Thursday, April 27, 2006
Chavez Watch: What's he up to now?
Two things, actually. First, he's increasing the 'rubbing-your-nose-in-it' cut price oil programme to deprived areas of the US, and he's withdrawn Venezuela from the Andean Community of Nations trade bloc. This second development is overtly targeted at those countries within the bloc (Peru and Columbia in particular, it appears) that have strengthened ties with the US. He really doesn't like the USA, this guy. I'm concerned he might push it too far. It's populist, yes, and it is defining. It's also principled, which is admirable. Indeed, it is defensible, given Venezuela's position of strength, particularly with the price of oil at $75 a barrel. But is it perhaps lowering himself to the standards of the White House by pursuing such anti-Americanism with such vigour?