Friday, August 29, 2008

Hezbollah in Venezuela? Elvis and Tupac in the Virgin Islands?

The most recent smear against Venezuela has been a charge that Chávez, because of his close ties to Iran, is opening a beachhead for Hezbollah in the Americas

Funny how these baseless attacks against Lefty Latin Americans, attributed to anonymous experts or government officials, tend to coincide with broader U.S. policy objectives on the other side of the world?

It is also amusing that a government that has long maintained close ties with Saudi Arabia can fault Venezuela for choosing some friends based on realpolitik rather than ideology. I mean, when a U.S. backed coup briefly overthrows your government and the Colossus of the North regularly blames you for every single thing that goes wrong (or right, depending on your politics) in the region, you might look for your friends where you can find them.

This hysteria also dovetails nicely with the regular U.S. accusations of Islamic terror networks in the triple border region between Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay.

While agents of pretty much any power, nefarious or otherwise, are most likely in Latin America--as is clear from the deadly 1992 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires--it is a pretty cynical move to link it all to Chávez. 

In other news, the Venezuelan president just had a big meeting with the Latin American Jewish Congress, hoping to get past some past misunderstandings, namely those generated by a certain right leaning, LA based organization.

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