, 12 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
THREAD Why is Putin intervening in #Venezuela in such a flamboyant and provocative fashion? The Kremlin’s game in Latin America is mainly about geopolitics, payback, and cold hard cash. #GlobalRussia 1/
As explained in this very fine paper by Julia Gurganus, fmr National Intelligence Officer for Russia/Eurasia, “Capitalizing on opportunities to gain a foothold in Latin America is a familiar strategy for Russia”
carnegieendowment.org/2018/05/03/rus… 2/
Here’s how General John Kelly, then-commander of US Southern Command, described the Russian approach in March 2015 3/
A big part of what motivates the Kremlin is payback for what it sees as US encroachment in Russia’s immediate backyard in places like Ukraine, Georgia and Central Asia. 4/
The other big issue is money and the hijacking of Russian foreign policy for the personal agendas of senior Kremlin figures, as my Moscow-based colleague @AlexGabuev explained in the FT recently ft.com/content/0e9618… 5/
Igor Sechin, the head of Russia’s national oil company (AKA Putin’s closest adviser), has plowed billions into Venezuela. Back in 2008 he got Kremlin-friendly govts in LatAm to recognize Russia’s carving up of Georgia and to establish ties w Abkhazia and South Ossetia 6/
Sechin blandished billions in loans to Venezuela in return for that geopolitical favor. As the Venezuelan economy unraveled, it couldn’t make its payments on these loans so Rosneft arranged stakes in additional oil/gas fields on very favorable terms and other sweetheart deals 7/
Russia eventually became Venezuela’s lender of last resort, an arrangement that I wrote about here with @MoisesNaim washingtonpost.com/news/global-op… 8/
The downward spiral created an opening for Putin, an inveterate opportunist. He simply couldn’t pass up an opportunity to show that Trump’s bombastic rhetoric about possible military intervention in Venezuela was largely empty talk nytimes.com/2017/08/12/wor… 9/
The Russians have now doubled down on their support for Maduro, flying in a small number of military personnel in broad daylight at Caracas’s main international airport. 10/
Such provocative moves are giving the Maduro regime a much-needed shot in the arm and cover in the UN Security Council where the Kremlin is protecting it from the impressive international coalition that the Trump administration has cobbled together. 11/
Sadly US tools for forcing out the Russians are pretty limited. Pompeo/Bolton repeatedly dangle the threat of add'l sanctions but haven’t acted. The biggest victims are likely to be the long-suffering people of Venezuela--& Trump’s undiminished hopes for a new reset w Putin END
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Andrew S. Weiss
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!