Chavez Seeks Federal Territories, Constitution Change (emphasis added):
“The governors don’t have the power or resources to solve the problems of some areas,” Chavez said in a televised speech today from southern Apure state. “I’d like to have three, four, five vice presidents, like in Iran and Cuba.”
The creation of federal territories would concentrate more power in the hands of Chavez, who won a six-year term in December and has been in office since 1999. Chavez reiterated his call to change the constitution to allow him to be re- elected indefinitely.
“I don’t know if in five years I will have the fire to run again,” said Chavez, 52. “But I think the option should be open for the people to decide to elect someone to serve 10, 20, or 30 years.'”
Not enough fire to run, but plenty of fire to stay on; the Organization of Anti-American States probably won’t complain.
Chavez’s buddy Daniel Ortega’s been networking lately: He took Muammar Gaddafi’s jet to visit Iran. Once there, it was all miel sobre hojuelas schmoozing: ‘Iran-Nicaragua to create justice-oriented order’, which, by the way, doesn’t prevent him from seeking more aid from the United States. Too bad he didn’t wear a baseball cap to visit the mullahs.
Of course the mullahs loved him and the official news agency peppered their reporting with this rather obnoxious headline, Supreme Leader: Unfair trend of int’l ties heading towards destruction
The unfair trend of international ties is heading towards destruction and a completely different future, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Sunday.
I wonder if the supreme leader’s ever heard of Joe Lieberman, or of Ron Klein and Connie Mack, who said, The rulers of Nicaragua, Venezuela and Iran are part of a new trio of tyrants.
Not related to any of the above, Colombia and France continue to discuss the possibility of a swap with the FARC for Ingrid Betancourt, who was taken prisoner five years ago:
Mr Sarkozy’s office said that he hoped that Mr Granda’s release could help free the hostages. Ms Betancourt is a minor figure in Colombia but an iconic one in France, where she studied. She has dual citizenship and two French children. A vast portrait of her hangs from the façade of Paris’s town hall. When foreign minister in 2003, Dominique de Villepin, her former professor, sent a crack team to rescue her; their mission was embarrassingly aborted in Brazil.
Since his election, Mr Sarkozy has taken up her case with vigour, twice inviting her children to the Elysée Palace.
I was wondering what Sarko’s approach was going to be on the Betancourt case, but here’s the explanation:
Liberating Ms Betancourt would be a spectacular political coup for a president whose action-man style marks a break with the era of Jacques Chirac and who faces two-round legislative elections on June 10th and 17th.
More blogging later, but before I do, Dynamobuzz is blogging again.