Security adviser John Bolton issued a stern warning this week to the countries that are viewed as obstacles to Washington’s influence in Latin America.
When asked by Newsweek radio host Hugh Hewitt about the arrival Russian, Chinese, and Iranian planes to support the government of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela, Bolton responded, “President Trump is determined not to see Venezuela fall under the sway of foreign powers.”
The national security adviser then discussed the Monroe Doctrine, which was established under the fifth U.S. President, James Monroe, in the early 19th century.
The Monroe Doctrine was used to curb European influence in the Americas and has been the foundation of much of Washington’s policies in Latin America.
“If the Monroe Doctrine fails, if China and Russia, along with Cuba, establish domination over Venezuela, I think American strategic interests will be harmed,” Bolton said. “And as I said at the beginning, the people of Venezuela will be trapped in this dictatorship. We are seeing here the palpable proof of eight years of Obama administration policy mistakes.”
Bolton said that the U.S. prefers a peaceful transition to power in Venezuela, despite his “all options on the table” comments.
“Look, our objective is a peaceful transition of power to Juan Guaidó and the opposition,” Bolton continued. “But let’s not forget we’ve got between 40,000 to 50,000 American citizens in Venezuela.”
“We’ve got countries, as you mentioned, Colombia and Brazil on the border with millions of Venezuelan refugees who have come across. We’ve got terrorist organizations like the ELN [National Liberation Army] and FARC [Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia] who threaten Colombia,” he said, adding that “we’re going to protect American national interest, and Maduro and his cronies ought to know that President Trump is very serious when he says all options are on the table.”