In Latin America, two phenomena are appearing on the surface: from one side, Syrian, Turkish and Iranian leaders are trying to strengthen their relations with this part of the world to find new allies against the US and Israel. From the other side, several leaders from Latin America, such as the Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, using hate-filled propaganda and old-fashioned communist rhetoric against the "capitalist Empire" (the US), are inciting their population against the US and its allies.

This is the first part of a weekly press review on Latin America, and covers mainly the official trip of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad to Venezuela. Assad toured, for the first time, Venezuela, Cuba, Brazil and Argentina, with the aim of strengthening political and economic relations.

The second part of this press review, that will come up in the following days, will cover the rest of Assad's trip, and Fidel Castro's analysis on the Middle East (surprisingly, he has a column in the official Cuban communist party newspaper).

CONTENTS:

  • Cartoon on Iran and the US Army
  • Syrian President Assad calls Venezuelan President Chavez an "Arab leader." Chavez: "The Yankee Empire and the genocidal state of Israel" are our "common enemies."
  • Chavez: "One day the genocidal state of Israel will be put in its place."
  • Syria and Venezuela launch the "Axis of the Brave."
  • Chavez: "[Assad] you are one of the liberators of the new world."
  • "With blood and our soul, we will redeem you, oh Bashar;" Chavez: Viva Assad! Viva Nasser!
  • Venezuela and Syria sign cooperation agreements

June 30 and June 28, 2010

Cartoon on Iran and the US Army

- Do you think they [the US] are going to inspect the Iranian boats?

- The point is not if they are going to do it, the problem is whether they'll come back.

On the arrow: Iran and North Korea

- Let's take advantage of the World Cup's euphoria to see whether we can score some "goals"

Granma, official Cuban communist party newspaper

June 28, 2010

Syrian President Assad calls Venezuelan President Chavez an "Arab leader." Chavez: "The Yankee Empire and the genocidal state of Israel" are our "common enemies."

President Hugo Chavez and his Syrian counterpart Bashar Assad met with representatives of the Syrian community in Caracas, estimated at some 700,000 people, in the last day of the Arab leader's official visit to Venezuela. Assad described Chavez as "an Arab leader," "in the heart" of the Arab world. "This is no flattering; it is the truth. We have seen his (Chavez's) stance about Gaza; we have seen Venezuela's historical position."

Chavez stressed instead that Assad's tour to the region – Venezuela, Cuba, Brazil and Argentina - is "historic." "Latin American people need a greater presence of Arab governments; we need to become united, and Bashar has decided to take the lead in this rapprochement effort," said the Venezuelan president. Chavez added that Venezuela and Syria have "common enemies" such as "the Yankee Empire, the genocidal state of Israel."

El Universal – Venezuela

June 28, 2010

Chavez: "One day the genocidal state of Israel will be put in its place"

Chavez made strong comments against during a meeting with Syrian President Assad:
"But one day the genocidal state of Israel will be put in its place, and let's hope that a really democratic state emerges there, with which we can share a path and ideas. It has become the assassin arm of the United States; no one can doubt it. It is a threat to all of us. Not just to you but to us as well. A threat to the countries that fight for their freedom."

"Our calling is to play a key role in freeing the world (by fighting) against imperialism, against the capitalistic and neoliberal hegemony that today threatens the survival of the human race," Chavez said.

Tehran Times – Iran

June 28, 2010

Syria and Venezuela launch the "Axis of the Brave."

The "Axis of the Brave" was launched in Caracas during the meeting between Chavez and Assad. The two leaders defined the axis as a "strategic alliance for a new world against imperialism." Chavez then stressed that the Golan should be returned back to Syria in a peaceful way, after calling Israel – with which Venezuela cut it diplomatic relationship in 2009 – a "genocidal State."

O Globo, Brazil

Link to Brazilian News Channel, R7: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRdvMCl5XRc

June 27, 2010

Chavez: "[Assad] you are one of the liberators of the new world."

Chavez decorated Assad with the Order of the Liberator, the highest distinction of Venezuela. He also presented the Syrian President with a gold-plated replica of a sword that belonged to Latin American independence icon Simon Bolivar.

Chavez stressed that this high distinction was given to Assad for the "continuous and brave fight for the freedom of people against imperialism and its allies, and for peace and for life." He then added: "I do not exaggerate, if I say that you [Assad] are one of the liberators of the new world."

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkAtWOOkCHs

June 27, 2010

"With blood and our soul, we will redeem you, oh Bashar;" Chavez: Viva Assad! Viva Nasser!

During a meeting with the Syrian community in Venezuela, with the presence of Assad and his ministries, Chavez stressed the importance of pan-Arabism.

Chavez: "[…] Viva our brother Assad! May God enlighten him and give him a long life in this battle that he adopted for the dignity."

Public: "Uah Uah Uah Chavez won't leave."

Chavez: "Uah Uah Uah Bashar won't leave!"

Public: Laugh…. "Uah Uah Uah Bashar won't leave."

Chavez: "Bashar Assad is the carrier of the flag of Arabism, of the Arab nationalism, of the flag that his father, the great chief Hafez Al-Assad, lifted very high…let's remember him and say: Viva Hafez Al Assad!"

Public: [In Arabic] "With blood and our soul, we will redeem you, oh Bashar!"

Chavez: "Bashar is the carrier of the flag - that no one will ever be able to erase – of this other great Arab leader, this other great representative of the deepest fight for the liberation and for the union of the Arab people. And this liberation and this union have to do essentially with socialism. I evoke the memory of the great Arab leader that inspired our revolutionary movement since our tender youth. Viva Nasser!"

Public: Clapping. "Viva! Viva!"

Chavez: "Arab socialism, Pan-Arabism, all these deep forces are here represented by our brother Bashar Al-Assad and for this I ask God to give him a long life. While the people of Latin America were sleeping, imperialism managed to oblige, manage to dull, managed to dominate the people of Latin America, with the only exception of the revolutionary Cuba, and for how long! But, in the same way they were sleeping, they have also woken up, and here is Latin America rising up again the flag of socialism, of the revolution, of the Latin American-Caribbean union. We are fully sure, that no one doubts it, that this awakening is happening and will happen in the next years in the people of the great Arab nation. I feel it deep in my heart, as a very big certainty."

Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Or3CP-FKIgg

June 26, 2010

Venezuela and Syria sign cooperation agreements

Chavez and Assad signed cooperation agreements on technology, agriculture and trade. They have also agreed to create a financing fund, with a value of 100 million U.S. dollars, for the establishment of joint ventures and a bi-national bank.

El Universal - Venezuela

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