Why this Blog?

A place where I can lament the changing times; for eccentric comments on current affairs and for unfashionable views, expressed I hope, in cogent style; also occasional cris de coeur largely concerned, I regret to say, with myself.


I welcome your comments, so do please write. Please note however that all comments are moderated prior to publication. Whilst I fully appreciate that life can be frustrating, nevertheless, abuse, SMS language and illiteracy will not be tolerated!

Tuesday 4 March 2008

Raspberry Beret Update

More news here from the troubled part of South America that includes Colombia, Venezuela and Ecuador.

Readers will recall that the Colombians launched a raid a couple of miles into Ecuadorian territory to attack a FARC guerilla camp. Since then, the two left-wing régimes have moved troops and tanks up to their borders with Colombia.

The article (link above) has some good quotable sections; for example after providing a summary of recent events, the article goes on to say:

"But there is little appetite for armed conflict in the region, despite Chavez's recent purchases of $3 billion in Russian arms, including 53 military helicopters, 100,000 Kalashnikov rifles and 24 SU-30 Sukhoi fighter jets.

The economic costs, to begin with, are far too high.

Too many people depend on cross-border trade worth $5 billion a year, most of it Colombian exports sorely needed by Venezuelans already suffering milk and meat shortages. Ecuador depends on some $1.8 billion in trade with Colombia."

Call me a reactionary cynic if you like but this description of the economic realities is so typical - think East and West Germany, Albania as was or North Korea... And yet, as stated above, Chavez has spent $3 billions on Russian armaments whilst his people have milk and meat shortages: a twerp indeed.

Then there's this:

"According to Colombia's national police director, Gen. Oscar Naranjo, the files seized in Saturday's raid are "tremendously revelatory" and are being examined with the help of U.S. experts.

One document, apparently written in February, suggests Venezuela recently gave the rebels $300 million, while another suggests the rebels were shopping for 50 kilos of uranium, said Naranjo."

$300,000,000? Quite a lot of milk and meat...

For the final extract, a quote from a Venezuelan citizen:

"The rebel presence has made many Venezuelans who live near the border uneasy. Chavez's threats have only made these people more anxious. And war fever seemed absent from the streets of Caracas.

"I hope Chavez isn't thinking about the madness of sending our sons to die in an absurd war with Colombia," said Carmen Arellano, a 41-year-old homemaker. "Chavez wants to fight a war to conceal the social and economic crisis in this country.""

Until the next time

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