The countdown to the final destiny of Venezuela’s de facto dictator Hugo Chávez may well have begun in the high halls of heaven. His grand plan was interrupted prematurely by the totally unscripted heroic deed of Honduras, where the Attorney General, the Supreme Court, the National Congress, and the Military Forces, in an unexpected feat did their duty to perfection (and a little bit beyond, in the latter case).
In a similar way, Adolf Hitler’s grand plan was interrupted prematurely when Britain honored their promise to Poland, and declared war after Nazi Germany invaded the Slavic nation (that coincidentally had financed much of Germany’s “economical miracle” with loans). Hitler’s armament plans were incomplete. He would not have his high seas navy ready until in 1942. The premature start of the war, from his point of view, may have been what caused him to loose it.
We must never forget how popular Hitler was in the 1930’s. It wasn’t until he took Czechoslovakia by betrayal in 1938 that his superstar status started to fade.
In a similar way, Hugo Chávez has gained a superstar status in European press. The warning signs have been ignored or dismissed. When Chávez tried to take over Honduras through his point man Zelaya, and the democratic institutions stopped it, the world sided with Chávez even though he threatened with military force both before and after the deposing of Zelaya. However, the event did offer an indication to Europe that Chávez was not the person they had thought.
Another warning came a month later, when it was discovered (and first reported in Sweden on this blog) that Swedish-made shoulder-fired anti-tank missiles, AT-4, that had been delivered to Venezuela almost 20 years ago had ended up in the hands of the leftist narco-guerilla FARC in Colombia. Within hours, Sweden stopped all weapons exports to Venezuela.
Further alarm was raised when Chávez made a tour to countries such as Syria and Russia, in a bid to acquire tanks, jet fighter planes, medium range missiles, and nuclear technology (from Iran). It became obvious that he was setting the stage for an axis against the usual allies, the U.S., the U.K., and other western democracies; no longer just a Latin American axis from Cuba to Tierra del Fuego, but a global axis that seems to have as only rule that “an enemy of my enemy is my friend”.
Hugo Chávez seems to have a propaganda ministry that is more ambitious and effective than that of Josef Göring himself. His talking points can be read in blogs in virtually all western countries, in many languages. He has to his disposal an international TV news network, Telesur, which is now cooperating with Al Jazeera.
This brings me to the last sign of the impending downfall. These news outlets and their appendages in the blogosphere are peddling totally ludicrous accusations against the U.S. in relation to Haiti. When it came to Honduras they accused the U.S. for the “military coup”, even though (1) the U.S. had informed ahead of time that they would not recognize whoever became president if Zelaya was deposed, and (2) it was no coup since the democratic institutions acted within the constitution in deposing Zelaya. Still, at least the accusation was plausible on its face.
If anybody reading this believes that it could be possible, I can assure you, as a geoscientist, that it is not. You might as well accuse them of having taken down the moon. It is as out-of-this-world lunatic as those who suggest the Antarctic was Atlantis “when it was ice free there 13,000 years ago”. Scientific evidence shows that it has been completely ice covered for 5 million years. Get my point?
So why does Chávez’s ministry of propaganda go out with something so outlandish? I can only think of one explanation: Desperation. The opportunity is starting to slip through his fingers, so he becomes desperate, just like Hitler did.
Yesterday’s demonstration against Chávez in Venezuela illustrates that his days may be counted. The danger is though, that he does something dramatic to hold on to it. This is not the time to let down the guard for that golpista.