Foreign Policy Blogs

Venezuela as the New Arms Dealer on the Block?

In the past few years we have seen Venezuela as an arms recipient, but does it now qualify as an arms dealer? In late September the Chávez administration donated six combat airplanes to Ecuador.

Despite the weapons transfer, relations between Colombia and Ecuador appear to be on the mend, with talks about the resumption of diplomatic relations. The Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa remains a realist, however, stating that his country is “always going to watch its back”.

Arms sales and transfers remain tricky business. Once upon a time, Venezuela itself purchased the bulk of its weapons systems from the United States. This rings a bell – the US selling arms that can later be turned against its own forces (see, most recently, Iraq and Afghanistan).



David D. Sussman

David D. Sussman is currently a PhD Candidate at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (Tufts University), in Boston, Massachusetts. Serving as a fellow at the Feinstein International Center, he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study the lives of Colombian refugees and economic migrants in Caracas, Venezuela. David has worked on a variety of migrant issues that include the health of displaced persons, domestic resettlement of refugees, and structured labor-migration programs. He holds a Masters in International Relations from the Fletcher School, where he studied the integration of Somali and Salvadoran immigrants. David has a B.A. from Dartmouth College and is fluent in Spanish. He has lived in Colombia, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico and Venezuela, and also traveled throughout Latin America. In his free time David enjoys reading up on international news, playing soccer, cooking arepas, and dancing salsa casino. Areas of Focus: Latin America; Migration; Venezuela.