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  • Nicolas Maduro

    Venezuela: The Wrong President Takes Office

    There is good reason to believe that Nicolas Maduro is not the legitimate president of Venezuela. Nonetheless Maduro was sworn into office on April 19 as Hugo Chavez’s handpicked successor after winning a tight presidential contest days before. In the April 14 election, Maduro claimed a narrow majority—235,000 votes out … More

    Despite Victory Claim, Big Setback for Chavismo in Venezuela

    On April 14, some 14.8 million Venezuelans went to the polls to select a new president to replace Hugo Chavez, who died on March 5. By the narrowest of margins—reportedly fewer than 235,000 votes—it appears that Nicolas Maduro, candidate of Chavez’s United Socialist Party (PSUV), defeated opposition leader Henrique Capriles … More

    Venezuela Presidential Election: Continuing the Chavez Decline

    Voters go to the polls on Sunday, April 14, to elect Venezuela’s next president. Snap elections followed the March 5 death of the authoritarian populist Hugo Chavez. It appears likely that voters will choose Nicolas Maduro, interim president, and Chavez’s handpicked successor, over opposition candidate Henrique Capriles. A dying Chavez … More

    Beware of Venezuela’s Paranoid Anti-Americanism

    Two weeks after the death of President Hugo Chavez from cancer, Venezuela’s interim chief and Chavista presidential candidate Nicolas Maduro is increasingly resorting to wild, paranoid, anti-American outbursts in an effort to convince Venezuelans he has the machismo needed to fill El Commandante’s boots. Following initial claims that the U.S. … More

    Who Killed Hugo Chávez? Why Not Ask Raul Castro and Michael Moore?

    Today, Venezuela will hold the official state funeral for Hugo Chávez. Already, ceremonies in honor of El Comandante are well underway. On Wednesday, a caravan carried Chávez’s body along a seven-hour-long procession through the streets of Caracas. The flag-draped coffin was laid in state at the military academy where he … More

    Morning Bell: Why the Death of Hugo Chavez Matters

    Tears streamed down the face of Venezuelan Vice President Nicolas Maduro yesterday as he announced that longtime Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez was dead. The news likely came as a surprise to no one—Chavez had been battling cancer for years and was long thought to be on his deathbed. In fact, … More

    Reckless and Outrageous: Chavez Heir Accuses U.S. of Murder

    The government of Venezuela has announced that Hugo Chavez died this afternoon. His death was not unexpected. What is unexpected is what occurred earlier today. Vice President Nicolas Maduro—Chavez’s heir apparent—informed a televised audience that Chavez was the victim of an attack by his enemies. “We have not a single … More

    Cuba: Raul Castro Is Out-Punching the U.S.

    A gaggle of democratic states gathered in Santiago, Chile, in late January handed over leadership of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Nations to Cuba for the coming year. The whitewash of Cuba’s abominable human rights and personal freedom record was quickly noted. The Santiago conclave started what has … More

    Waiting for Hugo Chavez: Theatrics and a Languishing Economy

    It has now been two months since Venezuela President Hugo Chavez departed Miraflores Palace (Venezuela’s White House) to undergo cancer surgery in Havana, Cuba. Very little is known about Chavez’s health. So far the only proof of life presented by senior officials are reported visits to the hospital where Chavez … More

    Chavez’s Swearing-In No Show: Dispensing with a Constitutional “Formality”

    According to Venezuela’s constitution, Hugo Chavez—elected president for an unprecedented fourth term in October 2012—must be sworn in as president on January 10, but it will not happen. Like so many constitutional principles in Venezuela, this requirement, according to Vice President Nicolas Maduro, is just a “formality.” Never mind the … More