Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Intelligence on Venezuela

Via Just the Facts, here is the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence's "Worldwide Threat Assessment of the U.S. Intelligence Community. For Latin America there is mention of Iran but not in too sensational a way. Iran is not mentioned with regard to Venezuela, which in fact gets pretty bland treatment.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez’s death on 5 March has triggered preparations for a new election in which we expect Vice President Nicolas Maduro to compete against Miranda Governor and former presidential candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski. Venezuelan Foreign Minister Elias Jaua announced that Maduro will take over as interim president and that an election will be held within 30 days. Maduro is a long-time Chavez loyalist and will almost certainly continue Chavez’s socialist policies.  
The Venezuelan Government will be up against the consequences of an increasingly deteriorating business environment and growing macroeconomic imbalances. Debt obligations will consume a growing share of Venezuela’s oil revenues, even if oil prices remain high. Lingering citizen concerns that Caracas will face in the next year also include personal safety, which has been threatened by a rising tide of
violent crime.

This could have been culled from recent media reports in less than five minutes. However, bland and obvious is far better than paranoid and deranged.


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