May 25, 2008


Mr. Chávez’s Unsavory Friends (NY Times, 5/265/08)

President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela has been caught. Despite his protestations of innocence, Interpol has corroborated the authenticity of thousands of computer files captured during a Colombian Army raid on a FARC rebel camp in Venezuela. Only a small share of this trove has been released, but it leaves little doubt that Venezuela has been aiding the guerrillas’ effort to overthrow Colombia’s democratically elected government.

The Colombian government released documents from the computers that suggest Venezuelan intelligence officials tried to secure weapons for the FARC and that Mr. Chávez’s government offered the rebels oil and a $250 million loan. Information in the files has already led to the seizure of FARC funds in Costa Rica. [...]

Responsibility means that Mr. Chávez must halt all aid to the FARC — which long ago chose drug trafficking over political liberation — and use his influence to get the rebels to lay down their arms and join the demobilization process that is under way for Colombia’s right-wing paramilitary groups.

Odd that these files don't impose responsibilities on FARC's other friends, Obama And FARC (INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY, March 07, 2008)
The March 1 death strike by the Colombian army against FARC warlord Raul Reyes broke open a trove of contacts in his computer. So why did the name of Barack Obama turn up there? [...]

[T]he little Obama reference within the 15 FARC letters released by the Colombian government signals a disturbing pattern of contacts with rogue actors. It's not the first time, and Obama has yet to distance himself.

In a Feb. 28 letter, FARC chieftain Raul Reyes cheerily reported to his inner circle that he met "two gringos" who assured him "the new president of their country will be Obama and that they are interested in your compatriots. Obama will not support 'Plan Colombia' nor will he sign the TLC (Free Trade Agreement)."

Aside from some interesting possibilities about who these "gringos" are — a congressional delegation did visit Ecuador and an international leftist "congress" was held in Quito around this time — the real question is why anyone secretly consorting with FARC would be able to speak for presidential candidate Obama.

Obama hasn't said a whole lot about Colombia other than to criticize President Bush's good relations with President Uribe.

A FARC Fan's Notes (Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2008)
A hard drive recovered from the computer of a killed Colombian guerrilla has offered more insights into the opposition of House Democrats to the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement.

A military strike three weeks ago killed Raúl Reyes, No. 2 in command of the FARC, Colombia's most notorious terrorist group. The Reyes hard drive reveals an ardent effort to do business directly with the FARC by Congressman James McGovern (D., Mass.), a leading opponent of the free-trade deal. Mr. McGovern has been working with an American go-between, who has been offering the rebels help in undermining Colombia's elected and popular government.

We need not conclude that there's overmuch collusion amongst the parties, but you can't help but note that FARC, Hugo and the Democrats share a common hatred of our Colombian ally. Well, actually, if you're a Timesman you can help it.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 25, 2008 8:50 AM

Hmmm. Is there anyone ELSE out there that FARC, Hugo, and the Democrats..... and the Euro-leftists mentioned on the same computers.... and the Iranians and North Koreans that Hugo chums around with..... share a common hatred of?

Thinking.... thinking....

Posted by: Andrew X at May 25, 2008 9:16 AM

Perhaps some who recoil from the name, "folk-enemy," may begin to understand.

Posted by: Lou Gots at May 25, 2008 6:07 PM

When I read your phrase "folk enemy", I think of Pete Seeger singing "This land is our land". Very apt description.

Posted by: h-man at May 26, 2008 6:35 AM