Alek Boyd's blog
Venezuelan website La Patilla has published the contract between PDVSA and Williams F1 team (see below), so that chavista Pastor Maldonado could compete in F1. I declare that I am not an expert in these kinds of contracts, but it seems to me that the contract is incredibly slanted in Williams team favour.
Yesterday's news is that Hugo Chavez has gone into some kind of secret agreement with Iran, to build, purportedly, a missile facility out in Paraguaná, an isthmus that sits in front of the Dutch Antilles.
It is rather difficult sometimes to make sense of warfare and political issues in far away lands, though it's always possible to draw parallels with similar historical events in other countries. People in the UK are well acquainted with IRA's form of doing politics: bombings and assassinations targeting innocent civilians, extortions, assaults, in sum, terrorism. So try and picture this for an instant: information pertaining operations, communications, international networks and funds sources belonging to an IRA top commander has been recovered by MI5, in a stint operation in Ireland.
Right on cue, after my article about Juan Manuel Santos being an accomplice of the FARC, the international Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) will launch the dossier "The FARC Files: Venezuela, Ecuador and the Secret Archive of 'Raúl Reyes'" in a few days time, here in London.
Since the assassination of Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, in 1948, Colombia has been suffering from an internal armed conflict. Historically, communist guerrilla movements -such as Colombia's Revolutionary Armed Forces or FARC- have exerted control over much territory, at one point controlling an area that extended to 40% of Colombia. The BBC, not the most objective source of information on issues that expose communism, has reported that 4.6 million people have been displaced in Colombia, due to the conflict between guerrillas and security forces.
In June 2003, the Venezuelan government bought through an intermediary, Omar Montilla Castillo, a 28% participation in a company called Bizta R&D Software C.A. for 300 million Bolivares [link]. Bizta was owned by Antonio Mugica and the late Alfredo Anzola, and was part of a consortium of companies (Smartmatic, Bizta, CANTV or SBC) contracted by Venezuela to automatise elections.
In the latest example of just how utterly fucked up our world is, Libyan tyrant Gadaffi has accepted a 'peace proposal' from his Venezuelan chum Hugo Chavez. Peace, the Venezuelan military dictator will bring. Peace. No, seriously. The man who attempted a military coup against a democratically elected government, causing the deaths of many, is to bring peace to Libya.
The former British Ambassador to Venezuela said: "but Chavez is an incredibly popular figure, is he not?" I must confess, I hate that type of argument. It means little, in my book, given that I am part of that 52% of Venezuelans who are at the receiving end of Chavez's hatred. So I replied: "you give anyone the access to the kind of money that Chavez has got control over, and even a chimpanzee would become incredibly popular." Laughter. Followed by "well, that's true." See, we have had to put up with such comments for too long.
By Walter Molano, BCP Securities, LLC | As Colombia transforms itself into an oasis of prosperity, Venezuela descends deeper into the dungeons of hell. Some academics propose that a country's leadership has a limited impact on a nation's trajectory. They argue that it is more dependent on its natural endowments, social structure as well as random exogenous factors. However, this is not the case with Venezuela.
A few years ago, searches for Venezuela in Google News use to return about 3,000 results. Today, it returns more than 25,000. Alas such explosion of news articles does not mean that objective coverage has increased eight fold. It continues to be lacking. Take for instance news that Hugo Chavez vetoed universities and tax increase laws. Thus far, AP bureau in Caracas sent a wire, from Ian James, that was picked up by the New York Times and Business Week.