The Miami Herald
Oscar Haza, a well known Miami Spanish-language broadcast journalist and anchor, scored an interview this week in Washington with President Barack Obama in which Obama said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez has not posed a “serious” national security threat to the United States…
…Haza asked about the alliance between Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and Iran.
“We’re always concerned about Iran engaging in destabilizing activity around the globe. But overall my sense is that what Mr. Chávez has done over the last several years has not had a serious national security impact on us,” Obama said. “We have to vigilant. My main concern when it comes to Venezuela is having the Venezuelan people have a voice in their affairs, and that you end up ultimately having fair and free elections, which we don’t always see.”…
The complete article, with video, is at The Miami Herald.
Republicans criticize President Obama for saying Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez has not threatened U.S. national security. The region’s experts, however, side with Obama.
“This is a stunning and shocking comment by the President. It is disturbing to see him downplaying the threat posed to U.S. interests by a regime that openly wishes us ill. Hugo Chavez has provided safe haven to drug kingpins, encouraged regional terrorist organizations that threaten our allies like Colombia, has strengthened military ties with Iran and helped it evade sanctions, and has allowed a Hezbollah presence within his country’s borders. And he is seeking to lead – together with the Castros – a destabilizing, anti-democratic, and anti-American ‘Bolivarian Revolution’ across Latin America. President Obama’s remarks continue a pattern of weakness in his foreign policy, one that has emboldened adversaries and diminished U.S. influence in every region of the world. As president, I will speak clearly and resolutely on the challenges we face so that both our allies and our adversaries will know where we stand.”
President Obama’s statement was made in a response to a question about Iran’s relationship with Chavez…