At the Washington Times,
Cuban advisers bolster Venezuelan regime
Cuba’s communist government has deployed thousands of technical and military advisers to Venezuela to bolster the regime of leftist President Hugo Chavez, as that country faces energy shortages and increased repression against opposition political leaders.
A senior Cuban security official and former interior minister, Gen. Ramiro Valdez, arrived in Caracas, Venezuela, in February to take charge of a Cuban government mission that over the past several years has grown to an estimated 40,000 advisers and aid workers, including a large contingent of Cuban military personnel.
Ponder that number: forty thousand Cuban personnel. What do they do?
The advisers include intelligence and security officers, political advisers and medical personnel.
“There are indications that agents of the Cuban G-2 [military intelligence] are operating openly at all the main military installations, principally the Ministry of Defense, the strategic operations command, the joint chiefs of staff headquarters, command centers of the army, navy, air force and national guard, as well as the military intelligence directorate” and the internal security service, said retired Brig. Gen. Francisco Uson, who served as defense planning director and briefly held the post of finance minister in Mr. Chavez’s government.
By the way, Simon Romero of the NYT has been writing about Chavez’s persecution of the opposition.