Mr. O, the man that is running for President against Mrs. C., managed to actually be more hawkish on Hugo Chavez than Mr. B. , which the media has barely reported so far.
In his first significant speech on Latin America at the Cuban American National Foundation, Mr. O. said, without any ambiguity or hesitation:
“No wonder, then, that demagogues like Hugo Chavez have stepped into
this vacuum. His predictable yet perilous mix of anti-American
rhetoric, authoritarian government, and checkbook diplomacy offers the
same false promise as the tried and failed ideologies of the past. But
the United States is so alienated from the rest of the Americas that
this stale vision has gone unchallenged, and has even made inroads from
Bolivia to Nicaragua. And Chavez and his allies are not the only ones
filling the vacuum.”
And just in case someone had any doubt of whether he meant it or not, Mr. O. described Chavez very well:
“In Venezuela, Hugo Chavez is a democratically elected leader. But we
also know that he does not govern democratically. He talks of the
people, but his actions just serve his own power.”
Jeez, has he been reading our blogs?
But the phrase that has not made it much to the headlines, but I managed to catch as I luckily watched the speech live, was when he said:
“We will support Colombiaís right to strike terrorists who seek safe-haven across its borders.”
Which so far has elicited no response from the quick trigger Venezuelan diplomats or even from the man himself.
Maybe Ivan Marquez, the FARC leader purportedly hiding somewhere in Venezuela, should be very nervous of this. After all, he is now supposedly the number one man at that terrorist organization, after Colombia’s Ministry of Defense formally announced Marulanda has been confirmed as dead. .