Washington's Chavez dilemma
return to power is both an embarrassment and an annoyance for the United
populist has frequently angered Washington and his fall from power on
Friday was welcomed by the White House.
Bush's official spokesman, Ari Fleischer, said on Friday that Mr Chavez
had been the author of his own downfall.
that the action encouraged by the Chavez government provoked this
crisis," said Mr Fleischer.
supporters, on orders from the Chavez government, suppressed peaceful
comments put the Bush administration at odds with most other countries on
the continent, and left many Latin American nations wondering if
Washington had a different approach to democracy depending on whether or
not they liked the leader.
Washington most certainly does not like Hugo Chavez, the CIA - which in
the past has had its fingerprints on other coups in the Americas, most
notably in Guatemala in 1954 and Chile in 1973 - does not, at this stage
at least, appear to have had any role in the Venezuelan upheaval.
has angered the United States many times.
relationship with Cuban leader Fidel Castro, long the bane of successive
American administrations, is in Mr Chavez's case arguably the least of his
He has paid
highly controversial visits to Libya and Iraq, becoming the first foreign
leader since the Gulf War in 1991 to travel to Baghdad.
neutral stance on the FARC insurgency in Colombia has also annoyed
dramatic return to power has put the Bush administration onto the back
security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, urged Mr Chavez to use his new
opportunity to reconsider his policies.
he takes advantage of this opportunity to right his own ship which has
been moving in the wrong direction frankly for quite a long time,"
said Ms Rice.
for Washington is that it has no choice but to develop some sort of
relationship with Mr Chavez.
the third largest supplier of oil to the United States, responsible for
about 13% of all US imports, and the situation in the Middle East - with
its potential to disrupt even more crucial American oil supplies - puts Mr
Chavez in a strong position.
FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Global Action on Aging distributes this material without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. We believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C § 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.