Latin leftist leaders in love-in with Libyan lunatic

Venezuelan President Hugo Ch├ívez expressed his support for embattled Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi in a Twitter post Feb. 25: “Long live Libya and its independence! Qaddafi is facing a civil war!” The Tweet was immediately protested by Venezuela’s opposition, which is also demanding that Qaddafi return a replica of independence hero Sim├│n Bol├şvar’s sword that Ch├ívez decorated him with when he hosted the Libyan in 2009.

Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro made it clear the government will not request return of the sword. In a statement in response to the demand, he said that Qaddafi “helped consolidate vital organizations that fought for the economic independence of the peoples of the south, he has been vital for the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, he has played a fundamental role in the consolidation of the Non-Aligned Movement and his participation was decisive for the construction of the Arab League.” He added that Venezuela wants Libya to preserve ‘its national unity and for the civil war to stop. We stand for the independence, the peace and the sovereignty of the Libyan people.” (DPA, Feb. 25)

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega also voiced his solidarity with Qaddafi, writing on the presidential website Feb. 21 that he had communicated by phone with the Libyan ruler. Speaking at an event honoring Nicaraguan revolutionary Augusto Cesar Sandino, Ortega said Qaddafi is “waging a great battle, seeking dialogue but defending the integrity of the nation.” He darkly suggested that “all types of conspiracies exist” against Libya.

Ortega was awarded the al-Gaddafi International Prize for Human Rights in 2009, a Libyan award named for the country’s leader. Other Latin American leaders to win the award are Hugo Ch├ívez (2004), Evo Morales (2000) and Fidel Castro (1998). Last week, Libya forgave some $200 million of Nicaraguan debt.

Marcos Carmona, director of Nicaragua’s Permanent Human Rights Commission (CPDH), protested Ortega’s statement, warning that a genocide may be underway in Libya. He accused Ortega of a “double discourse” for having supported the Egyptian protesters while now closing ranks with the Libyan dictator.

Cuba’s veteran leader Fidel Castro on Feb. 21 issued a statement that stopped short of outright support for Qaddafi, but expressed skepticism at the massacre reports and warned of NATO intervention in Libya. In Bolivia, Evo Morales only said that he called on Qaddafi to let the Libyan “people” find a peaceful resolution to the crisis.

On the other side of the coin, President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia (the hemisphere’s worst human rights abuser) spoke out on the Libyan repression, Tweeting: “What is happening in Libya is unacceptable. We condemn the way the population of this country is acted against.”

The governments of Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Costa Rica have all demanded a halt to the repression in Libya. (Colombia Reports, Feb. 25; Nuevo Diario, Managua; Tico Times, Costa Rica, Feb. 24; La Naci├│n, Buenos Aires, Feb. 23)

See our last post on the Libyan crisis.

Please leave a tip or answer the Exit Poll.

  1. The Enemy of My Enemy is My friend
    I think this should show leftists the futility of aligning ourselves with any government anywhere. This is the logic of states. Strategic alliances and the principle of the enemy of my enemy is my friend is their guiding principle. They could care less about freedom and democracy. Chavez and the like have always reminded me of the cleavage between those who sympathized with the Bolsheviks at the time versus their detractors on the left. The left was so hopeful that there was this real world alternative operating, that they threw themselves at the feet of the Bolsheviks. It had disastrous consequences. Instead of going in a more libertarian direction, the left was caught in dogmatic Marxism. It seems to me we are on that same path of trying the same old top-down forms of power and trying to emulate the politics of distant revolutionaries. The left needs to move beyond social democracy on the one hand as well as nationalist state development on the other. Maybe the current rebellions in the middle-east can have some influence if they move beyond merely calling for liberal democracy. One of theses days maybe the Zapatistas and the Mexican people can topple their government. We can always hope. Or maybe, just maybe, here in the States.

    1. chavez et al/ghadaffi
      You’re confusing Bolshevism with Stalinism. The Stalinist counterrevolution specifically targeted the actual revolutionaries–the Bolsheviks–for political genocide. Of course, the symbols and heroes of the Russian Revolution were retained to lend credibility to the very people who killed the RR:

      http://www.wsws.org/articles/2005/aug2005/le1-all.shtml

      Also, see David North’s “In Defense of the Russian Revolution.”

      As for Chavez–who has nothing in common with the Bolsheviks–and his ilk:

      http://www.wsws.org/articles/1998/jan1998/cast-j07.shtml

  2. What is the story with Mathaba.net?
    In addition to running stories like “Jewish Mega Financier Billionaire George Soros Driving Unrest in Arab World,” it also presents more quotes on the Libyan mess from Hugo Ch├ívez in a story dubbed “Chavez denounces international community’s double standards and rejects intervention in Libya.” But the text reads like it was translated by Babelfish and then not cleaned up afterwards:

    “Those who condemn Libya immediately to make exits with the bombing of the State of Israel on Fallujah, and thousands and thousands of deaths including children, women, families, they remain silent with the bombing and the massacres in Iraq, Afghanistan, they have no morals then to condemn anyone,” said the head of state who made a vow because Libya will find its way through peaceful means.

    “We condemn the violence, imperialism, interventionism,” he added.

    As we’ve stated before, decrying the double standard is one thing, and wholly legitimate. Using it as an excuse to justify atrocities is another, and dishonest propaganda. Ch├ívez should make his point a little clearer.