With our ongoing military engagement in Afghanistan, Syria on the verge of civil war, and the real possibility of an Israeli strike against Iran some time this year, could President Obama seriously be considering aiding the overthrow of the Venezuelan government if Hugo Chavez kicks the bucket? Fidel Castro seems to think so:
I, for one, do not hesitate in stating my modest opinion – which emanates from more than half a century of struggle – that the oligarchy will never again be able to govern that country. That is the reason why the U.S. government’s decision to promote the overthrow of the Bolivarian government under such circumstances becomes a source of concern.
Moreover, to insist on a slanderous campaign stating that among the top leadership of the Bolivarian government there is a desperate quarrel to assume command of the revolutionary government if the President is not able to overcome his illness, is tantamount to constructing a crude lie.
On the contrary, I have been able to see the closest unity among the leaders of the Bolivarian Revolution.
Under such circumstances, any mistake made by Obama could provoke rivers of blood in Venezuela.
Put me down as highly skeptical, and not just because of the source. With elections scheduled for later this year I suppose some political upheaval in Venezuela is possible, especially if Chavez dies at a critical point leading up to the election. But it seems a pretty safe bet that President Obama is not going to involve the U.S. in overthrowing the remnants of Chavez’s regime, even indirectly. Recall his approach to the constitutional crisis in Honduras early on in his term when he came out very strongly against what he deemed an illegal coup attempt, and pushed (unsuccessfully) for the reinstatement of the leftist Zelaya as president. No, Obama is too invested in his “pro-democracy” posturing in Latin America, even when the elections are rigged, and regardless of whether leftist forces are advancing throughout the continent as a result. Some might argue that this has been his goal all along. In any case, I don’t think Castro has much to worry about.