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May-09-2011 16:15printcomments

Chávez is More Fanatically Islamic than Al Qaeda

“Chávez and his gang” are “strange bedfellows” - Carlos Alberto Montaner

Carlos Alberto Montaner (Image from the Machetera blog)
Carlos Alberto Montaner (From the Machetera blog)

(BOGOTA, Colombia) - Gracing the pages of various Spanish-language newspapers yesterday and today is an article entitled “Bin Laden in Latin America”. Written by exiled Cuban columnist and author Carlos Alberto Montaner, whose claims to fame include referring to Eduardo Galeano’s acclaimed Open Veins of Latin America as “the idiot’s bible”, it might be more appropriately titled “The idiot’s attempt to turn Hugo Chávez into bin Laden by way of an irrelevant Ethiopian”.

The article begins with the announcement that an Ethiopian terrorist engaged in the trafficking of illegal immigrants was captured in Ecuador and deported to the United States in March. Montaner himself states in the first paragraph that the man’s ties to Al Qaeda have not been confirmed, but declares in the second that the purpose of said trafficking was presumably to raise funds for the organization and to construct networks of potential collaborators.

Via this introduction, we somehow arrive at the revelation that the president of Venezuela is “an accomplice of all extremist and fanatically Islamic causes, including Al Qaeda”, though Montaner refrains from explaining whether the expulsion from Caracas of Israeli diplomatic personnel in response to massacres in Gaza qualifies as fanatical complicity. Montaner asserts that the reason for Chávez’ pro-extremist behavior is “not at all clear” but promptly goes on to state, quite clearly, that the Venezuelan leader—plus his counterparts in Cuba, Nicaragua, Ecuador, and Bolivia—perceive Al Qaeda, Hamas, and Hezbollah “as allies because they believe they have a common enemy: north American imperialism”.

The conclusion of Montaner’s slop is that chavismo is in fact more of a threat to the U.S. than radical Islam because “if the Americans withdraw from the Middle East, it is likely that the Islamists will gradually abandon anti-Americanism, whereas according to Chávez’ vision no victory is final without the destruction of the U.S.”.

His vacuous parting thought—that bin Laden and “Chávez and his gang” are “strange bedfellows”—meanwhile fails to take into account the appearance of stranger bedfellows throughout history, or the possibility that Montaner’s own reported ties to the CIA might have produced a more introspective article than “Bin Laden in Latin America”, such as “Bin Laden in my bed”.


Belén is a feature writer at Pulse Media. Her articles also have appeared in CounterPunch, Narco News, Palestine Chronicle, Palestine Think Tank, Rebelión, Tlaxcala, The Electronic Intifada, Upside Down World, and Her book “Coffee with Hezbollah,” a humorous political travelogue chronicling her hitchhiking trip through Lebanon in the aftermath of the 2006 Israeli assault, is available at Amazon, Amazon UK, and Barnes and Noble.

Born in Washington, DC, in 1982, Belén earned her bachelor's degree with a concentration in political science from Columbia University in New York City. Her diverse background of worldwide experiences, created a fantastic writer; one whose work we are extremely happy to share with viewers. You can contact Belén at:

Comments Leave a comment on this story.

All comments and messages are approved by people and self promotional links or unacceptable comments are denied. May 11, 2011 6:25 am (Pacific time)

and Kennedy caused the bay of pigs not the cia, and the conquiestador class health care and education policies turned slaves into the middle class.

gp May 9, 2011 5:16 pm (Pacific time)

you could have just called Carlos Alberto Montaner what he is, a propagandist instead of gifting him with the title columnist and author.

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