New Details on Failed Mercenary Invasion of Venezuela

New details have emerged about the May 2020 failed mercenary invasion of Venezuela. The Bay-of-Pigs style operation sought to overthrow President Nicolás Maduro and install Juan Guaidó, head of the National Assembly, as president.

Now, testimony from key organiser Yacsy Álvarez – released by media in Colombia – suggests that Colombian intelligence facilitated the operation. According to Álvarez, Colombia guaranteed the safe passage of money and weapons from the United States to the plotters’ training camps on the Colombian-Venezuelan border.

The camps were run by US-based mercenaries Silvercorp, headed by ex-Green Beret Jordan Goudreau. Four other US veterans reportedly trained the mercenary force of Venezuelans and Colombians and led them into the failed invasion.

Silvercorp chief Jordan Goudreau

According to earlier reports, Goudreau was chasing a multi-million dollar pay-off from Venezuelan opposition businessmen if the plot succeeded in ousting Maduro. Goudreau even produced a contract he says proves the arrangement in an extraordinary breach of contract lawsuit he filed in Miami against his alleged former conspirators.

In spite of its high hopes, the plot never really got off the ground. On 1 May 2020, the Associated Press published an article describing the plot as “a call to arms that crashed before it launched.” 

To add a bizarre element to an already outlandish sequence of events, Goudreau ordered the operation go ahead anyway, even after AP broke the story. Mercenaries were promptly killed and arrested by Venezuelan security services, and their American trainers put in front of television cameras as the perfect embodiment of capitalist-imperialist treachery.

Leftist coverage of the plot has focused on the involvement of US officials,. Undoubtedly, the US administration did know of the operation in advance (and even before AP!). 

Yet the plot is more characterised by freelance bombast and opportunism, both from Goudreau as well as private-sector backers in Venezuela and Miami. Sure, profiteers and underworld figures have always lurked around covert ops, but in its sheer unhinged buffoonery this plot is the perfect Trump-era iteration of the US-Latin American intervention.

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