During his recent visit to Russia, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo urged Russian President Vladimir Putin to end his support for the regime of Venezuelan strongman Nicolas Maduro. If Putin continues to defy the U.S. and European call for democracy in Venezuela, Moscow may emulate the political and economic tactics it refined during its intervention in Syria. In practical terms, this means exploiting Maduro’s weakness to secure access to resources and strategic infrastructure located within Venezuela’s borders.
Andrew Gabel is a research analyst at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, where he contributes to FDD’s Center on Military and Political Power. Follow Andrew on Twitter @Andrew_B_Gabel. Follow FDD on Twitter @FDD and @FDD_CMPP. FDD is a Washington, DC-based, nonpartisan research institute focusing on national security and foreign policy.