By dcdirectactionnews | May 24, 2019 at 03:43PM | via DC Direct Action News
On the 9th of April, the Organization of American States (which is dominated by the US) revoked their recognition of the government of Venezuala, instead supporting Juan Guiado. Guado at that time has lost one election and led two failed coup attempts, yet then and now claims to be the self-declared President of Venezuala. With their embassy in Washington DC in jeopardy, Venezualan diplomatic officials invited Code Pink and other groups operating as the Embassy Protection Collective to move into the embassy and hold it for them. Guaido’s forces had already taken the military attache’s office and a consulate, but thanks to the Embassy Protection Collective they didn’t get the embassy.
On the 30th of April things escalated dramatically: Juan Guaido led a third coup attempt in Caracas leading to several deaths. The coup attempt again failed. Here in DC, Guaido’s supporters tried and failed to take the embassy by force, leading to a siege of the embassy that lasted until the 16th of May. On the first of May, False Ambassador Carlos Vecchio fled the embassy after another failed attempt to get in. His presence would spark many confrontations over the next two weeks, but the coup supporters used their greatest force and violence in their efforts to keep food out of the embassy.
This was a literal siege, as much as any that ever took a castle in the Middle Ages. As food ran short and both power and water were cut off, conditions in the embassy became an eerie mirror of the results of US sanctions (and the post-2014 oil price collapse) on Venezuala. There too power has often been out, sometime because US backed coup plotters sabotaged electical generating stations.
On the 13th of May, police attempted to raid the embassy over the objection of the government of Venezuala and in defiance of international law. Three hours of dogged resistance by the embassy’s defenders bought time for Partnership for Civil Justice attorneys to “talk down” the police, causing them to abandon what became a very rare failed police raid. On the 16th of May police returned and stormed the building, arresting four embassy defenders. False Ambassador Carlos Vecchio showed up to give a speech that afternoon, but had to do it outside as apparently the US is still not ready to brazenly turn over an embassy to openly declared enemies of the government that owns the embassy. His speech was shouted down by opponents of the US backed coup attempts.
On the 18th of May, the four embassy defenders who had been arrested (several dozen had cleared out ahead of the first raid) returned to the 100 foot limit set as part of their release conditions and spoke before a march to the White House. One of them said the supporters coming out every day (and no doubt those braving the violent wrath of the coup supporters to get food and supplies in) literally gave them the strength to continue. At this writing the story is not over, with police apparently (but this is not 100% confirmed) holding both sides out of the embassy, thus doing essentially the same work the Embassy Protection Collective did in denying the building to the coup supporters of Juan Guaido.