How much damage will this administration do to the world before it is stopped? : LUSENET : Unk's Troll-free Private Saloon : One Thread

April 16, 2002

Bush Officials Met With Venezuelans Who Ousted Leader


ASHINGTON, April 15 — Senior members of the Bush administration met several times in recent months with leaders of a coalition that ousted the Venezuelan president, Hugo Chávez, for two days last weekend, and agreed with them that he should be removed from office, administration officials said today.

But administration officials gave conflicting accounts of what the United States told those opponents of Mr. Chávez about acceptable ways of ousting him.

One senior official involved in the discussions insisted that the Venezuelans use constitutional means, like a referendum, to effect an overthrow.

"They came here to complain," the official said, referring to the anti-Chávez group. "Our message was very clear: there are constitutional processes. We did not even wink at anyone."

But a Defense Department official who is involved in the development of policy toward Venezuela said the administration's message was less categorical.

"We were not discouraging people," the official said. "We were sending informal, subtle signals that we don't like this guy. We didn't say, `No, don't you dare,' and we weren't advocates saying, `Here's some arms; we'll help you overthrow this guy.' We were not doing that."

The disclosures come as rights advocates, Latin American diplomats and others accuse the administration of having turned a blind eye to coup plotting activities, or even encouraged the people who temporarily removed Mr. Chávez. Such actions would place the United States at odds with its fellow members of the Organization of American States, whose charter condemns the overthrow of democratically elected governments.

In the immediate aftermath of the ouster, the White House spokesman, Ari Fleischer, suggested that the administration was pleased that Mr. Chávez was gone. "The government suppressed what was a peaceful demonstration of the people," Mr. Fleischer said, which "led very quickly to a combustible situation in which Chávez resigned."

That statement contrasted with a clear stand by other nations in the hemisphere, which all condemned the removal of a democratically elected leader.

Mr. Chávez has made himself very unpopular with the Bush administration with his pro-Cuban stance and mouthing of revolutionary slogans — and, most recently, by threatening the independence of Venezuela's state-owned oil company, Petróleos de Venezuela, the third-largest foreign supplier of American oil.

Whether or not the administration knew about the pending action against Mr. Chávez, critics note that it was slow to condemn the overthrow and that it still refuses to acknowledge that a coup even took place.

One result, according to the critics, is that in its zeal to rid itself of Mr. Chávez, the administration has damaged its credibility as a chief defender of democratically elected governments. And even though they deny having encouraged Mr. Chávez's ouster, administration officials did not hide their dismay at his restora tion.

Asked whether the administration now recognizes Mr. Chávez as Venezuela's legitimate president, one administration official replied, "He was democratically elected," then added, "Legitimacy is something that is conferred not just by a majority of the voters, however."

A senior administration official said today that the anti-Chávez group had not asked for American backing and that none had been offered. Still, one American diplomat said, Mr. Chávez was so distressed by his opponents' lobbying in Washington that he sent officials from his government to plead his case there.

Mr. Chávez returned to power on Sunday, after two days. The Bush administration swiftly laid the blame for the episode on him, pointing out that troops loyal to him had fired on unarmed civilians and wounded more than 100 demonstrators.

Mr. Fleischer, the White House spokesman, stuck to that approach today, saying Mr. Chávez should heed the message of his opponents and reach out to "all the democratic forces in Venezuela."

"The people of Venezuela have sent a clear message to President Chávez that they want both democracy and reform," he said. "The Chávez administration has an opportunity to respond to this message by correcting its course and governing in a fully democratic manner."(this administration should practice what they preach)

On Sunday, President Bush's national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, expressed hopes that Mr. Chávez would deal with his opponents in a less "highhanded fashion."

But to some critics, it was the Bush administration that had displayed arrogance in initially bucking the tide of international condemnation of the action against Mr. Chavez, who was democratically elected in 1998.

Arturo Valenzuela, the Latin America national security aide in the Clinton administration, accused the Bush administration of running roughshod over more than a decade of treaties and agreements for the collective defense of democracy. Since 1990, the United States has repeatedly invoked those agreements at the Organization of American States to help restore democratic rule in such countries as Haiti, Guatemala and Peru.

Mr. Valenzuela, who now heads the Latin American studies department at Georgetown University here, warned that the nations in the region might view the administration's tepid support of Venezuelan democracy as a green light to return to 1960's and 1970's, when power was transferred from coup to coup.

"I think it's a very negative development for the principle of constitutional government in Latin America," Mr. Valenzuela said. "I think it's going to come back and haunt all of us."(like the training of the freedom fighters in Afghanistan is doing now?)

Administration officials insist that they are firmly behind efforts at the Organization of American States to determine what happened in Venezuela and restore democratic rule. (in this administration we have learned that "talk is cheap")The secretary general of the O.A.S., César Gaviria, left today for Caracas, the Venezuelan capital, and the organization is scheduled to meet in Washington on Thursday.

Still, critics say, there were several signs that the administration was too quick to rally around the businessman Pedro Carmona Estanga as Mr. Chávez's successor. (businessman--I'll just bet who he is affiliated with)

One Democratic foreign policy aide complained that the administration, in phone calls to Congress on Friday, reported that Mr. Chávez had resigned, even though officials now concede that they had no evidence of that.

And on Saturday, the administration supported an O.A.S. resolution condemning "the alteration of constitutional order in Venezuela" only after learning that Mr. Chávez had regained control, Latin American diplomats said.

One official said political hard-liners in the administration might have "gone overboard" in proclaiming Mr. Chávez's ouster before the dust settled.

The official said there were competing impulses within the administration, signaling a disagreement on the extent of trouble posed by Mr. Chávez, who has thumbed his nose at American officials by maintaining ties with Cuba, Libya and Iraq.

-- Cherri (whatever@who.cares), April 16, 2002


You like Hugo? Don't tell me that that's not the point and that some etherial utopian vision of democracy however defiled must rule. Just answer. You like Hugo? How would you like a Hugo running our show? Oh, nevermind.

-- Carlos (, April 16, 2002.

yeah, yeah it's "eal".

-- Carlos (, April 17, 2002.

Doesn't matter if I like him or not, I'm not KING (queen) of the world, and Georgie boy and his minions aren't either.

According to the administrations view, if we don't like who was "voted" in in our country, then we can pull a coup and get him out also.

Hmmm...if only....

-- Cherri (whatever@who.cares), April 17, 2002.

Just another NWO plot that backfired. They are persistent though, and their goal will be achieved. Probably won't be long before Chavez is assassinated and Dubya "helps them find a new Democratic leader" (translation: "appoints a new Fascist Dictator").

-- (NWO making @ another. oil grab), April 17, 2002.

Cherri you can't have it both ways. You supported Clinton's deployments all over the globe, yet Bush can't meet with leaders to discuss possible outcomes. That I don't understand. Oh that's right Bush did this, that's why you find it offensive.

-- Maria (, April 17, 2002.


There are some very major differences between what Clinton did and what Bush is doing. Clinton's foreign policy goals are peace and prosperity throughout the World. Dubya's foreign policy goal is to use Fascism to gain total control of all wealth and resources on the planet.

-- (no@comparison.whatsoever), April 17, 2002.

Come on Maria, I know you have a brain, try to using it.

Cherri you can't have it both ways. You supported Clinton's deployments all over the globe, yet Bush can't meet with leaders to discuss possible outcomes.

Let us see now. Clinton worked for and helped achieve some level of peace in foreign countries. As soon as he was appointed, Bush declared he had no intention of "nation building" i.e. working to achieve peace outside of the United States (or in it either from his actions). He has been forced to get involved with Israel and Palestine. Yet he sent his crew over to bribe and threaten the Taliban, whom his buddies had tried to negotiate with years ago, when they told him they were not interested in the bribes they were offered, he allowed our nation guard down, going completely opposite of what Bill Clinton had done to secure our borders, with horrible results. Meantime, his administration is bombarded by people who were advocating the overthrow of a democratically elected president, he didn't "like" the guy (especially when he threatened 1/3 of our oil supply-bet you didn't know that before you read it above) so the administration jumps up and prematurely declared the dually elected president of said country as overthrown. As has become more common in this administration, it appears they have precognition over certain foreign affairs.

Geeze, they aren't even pretending to let this coup run it's course before they jumped in and declared "their pick" the winner.

As happened in Afghanistan, very little main media coverage about the affairs in Venezuela has been reported. Until the situation appears to turn the way the administration wants it to be.

But the average American is no longer sucking up this pabulum any more, they are getting information outside of the mainstream American media and educating themselves on global affairs.

The spin machines no longer control people's thinking. They have seen too many lies, too many promises broken and the excuse "that's what people do during campaigns, tell people what they want to hear" doesn't excuse it any more.

The administration is trying to continue as if Clinton was never in office. Big mistake. Clinton was too good at what he did and all of the red herrings and screaming over a BJ is getting really, really old.

How about we start getting clarifications about the thinks this current prez is doing to change our lives and global events? Any problem with people who are interested getting the facts that effect them...and will effect them and you for the rest of your life? Like why has one of Washington States small cities water supply been contaminated by arsenic, unusable for consumption? Geeze, how long and how did it happen? Why did it happen now, after the levels were adjusted and federal laws changed allowing arsenic runoff in mines?

How long will you drink water before something like this is finally discovered. Remember when you used to feel safe? Not any more. Those commie left wing hippies made sure there were too many greenie laws interfering with corporation profit and had to be changed! Usually on the sly, with little or no publicity. Certainly not in the "right wing extremist" media in this country. The actions Clinton took while in office are in the archives, it was there all along, it just appears the "liberal mainstream media" chose not to report it at the time, it was more profitable to smear Clinton for years with ultamatly unproven alligations until they finally were handed the BJ.

Which couldn't happen to Bush jr., as it is a well known fact that drunks make lousy lovers **snicker** and from the size of his ego, Bush didn't have much to work with in the first place. Which explains a LOT about his (and those in his administration's)attempt to "rule the world".

Fact is, Bush and this administration have no right, morally or legally to decide who leads other countries in this world.

-- Cherri (whatever@who.cares), April 17, 2002.

Wrong, Pig Woman.

Fact is, this country was saved from further traitorous activities from the White House when Bush was elected. That’s right welfare leach, ELECTED!!

Al Gore and a few thousand welfare niggers couldn’t steal the election so the country was spared from the trailer trash hillbilly’s that stunk-up DC for most of the 90’s.

If you would drag your fat ass away from the keyboard, and get a job instead of slopping at the public trough you might discover a new appreciation for the working folks that pay for your food stamps and whatever other freebee’s you are mooching from the Government.

Tell you what you silly bitch: If you hate Bush so much, why not refuse to take any public assistance until the party of your liking is running the show?

Fat chance of that, huh?

-- Bloated (liberal@loony.bitch), April 17, 2002.

Why do you people even respond to her?

-- Uncle Deedah (, April 17, 2002.

For fun.

-- Carlos (, April 17, 2002.

"Why do you people even respond to her?"

Because she is one of the few people on this forum who can actually produce a topic that is worthy of a response. The pugs are all brain dead, they still can't get over the thought of Clinton getting a hummer.

-- (repugs@sponge.brains), April 18, 2002.

Let me guess who the 'other' one is.

-- Send (mo@money.please), April 18, 2002.

If you thought that was all over a hummer you're as brain dead as you say the "pugs" are.

Clinton lied under oath, a crime for the lowly little people when they do it. And yes, the lie was about sex, but he was being sued in a sexual harrassment case, thus questions about past sexual history are fair least questions about past sexual history are fair game when it is a lowly little person being sued. For the little people who are sued for sexual harrassment the court sorts out whether or not the claims of the plaintiff have merit, not the defendant and his cronies.

But, being as brain dead as a pug, you will never get the distinction.

-- Uncle Deedah (, April 18, 2002.


You're just proving you are a brain dead sponge-brain pug. It's so damn obvious, yet you pugs just don't want to admit it...

Clinton would never have had to lie about his personal business if the pugs had not been sticking their nose into his underwear in the first place.

-- (first@things.first), April 18, 2002.

Nice try.

The "left" was the major driving force behind the enactment of sexual harassment laws. But I guess those laws only apply to "pugs" like Bob Packwood.

-- Uncle Deedah (, April 18, 2002.


Good one Unk! Now you're accusing Clinton of sexual "harassment" when Monica was perfectly willing to do what she did. Typical pug.

-- (showing@true.colors), April 18, 2002.

Boy, you're even dumber than I thought. Monica wasn't suing Clinton, Paula Jones was.

Sheesh, and you think pugs are dumb, LOL.

-- Uncle Deedah (, April 18, 2002.

I believe it was YOU who said...

"If you thought that was all over a hummer you're as brain dead as you say the "pugs" are."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it sure sounds like you were referring to the Monica scandal.

-- lol (yeah@change.stories), April 18, 2002.

Monica was the best thing that ever happened to our friend Bill. So busy was the media chasing Bill & Star around the block they 'forgot' about treason. THE reason missle defense is on top of Bush's list is that thanks to Bill slurping Chinese bucks, and the quid pro quo, Chinese missles can now target unerringly. Maybe that isn't important to you.

-- Carlos (, April 18, 2002.

That ain't what Dumbya says. He says the missile defense system is to protect us from "rogue" nations in his "axis of evil".

We had developed a good peaceful relationship with the Chinese during the Clinton years, but Dumbya has pissed them off in so many different ways that they are now our biggest threat, and no half-assed missile shield is going to stop them.

-- (pay @ attention. Dunceya), April 19, 2002.

Doc, how is Patricia doing?

-- Jack Booted Thug (, April 19, 2002.

The pugs are all brain dead, they still can't get over the thought of Clinton getting a hummer.

Sorry Einstein, it was you who said that. Use that slider thingy and scoll up and see it for yourself.

I was referring to the ENTIRE scandal. You know, that thing you can't grasp, the BIG PICTURE.

-- Uncle Deedah (, April 19, 2002.

Thanks Unk, I liked the exchange; it gave me my morning chuckle. How's the weather in FL?

-- Maria (, April 19, 2002.

There is a line about a splinter and a plank, and eyes in there somewhere...

It cracks me up when the previous and current adminstrations are compared... it is sort of like this:

Do you want a 3rd degree burn over 20% of your body, or an amputation? Please be prompt in your response... (snicker)

Government is government... you get screwed somehow no matter what "party" is in there.

Growlin' at C-Span on the TV...

The Dog

-- The Dog (, April 19, 2002.

**We had developed a good peaceful relationship with the Chinese during the Clinton years, but Dumbya has pissed them off in so many different ways that they are now our biggest threat, and no half- assed missile shield is going to stop them.**

Incoming Chinese missiles that can't be stopped? Do we have a doomer is polly's clothing?

-- (cin@cin.cin), April 19, 2002.


FYI: The missile interceptors are a far cry from being reliable, and the system is not expected to be completed for several more years. By the time it is completed, the speed of the incoming missiles will have been increased to the point where our outdated interceptors still won't be able to hit them. The entire concept is ludicrous, like trying to shoot down a fly with a slingshot. It will never work.

-- (not @ doomer. brainless), April 19, 2002.

And don't even think the HAARP project is meant to protect us.

-- (dumbya@our.enemy), April 20, 2002.

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