Venezuelan Missile Crisis? Chavez Letting Iran Build Rockets on Coast, German Paper Says

photo by Carlosar via Wikimedia Commons
Following in Fidel's footsteps
Stop us if this sounds familiar: An antagonistic South American strongman invites one of America's worst enemies to build long-range missiles in his country, sending the region -- and damn near the world -- to the brink.

Hugo Chavez apparently would love nothing more than to follow his buddy Fidel down that path. A German newspaper is reporting that Chavez has invited Iranian engineers to start work on a missile base on the Caribbean coast with 20-meter-deep rocket silos. Eeep!

The report by Die Welt, a major Berlin-based daily, cites "Western security sources" in writing that Chavez secretly met in February with the chief of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard's Air Force, Amir al-Hadschisadeh.

The pair finalized a location for the missile base, Die Welt says, on the Peninsula de Paraguana, a jut of land 120 kilometers from the Colombian border. Engineers from the Iranian state-owned construction agency, Khatam al-Anbia, have begun preliminary work on the base.

It's worth noting that most experts believe the base is a bid to make a rudimentary missile defense system for Caracas, and -- unlike Fidel's tet-a-tet with the Soviets -- there won't be any nukes involved. (Neither Venezuela nor Iran have nuclear technology just yet, though Iran is trying.)

Also, Iran's longest missiles can travel about 1500 km -- still short of Miami, which is more than 2,000 kilometers from Venezuela's coast.

But how can you not feel a little queasy at the idea of Mahmood Ahmadinejad building missiles that close to the U.S. -- not to mention our own front yards here in the Magic City?

Let's hope Obama can find a less exciting way to resolve this business than JFK.

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My Voice Nation Help

Lets hope that President Obama has the guts to do something.!!!!

David Blomstrom
David Blomstrom

 Viva Chavez! As the U.S. invades one country after another, the entire world needs to start beefing up its defenses. I just hope Chavez doesn't follow the U.S. lead in adopting terror weapons, like unmanned drones, cluster bombs and white phosphorous. On second thought, unmanned drones might send a message to the war criminals in Washington, D.C.

f b
f b

Not really queasy at all. As long as they aren't nuclear weapons. every country has a right, albeit shortsighted and counter productive right, to arm themselves with conventional weapons. If he is foolish enough to launch the missiles At Columbia (or any other country) then we have the right to wipe his armies off the map and remove him from power. This is just a publicity stunt and we as a country have bigger things to worry about than a moron playing with his fireworks.


 Remember, " To do nothing, to say nothing, is in itself doing and saying something!

David Blomstrom
David Blomstrom

 f b wrote, "If he is foolish enough to launch the missiles At Columbia (or any other country) then we have the right to wipe his armies off the map and remove him from power."Or we could mind our own business for a change.

In the meantime, Colombia's new president seems to be less of a thug than the right-winger he replaced, and relations between the two countries are improving. IF Chavez is building a military base, it's probably designed to defend against the military bases the U.S. operates in Colombia...and in Central America and the Caribbean.

Hopefully, the socialist revolution Chavez did so much to support will terminate all U.S. bases in South America, and the U.S. can then gradually be squeezed out of Central America and Mexico.

Then the U.S. will have little choice but mind its own business. Maybe Obama will even do something to help our economy for a change. 

Robert Lee
Robert Lee

 f b, I appreciate your calm demeanor; sorry that I don't share it though.  During the Cuban Missile crisis, we were dealing with aggressive moves by rational people.  We may not have agreed  with, or liked,  Castro and Kruschev...but they were not raving lunatics (though Kruschev banging his shoe on the UN table may be evidence against this conclusion)  I was once a tacit supporter of Chavez; redistributing the oil  wealth of his nation to the poor living on hillsides till the next rain washed them away.   But power corrupted his mind, and now he is no longer guided by reason.  Improvements  in  missiledistance will come, and nuclear technology can always be purchased; maybe from the Pakistanis; or a biological agent could be exploded upwind of the US.    I believe the situation is akin to having a psychopathic child living next door; and the parents buy him a BB gun. Well, it is only a BB gun..pity the birds and squirrels in his neighborhood...but how long before the crazy kid learns to adapt his projectiles, or hones his skill for his next weapon. I think Chavez is a danger to the Western Hemisphere.  Hopefully he can be removed by ballot....but if bullet.

David Blomstrom
David Blomstrom

 Robert Lee wrote, "I think Chavez is a danger to the Western Hemisphere.  Hopefully he can be removed by ballot....but if bullet."

Replace "Chavez" with "Obama" and I like that sentence very much.

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