Chavez temper tantrum # 666: Hugo freezes Venezuela’s relations with Colombia

July 28, 2009

(Este post en español aquí)

It was typical Hugo Chavez, caught red handed providing Swedish rocket launchers to the FARC guerrillas, he reacts by attempting to distract locally, throwing a temper tantrum, faking being mad at Colombia for “making up” the story and decides to “freeze” for the nth. time relations between the two countries. I really have not counted, but how many times has Chavez thrown these type of tantrums, acting like an unruly little kid (or a madman, you choose) and threatening to upset relations with the country’s second most important trading partner.

The amazing thing is that it should really be the other way around, it was the Venezuelan President who was caught threatening Colombians, because so far there has been no explanations as to how the rocket launchers happened to appear at the FARC camp. It is Venezuela that has some explaining to do in this matter, Sweden’s Government does not allow in its contracts for Venezuela to sell or export the weapons and they were after all under the care of the Venezuelan military (No smirks allowed!). Thus, it is Colombia that has the right to be outraged as the Venezuelan Government through negligence or on purpose, allowed weapons to fall in the hands of the FARC that could be used against the citizens of that country.

But one does not manage diplomatic relations a la Chavez, throwing temper tantrums, otherwise most of the the civilized world would have ended relations with most of its neighbors over petty bickering and jealousies. Instead Chavez freezes relations and in his immense ignorance on economic matters, threatens to substitute Colombian imports and irresponsibly threatens to nationalize Colombian companies in Venezuela. Just because you don’t mess with Hugo Chavez, even if it was him that actually messed with you.

And his threat to “substitute” Colombian imports just shows the Hugocentric view of the economy as well as his ignorance on economic matters. It is not Hugo that imports products from Colombia. It its hundreds of Colombian companies that have taken advantage of Chavez’ destruction of Venezuela’s manufacturing sector in the last ten years, filling the void by setting up local subsidiaries and plants. This has been accompanied by national and multinationals moving to the more friendly business environment of Colombia and exporting form there. Thus, Chavez, facing the possibility of shortages already, is between a rock and a hard place, in that it will not be so easy to substitute Colombian imports and nationalizing Colombian companies in Venezuela is as harebrained as you can get, as most of them have a very strong dependence to the home office in Colombia, without which they could not produce much.

But “Yo no fui” (It wasn’t me) Chavez does not fool anyone anymore. Everyone, both here and abroad, knows what he is about. He wants to be the tough guy, but always backs down when push comes to shove or Fidel tells him to do it. By tonight, Fidel will be advising his parody to cool it off, as the world still remembers his threats to go to Honduras with Zelaya (which Fidel stopped) as well as the sordid images of Maduro reliving his days as a driver, taking Zelaya to the border.

And once again, Hugo’s temper tantrums distracts him him from the real problem at hand of solving the problems for the average Venezuelan. Neither poverty, nor crime nor the well being of the poor Venezuelan has improved in ten years of sordid and verbose rule by Hugo Chavez, despite the largest windfall in the country’s history. As the economy runs into trouble, all Hugo can think is how to reign in Honduras, fight Colombia and pick a fight with Obama, now that old GW is no longer in the picture.

The problem is his credibility both home and abroad is going down and he does not seem to have the mind or will to deal with either. He still wants to to be the enfant terrible of Latin America, but most people are realizing that he is becoming the short-fused temper baby of the region.

Interestingly, in the upcoming days we should see more and more of the evidence from Colombia and Sweden, which once again will show what a spoiled brat Chavez has become, forcing him to either back down from his threats today or to really deliver on them, in which case it will be his Government and the people that he claims to love that would be hurt. Given his rush to be the top dog in this fight, expect him to back down, sooner rather later, and change course, as his has done so many times in the last ten  years.

29 Responses to “Chavez temper tantrum # 666: Hugo freezes Venezuela’s relations with Colombia”

  1. T.I.G.O.T. Says:

    Venezuela isn’t a case of the inmates running the asylum, but a case of the 5-year-olds running the kindergarten. And goddammit they are really stupid 5-year-olds…

  2. Sergio Says:

    Yeah a bunch of dumb 5 year olds with lots of money at their disposition.

  3. Pedro Perez Says:

    Miguel,
    How true do you think are the latest comments about the US setting up a military base in Colombia?
    Thank you,
    Megaescualidus

  4. Kepler Says:

    Chavez is the most typical class of Venezuelan there is now, believe it or not.

    I wonder: what is “freezing relationships”? It is obviously not breaking them. What is that freezing concretely?

  5. Roberto Says:

    Well Kepler, this: http://www.noticias24.com/actualidad/noticia/70344/retiramos-al-embajador-de-bogota/

    Is pretty clear. Remove all but the lowest man on the totem pole, and threaten to look for substitute partners in trade. I also liked the part where he threatens to expropriate ALL Colombian companies in Venezuela the next time Uribe “insults” Venezuela (Chavez).

    2 weeks from now, absent any other shockers, and things will be back to what passes for normal in Venezuela.

  6. firepigette Says:

    Freezing : putting on hold for when needed.

    Sometimes Chavez knows he shouldn’t really do something( for his own interests, but he pretends( or threatens to).It is something like that

    I agree with Roberto, it will soon pass, when he needs it to pass.

    Nothing Chavez does is out of principle, but instead,is instigated as a con.

    He is a sheister

    What he plans to do in the future will depend on what unfolds, but I totally agree with Robert:

    “2 weeks from now, absent any other shockers, and things will be back to what passes for normal in Venezuela.”

  7. GWEH Says:

    Megaescualidus, the Americans wore out their welcome mat in Ecuador. Unfortunately the American military presence in Manta brought little to the locals except a steady demand for prostitutes and alcohol. This is nothing new, American arrogance, lack of cultural sensitivity and disregard for the locals (their hosts) is a long time problem for the US military.

    American military counterinsurgency operations in Iraq were restructured as a result most notably under General David Petraeus. The results speak for themselves.

    The American military presence in Colombia is a fact. Could the buildup have been avoided? Maybe if Correa had not kicked the gringos out and if Chavez had cooperated on counternarcotics.

    Chavez thinks that oil trumps cocaine. Time will tell….

  8. Larry Says:

    Could the buildup have been avoided?

    Yes, how about getting the hell out of places they should not be in the first place? How about ending the infamous war on drugs, which causes more problems than it solves? That would be a good start.

  9. firepigette Says:

    Gweh,

    Don’t equate American Military arrogance with American arrogance.I just wish folks in my town and other US towns would develop a bit more arrogance once in awhile- they bend over backwards to accommodate rudeness and every aggressiveness among the illegals,go to EVERY length to help them even to the point of sometimes endangering others and then get shit on: by the press, and by the Aprovechadores themselves.

    As for the Military, training is brutal.Life is brutal.This has consequences.

    In the long run I think drugs are going to trump.Oil runs out.Alternative energy will eventually prevail , but drugs can go on indefinitely.


  10. […] VENEZUELA Chavez temper tantrum #666: Hugo freezes Venezuela’s relations with Colombia […]

  11. Kepler Says:

    Roberto,

    Yeah, perhaps it is again business as usual in two weeks…or an ever-increasing deterioration. I wrote something here:

    http://venezuela-europa.blogspot.com/2009/07/chavez-freezer-sweden-venezuela-farc.html

    Gweh,

    I think that is a problem of most other armies as well. I hope they do better in Colombia. Who’s going to tell them?
    Any idea where the bases will be located?

    To people too old for their biological age:

    Here you have a picture of some of the Aprovechadores:

  12. firepigette Says:

    Okay Kepler, First of all you need to realize that old for me is an incredible compliment as in my case it refers to evolution.

    A for the cartoon :

    We could make some of European tribes invading each other in BC , or the Roman Empire shenanigans, or maybe even the time of the pharaohs, however,
    most of us have evolved in our conciousness.Let us compare in the here and now shall we?

  13. firepigette Says:

    Larry,

    I guess we should withdraw from Afghanistan as well.Maybe we should have dismantled NATO and let the Serbians carry out their ethnic cleansing.

    Colombia wants the US military presence, are they not allowed their own sovereign decisions?

  14. Raimundo Andueza Says:

    I totally agree.
    One comment though, why did the swedes sell the rkt launchers to Venezuela in the frist place?. I wonder if the launchers were “Nobel” brand.
    Would anyone be surprised if weapons sold to iran wound up with Hezbolah?
    Hipocrisy, hipocrisy, hipocrisy.

  15. Kepler Says:

    Raimundo,

    Sweden stopped in 2006, as soon as the US Americans complained.

    But anyway, this may be interesting:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_industry

    Do you think Germany or the US or Belgium or Italy have acted more kosher? They have been giving weapons to rogue countries since they were exporting them.

    Do you know how much money had been flowing from the Saudi ruling families to fundamentalists in the past decades?
    What countries were supporting the Apartheid regime in Africa?
    So: don’t expect Swedes to be more saint than the others. By the way: the Nobel price of Peace is awarded in Norway.

    Firepigette,
    Actually, what you call consciousness is what suits you personally. I don’t think illegal immigration is good, but I think it is a more complex situation than you “I am already in, rules and ‘consciousness’ changed once my family could get into the US, I am higher morally and ethically speaking than you APROVECHADORES”. Most of your ancestors did most likely the same thing those Latinos now do.

  16. Larry Says:

    firepigette, Are you writing from Afghanistan? Otherwise your use of the word we is unwarranted. But yes, the USGov should withdraw its troops from Afghanistan, if they don’t want to have the same fate the soviets had.

    Finally, “Colombia” doesn’t want the US military presence. How do you know “Colombia” wants to have US troops there? Did you ask “Colombia”?

  17. Kepler Says:

    Andueza,

    There is a permanent discussion in Belgium about the blood diamonds traded in Antwerp. It is extremely difficult to backtrack their origin, but indeed better controls are needed.

    There are discussions about how much France, Germany, etc, are helping very bloody guerrilla or governmental forces in Africa to gain control to certain minerals

    This is the tip of the iceberg:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/8159977.stm

    I have read of worse things (a book by Scholl-Latour on Africa is particularly shocking)

    As I said initially, the whole world is a complete mess.

  18. firepigette Says:

    Larry

    When I say ‘we’ I refer to US and Nato.

    By Colombia I mean the DEMOCRATICALLY elected government.

  19. marc in calgary Says:

    This poll, finds colombian public support of the US troops in Colombia at 55% No doubt that the government of Colombia as well, would like more help in finishing off FARC.
    translation is here…

    http://colombiareports.com/colombia-news/news/5090-colombians-support-us-military-presence-rcn.html

    and… “Sweden” doesn’t export arms. It allows Saab AB to, and is a private company with stock listing in Stockholm.

    http://www.saabgroup.com/en/InvestorRelations/TheShare/share_graph.htmn

    They’ve been shortlisted to sell new fighter jets to Brasil. I’m interested to know if this will affect Lula’s decision of who will supply.

  20. Martin Says:

    There isn’t even an argument about which society – the US or Europe – is more advanced in dealing with legal and illegal immigration- the US is far, far ahead. It has been doing it since its founding; Europe only for 50 years or so. It’s Europe I worry for most, especially countries that don’t even have the spine to defend their own interests abroad, and let others (guess who?) do their fighting for them.

  21. Kepler Says:

    Martin,
    I agree immigration is still a mess in Europe. Which doesn’t make me think all illegal immigrants are ‘aprovechadores’. Until very recently most Europeans saw immigrants as “Gastarbeiter”, guests who would leave once they were not needed. Very silly indeed.

  22. firepigette Says:

    Kepler.

    ‘aprovechadores’ is not a word Americans use in general.It is a word I use because I am not PC.

    It is obvious to those apolitical folks like myself that when you do not have legality and receive untold benefits and are treated with kid gloves BY receiving scholarships ,free medical care, jobs, food stamps, etc etc.( when ordinary citizens have a harder time receiving these benefits AND when there is no easy possibility of tracing you down even if you commit a crime( because your name, and age are false and because you can jump the border and come back a new person anytime you feel like it:

    then you are aprovechando the good will of somebody.

    and,

    Do not get me started on the ” guest” attitude of the Western Europeans, except for MAYBE the British..
    I must have 100 stories of German and Swiss ” hospitality” that would mind boggle your average citizen here.What hospitality do the Danes have?

    Must admit though, I know nothing of your country.More than likely it is paragon of perfection.

    The idea that the US needs these people is fomented by greedy big business, and PC stupid leftists.( created by both Republicans and Democrats who are on the seedy side)

    They are taking away jobs from needy citizens.I know many young people here looking for factory work,and cannot find it, but factories are jammed with illegals.No country can be inundated by illegals like this and survive for too long.

    One good news I am hearing lately however is that there is starting a mini-trend for US businesses to leave China and Mexico and come back to give jobs to our citizens.

  23. Kepler Says:

    Firepigette,

    I really don’t know where you study history of the United States of America, probably some leaflet when you were 10 to 15.

    In the XIX century German organizations in the US carried out campaigns to protect the many German women who became prostitutes when arriving in the US in search for a better future. The same surely happened with women from all over Europe. The same story you here now about foreigners used for dumping salaries you would have heard since the very start of the US as an independent country.
    There are whole libraries written about the conflicts with Italian, Irish, German immigrants. It is not “lefty stuff”, it is basic history.

    Of course a country needs to control immigration and there are lots of measures that need to be taken.
    but when you call those immigrants “aprovechadores” it is not you are the bright un-PC cheeky lady, you simply are myopic and ignore most of your ancestors were as “aprovechadores” as the Mexicans now there.

    Try to go to the public library of your town or village and get two or three books on history of the US.

    As for migration here: it is a mess, I know it very well.

    Again: your ancestors were not an atom less aprovechadores than the Latinos crossing the border now between Mexico and the US
    (and I agree illegal immigration needs to be curved)

  24. firepigette Says:

    Kepler, Glad you admit that migration ‘is a mess there’, but typical of you to state this without any comment at all while at the same time going on eternally criticizing the States.

    Whereas you value the writings of Zinn,and what you can get from afar, I value not only the many books that have been written when history was being recorded( not the rewritten kind like Howard Zinns) but also the history I have made and lived as well.While Zinn was acting as adviser for SNCC, I was an activist in the same org.

    Most of our ancestors were legal immigrants, not illegal, but I don’t expect you to understand the difference.

  25. Kepler Says:

    Firepigette,
    I don’t expect you to understand why they were “legal”.
    Zinn’s book is not the only book out there. Believe me: there are wonderful libraries in the US and I am sure you will be able to find some good books on US history that don’t portray things so nicely or so badly as extremes show.

    I don’t delve into migration here because we are actually talking about Venezuela and then you started with your “aprovechadores” in the US.
    This goes beyond US or Europe, but you keep in your pathetic “don’t say anything evil about MY USA”.

    I don’t care for your kind of patriotism.

  26. firepigette Says:

    Kepler

    …..And I don’t care for US haters.Every time you rewrite and interpret in this way.I will defend what is true.

    Your choice.

  27. Kepler Says:

    Firepig,
    This does not have anything to do about the US, Europe or Madagascar.
    You try to put yourself on a higher ethical level than all those illegal.
    Whatever

  28. Charly Says:

    Latest opinion pool, over 64% of those sampled think Chavez does a good job. They really deserve the big f*ck*ng they are having and in my opinion they deserve more.


  29. […] Chavez temper pretension # 666: Hugo freezes Venezuela's family … […]


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