Republican Senator Issues Brutal Response To Trump’s Threat Of ‘Military Option In Venezuela’
President Donald Trump on Friday said he was not ruling out “a military option” for the United States’ involvement in Venezuela’s ongoing government power struggle, which has led to widespread and, at times, violent demonstrations within the country.
“Venezuela is a mess,” said Trump, in an appearance before reporters with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley at his New Jersey golf club. “It is a very dangerous mess and a very sad situation.”
Asked about the possibilities for U.S. intervention in the country currently led by President Nicolas Maduro, Trump said:
“We have many options for Venezuela. And, by the way, I’m not going to rule out a military option,” said Trump. “We have many options for Venezuela. This is our neighbor … we’re all over the world, and we have troops all over the world in places that are very, very far away.
“Venezuela is not very far away and the people are suffering and they’re dying,” he continued. “We have many options for Venezuela, including a possible military option, if necessary.”
The president’s remarks about not ruling out a “military option” didn’t sit well with Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, who responded with a strong statement:
“No. Congress isn’t authorizing war in Venezuela. Nicolas Maduro is a horrible human being, but Congress doesn’t vote to spill Nebraskans’ blood based on who the Executive lashes out at today.”
Military engagement in the turmoil in the South American country would mark a vast escalation in U.S. participation, which has thus far been limited to rebukes from the White House and economic sanctions.