Venezuela: Hugo Chavez
As Karen Hughes joins Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to seek inroads into the Arab world, they, and those committed to securing the United States, must not lose sight of the evil coiled and ready to strike in our very back yard. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell is an incredible person who has served our nation with great distinction. That said, with regard to Mr. Chavez and the threat he represents to the U.S., Mr. Powell fell victim to the career apologists of socialism and tyranny within the State Department. Miss Rice, who enjoys full White House backing, must wall off such apologists. Mr. Chavez may be many things. But legitimate leader of Venezuela, he is not. Any fair and rational reading of the August 2004 recall referendum in that country to oust him by popular demand would clearly show Mr. Chavez stole the election. In so doing, he basically installed himself as dictator for life of that oil-rich nation. Tragically, "fair" and "rational" were two words ignored not only by our own State Department but by former President Jimmy Carter as well.
RHG: The Washington Times is a right.wing newspaper, but to speak of " the career apologists of socialism and tyranny within the State Department" is grossly unfair and makes the "liberal" press look much more professional. It would have been sufficient to tell the sordid truth about Chavez.
Hugo Chavez of Venezuela is the target of US criticism. Alberto Gutierrez forwarded "Focusing on closer threats", by Douglas MacKinnon (The Washington Times, 4/3/05)- Carmen Negrín counters: Chavez was elected and reelected to the dislike of the US. He is totally legally in his place, whether some people like it or not, he was democratically chosen and confirmed by the majority of his fellow citizens. Moreover, what threat does he represent to the US? He has increased his oil sales to the US and does not plan to invade the US nor to tumble its president (as the US tried to do with him). What more does the US government want? Oil prices have massively gone up since the Iraq invasion, not since the election of Chavez. Are they going to put the blame on Chavez?! His main default is being a demagogue, but don't you think George W. beats him in that area? The major threat of the US comes from within the US, As long as it wants to govern or rather take advantage of the rest of the world, there will be unavoidable and unpredictable reactions, Osama ben Laden being perhaps the major example of these reactions. RH: Hitler won and election, so did Perón. How honest the elections of Chavez were I do not know. If he could lead Latin America to a more just society (a "new form of socialism"), he would be a benefactor, but I fear that he simply would replicate Castro's Cuba. This is not a defense of US policy toward Chavez.