Reports: Chavistas, Sandinistas, Other Foreign Leftists Join Nationwide Riots

Protesters march during a rally in response to the recent death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man who died while in police custody in Minneapolis, in Miami, Florida on May 31, 2020. - Thousands of National Guard troops patrolled major US cities after five consecutive nights of protests over …
RICARDO ARDUENGO/AFP via Getty Images

Multiple reports have surfaced in the past week of communists allied with the Sandinista movement in Nicaragua, the chavista regime in Venezuela, and other Latin American leftists surfacing at protests and riots allegedly meant to condemn American police brutality.

A report published on Monday claimed the FBI had arrested several individuals who told law enforcement that “activists with Cuban and Venezuelan origins” had paid for their participation in violence. According to Emmy-award-winning journalist Casto Ocando, the arrests occurred in Miami “and other cities” and suggest that much of the violence at the hands of allegedly American protesters is fueled by organized leftist groups, some with foreign ties. Ocando claimed some of the arrested were caught with large amounts of cash of dubious origin.

“There are definitely individuals associated with Venezuela who paid for trips of people to various cities in the United States to promote chaos,” Ocando quoted an anonymous “informant with knowledge of the investigations” as saying.

Miami police and the FBI have not publicly confirmed the report. Local officials in many of the most affected cities in the country, however, have publicly expressed outrage at “outsiders” destroying neighborhoods, some among the least affluent in their purview. Minnesota officials have been particularly vocal with this accusation.

In Miami, multiple individuals marching in protests that later became looting riots displayed signs associated with violent Latin American communist movements. In one case, a citizen journalist approached a woman on video wearing paraphernalia associated with Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro.

“I support the Bolivarian Revolution,” the woman said, identifying herself not as Venezuelan but as Dominican. “I was there [in Venezuela] recently as part of an internationalist brigade.”

“I want a regime that supports all human life, without imperialism,” the woman added.

Venezuela is one of the world’s most violent regimes, actively imprisoning, torturing, and killing political dissidents into the present. Maduro has regularly deployed lethal force against peaceful, anti-socialist protesters in the country for decades, killing children as young as 14.

Elsewhere in Miami, supporters of the Sandinista Front for National Liberation (FSLN), the communist insurrection currently in control in Nicaragua, openly displayed the group’s flag at a protest allegedly in defense of the human rights of black Americans.

Student protests against communism and state violence in Nicaragua have been ongoing for years, met by dictator Daniel Ortega with lethal force and the mass imprisonment and torture of protesters. Ortega particularly targeted Nicaragua’s Catholic Church due to their support of the peaceful student protest movement, triggering the mass burning of religious sites.

Latin American leftist iconography surfaced elsewhere in the United States, as well. In Washington, DC, far-left agitator Max Blumenthal, who has produced propaganda pieces supporting Maduro and the chavista movement, appeared at one of the nodes of protest wearing a shirt with the eyes of Hugo Chávez — a Big Brother-style image prevalent in state-sponsored graffiti throughout Venezuela — on it. When Venezuelan exiles responded to footage of someone using the image in the name of racial equality in the United States with outrage, Blumenthal outed himself as the one wearing the shirt and mocked their alarm.

In Minnesota, a symbol that the left has appropriated for violent riots in Chile — the flag of the indigenous Mapuche people — also appeared during a daytime protest in Minneapolis last week. The flag also reportedly made an appearance in Hollywood, California.

The flag is a 1992 creation more common at anti-police protests than the group’s original flag and became a common sight among far-left rioters during the burning of Santiago, the nation’s capital last year. As the Spanish failed to ever colonize the Mapuche people, the left has attempted to adopt their symbols as their own against the police.

Chilean journalist Felipe Herrera identified himself as the carrier of the flag in Minnesota, asserting, “I brought it [the flag] because I felt like it and free speech is respected here [in America].”

Chile was home to some of the most destructive riots in the Western Hemisphere’s history last year, allegedly triggered by a proposed hike in fares for the Santiago metro. Despite the alleged cause, rioters destroyed churches, businesses, and homes, sometimes using industrial-grade explosives, according to local officials. Authorities found evidence of Cuban communist regime agents and individuals with ties to Venezuela’s socialist narco-regime among those causing destruction, deporting dozens.

Follow Frances Martel on Facebook and Twitter.

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