Foreign Policy Blogs

Tag Archives: Venezuela

FARC Trades Cocaine for Arms from Venezuela

There is evidence that FARC has been trading cocaine for arms brokered by Venezuelan middlemen, entrepreneurs who are, at the same time, supplying weapons to Mexico.

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Front Page Controversy Over Photos in Venezuela

A major Venezuelan newspaper is butting heads with the government over the right to publish graphic photos on their front page. El Nacional, one of the country’s oldest newspapers, has been ordered to stop publishing certain types of photos. According to the Associated Press: A court ordered one of Venezuela’s leading newspapers on Tuesday to […]

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Venezuela’s Own (Gas) Platform Disaster

According to the law of comparative advantage in economics, each country has production advantages in comparison to other states. Venezuela too, has its strengths. It produces more Major League baseball players per capita than most other countries. Along with Puerto Rico, it has won the most Miss Universe crowns over the past two decades. Venezuela […]

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Chavez Takes Up Twitter

This blog does not purport to cover all relevant news that takes place in Venezuela, but instead provides some insight into major issues. Now, however, if you wish to get the latest update straight from President Hugo Chávez you can do so by following his Twitter feed @chavezcandanga. The move appears to be an effort […]

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Venezuela Celebrates Act of Independence Bicentennial

In Venezuela, the date April 19th is known as the “Signing of the Act of Independence”, a major move towards separation from Spain. The full declaration of independence came the next year, on July 5, 1811. This was followed by a decade of bloody battles in which Simón Bolívar rose to fame, finally defeating the […]

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Cuba's challenges, in a nutshell

Cuba's challenges, in a nutshell

The Canadian Foundation for the Americas (FOCAL) puts out two highly relevant electronic publications that readers might find helpful and interesting. One, the Chronicle on Cuba, is a monthly compilation of top news items on Cuba, collected from diverse sources. The other, FOCALPoint: Canada’s Spotlight on the Americas, is a broader look at important current issues […]

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Putin Travels to Venezuela

In another sign of strengthened ties between Venezuela and Russia, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin visited Hugo Chávez on Friday. Together they toured the Kruzenshtern, a Russian ship docked at the Venezuelan port city of La Guiara, and spent time in Miraflores, the equivalent of Venezuela’s White House. While in Caracas the leaders signed agreements to […]

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Energy Crisis Leads to Extended Semana Santa Vacation

This coming Monday Venezuelans will enjoy an entire week off to celebrate Semana Santa (Holy Week) instead of the normal Thursday-Friday break. One might think that in a country where more than 90% of the population is Catholic this would be cause for greater attendance at church. In reality, it will likely mean longer vacations […]

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Internet Restrictions in Venezuela?

President Hugo Chávez wants to place restrictions on the Internet in Venezuela after he criticized negative coverage from Noticiero Digital, a website generally opposing the government. The site had incorrectly reported the assassination of a top government official. Frustration with a false report is understandable. Any broader move to limit news sources, however, appears to […]

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IACHR Issues Strong Critique of Venezuela

Late last month the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) released a lengthy report that described a weakening of democratic freedoms and rights in Venezuela. In its overview, the Commission stated that the country experiences: “political intolerance; the lack of independence of the branches of the State in dealing with the executive; constraints on freedom […]

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Lula, the Squid

Lula, the Squid

In Brazil, nicknames are very common, especially for famous people and even politicians. President Lula da Silva received his nickname when he was  young, since the common nickname for Luiz, his given name, is Lula (similar to calling a person named Robert, Bob). However, given that lula means squid in Portuguese, the president has really […]

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Taking on the Americas

On the heels on the announcement that Latin America is forming a new regional organization without the US and Canada to rival the Organization of American States, it looks like the current Inter-American system is coming under fire. Or at least it is from Venezuela. After the release of a 300 page report by the […]

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Chavez and Uribe Trade Barbs

A private meeting between the Venezuelan and Colombian leaders apparently ended in a shouting match on Monday. They were both attending a Latin American summit in Cancun, Mexico. An already tense discussion appeared to blow up when Chávez raised the issue of Colombian paramilitaries. The explanation of the words used is critical, since the meeting […]

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Government Open to New Contracts with Foreign Oil Companies

Likely a further sign of his government’s economic woes, President Hugo Chávez’s administration is offering oil contracts to foreign companies. The response to the bidding for concessions was not as strong as it has been in the past, as many companies have been burned by Chávez’s expropriation of assets. Still, Chevron and Repsol (of Spain) […]

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Venezuela and Chevron — A Love Story

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Hugo Chavez, President of Venezuela, has changed his mind.  He loves big oil companies after all. The history of Big Oil and Hugo Chavez reads like one of those dysfunctional relationships most of us have at least briefly been involved in: he or she only loves you when they […]

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