Washington has thrown its full weight behind Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, recognizing him as interim president, demanding that the democratically elected President Nicolas Maduro step aside, imposing sanctions and even threatening the "option" of military intervention. Colombia plays a crucial role in this attempted coup because it has taken in the lion's share of the more than 2 million Venezuelans who have fled the country. Now, Colombia is the staging post for the US and other foreign humanitarian aid that Maduro is refusing to allow in, saying it could be a precursor to US military action. This is now being framed as a standoff between Maduro and Guaido over the arrival of mostly US aid shipments. US National Security Adviser John Bolton tweeted today that "Maduro would rather stand for tyranny than… accept aid for the Venezuelan people." It's interesting to me how the US is trying to weaponize food as leverage in this attempted coup. If the US were truly concerned about the Venezuelan people, it would lift the sanctions and work with Maduro for the betterment of all.
As Iranians this week mark the 40th anniversary of their country's 1979 revolution, US President Donald Trump's National Security Adviser John Bolton declared in a message to Iranian leaders that he doesn't think they will "have many more anniversaries to enjoy"- a comment that was immediately perceived as a direct threat of war. Why is the administration hell-bent on starting a war with Iran? Bolton echoed false assertions and repeatedly debunked claims by Trump that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons and described the Iranian government as the "central banker of international terrorism." Who is his audience?
The US national debt topped $22 trillion for the first time yesterday as experts warn of ripple effects. This is a milestone that experts warned is further proof the country is on an unsustainable financial path that could jeopardize the economic security of every American. The Treasury Department reported the debt jumped more than $30 billion in just this month. Are there dangers lurking on the horizon if this debt continues to grow?
Dr. Ajamu Baraka — American political activist and former Green Party nominee for vice president of the United States in the 2016 election.
Dr. Gerald Horne — Professor of history at the University of Houston and author of many books, including "Blows Against the Empire: US Imperialism in Crisis."
Daniel Lazare — Journalist and author of three books: "The Frozen Republic," "The Velvet Coup" and "America's Undeclared War."
Susan Collins — Edward M. Gramlich Collegiate Professor of Public Policy, professor of economics at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
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