Erik Prince Is Planning To Send Mercenaries To Venezuela To Help Overthrow Maduro, And He Wants To Get Funding From Venezuelan Money

By Theodore Shoebat

Eric Prince, the founder of the mercenary group, Blackwater, is currently planning on sending mercenaries into Venezuela to help topple Nicolas Maduro, according to Reuters which made an exclusive report on this from four sources with information on this situation. 

Prince is reportedly working to gain funds from wealthy Venezuelan exiles. He is also looking to receive political support from prestigious Trump supporters. Prince has also conducted private meetings in both the United States and Europe in which he has sketched out a plan of sending 5,000 mercenaries into Venezuela to aid the opposition of Juan Guaido against Maduro, according to two sources with direct knowledge of Prince’s plan. One source in fact affirmed that  some of these meetings were as recent as mid-April. One person with insight into the Trump administration’s thinking said that the US government would supposedly not support such a plan. But White House National Security Council spokesman Garrett Marquis declined to give any comment as to whether or not Prince had proposed to the administration his plan. Guaido spokesman Edward Rodriguez said that the opposition has not discussed security operations with Prince.

However, Lital Leshem, who is the director of investor relations at Prince’s private equity firm, Frontier Resource Group, actually admitted that Prince does have interest in Venezuela security operations, stating: “He does have a solution for Venezuela, just as he has a solution for many other places,” but she declined to give further details. Two sources with direct knowledge of the mercenary project said that Prince’s plan is to first have intelligence operations in Venezuela, and then have 4,000 to 5,000 soldiers-for-hire sent to Venezuela. One source reported that Prince said that what Venezuela needs is a “dynamic event” to end the impasse between Maduro and Guaido which has been going on since January when the opposition leader declared Maduro’s reelection illegitimate.

Blackwater’s history is tainted with blood. In 2007, four Blackwater mercenaries — Paul Slough, Nicholas Slatten, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard — were involved in the slaughter of seventeen Iraqi civilians. Nicholas Slatten, a former Army sniper from Tennessee, was convicted of murder for firing the first fatal shots and given a life sentence while the other three were given 30 year sentences. Ever since this tragic event, Blackwater has been mired with an odious reputation. For the last two years Prince has been trying to convince the Trump administration to replace the US military in Afghanistan with private soldiers. Prince has also entered the Chinese market, gaining strong ties through his Frontier Resource Group with China’s CITIC investment conglomerate group. Prince’s Frontier Resource Group is in fact headquartered in Hong Kong, and its biggest shareholder is CITIC. Through Frontier Resource Groups Prince assists Chinese firms operating in Africa with security, aviation and logistics services. The most controversial work of Prince’s in China is his agreement with China to build a training center in a camp where the Chinese government around a million Uighur Muslims, as we read in a report from Bloomberg:

“Now FSG has drawn international attention for a signing ceremony to build a training center in far western China, where the Chinese government has detained as many as a million Uighur Muslims in political camps. The statement, made in Chinese, was subsequently removed from the firm’s website.”

One of the most interesting aspects of this reported plan from Prince is the hiring of Latin American mercenaries, as we read from Reuters:

“Prince envisions a force made up of “Peruvians, Ecuadoreans, Colombians, Spanish speakers,” one of the sources said, adding that Prince argued that such soldiers would be more politically palatable than American contractors.”

Now, a mix of Hispanic fighters with Spanish speaking Americans is reminiscent of the School of the Americas, now known as the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (WHINSEC), a military school in Fort Benning, near Columbus, Georgia, created specifically to train the most elite units of Latin American nations (Gill, 2004). The most difficult class in the School of the Americas is the Command and General Staff Officer course, and what is interesting to point out is that Venezuela, alongside the Dominican Republican, Honduras, Guatemala and Bolivia have sent the most students to this hard course. Back in 2002 there was a coup in Venezuela against Hugo Chavez and it was led by Gen. Efraín Vázquez and Gen. Ramirez Poveda both graduates from the School of the Americas.  Its possible that these types of trainees could be used for a revolution in Venezuela.

Another interesting detail about the report on Prince and Venezuela is that he is looking for funds from the Venezuelan assets that were frozen by sanctions, as we read from Reuters: “The two sources with direct knowledge of Prince’s Venezuela plan said he is seeking $40 million from private investors. He also aims to get funding from the billions of dollars in Venezuelan assets that have been seized by governments around the world imposing sanctions on the OPEC nation, a major oil exporter.” If this is true, what we have here is an attempt at robbery. Remember what happened in the Iranian hostage crises: the US froze all Iranian assets in American banks.   

 David Rockefeller of Chase Manhattan Bank, knowing full well that allowing the Shah entry into the United States would trigger a hostage crisis in the embassy, pushed for the Shah’s arrival into the US, and then when the hostage situation commenced, his bank then seized Iranian assets. $20 million was seized from the Shah’s sister Princess Ashraf’s account with Chase Manhattan Bank, and on October 1980 the money was passed to a bank account that benefited John Shaheen, a colleague close to the head of the CIA, Bill Casey. As journalist Robert Parry reported:

“The bank deal that Cyrus Hashemi and John Shaheen had discussed for months took final shape two days after Reagan’s Inauguration. On January 22, 1981, Shaheen opened the Hong Kong Deposit and Guaranty Bank with $20 million that had been funneled to him through Jean Patry, the Rockefeller lawyer in Geneva who was fronting for the Shah’s twin sister, Princess Ashraf.” 

Also as Parry has reported:

“The new Iranian government … wanted Chase Manhattan to return Iranian assets, which Rockefeller put at more than $1 billion in 1978, although some estimates ran much higher.”

The seizing of Iranian assets was justified under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, and these powers had just been transferred to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) under the work of Brzezinski and his colleague, the American nationalist and war monger Samuel Huntington. Journalist Robert Dreyfuss quoted Randy Kau, the Federal Emergency Management Agency official placed in the Treasury Department, as saying:

“We at FEMA had this plan to freeze the Iranian assets two weeks before we did it, and I spent the entire two weeks on the phone trying to kill the rumors that we would do it.”

In other words, there were people who knew that certain US officials and lobbyists were conspiring a money-grab, and the people in FEMA were working to shrug off these remarks and make them look stupid. But it was no conspiracy theory, just as  it is no conspiracy when people say that the US policy plans for Venezuela is about controlling oil.