Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Venezuelan President crosses the line

It is particularly important for those on the Right to critcize those on the Right who make anti-Semetic statements. Similarly, it is important for those on the Left such as myself to criticize others on the Left for the same. And now is one of those times.

Venezuela's President, Hugh Chavez, recently crossed the line with his recent comments:


This is not the first time he has uttered offensive remarks; a quick Google or Yahoo! search will find others. But there has been a tendancy to regard Chavez as more of a buffoon than a real danger.

And perhaps he is a buffoon. His country is nowhere near as repressive as, say, Castro's Cuba -- or any of dozens of past dictatorships in this hemisphere that the US used to support. But even a buffoon can influence others and deserves condemnation. If Mel Gibson, who is just an actor and a director, deserves condemnation for his statements and actions (and I think he does), so much more so the President of a sovereign state.

And interestingly, there is potentially something that could be done that could have an effect: Citgo, one of the largest retailers of gasoline in the United States, is owned indirectly by the Venezuelan government. I'm not calling for a boycott, but if Jewish leaders in Israel and the US do, I would be happy to support it.

No comments: