'In January, Donald Trump and officials in his administration spoke confidently about how their plan to topple Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro and install their puppet – so-called ‘interim president’ Juan Guaidó – would be a quick victory. But as the months went by, the coup attempt stalled and faltered. Maduro stayed firmly in power; and crucially, the military overwhelmingly stayed loyal to him. Now, six months after the launch of the coup attempt, a report suggests Trump is losing interest and pushing blame onto both Venezuelan opposition leaders and his own officials.
Trump “chewed out” his own staff for failing on “low-hanging fruit”
On 19 June, the Washington Post published an article quoting anonymous Trump administration officials on growing frustrations about the coup attempt in Venezuela. According to the report, Trump had initially considered ousting Maduro to be “low-hanging fruit”. He assumed it would be an easy foreign policy “win” that he could tout as “a major foreign policy victory.”
The article also reports that two anonymous administration officials said Trump feels his national security adviser John Bolton and his Latin America staff “got played” by both coup leaders and officials in the Maduro government. And Trump reportedly “chewed them out” at an angry meeting over the coup’s failure.
Growing disinterest from Trump
Naturally, the administration has denied the claims. But the response is revealingly defensive. A senior official said:
The United States never said that its effort in Venezuela would be limited to one round.
Trump’s own recent silence on the matter speaks volumes, though. Because he has hardlytweeted at all about Venezuela in recent months. One exception was his claim that Russia had withdrawn most of its personnel from the country, something which Moscow quickly denied.'
Read more: Trump gets fed up with Venezuela, slamming his own officials for failing to oust its government