Saturday, January 26, 2008

Plots & Pawns

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) ― President Hugo Chavez on Friday accused neighboring Colombia and the United States of plotting a military "aggression" against Venezuela.

"I accuse the government of Colombia of devising a conspiracy, acting as a pawn of the U.S. empire, of devising a military provocation against Venezuela," Chavez said.

"A military aggression is being prepared," Chavez added, saying that Washington aims to "oblige us to respond, and later a war could be set off."

He cited intelligence reports but did not offer evidence to support his claim.

Chavez warned Colombia not to attempt a "provocation," warning that it would trigger a decision by Venezuela to cut off all oil exports.

"In that scenario, write it down: the price of oil would reach $300, because there wouldn't be oil for anyone," Chavez said.

"The invaders would have to step over our dead bodies." Chavez has repeatedly accused Washington of plotting to oust or kill him, though it was the first time he has accused Colombia's U.S.-allied government in such strident terms.

---- Chavez knows better. The US can't afford war in South America - domestic opinion and lack of funds are two of many reasons. The rhetoric tells me Hugo is losing support with his base, likely because he's not delivering on promises fast enough, and thinks an external "threat" will be a uniter.

Perhaps Hugo issues such press releases to impress the Nicaraguans - to remind Nicas that he, as the Sandinistas before him, is threatened by a US funded guerrilla war staged from Columbia - his anti-Yanqui maneuver. But after a decade in power not many are buying Hugo's every 3 months accusation that the yankees are coming.

Seems the average Nicaraguan isn't overly impressed with Hugo. "The Nicaraguan government's attempt to go into the oil-importing business without either facilities or experienced executives foundered into delays, bottlenecks and glitches, eventually resulting in the seizure of the Exxon facilities. The storage tanks were returned two months later, after Exxon agreed to rent them out to the government. But even so, only about 2 million of the promised 10 million barrels of Venezuelan oil arrived in 2007. And though the government laid a cornerstone for the new refinery Venezuela promised, no more work has been done on it. ''Chávez promised a new refinery,'' Jarquin says. "But Nicaragua is the 11th country where Chávez has offered the same refinery. He's over-drafted, over-committed. He can't deliver; that's the reality.''

Chavez needs the price of oil to hit $300 a barrel. He needs the proceeds to deliver on promises at home and around the world; and feed/shelter the millions of poor immigrating to the New Venezuela from surrounding countries. Apparently Chavez is seizing food to stock his newly created State food distribution company; food seized from one of the country's largest employers.

Like it or not, Chavez needed the giants - ConocoPhillips and Exxon - at least until he had something else lined up - but as of 2007 both companies have refused to sign a deal to keep producing oil in Venezuela on the terms offered by Chavez. It hurts Venezuela more than CP and Exxon as both companies continue healthy profits.

Unlike Che, Castro, or Ortega - Lt. Colonel Hugo didn't arrive with fire from the mountain . He rode in on the same system he rants about - US styled "democratic capitalism."

And you know what? I want a dollar for every time I've read or heard a white person observe that Hugo is mestizo, therefore a brown Venezuelan must be honest and on the side of the poor. To insinuate that a nonwhite can't be as corrupt as any white folk. What an insult!

To be blunt, for too long I've watched American liberals adopt Latin revolutionaries like pets, and call it solidarity; please donate to fight the empire - all while living quite comfortably in the empire. A few will venture to briefly visit the revolution (aka drinking and screwing) to report upon returning home how intellectually uplifting it was to see the "movement" firsthand.

Too bad they can't get their own revolution on at home.

For those who say US backers fund the Chavez opposition ... can you tell me who funded Chavez campaigns, before he had access to oil funds ? ...

Some theorists claim that Fransisco Arias Cardenas (Chavez opposition in 2000 election) was backed by the left branch of the NWO, some say the USCIA, all labeled him "the pro-US" Arias, etc. Chavez had a "landslide victory" over Arias who has called Hugo a paranoid murderer and head of a gang of criminals.

Arias and Hugo go back a long way, military cadets together, co-conspirators in the 1992 coup attempt, both pardoned by president Rafael Caldera after a year in prison. Arias is currently the Venezuelan ambassador to the UN, having kissed and made-up; or money talks, b.s. walks. Arias was to Chavez what Kerry was to Bush, both knowing where the skulls and bones are buried; sure looked like a real election though huh Bubba?

Chavez is no revolutionary - he's another puppet on the world stage.

(Fire From the Mountain has an English version and worth reading.)

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