Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Energy News .

Cuba anxious about post-Chavez Venezuela
by Staff Writers
Havana (UPI) Mar 14, 2013

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Cuba is fervently hoping the death of late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez won't disturb the status quo in the Caribbean island's lucrative relationship with oil-rich government in Caracas.

Pronouncements by Cuba's communist elite point to the level of anxiety over the shape of things to come before or after an April 14 special election that Acting President Nicolas Maduro is widely expected to win.

A month being a long time in politics, Maduro is also demonstrating a certain amount of anxiety himself, seeking to prove he's a true inheritor of the Bolivarian revolution of the late leader, who died March 5 after a two-year battle with cancer.

The revolution's fruits are open to question, as oil-rich Venezuela fights a three-year recession, high crime, youth unemployment and polarization between the populist masses still loyal to the Chavez legacy and a much smaller class of business and industry representatives, middle and upper income minorities supportive of change under opposition candidate Henrique Capriles.

Despite widespread skepticism over the Bolivarian revolution project, the Chavez establishment remains deeply entrenched, making a potential power switch to Capriles a forbidding challenge for the opposition.

"I'm not (Hugo) Chavez, but I'm his son," Maduro said as he announced his candidacy before the Electoral Tribunal for the April 14 election.

That line was reinforced in Cuban pronouncements in support of Maduro, an endorsement the newcomer will need, if elected, to take on the mantle of Bolivarian socialism left behind by Chavez.

Maduro's pronouncements suggest he intends forge Chavez's legacy into a long-term franchise in the style of Peronism in neighboring Argentina. Uruguayan President Jose Mujica says he sees long years of "Chavism" ahead, a style familiar to the Castro brothers in Havana.

In frequent medical trips to Cuba Chavez built close ties with President Raul Castro and worshipped brother Fidel as his senior mentor.

For once Cuba is paying back to Caracas what it received in generous largesse from Chavez and the endorsement is critical for Maduro's effort to fix his credentials in Latin America's socialist bloc.

Raul Castro said he had "absolute confidence" in Hugo Chavez's successors, the state-led Cuban media reported after his return from Chavez's funeral in Caracas.

"We return satisfied to see how Chavez's great work is being continued and the gigantic support of the people," Castro said. "I am sure and have absolute confidence in the success President Maduro and the other leaders who have come up under Chavez will have," he said.

Chavez helped Cuba with cash, cheap oil and other preferential trade assistance and helped pave the way for Havana to reintegrate in regional Latin American forums. Brazil is helping Cuba, too, with multibillion dollar aid and trade deals but Venezuela's role remains critical as Cuba struggles with a now-on-and-now-off economic liberalization.

Castro's reform program is bogged down because of behind-the-scenes resistance from Communist Party stalwarts who remain entrenched in a state being led toward a Chinese-style socialist market economy.

Chavez spearheaded diplomatic efforts in Latin America for Cuba's rehabilitation as an equal participant in region groupings where until recently the communist state was either barred or isolated.

He offered Cuba assistance as gratitude for medical care during the last days of his battle against cancer.

Chavez drummed up regional opposition to the U.S. embargo on Cuba.

Chavez's departure has injected uncertainty in the relationship partly because Maduro hasn't revealed his politics, except for rhetorical pronouncements in the style of Chavez, and is unlikely to do much until his future is secured in the April 14 election.

With the Chavez establishment left intact, Maduro is banking on convincing the military and the political establishment that his presidency will guarantee a continuation of the status quo.

"If necessary we will resort to arms to defend the revolution of Commander Chavez," Maduro warned. "We are all Chavez, workers of the fatherland, Chavez forever!"

"They (the opposition) have said that we haven't even had a minute of silence for Commander Chavez but we are warning them to learn to respect because the people's heart is in deep pain, the most severe pain you can imagine," Maduro said.

"God forgive them because with their hatred they have no idea of the pain and harm they inflict on the fatherland," Maduro said, echoing the rhetoric of the late firebrand.


Related Links
Powering The World in the 21st Century at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Pope may be dragged into Falklands dispute
Buenos Aires (UPI) Mar 14, 2013
Pope Francis, acclaimed worldwide as a powerful new champion for the world's poor, risks becoming embroiled in Argentina's increasingly strident rhetoric of a sovereignty claim on the British Overseas Territory of the Falkland Islands. After The Telegraph newspaper in London republished past pronouncements on the Falklands by the former archbishop of Buenos Aires, the pope's present pos ... read more

The household carbon emission per capita in Northwestern China is only 2.05 tons CO2 per year

Court battle looms over Chile power plant

California Ranked First in the US for Green Jobs Last Year

Opportunities And Obstacles Fulfilling California's Nation-Leading Energy Policies

Oil Explorers Beware: Hackers Are Eyeing What You Know

Cuba anxious about post-Chavez Venezuela

ENI sells Mozambique stake to CNPC for $4.21bn

Boeing Receives FAA Approval of Certification Plan for 787 Battery Solution

Uruguay deal boosts S. America wind power

Huge wind farm turbine snaps in Japan

Court ruling halts British wind farm

Wind power as a cost-effective long-term hedge against natural gas prices

Revolution Energy and Dynamic Energy announce completion of Solar Project

India's solar mission drives manufacturing

UAE opens world's largest CSP solar power plant

Sempra US Gas and Power Dedicates Nevada's Newest Solar Power Project

Crippled Japan nuclear plant hit by power cut: report

Nuclear group Areva insists public trusts sector

Budget cuts could hamper nuclear cleanup

Anti-nuclear rally in Tokyo ahead of tsunami anniversary

Biobatteries catch breath

Biodiesel algae: Starvation diets damage health

Using photosynthesis to make chemical compounds

Duckweed as a cost-competitive raw material for biofuel production

Shenzhou 10 - Next Stop: Jiuquan

China's fourth space launch center to be in use in two years

China to launch new manned spacecraft

Woman expected again to join next China crew roster

Middle East faces alarming water loss

Drought declared in New Zealand's North Island

Monsoon failure key to long droughts in Southwest

Earth Is Warmer Today Than During 70 to 80 Percent of the Past 11,300 Years

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement