The latest evidence gathered by the Venezuelan government, and presented on Monday, March 11, to the Venezuelan population about the attack on the national electricity system, allows us to reconstruct the multidimensional attack that was unleashed in the energy chapter of the irregular war against Venezuela.
It’s been less than a week since the cyber sabotage to the Simón Bolívar Hydroelectric Plant located in the Guri reservoir, which cut off the supply of electricity to more than 80% of the national territory, also affecting the supply of drinking water, health centers, communications and electronic banking; the President of the Bolivarian Republic denounced the physical attacks to electrical substations that made difficult the tasks of the technical personnel of the National Electric Corporation (Corpoelec) to restore the service.
The cyber attack against Corpoelec’s computerized brain (central processor) at the Guri Complex hydroelectric plant and later against the computerized power control center in Caracas was followed by electromagnetic attacks and, simultaneously, sabotage to other support infrastructures that reversed the recovery processes in order to raise the bet on the general and irreversible collapse of the electric supply.
It is essential to point out that these attacks are not dislocated events of the road map for the formation of an irregular war in an openly bellicose phase in Venezuela, as has been denounced several times by its authorities.
The exacerbation of unconventional conflict in Venezuela would involve the variable of large-scale sabotage to produce a greater erosion in the security components in Venezuela, which would be extended to the population through the degradation of living conditions. Indispensable inputs to the narrative of the “humanitarian crisis” and the “inability” of the “usurper’s authorities” to “protect” the Venezuelan population, under which the US government persists in acting.
Indeed, one week after the electrical attack on Venezuela, the US Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, said that the government of his country will insist on the forcible entry of “humanitarian aid”, now incorporating the input of the destruction of normality and quasi -break of social cohesion in Venezuela at the expense of the blackout.
OPERATIONAL MAP OF PHYSICAL ATTACKS AGAINST THE ELECTRIC SYSTEM
The attacks described below occurred when power was restored in the east and south of the country while working in the capital. There were at least five attacks on the national electricity system, according to information provided by communication minister Jorge Rodríguez.
On the other hand, there was an emphasis on direct sabotage, such as that recorded by the explosion of the Alto Prado substation, located in “Terrazas del Club Hipico” of the Baruta municipality (Caracas). When it caught fire in the early hours of Monday the 11th, again we got parts of the city of Caracas without electricity .
The sabotage to the Tacoa thermoelectric plant, located in Vargas, was also registered. There they cut off the gas that supplies the station, causing an explosion and preventing its operation as an element of blackout contingency within the Venezuelan capital.
It is necessary to stop at this point to note that a context of irregular warfare, such as that which is already being waged in Venezuela, disabling electricity in Caracas has strategic value, not only because it is the most important node in national politics, also because it is the main center of financial operations and electronic payment systems extensively used throughout the country. The interruption of the electric flow and consequently of the telecommunications and means of payment, would dramatically rupture the sense of normality generating a direct impact on the population.
Other explosions of transformers were reported in the interior of the country, affecting mainly the western region. Both in the municipality Cabimas (Zulia) and Cabudare (Lara), are sites where the complete restoration of the electrical system took time to materialize due to explosions in substations. Specifically in Zulia, the explosion was reported this Tuesday afternoon, in the Las Cabillas sector of the Cabimas municipality. This state has also suffered irregular violent riots that have affected several commercial areas.
Also in the Lara municipality of Cabudare, the explosion of the substation occurred on Monday 11, causing greater delays in the re-connection of energy within that area.
THE SABOTAGE AGAINST OIL INSTALLATIONS: OBJECTIVES
On Wednesday, March 13, the explosion of two 250 thousand barrels tanks of thinner was registered in the state of Anzoategui, specifically in the PDVSA Petro San Felix complex. PDVSA authorities announced at the time of the event in their internal messaging that the explosion had signs of sabotage. The dilutents are hydrocarbon fluids (such as naphtha) that are used to dilute heavy oil and to reduce its viscosity, thus facilitating the transportation of crude oil.
Venezuelan crude oil is mostly extra heavy, between 9 and 15 degrees API, high density. For its transportation, handling and dispatch, dilutents are essential, in them also lies the capacity of Venezuela to sustain or increase its crude production.
The intermittency in the availability of these thinners has been one of the causes of the fall in oil production in recent years in Venezuela, since they had traditionally been supplied by the US industrial oil circuit to Venezuela, and since the sanctions against the Venezuelan economy the country has had to resort to other suppliers in the midst of the financial boycott, affecting the flow of that input in Venezuelan production.
The attack on Petro San Felix could be clearly framed as an agenda to degrade Venezuelan exports. It also helps to partially disable the production of gasoline for the domestic market and supply, given that the systems for transporting and dispatching crude oil through pipelines to national refineries also depend on these dilutents.
Recently the financial firm Barclays made the estimate that by attacking the Venezuelan electricity system, the country could lose about 700 thousand barrels of oil production in a few hours.
Although Venezuelan authorities have not reported on this item, it is true that oil production is associated with electricity and that the shielding of oil fields through on-site generation could be partial and limited. The sustained loss of electricity means the loss of compression injected into wells, essential for the pumping of crude oil. It is known that a meas loss of production, compared to current levels, would have extensive effects on domestic exports and the domestic fuel flow.
It is necessary to estimate then that, in the operational approach of attrition against vital services in Venezuela, it has PDVSA as an indispensable target.
ACCURATE INPUTS AND ACTORS OF IRREGULAR WARFARE IN VENEZUELA
Through successive events that have taken place in Venezuela, a series of asymmetric resources are broken off to increase the collapse as consecutive attacks to power stations in border states by irregular groups from Colombia , theft of cables and strategic materials in substations in the central region Western and electric attacks that have their high peaks in electoral periods.
Minister Jorge Rodríguez has released figures that illustrate the consequences of low intensity operations, which seek to dismantle the electricity infrastructure, a strategic area for the normal functioning of a country, with the aim of providing greater inputs to foreign intervention .
These actions, which have a long history, have generated more than 200 electrocution deaths, more than 150 damaged electrical substations and multi-million dollar losses in specialized equipment. The constant terrorist attacks on the country’s electricity system severely damaged the infrastructure, which facilitated the work of generating a domino effect that prolonged the collapse of services.
At the moment of gaining access to the nerve center and stopping its operation, the circulatory body deployed throughout the territory was weakened.
In addition to measuring the response capacity of the Venezuelan military institutions before a possible war scenario, where this type of resources would be in daily use, the violation of security in the Guri was used to reactivate the propaganda campaign of the “humanitarian crisis” after the failure of 23F. The New York Times’ disclosure of the fabrication of a false positive in the “humanitarian aid” delI very show exposed not only the Trump administration but also the Colombian government for its participation.
The US intermediary, Juan Guaidó (politically diminished after 23F), to comply with the mediatic phase of unconventional aggression, spread imprecise explanations of a supposed energy crisis caused by the Venezuelan State’s negligence.
In parallel, Marco Rubio disseminates false figures of deaths due to power failures and incorrect information from affected stations and John Bolton is responsible for hiding the implications of the United States by assigning the reason for the blackouts “to years of Maduro corruption, underinvestment and neglected maintenance”.
In addition, it takes advantage of the brief moment of trending enjoyed by fake news about what happens in Venezuela after the blackout, to tighten the financial siege and force other nations to also join it.
The intellectual authors of Washington oversize the effects of the attack to capitalize them in favor of transferring the responsibility to the government of Nicolás Maduro and increase the economic and diplomatic pressures against Venezuela, hurrying the step to verify that irremediably the support for the Guaido’s “parallel government” is losing strength and the aggressive tone against the legitimate presidency of Maduro at a global level, while internally, they fail to break the FANB (Army) to materialize the regime change.
Translated by JRE/EF%