Most Shocking From Jan. 6 Hearings: U.S. Comes Out Against Coups

The Jan. 6 hearings are clearly running over a month. Let’s call it a month. There are many countries in which the U.S. has organized, facilitated, or supported one or more coup attempts. Let’s count each country just once. And let’s go back only to the year 2000. Here’s a list of countries and the dates of attempted or successful overthrows. An asterick indicates success:

Yugoslavia 1999-2000 *
Ecuador 2000 *
Afghanistan 2001 *
Venezuela 2002 * and 2018, 2019, 2020
Iraq 2003 *
Haiti 2004 *
Somalia 2007 . . .
Mauritania 2008
Honduras 2009
Libya 2011 *
Syria 2012
Mali 2012, 2020, 2021
Egypt 2013
Ukraine 2014 *
Burkina Faso 2015, 2022
Bolivia 2019
Guinea 2021 *
Chad 2021 *
Sudan 2021 *

This is clearly a partial list. Did the U.S. support a coup attempt in Belarus in 2021 or Kazakhstan 2022? Should one include Gambia 2014 because of U.S.-trained troops or exclude it because the FBI opposed it? Hearings would help answer such questions. Add your additions to the comments below. This list intentionally does not include countries brutally sanctioned with the stated purpose of overthrowing leaders, not even Russia, Iran, North Korea, or Cuba. It includes only particular coup attempts at least as quintessentially recognizable as such as that of January 6, 2021 — coup attempts carried out with the support of the U.S. government or by people trained by the U.S. government. This is not a list of coup attempts that involved U.S.-made weapons, as that would be virtually all coup attempts.

But even starting with this list, we’re looking — now that the U.S. Congress has come out against coups — at 19 months of hearings just on these. The remarkable thing about these hearings is the intense level of detail we will learn about the perpetrators and their victims, more (I think it’s safe to say) than has been learned about non-U.S. people within the United States Capitol and on live unending television since before Russiagate, since before those imaginary Kuwaiti infants and their incubators, since quite possibly ever.

Of course these hearings will have the advantage of occupying Democrats in Congress with work while they avoid governing, legislating, or accomplishing anything else. The trick will be figuring out how to blame all of the U.S. aid to all of these coups exclusively on the Republicans. But I have faith that it can be done. The simplest way to make sure that the vast majority of these are Republican coups, though it’s a bit unorthodox, would be to expand the Jan. 6 hearings to include Hillary Clinton’s support for Trump’s nomination in 2015 and declare Clinton an honorary Republican. But there are other more laborious ways to go about it.

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