Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas



Capriles Vows to End Cuba Support

Venezuelan opposition candidate Henrique Capriles Rodonski said on Monday that if he wins the presidential election on April 14, he will stop sending 100,000 barrels a day of oil to Cuba and other countries in the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA). “Not one more drop of oil will go to help finance the Castro … Read more

Chavez funeral crowd_Juan Victor Fajardo 510x340

Did Chávez Help the Poor?

In a recent opinion piece, Venezuelan-American author Eva Golinger proclaimed the late Hugo Chávez was “a maker of dreams.” Chávez, she says, dreamt of eradicating poverty, and made those dreams come true. Much of what has been written—including by people critical of his legacy—repeats the same conclusion: Chávez improved the lives of the poor. Sadly, … Read more


AQ Slideshow: Venezuelans Wait Hours to View Chávez

Click here to view an expanded version of the slideshow. Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez’ body is being moved today from the Military Academy of Caracas to the city’s military museum, marking the end of a nine-day open casket service that has drawn thousands of the late president’s followers to the capital city. The lines of … Read more


Monday Memo: Venezuela to Hold Elections – Falkland Islands/Malvinas Referendum – Meeting on IACHR Reforms Convenes in Ecuador – Papal Conclave Begins – Lima’s Mayor Faces Recall

Top stories this week are likely to include: Venezuela announces new presidential elections; Falkland Islands/Malvinas inhabitants vote on political status; Signatories of the American Convention on Human Rights meet to discuss IACHR reforms; the papal conclave begins Tuesday; Lima Mayor Susana Villarán faces a recall vote on Sunday. Venezuelan Elections to be Held on April … Read more


Chávez Death Leaves a Power Vacuum in Venezuela

Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez has died of cancer, leaving a power vacuum that will be hard to fill in the oil-rich country. After Vice President Nicolás Maduro’s announcement of the president’s death, Minister of Foreign Affairs Elías Jaua announced on March 6 that elections would be called in 30 days, as the constitution stipulates, and … Read more


World Leaders Arrive For Chávez’s Funeral

More than 30 heads of state traveled to Caracas for the funeral of Hugo Chávez, the president of Venezuela since 1999 and the architect of the Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (ALBA) who passed away on Tuesday after a two-year battle with cancer. Upon his arrival, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, “he was a dear … Read more


AQ Slideshow: Venezuelans Pay Their Respects to Hugo Chávez

Click here to view an expanded version of the slideshow. Throughout the day on Wednesday, enormous crowds took to the streets of Caracas to join the president’s procession from the hospital in which he died to the military academy. The impressive procession traversed eight kilometers of the capital city and lasted seven hours, flooding major … Read more


Latin America Reacts to Chávez’ Death

Latin Americans are mourning the death of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, who passed away at age 58 on Tuesday. Just hours before Chávez died, Venezuelan Vice President Nicolás Maduro had accused Venezuela’s enemies of “attacking” the leader with cancer and expelled two U.S. Embassy officials for allegedly conspiring against the deceased president.  The president’s body … Read more


Chávez Leaves a Mess

Hugo Chávez died today at the age of 58. While many of his obituaries will focus on his voluminous political legacy, the day-to-day issues he leaves behind are enormously complex. Eventually, they are sure to overshadow any historical discussion about the man. Politically, his movement is orphaned. Chávez was not only president of Venezuela, he … Read more


The King Is Dead; Long Live the King

I must admit, I was shocked when the e-mail a colleague had written me flashed on my desktop yesterday. “Chávez is dead.”  It wasn’t like I wasn’t expecting it.  But like the Chavista advisors that staged the bizarre, incoherent press conference shortly before they announced the Venezuelan President’s death, I was oddly taken aback.  In … Read more


Venezuela’s Hugo Chávez Dies

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez has died, Venezuelan Vice President Nicolás Maduro announced this evening. Since the president’s return home from Cuba on February 18, Venezuelan supporters have gathered to pray for the health of the president, which has been in decline for weeks. The death of the 58 year-old Chávez, who was re-elected to a … Read more


Hugo Chávez’ Health and Succession in Venezuela

Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez remains in a Caracas military hospital, prompting continued speculation in Venezuela and abroad about eventual succession and concerns over political stability—as well as uncertainty about who is in charge. The president’s uncertain situation comes at a time of significant social and economic difficulty in Venezuela. The government’s announcement on February 2 … Read more


Venezuelan Currency Devaluation Goes into Effect

After the Venezuelan government announced its intention to devalue its bolívar currency late last week, the 32-percent shift in its exchange rate—from 4.3 to 6.3 bolívars to the dollar—went into effect yesterday. It is Venezuela’s fifth devaluation in nine years; the previous devaluation occurred in January 2010. Yesterday, the bolívar reached its lowest value, having … Read more


Capriles, Venezuelan Opposition Deny Corruption Charges

Leaders of the Primero Justicia (Justice First—PJ) opposition party in Venezuela vigorously rejected claims of corruption yesterday, after National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello accused three of its members of such on Tuesday and the Assembly summarily agreed to open an investigation to look into the charges. Cabello, a loyalist of President Hugo Chávez, accuses PJ of … Read more


Chávez Supporters and Opposition Take to the Streets of Caracas

  Thousands of members of both Hugo Chávez’ Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela (PSUV) and the opposition are marching in Caracas today in simultaneous demonstrations since January 23 marks the end of Venezuela’s 1945-1958 military dictatorship. However, this year the date has acquired a new meaning for each side of the political spectrum. For members of the PSUV, today’s demonstration is an opportunity to show their solidarity with Chávez, who is recovering from cancer surgery in Cuba. Meanwhile, the opposition plans to protest  the Venezuelan Supreme Court’s January 8 resolution to … Read more

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