Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Del WSJ de hoy:

Axis of Hugo

Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chávez is on a two-week tour du monde that began with a visit to Che Guevara's boyhood home in Argentina and will, after several stops, reach a climax alongside Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran. This is more than just an itinerary; it's a kind of AAA guide through the world's rogue regimes and anti-Americans.

So it was no surprise that in London Mr. Chávez skipped Tony Blair. Instead, he paid a visit to London Mayor "Red Ken" Livingstone, an ostensible progressive who finds common ground with firebrand Islamist clerics. Next up was scenic Belarus, the last full-blown dictatorship in Europe, which Mr. Chávez praised as a "model of a social state." Then on to Moscow, where he plans to squander his country's oil wealth on 30 advanced jet fighters and a license to build Kalashnikov assault rifles back home. Mr. Chávez has publicly fantasized about using the fighters to take out a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Caribbean. That's implausible, given how the U.S. would respond if he tried. But Venezuela's neighbors have plenty to fear from his Kalashnikovs.

As for Iran, this will be Mr. Chávez's fifth visit. Maybe he likes the food. Already Caracas and Tehran have cemented an alliance that goes beyond anti-American posturing and oil politics to include military exchanges, according to press reports. Who knows where the madcap Venezuelan will turn up next, but we'll lay odds that Zimbabwe, Burma and North Korea are all high on his 50-dictatorships-to-see-before-I'm-deposed" list.


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