Trump: ‘I’m Not Going to Rule Out a Military Option’ for Venezuela

As the Trump administration grapples with a potential nuclear standoff with North Korea, the president on Friday night publicly declared that he is refusing to rule out a U.S. “military option” for Venezuela, another country currently engulfed in crisis. “We have many options for Venezuela, and by the way, I’m not going to rule out a military option,” Trump told reporters. “We have many options for Venezuela. This is our neighbor... We have troops all over the world in places that are very, very far away. Venezuela is not very far away. And the people are suffering and they're dying. We have many options for Venezuela, including a possible military option, if necessary.” The president added that a “military operation... is certainly something that we could” foresee in the near future. White House representatives did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s question regarding what military options toward Venezuela—a country that is not attacking the United States right now nor seems inclined to—Trump was referencing. Furthermore, it is a habit of this president to very rarely, if ever at all, rule out any U.S. military options in related topics discussed.

The Department of Defense subsequently issued a statement saying it was not invading the country.

—Asawin Suebsaeng