Global Security Watch-- Venezuela

Global Security Watch-- Venezuela

Global Security Watch-- Venezuela

Global Security Watch-- Venezuela

Synopsis

This in-depth study provides a timely assessment of how the foreign, military, and security policies of Venezuela shape relations with the United States in the Chavez era.

Excerpt

As I completed the manuscript for this book in February 2012, Venezuelan politics, as well as the country’s role in the world, seemed to be entering a period of uncertainly, high even by standards of the last 25 years, when one political regime collapsed and a new one strove to consolidate itself. First, the opposition to President Hugo Chávez, often its own worst enemy, held a presidential election primary and united behind the winner, Henrique Capriles Radonski, governor of an important state near the capital. Capriles put forth an image of a young, new-generation politician and set out on a strategy aimed at convincing voters in poor areas that he would improve, not dismantle, the social programs that have significantly improved their lives during the Chávez era. Popular dissatisfaction with the crime rate and several other key governance issues suggested such a strategy might yield enough votes that, combined with the solidly anti-Chávez middle class, Capriles could win in the October 7 election.

However, polls right after the primary showed a strong lead for President Chávez. Then, at the end of February, came another wildcard—the announcement by Chávez that he would return to Cuba to undergo another operation for a cancerous lesion, despite his earlier assurances that he had been cured of cancer. Once again observers wondered whether he would be healthy enough to campaign vigorously. If his health declined or he passed away, could his party unify around a successor—with no clear choice on the horizon?

And there were at least two other wildcards to consider: (1) the outcome of the U.S. elections in November and (2) the impact of events in the Middle East. Already, Republican control of the House of Representatives had delivered control of key foreign relations committees to fiercely anti-Chávez politicians. Control of the Senate and/or the presidency would increase their leverage to ratchet up sanctions against Chávez. In the Middle East, the uprising in Syria and the prospect . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.