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    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

    Heritage Analysts: What We Saw in Venezuela

    The situation encountered by Heritage analysts on the ground in Venezuela last week was of a country that has been looted and is falling apart—literally and figuratively. The once thriving nightlife of downtown Caracas is but a distant memory. These days the streets are deserted, surrendered to gangsters and narcotraffickers. … More

    U.N. General Assembly Adopts the Arms Trade Treaty

    This morning, by a vote of 154 nations in favor (including the United States), 23 abstentions, and three against (Syria, North Korea, and Iran), the U.N. General Assembly adopted the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The treaty will be open for national signature on June 3, 2013, and will enter into … More

    Venezuela Tries to Weaken Human Rights Watchdog

    A group of populist Latin American states—led by Bolivia, Ecuador, and Venezuela—hopes to reduce the role of an international human rights commission and watchdog. These radical states aim to weaken the commission because it goes against their political ambitions, as it entails scrutiny and judgments of human rights violations by … More

    The Arms Trade Treaty, Week Two: The Ways It Might Fail

    In New York, the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) conference is entering its final phase, and the ways in which the negotiations might fail are becoming clearer. A large number of nations—mainly the Middle East but also Bangladesh, Cuba, North Korea, Venezuela, Zimbabwe, and others—are not going to get much of … 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

    Post-Chávez, Caribbean Should Snub PetroCaribe

    As some Venezuelans mourn the death of populist President Hugo Chávez, their northern neighbors in the Caribbean Basin shouldn’t shed a tear. In 2005, members of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) sold out on free markets for the price of Chávez’s oil diplomacy by signing up for PetroCaribe, a financing agreement … 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