Hugo Chavez gives exclusive interview to RT
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has given an exclusive live interview to RT's Spanish channel while on a visit to Moscow. Chavez shared his views on the current world order and his hopes for the future.
Speaking about the role of the US in the present state of things, he blamed Washington for failing to keep promises and spreading lies in the interests of what he called the “Yankee Empire.”
“President Obama reminds me of a great article written by Gabriel Garcia Marquez,” said the Venezuelan leader. “I met him in 1998. He wanted to interview me, so we spent three hours talking. A few days later he wrote an article about the two Chavezes. Now I am using his idea to describe Obama.”
One Barack Obama, according to Chavez, is the one who hinted at changes with “his smile, his color, his name, his promises, his speech in Cairo.”
And the other Obama, in Chavez’s view, is “the president of the great empire.”
“There’s a difference between them,” stated the Latin American head of state. “Now the one that promised change disappeared. He is no longer there. Nothing changes. The way the US treats us, for example. On the contrary, there’s more and more aggression. And behind this aggression are the hands of the Yankee Empire.”
“We are saying the hands in plural,” he added. “There are what you can all tribes competing in the US. You have the president and the secretary of state – two different personalities, two different concepts of the world. You have the CIA and its mechanisms.”
“You never know who makes the decision,” said Chavez. “But the hands of the empire, they are trying to dominate the world. It’s one of the greatest tragedies.”
In order to withstand the “aggression” of the “empire,” Latin American states are joining forces.
“We are trying to create UNASUR, alliances with the Caribbean, the ALBA group, the Bolivarian alliance for the Americas, because we want a balanced world, a multipolar world to put an end to this terrible era of imperialism,” Chavez said.
Latin America has gone through a lot of changes in recent years, he said, stressing that it is now in transition toward real independence.
“You need to remember that Latin America used to be a backyard of the United States for a long time,” he said. “Simon Bolivar was prophetic when in 1825 he said that the United States is going to fill our countries with misery instead of liberty. They were taking away those heads of all the governments that had a different idea of independence. We are talking about the invasions to Mexico, Guatemala, Panama, Nicaragua, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, coup d’etat in Venezuela several times, in Argentina, Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia. In 150 years in Latin America there wasn’t a single coup d’etat without the Yankees.”
However, the situation has changed.
“Now we finally have a free zone of commerce and we privatized all the companies,” the Venezuelan president said. “Now we are singing a different song and dancing a different dance. We are dancing to our own rhythms and giving ourselves our own advice. We are defending our own independence.”
Speaking about the experiences of his own country, the Venezuelan leader proudly stated that now it has “economic resistance” against all the “weapons” the United States might have up their sleeves, like coup d’etat, economic sabotage and oil sabotage.
The design of lies
The Venezuelan leader slammed the United States for its policy of creating lies about other countries and their leaderships.
“Take a look at the war in Iraq,” he said. “Thousands of dead people, children assassinated… It was based on a lie that the government of Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. That was the only reason the Yankee Empire gave to explain the invasion of Iraq. But then they said that they recognize there were no weapons of mass destruction. So they actually designed that lie but still there was the war in Iraq. And that’s the politics of the Yankee Empire.”
“Just to give you another example. When I was born they were bombarding Guatemala City,” continued Chavez. “And there was another lie that supposedly the communist government was coming and there was a threat to Latin America and the Caribbean. Fidel was a student leader but there was no revolution at that time. And they wanted to topple that government because it represented a threat.”
And over the years nothing has changed in the tactics of the United States, stated Chavez.
“Still, there is 1,001 lies,” he said. “About the FARC military group, about the camps where they supposedly hide, about us enriching uranium. Now they have to accuse us of making an atomic bomb. And that lab of lies is used to justify whatever needs to be justified.”
The Venezuelan leader stressed that he himself is a victim of a million lies.
“They say I support terrorists and drug trafficking,” he said. “They keep saying that I am a dictator. And then they are going to speak about the fall of the dictator.”
“For example, so many times it was repeated that I created the Colombian and Venezuelan guerrilla squads,” Chavez said. “Even before I became president. It was repeated so many times it was everywhere.”
Some lies sounded absolutely ridiculous, said Chavez.
“I was laughing a lot, but those lies were actually moving toward a tragedy,” he admitted. “On TV very serious people would say that I was crazy.”
“There were trying to transform me into something I was not because they were afraid of what I and my partners represented.”
But that strategy doesn’t always work, noted Chavez.
“If you take Ukraine, you’ll see it didn’t work there,” the Venezuelan leader said. “The lies failed to convince the people.”
The world in 2050
As for the future of his country and the world, Hugo Chavez has no doubts Venezuela will be “free” and “united.” But his country, as well as Russia, will be the places where “our children and grandchildren can live in dignity.”
But for the US he sees less brighter prospects:
“I think the United States sees everything upside down, at least part of the world,” Chavez said. “It’s hard to imagine the destiny of this society. But of course we have to hope for the better, for the winds of change coming from the south.”
Who is Hugo Chavez?
“Human, soldier and revolutionary” – these are three words that describe Hugo Chavez best, according to his own admission. What else? Love for books maybe, which is in fact not just love but an innate necessity that comes from childhood.
“My parents, they were amazing people, they made me love books,” he said. “I can’t live without books, just can’t live without books."
A hunger for knowledge might be a reason he has found a common language with Fidel Castro, whom he admires for many things but first of all for his willingness to learn.
“Take a look at Fidel Castro, he’s still studying at his age,” Chavez said.
In an interview with RT the Venezuelan president recalled an event that shaped his life and led to his current position. About 20 years ago, when he was in prison and could not even imagine that he would someday lead his country, his teacher, whom he has known since childhood, told him something that made him believe in himself.
The man said to him, “You’re going to become president of this country. But you need to do a lot of things and study a lot,” Chavez recalled. “And he gave me a box of books.”
But what impressed the future president the most were the following words: “You need to become an old man before your time to become more mature.”
“And I will never forget this advice – become mature ahead of time to assume this great responsibility that I’ve been blessed with,” Chavez said.