When it comes to foreign policy, it’s never clear whether American presidents have forgotten past failures or they have studied them closely in order to duplicate them. Whatever the case, Donald Trump’s aggressive policy toward Venezuela has many precedents that suggest pessimism is in order.
At a speech in Miami on Monday, he called on the Venezuelan military to overthrow President Nicolas Maduro, the leftist strongman whose socialist policies have turned the oil-rich country into a riot of economic disarray. Trump’s speech came on the heels of new U.S. economic sanctions meant to help topple the regime.
The administration has recognized opposition leader Juan Guaido, who has proclaimed himself the legitimate president following rigged elections last year.…