Cenk Uygur, who believes Tillerson is the reason Russia meddled in the US elections, certainly thinks so:
I, on the other hand, think he may yet stay on. There’s a reason for that, and its name is VENEZUELA.
Venezuela’s proven oil resources are the largest in the world, and the facilities to tap and process them are already well established, unlike those of Rosneft in Siberia. Foreign oil companies must sign agreements with the Venezuelan government — agreements which are not as favorable and lucrative as they’ve been in decades past. As (former) CEO of ExxonMobil, Rex Tillerson still stands to make major money on Venezuelan oil, even though the deal with Rosneft has fallen through. Ten years ago almost to this day, they failed to extort the Venezuelans out of their oil, but as ExxonMobil hasn’t been kicked all the way out of Venezuela yet, he could try for another robbery.
And there will be a major opportunity for him to do so. The Venezuelan elections are coming up, and there’s a big push — or PUTSCH — on for the opposition to “win” them. Or cry “fraud” if they fail yet again, as they’ve been doing ever since Chavecito and his loyal Bolivarians beat back their first coup attempt in 2002. The US, no matter who was president or what party was in charge, has always backed those putschists and fascists of the opposition, so there’s no need to speculate as to where Tillerson’s loyalties will lie this time around, either. He’s going to throw everything he can behind whomever they’re running, and if that candidate loses — as that candidate surely will, because the Venezuelan people aren’t fucking stupid — he’s going to back the coup attempt that will follow, just as night follows day, in the usual State Dept. pattern.
Of course — and this is where it will get stickier for him than the heavy Venezuelan crude — the Venezuelan people will beat back the next coup attempt, just as they’ve done all the previous ones. Politicians who back the putsch will go to jail, as I’m sure will quite a few “aid worker” gringos found funneling guns and money (though maybe not lawyers) to the thugs on the street. It’s happened before, and don’t think that Madurito and his still very loyal Bolivarian forces won’t be aware of who’s up to what. They’re not fucking stupid, either.
And that’s where they differ sharply from Donnie and his buffoonish band of corporate raiders.
The Venezuelans have been buying guns and Sukhoi jets from the Russians for years now, and diplomatic and trade relations between them and Russia are not so fraught. By now, they have plenty of flying hours with the Sukhois, too, should worse come to worst. And nearly two decades of fascist putschism have taught them well to beware of gringo-aligned traitors in their midst. Any “rebels” in the Bolivarian Armed Forces will be dealt with harshly. There is no incipient Pinochet in Venezuela, and there is no taste for fascism there, either — Venezuela’s armed forces have long been politically progressive. Their officers come not from the ranks of the upper classes (twits one and all), but from the common folk, thanks to the Andrés Bello Plan. Chavecito was one himself. And he made sure to model the military after his own heart, with a keen political awareness. Under him, the Venezuelan army served the people, not their oppressors. It still does.
And if Rex Tillerson thinks he can go up against that, his Rexit will be even more ignominious than anything those devilish, scheming Russians could devise.