March 4, 2008
Charges Mount On Chavez Laundering and Terrorist Ties
I've been interested in Colombia's killing of FARC #2 Raul Reyes and Hugo Chavez's reaction, ever since the story broke. Besides the certainty that Chavez es mucho loco, I've been more than a bit curious as to just why The whacko Venezuelan president would be so emotionally charged over the killing of a terrorist in a country that's not even his. Fortunately, along came Aaron Mannes in NRO and his piece on FARC, Chavez, & Colombia:
The Colombian government's successful killing of Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) number-two Raul Reyes is an important victory in Colombia's 44-year war with the narco-terrorists. Perhaps more significantly, the Colombian government's ability to target the FARC will be substantially augmented by the computers captured from Reyes's base. Advantages aside, however, the killing of Reyes and the contents of his hard drives have sparked a major diplomatic spat that has important regional implications.Readers will find each of the four possibilities given by Mannes is highly likely, and I believe that there is some truth in all four.
The attack took place on March 1 about a mile and a half inside of Ecuadorian territory. Ecuador's government was perturbed by this violation of their sovereignty, but the Colombian government apologized and the official Ecuadorian government reaction was subdued.
It was Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez who loudly and undiplomatically condemned Colombia's President Uribe calling him a mafia chief, a criminal, and -- the most offensive insult Chavez can level -- an oligarch. He also called Colombia the Israel of Latin America (such sentiments are de rigueur for Chavistas). Chavez stated that similar attacks in Venezuela would be an act of war, and ordered ten battalions to the Colombian border. After its initially mild reaction, Ecuador followed suit, mobilizing troops and, in like fashion, expelling Colombian diplomats. But if it was Ecuadorian sovereignty that was violated, why is Chavez taking the lead in bashing Colombia?
However, it's Mannes' fourth possibility that I find most spot on - Hugo es loco, which brings us to bigger problem. Via Jonathan Winer at Counterterrorism Blog - Growing International Free-For-All, As Charges Mount On Chavez Laundering and Terrorist Ties, we learn that there has been startling new information emerge publiclly about alleged Venezuelan support for terrorist groups, laundering of political funds, and possible efforts on the part of the Colombian terrorist group FARC to build a dirty bomb:
Given the allegations that the captured FARC computers showed financial support to FARC from Chavez, and Chavez himself expressing sympathy and support for Reyes and his efforts, there's an obvious question about what role if any Venezuela may have played in whatever efforts FARC made to acquire nuclear material for a dirty bomb. Information relevant to that issue may exist in the hard drives of the FARC computers seized by Colombia in connection with the raid that killed Reyes.Apparently, Mucho Loco Hugo has been up to much more no-good than just cuddling up to Iran's madman A-jad.
... this shocker at Time : Colombia says some documents suggest the rebels have bought and sold uranium ...
"When they mention negotiations for 50 kilos of uranium this means that the FARC are taking big steps in the world of terrorism to become a global aggressor. We're not talking of domestic guerrilla but transnational terrorism," Gen. Oscar Naranjo said at an explosive news conference.
Cross posted from Hyscience
Posted by Richard at March 4, 2008 8:30 PM