Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has told the United States to “swallow” its criticism of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States’ (CELAC) summit, after the U.S. accused the CELAC of “betraying democracy” by supporting Cuba.
Venezuela’s National Experimental University for Security (UNES), which trains police in human rights and preventative policing, has launched a two month, nationwide campaign against the US run School of the Americas (SOA).
Last January, Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad took a weeklong tour of Latin America, visiting Venezuela, Nicaragua, Cuba, and finally Ecuador. In the U.S. media, where there are no two greater villains than Ahmadinejad and Chávez, it was not hard to predict that the coverage of the first stop on the tour would result in an onslaught of negative headlines filled with hysterics at what such a meeting could mean for U.S. national security.
In spite of surprises in the lead-up to the Sixth Summit of the Americas in Cartagena, Colombia, on April 14–15, the results of the conference were predictable. The United States and Canada found themselves distanced from their neighbors to the south. The newly created regional organizations that exclude the United States were at least partially responsible for this shift.
On Wednesday the Venezuelan Foreign Minstry informed the international community that the founding meeting of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Nations (CELAC) - an "OAS without the U.S. or Canada" as Ecuadorian President Rafael Correo once put it - has been suspended, citing the health of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez as the principal cause of the meeting's postponement.