Tag Archives: Venezuela

Hugo Chavez Succeeds And Fails

Hugo Chavez assumed power in Venezuela with a unique opportunity to transform his nation into one in which a small group of wealthy people could no longer assert power into one in which all classes shared in governing the nation. However, his blind ambition for power and egocentric approach to leadership has created a sharp division within the country. In the latest elections, Chavez and his allies won most regional elections, but suffered losses in key areas such as Caracas, the capital. The opposition which consists of several parties increased its power base from two to five states including the populous and economically important Carabobo,Zulia, and Miranda. It not only captured the city hall of Caracas but also won a majority in some major slum areas.

Chavez insists the election is a mandate for socialism even though a significant portion of the population opposes that move. As one who believes in socialist principles, it is important in moving toward a socialist society to work with all segments of the population. Chavez has lost confidence of many young people including college students. Perhaps, it is time for a step back and a focus on developing and protecting democratic principles.

Russia Courts Bolivia And Challenges US

President Bush has challenged Russia directly by pushing for construction of missile bases in Poland and the Czech Republic as well as giving Georgia his unqualified support after their failed invasion of South Ossetia. Prime Minister Putin intends to stick it right back to America by working for close relations with nations like Venezuela and Bolivia. Russia is selling planes to Bolivia as a “first step” in building closer relations. Russian Ambassador to Bolivia, Leonid Golubev, made it even clearer by saying, “we want to show up the United States that Latin America is not their backyard. We also have interests in various spheres, including military ones.”

Although modern Russia is capitalist, its leaders are courting socialist governments in Latin America mainly to make clear to Bush if he wants to exert military pressure on their border, then the same can be done to American borders. Hugo Chavez in Venezuela, who has become America’s number one opponent in Latin America, has purchased about four billion dollars worth of military equipment since 2005 from Russia.

Chavez Discovers Coup Plan – When Doesn’t He?

President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela has been claiming for years that right wing officers in the military are working with the CIA in order to plot an overthrow of his regime. Yesterday, he announced that “various” suspects were detained and accused them of trying to assassinate him with tacit backing from political opponents and the United States. He blamed a group of officers who in 2002 tried a coup to once again team up with American agents in an effort to take over the government and destroy his “Bolivarian revolution.” The president charged an admiral and several retired officers were involved in planning the coup.

According to Chavez, the plotters were seeking ground-to-air missiles in order to blow up the presidential plane or bomb the presidential palace. He also blamed the right wing press for aiding such efforts. Of course, Chavez has been trying for years to silence any newspaper or television station from offering an independent view of life in Venezuela. In a sense, he is like the boy who cried “wolf” and if there really is a planned coup, it is hard to believe anything he claims at this point in time.

Bolivia Boils Over In Confusion

Evo Morales, the first indigenous president of Bolivia, hoped his administration would be abl to make serious economic inroads into poverty that besets so many living in poverty. Tomorrow, May 4th was supposed to be the day for constitutional referendum, but voting has been suspended. Instead, the region of Santa Cruz, home to his conservatve opposition, is poised to vote for autonomy from the central government and end the Morales goal for social and economic revolution. Many had hoped Morals would usher in new era in which all sectors of society worked together to revamp the economy and ensure a better life for the poorer component of society, those of indigenous backgrounds. Instead, the nation is being torn to pieces as the more developed Santa cruz region, seeks to gain greater local control over rich resources.

Morales insists the referendum is illegal and has urged a boycott which will only result in an even wider victory majority for conservatives. After the referendum, the conservative oppostion is expected to lclaim the right to control local government, taxes, police and natural resources, but will probably stop short of secession.

Morales may have attempted to go too quickly and ignored the need to seek allies within the ranks of the middle classes and moderates. His flirtation with Hugo Chavez only served to frighten the middle clas which feared Morales would assume a dictatorial attitude similar to that of the Venezuelan president.

Are Sounds Of War Being Heard In South America?

Troops from Ecuador, Venezuela and Colombia are poised at their borders awaiing possible new developments in the conflict which has emerged from Colombia’s effort to wipe out the FARC rebel groups. The Colombin government even charged FARC with building a radioactive “dirty bomb” for use against its troops. The allegation was made by Colombian vice-president Francisco Santos to a UN group in Geneva, but he did not offer any evidence to support the allegation. President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, a self appointed guardian of South America, thrust his nation into the fray when he condemned the Colombian attack on a FARC camp one mile into Ecuador an a violation of his guidelines for peace in the regon.

Even Comrade Fidel Castro jumped into action with a newspaper column where he warned:
“we can plainly hear the trumphets of war to the south of our continent as a consequence of genocidal plans of the Yankee empire.” The Colombian operation was against terrorists who are into drug trafficking and kidnapping. Exactly how dealing with cut-throat gangsters is connected to “genocidal plans” only the Supreme Leader knows. The United States history of involvement in Latin America is terrible, but this is one time, the situation is strictly a Colombian affair.

Dogs Of War Barking In Venezuela

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez moved tanks to the border of Colombia and mobilized jet fighter planes as he warned the Colombian government their continued attacks on FARC rebels hiding in Ecuador might spark war. Colombia’s military said on Saturday its troops killed Raul Reyes, a leader of the Marxist FARC rebels duing an attack on his jungle camp in Ecuador. The operation included air strikes and fighting with rebels in border regions. Chavez in his usuual rhetoric ordered the Venezuelan military to move 10 battalions to the frontier of Colombia and said: “May God spare us war. But we are not going to allow them to violate out sovereign territory.”

The FARC rebellion began as a political movement directed at the Colombian government. As years passed, the rebels increasingly turned towards working with drug lords and lost their revolutionary fervor once money became more important. Chavez dared to call the FARC rebel leader’s death, a “cowardly assassination” of a “good revolutionary.” The only thing good about FARC is its ability to make money from drugs. They long ago lost any connection to revolutionary ideals related to poverty and injustice.

Venezuelan Democracy Wins-Chavez Loses!

The forces of democracy in Venezuela finally overcame the authoritarian policies of President Hugo Chavez by handing the would be dictator a stunning electoral defeat. Although the Chavez government controlled TV and handed out millions of dollars to supporters, the student-led opposition was able to defeat the referendum by a vote of 51% to 49%. The proposed new constitution would have allowed Chavez to appoint all officials, to pack the courts, and to serve as president forever. The constitution was a blatant effort to end democracy in the nation of Venezuela. President Chavez told his supporters not to “feel sad” since the defeat was over “microscopic differences,” and he stated to his opponents, “To those who voted against my proposal, I thank them and congratulate them. I ask all of you to go home and know how to handle your victory. You won it.”

Hopefully, this is the first step toward ending the power of Chavez who has used oil money in order to extend his power. Perhaps, his opponents now recognize the importance to the future of Venezuela of taking vigorous action to protect the rights and dignity of those in poverty. Unless issues of poverty are addressed, another Chavez will appear on the scene and next time he might be more successful in furthering movement toward a dictatorship.

Iran Threatens US Dollar At Closed OPEC Meeting

The the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries(OPEC), Iran’s Foreign Minister Manoucher Mottaki, was accidentally overheard telling the members it was time to end linking the price of oil to the American dollar because of the continual depreciation of that currency. “The reality is we have this problem. I think we should draft the declaration to reflect our concerns.” Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal of Saudi Arabia responded that such a declaration would hurt the price of oil. “Nobody wants to have less money than more money. I am sure we all agree on that.” It also came out, President Chavez of Venezuela, wants to cut the price of oil being sold to poor nations while keeping it high on the wealthy ones. OPEC leaders want to make certain Chavez is kept away from the media

The United States of America’s refusal to become energy smart is resulting in other nations treating it as energy dumb. It is now almost forty years since OPEC became a force in the world but America still refuses to make dramatic steps to end dependency on oil and, as a result, increasingly has other nations making decisions about what happens in the United States of America.