The irony that you have to keep adding chapters to "the final phase" of Operation Freedom has not gone unnoticed in the White House. Donald Trump likes to win, but four months after he was sold the impending bonanzas of regime change in Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro is still in power.
The president is frustrated and irritated by his advisers, especially National Security, John Bolton, who was going to solve the problem so quickly. According to The Washington Post, he feels cheated by what he was presented as an easy victory. This Thursday, when the press asked him about it during an impromptu press conference that lasted 45 minutes, Trump did not deny it. He only reiterated his affection for Bolton, who gives him "very good advice", but admitted that it is he who has to "temper" the warlike instincts of this Bush hawk, which also sold the former president how easy it would be to invade Iraq.
At this point the president needs to finish the play. What is on the table is not the future of Venezuela, nor the conquest of Latin America, nor the contracts of the US oil companies, but their own re-election. After having raised the expectations of the Cuban and Venezuelan exiles from Florida, it is necessary to comply to register that key State in the polling station next year.
That is why Trump is leaning more and more for the military option, annoyed because he believes that his hawk has put him in a way in which he has no choice but the war. She is vehemently opposed by the Pentagon's strategists, where there is no Secretary of Defense since James Mattis resigned in December in protest of the withdrawal of Syria.
The advice of the generals is to avoid a direct invasion and even a bombing and, if anything, to reinforce the military presence in the region in the hope that this intimidates Maduro enough, that he will endure more than anyone could have imagined.