Venezuelan Judge Orders Trial for Chávez Foe Helped by U.S.http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/08/international/americas/08venez.html
Hugo Chavez, president of Venezuela, has been purging his national oil industry of political opponents, not least because this has been the central organizing venue for the US campaign to oust him, which culminated in a failed coup.
Chavez, having consolidated power in a smashing referendum victory, now moves to tidy up after the US backed coup foundered.
The article cited mentions trials of the first four of what will no doubt be scores of conspirator (sorry, alleged conspirators…)
The question I wish to raise for debate…
(PRAISE JESUS, SEND DOWN THE CLARITY…_)
If YOU were advising Chavez.
If you were putting your cosiderable geopolitical and analytical skills at his disposal for the advancement of his interests and how he perceives the interests of the Venezualan people,
If you were, say, Ali Rodriguez, Oil Minister and from time to time rotatng chair of the opec market (pricing) committee.
How would you advise him best to use the geopolitical leverage implicit in Venezuela’s oil reserves to counter the increasing Yanqui hostility ?
WITH THAT FRAMEWORK IN MIND, CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING HYPOTHETICAL SET OF FACTS TO BE TRUE:
This morning Chavez (or El Cabillito as I like to call him affectionately…) phoned you and said that Columbian paramilitaries had crossed over the border several times in the previous week, and he was concerned that they were trying to provoke an incident to be a latter day “tonkin gulf” .
As oil minister you have been talking with CNOOC about a dedicated supply contract. That’s where they take all you can pump, and you pump all they can take…
Chavez wants your answer on this question:
Should I try and cut a deal with the US? I can’t win a war against a Columbian proxy, if they are willing to go that far, and they sure are…
But if I cut a deal, I know they won’t keep it unless I get Jorge’s left ball for collateral.
How can I best line up diplomatic and economic partners with enough combined clout to keep Jorge from going up my ass the way he did Saddam, and his daddy did poor old Noriega.
What did those Chinese guys say to you about our deal? What good does it do them to make a deal with me if they let Jorge turn me into an adult movie star at Gitmo.
You gotta work out a thing for us, that if Jorge starts horsing around like he loves to do, they gotta get on the phone and sell the shit outta that country. No, better yet, do this. Cause he’s too stupid to let him dance his ass too far out a a limb you know, cause when he fall’s off he could knock my head on the way down.
We don’t make a deal with the Chinese unless they say OUT FRONT and OUT LOUD, that they gonna sell the shit outta the US if they fuck with me. That way we’ll back his chickenshit ass down like North Korea did, you know. This little pendajo, you gotta let him know who’s boss. He talks big, but he’s gonna get the “oye como va” from me.
He’s gonna jump like a rattler bit the tire on that sissy bike, what’s wrong with him he cant ride a horse like a man?
How will you advise your president?
MY advice, for what it is worth, would be for Chavez to calll a summit of the South American states in opposition to Americsa (Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina(?) Ecuador, together with Indonesia, China (as consumer) France and Germany(as consumers and just for spite), Cuba, (because that beautiful man has been waiting so long for this,) because no one knows the Yanqui like El Caballo, probably Jamaica, (because they are the baddest muthafuckers in the carribean on account of the slave ships put in there first and dumped the surviving worst actors before sailing on with the rest of the “cargo”) and, really, anyone else who wants to buy or sell oil at a fair price, and be able to continue to do so, in peace, without contracting to Halliburton.
At the summit conference , they would discuss mutual security, orderly supply of crude, and cutting loose from the dollar for oil pricing.It would be an “Oil Union”, ie an economic union, of producers and consumers who fear America and who want to put the american military in as tight a box as they can, because that’s the military that will be coming soon to “liberate” a town near you
This would be sort of a “coalition of the unwilling”
If you would give different advice, why? Remember, you are advising Chavez on HIS interests, of which #1 is staying President, cause as an ex president he’s gonna be a dead president.
How would it be in his OR Venezuela’s interest to have any further commercial relations with the US than absolutely necessary?
Could Jorge be rehabilitated? How? If not rehabilitated, could he at least be deterred enough from reneging on a deal so as to make Chavez secure?
Clearly, if Chavez is convinced Bush or his succesors in interest will stab him in the back, he might as well “throw down” big time–that is to say, go for broke in attempting to surround himself with allies, particularly amongst oil producers.
I think China is the wild card. The “indispensible party”, because it has the interest and the means to curtail America’s Freedom of Adventure, so to speak and Venezuela has the oil that China needs.
Oh, by the way. This next part is not hypothetical…
CNOOC has an offer pending to acquire Unocal. And they probably will be buying more US oil companies as time goes on. Gotta do something with those dollars.