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Keep Freedom Alive In South America With Free Trade
Posted By Conn Carroll On February 4, 2008 @ 12:13 pm In International | Comments Disabled
Venezuela President Hugo Chavez continued his ongoing campaign  to undermine the democratic government of Colombia by securing the release of three more hostages  from the terrorist group FARC this weekend. Chavez had surprised leaders world wide last month when he proclaimed that Venezuela now recognizes FARC as a legitimate political actor , and more recently Chavez has amassed 1,200 troops on the Colombian border  in an effort to enforce price controls on daily necessities like milk, rice, and sugar.
Chavez has increased his foreign policy provocations since Venezuelans narrowly rejected his package of constitutional reforms that would have essentially granted him indefinite tenure in office. Chavez increasingly needs headlines from overseas to distract from the rampant inflation in Venezuela and the failure of his price control measures. Reviving the myth of Simon Bolivar’s Gran Colombia  has long been a fixation of Chavez’, and Colombia’s democratic government stands in the way of that dream.
The left in America is playing into to Chavez’ hands by attempting to reject free trade with Colombia . With a rejection of the trade deal, Chavez can portray the US as a fickle trade partner  only concerned with our own domestic interests. Congress should deny Chavez this victory and approve the Colombia trade pact .
Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org
URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2008/02/04/keep-freedom-alive-in-south-america-with-free-trade/
URLs in this post:
 ongoing campaign: http://www.heritage.org/Research/LatinAmerica/wm1784.cfm
 securing the release of three more hostages: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/04/world/americas/04hostage.html?ref=todayspaper&pagewanted=print
 Venezuela now recognizes FARC as a legitimate political actor: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120209345977739855.html?mod=opinion_main_commentaries
 1,200 troops on the Colombian border: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/world/AP/story/388983.html
 myth of Simon Bolivar’s Gran Colombia: http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200605/chavez
 by attempting to reject free trade with Colombia: http://www.sun-sentinel.com/business/sfl-flzcolombiatrade0129sbjan29,0,3449640.story
 approve the Colombia trade pact: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-ed-colombia1feb01,0,439304.story
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