Venezuela: Terrorist Attack on Fort Paramacay: Analysis and Context

Misión Verdad
Translation by Internationalist 360°

In the early hours of Sunday 6 August, a paramilitary  terrorist attack was carried out against the Bolivarian Army’s 41st Armored Brigade, located in Valencia, Carabobo State, as described by the Bolivarian National Armed Forces (FANB) in a statement .

According to the FANB communiqué, the paramilitary terrorist attack was carried out “by a group of civilian criminals wearing military uniforms and a first Lieutenant deserter.” Eight of the attackers were arrested. It is also known that there were two deaths among  the terrorist’s ranks.

As reported by the Minister of Communication and Information:

The leader of the paramilitary offensive was former GNB officer Juan Carlos Caguaripano, who in 2014 made a public statement in support of the insurgency plan called “La Salida” ( from CNN ) and was allegedly involved in a coup plot against President Nicolás Maduro. Caguaripano  supplied the  firearms and explosives for”Operation David”, according to opposition journalist Javier Mayorca.

The FANB confirmed that there was a robbery in its arsenal of weapons at Fort Paramacay during the events. Another opposition journalist, Román Camacho, specified the weapons stolen by the mercenaries.

In the morning a video was released of Caguaripano with uniformed  heavily armed men, in which he describes the terrorist attack as a “civic military action”, and that, “from today freedom lives and tyranny dies”.

The paramilitary operation was neutralized within a few hours. This was confirmed by Army Commander Jesús Suárez Chourio, head of the Central REDI, from Fort Paramacay in Valencia, Carabobo state.

International reactions

This operation has  served transnational media in manufacturing and promoting a false narrative with disturbing  similarities to that of “the Syrian or Libyan rebels” (mercenary factions of Al Qaeda and the Islamic State that have destroyed these two nations), while they attempt to  legitimize the terrorist attack by framing it as a spontaneous and “reasonable” response to the National Constituent Assembly. The international media has insisted on whitewashing reports,  alleging that there was an actual “military rebellion”.

Reuters, the British news agency, reported:

This false narrative is replicated by El Pais de España, calling the atack a  “military uprising”, while the fact is that mercenary civilians wearing  military uniforms were carrying out terrorist actions.

The most revealing response came from US Senator Marco Rubio who defended the attack on the military base and taunted Diosdado Cabello who accused him of supporting Venezuelan terrorists.

In June, Rubio  promised additional  funding to the armed opposition to carry out violent acts against the Bolivarian government in conjunction with  aggressive US sanctions against Venezuela . Marco Rubio, who is  financially backed  by arms corporations, Israeli financiers and oil companies such as  ExxonMobil,  expected actions of this type that could destabilize the Venezuelan political landscape with the installation of the National Constituent Assembly.

The terrorist offensive was announced

Attacks against military installations in Venezuela have been used as tactics of terror by armed anti-Chavism. This is not the first time a terrorist action of this type has taken place. There have  been armed attacks against the Air Force Base Francisco de Miranda (La Carlota) and Alcazalas of Fort Tiuna in Caracas. Their violent, armed vanguard has carried out attacks against military bases, hospitals, schools and institutional and governmental headquarters.

“Operation David” arises at a time when the Venezuelan opposition has lost both its  capacity for mobilization in the streets and its political force,  with the majority popular support of the National Constituent Assembly.

Several international analysts and think tanks connected with the hegemonic power centers of the United States and Europe, such as the International Crisis Group and David Smilde ( New York Times columnist) have provided a steady stream of propaganda in support of a possible armed conflict managed by local and and external actors,  who are willing to pursue the destruction of the country as an expeditious route for corporate looting.

Smilde recently wrote that with the assumption of a parallel MUD government, the Venezuelan opposition could receive direct external funding, specifically from the US, including arms, which would escalate the  violent insurgency.

Analyst Phil Gunson of Crisis Group wrote that the radical wing of the opposition is frustrated because the “peaceful struggle” does not produce results and “could opt for the armed way” to overthrow Chavismo.

On the other hand, opposition journalist Javier Mayorca announced via Twitter, that this terrorist attack is disguised as “military rebellion”.

Next stage

The objective of “Operation David” is to impose a narrative of ungovernability and fracture in the Venezuelan military in order to resolve the failures of anti-Chavism and the US government that hoped to break the civic-military union, the  flag of Chavismo.

Media such as CNN en Español have used this armed operation to project a new cycle of violence in the streets of Venezuela.

In light of the armed attack by Oscar Pérez on the headquarters of the TSJ and the Ministry of Interior, Justice and Peace in Caracas, and armed violence in Andean states, bordering Colombia, on July 30 (constitutional election day) , the conflict seems to mark a drift towards the creation, training and financing of mercenary groups increasingly professionalized in applying tactics of sabotage and war against the country, denying any form of political resolution, opening calls to legitimize, locally and internationally armed political leaders.  This plan was executed in Syria and Libya to promote military interventions of US and NATO.

Lastly, and to emphasize, this terrorist action in Valencia has an important precedent:  before July 30, the US besieged Venezuela daily through communications and blackmailing its “allies”, pressing for a violent exit from the conflict.

In this context, the belligerence of the government of Juan Manuel Santos must be observed without naivety, since Colombia is a huge market for arms and mercenaries that can be used to amplify operations on Venezuelan soil.

Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State and former CEO of ExxonMobil, said on August 3 that “conditions must be created to return Venezuela to its Constitution,” suggesting that all measures of force (including a dirty war by a transnational private army) are on the table to overthrow Chavismo. The attack on Fort Paramacay confirms that this armed strategy is moving forward, with funding and international support, overtaking local political actors of the opposition and imposing the path of armed conflict as the only route to prolong the siege against the country.