Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Venezuelan Blasts President Chavez

Above, Cuba's Fidel Castro, left, embraces Venezuelan Pres. Hugo Chavez.

Editor’s note: Fearing for her family’s safety in Venezuela, the author has asked that only her first name be used.

By Jackie
A Venezuelan living abroad

Hugo Chavez believes that Cuba lives in the "sea of happiness" and wants to transport those ideas of "revolutionary democracy" -not communism according to him- into Venezuela. In the meantime, people die in Caracas because they don't have oxygen, but he spent $256 million in a live program from Cuba that lasted 6 hours, just talking.

To gain the support of other leaders in the region, he keeps signing agreements, buying products from other countries, and in his country people are in extreme poverty. He said it is good to be poor, and the "solutions" are only temporary things that don't really solve problems.

For the past years, he's been saying that U.S.A. is trying to kill him, and yet he has never met President Bush face to face. He's pissed he is not recognized as a president by the White House.

And his friendship with Fidel Castro is very strong: He sends to Cuba 95,000 oil barrels a day, with much lower prices (which Castro hasn't paid). In exchange, Castro sent medical doctors to Venezuela, to teach the marvels of Cuba. The only thing is that many of those doctors have escaped from Venezuela to Miami searching for asylum.

On top of that, Chavez has control of ALL the powers in the country, specially the electoral institution that cheated everybody with fixed machines that allowed only up to certain number of votes to be against him. There is a very high level of corruption, and the crime indexes are the highest in history, as well as emigration. Everybody that can is leaving or left already.

So, what do I think of the man that divided the people and is destroying the country where I was born? I'm not saying that Pat Robertson was right, but it is a thought. I hope somehow that Chavez will get his punishment, and people in Venezuela will get to have a better country when the oil is still producing a lot of money.

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Thursday, August 25, 2005

Robertson Apologizes for Chavez Remarks

Above, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a clergyman who died for his resistance to the Nazis.

By Lisa Haddock
NJ Faith Forum Editor

After igniting a firestorm of controversy, "700 Club" host Pat Robertson apologized for his remarks about Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, CNN reported. On Monday's (Aug. 22) broadcast of the "700 Club" Robertson said: "We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability."

On Wednesday's (Aug. 24) "700 Club," Robertson tried to spin his comments. "I didn't say 'assassination.' I said our special forces should 'take him out.' And 'take him out' can be a number of things, including kidnapping; there are a number of ways to take out a dictator from power besides killing him. I was misinterpreted by the AP [Associated Press], but that happens all the time," the broadcaster said.

But later on Wednesday, Robertson owned up to his words. "Is it right to call for assassination? No, and I apologize for that statement," he said. "I spoke in frustration that we should accommodate the man who thinks the U.S. is out to kill him."

On his Web site, Robertson clarified his comments. He asserted that it is morally right to assassinate -- under the right circumstances. Robertson pointed to the example German theologian and Lutheran pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who took part in a plot to kill Adolf Hitler. Bonhoeffer, who was executed by the Nazis, is revered as a martyr and hero by many Christians.

Read the CNN story.

Read Robertson's Robertson's clarification.
Read U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum article about Bonhoeffer.
Read Wikipedia article.
Read Summation of Bonhoeffer’s ethics and philosophy.
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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Pat Robertson Stands His Ground

The Rev. Pat Robertson -- a conservative Christian broadcaster and former U.S. presidential candidate -- continues to lambaste President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela.

Read story on Robertson's Web site, Christian Broadcasting Network.

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Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Robertson Calls for Political Assassination

By Lisa Haddock
NJ Faith Forum Editor

Is this the equivalent of a Christian fatwa*?

The Rev. Pat Robertson has called for the assassination of Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.

"We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability," the conservative Christian broadcaster stated during Monday's (Aug. 22) broadcast of "The 700 Club."

Chavez has close ties to Cuban Communist leader Fidel Castro. Robertson said that Chavez will turn Venezuela into "a launching pad for Communist infiltration and Muslim extremism all over the continent."

Bernardo Alvarez, Venezuela's ambassador to the U.S., stated: "Mr. Robertson´s call that U.S. government covert operatives murder President Hugo Chavez is a call to terrorism."

Read story on CNN
Read story on Robertson's Christian Broadcasting Network
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*Note: A fatwa is a ruling by a Muslim authority. It can apply to any issue. It is not a death sentence.