Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez on Sunday vowed to revive a global socialist opposition to the U.S. while continuing his Latin American tour aimed at upstaging President George W. Bush's own visit to the region.Chavez reportedly went on to say:
"The [US] Empire is in counterattack, with the head of the empire himself leading the attack," Chavez said. "And why? Because they realize that the popular Latin American offensive is for real. Fifteen years ago, the American empire thought they had won the final battle when the Soviet Union fell. They let out their triumphant cry: 'Here is Superman!'"Interestingly, a search on one of the contributors to this AP article reveals some interesting facts. Alvaro Zuazo is the journalist cited as a contributor who actually was in La Paz at the time. There are several Indymedia articles which call Zuazo's objectivity into question. And of course, an actual transcript of the speech is no where to be found, nor is the speech mentioned in any official Venezuelan media. Zuazo and his compatriots peppered their story with "go home gringo" and other provocatively creative phraseology.
He said now is the time for Latin America to fight back.
"We have resisted for a long time. But no one wins a battle always staying on the defensive," he said. "Let loose the charging cavalry!"1
Nevertheless, if the Bush visit to Latin America was designed to raise the profile of the US it has to be considered an utter failure. Instead, Chavez and left leaders and movements across Latin America took center stage and presented the socialist alternative to the world press. Emboldened by the weakness of the Bush regime, the less-compromised press was more than happy to show some degree of independence and backbone in covering these exciting trends.
Viva la Socialista, la bonita libertad!