Saturday, May 20, 2006

Chavez's Pretend War

I'm beginning to think that Chavez's anti-American paranoia is nothing more than ploy that he will eventually use to justify his remaining in power long after his elected term has finished. Not content with simply telling everyone who will listen that the US is about to invade, he's now also conducting military manoeuvres to practice resisting an Iraq-style invasion by America.

Venezuela's government has created community organizations called "Local Defense Councils" that would provide support during a potential invasion by hiding weapons deposits, relaying messages or sabotaging water and power services.

Chavez is expected to easily win a reelection bid this December as massive social spending and the widely popular anti-American discourse have kept his approval ratings high.

Critics in Venezuela say Chavez is squandering record oil wealth on improvised social programs and creating an artificial conflict with the United States.

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