Has Hugo Chavez Become Drug Lords’ Friend?

John Carlin, writing in the Manchester Guardian, offers an insightful analysis of how the Venezuelan government of Hugo Chavez is aiding the efforts of so-called revolutionary forces in Colombia to pursue their drug trafficking efforts. The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia(Farc) which began years ago as a socialist left-wing effort to fight for the rights of poor people has become transformed into another drug lord operation with the active cooperation of their Venezuelan allies. Carlin notes that about 2,400 Farc guerrillas have deserted this year due to disgust with the organization and many have sought to cooperate with Colombian authorities. Carlin spoke with one such deserter who claimed there is a “non-aggession pact with the Venezuelan military” under which Farc can operate without any fear of being attacked by Chavez loyalists.

John Carlin interviewed a host of diplomats and analysts and “all agreed that powerful elements within the Venezuelan state apparatus have fored a strong working relationship with Farc.” They provide arms and ammunition as well as a safe sanctuary when Farc is being pursued by Colombian forces. One diplomat noted: “The so-called anti-imperialist, socialist and Bolivarian nation that Chavez says he wants to create is en route to become a narco-state in the same way Farc members have turned themselves into narco-guerrillas.”

Perhaps, at some point in time, nations will realize criminalizing drugs allows such terror to spread.