In September of last year, President Trump made a major policy address to the United Nations assembly. He offered assurances to other countries that they need not fear interference from his Administration in their internal affairs:
“…America will always choose independence and cooperation over global governance, control, and domination. I honor the right of every nation in this room to pursue its own customs, beliefs, and traditions. The United States will not tell you how to live or work or worship.”
And then—oops, at the end of this very speech, Trump abandoned the policy:
“Not long ago, Venezuela was one of the richest countries on Earth. Today, socialism has bankrupted the oil-rich nation and driven its people into abject poverty. In that spirit…today, we are announcing additional sanctions against the repressive regime, targeting [Venezuelan President] Maduro’s inner circle and close advisors.”
And not long after that, people in the US embassy in Caracas, along with officials from our National Security Council worked to explore opportunities to trigger President Madero’s ouster. They decided on a strategy, got Donald Trump on board, and gave VP Mike Pence the job of calling a young leader of the Venezuelan opposition to tell him that the US would back him as “Interim President.”
It appears our enthusiasm for seeking “regime change” in oil producing nations has not abated.