U.S. General Dismisses Allegations of Venezuelan Government Links with Colombian Guerrillas and Arab Terrorists

In an interview to The Miami Herald, Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon denied U.S. News & World Report allegations that Venezuela is “flirting with terrorism.”

In an interview published today by The Miami Herald, U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon, dismissed recent reports that suggest links between the Venezuelan Government and Colombian guerrillas, and that the Chavez administration is providing assistance to Arab terrorists from the Middle East and other terrorists.

Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon serves as director of operations at the Pentagon’s U.S. Southern Command (Southcom) located in Miami. He recently acted as deputy chief of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

A recent U.S. News & World Report article claims that President Hugo Chavez is “flirting with terrorism.” The article cites “unnamed U.S. government sources,” claiming that the Venezuelan Government is providing identity cards to Arab radicals, which can then be used to enter the U.S. and carry out terrorist attacks in North American territory. The article, titled “Terror Close to Home,” by Linda Robinson, appeared in the October 6 issue of U.S. News and World Report also accuses the Chavez administration of being host to Cubans operating inside Venezuela’s paramilitary and intelligence apparatus.

“I have no reason to believe that,” said Mixon to the Miami Herald, adding that they have no details about which borders terrorists are crossing.

“We certainly don’t have any information that they are being supported by any other government in the region,” the general said.

Last Tuesday, Venezuelan Ambassador to the United States Bernardo Alvarez, sent a letter to the editors of the U.S. News and World Report asserting that Linda Robinson’s article “makes outrageous, false, and very serious allegations that Venezuela is linked to terrorism, without offering a shred of verifiable evidence.”

While the U.S. News & World Report article does not cite any of their alleged U.S. government sources, at least now, a U.S. general has denied having any proof Venezuela’s supposed links to terrorists.