Venezuelanalysis carries an interesting report on collaboration between Venezuela’s counter-revolutionary opposition and the Israeli government. Both hope to beat President Hugo Chavez in this year’s elections, though the Chavez government maintains a solid lead in the polls.
Over the weekend, Venezuela’s anti-Chavez minority conﬁrmed reports that one of their own recently met with right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and promised to re-establish ties with Israel if the opposition is somehow successful in this year’s presidential election. Speaking on behalf of the opposition’s socalled Democratic Unity Roundtable (MUD), Metropolitan Mayor of Caracas Antonio Ledezma is said to have promised both economic and political rewards in exchange for Israeli support of MUD presidential hopeful, Henrique Capriles Radonski.
Though the MUD have been totally unable to improve their standing in polls which predict a sweeping electoral victory for Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez this October 7, Ledezma’s comments in Israel provide a troubling glimpse at wishful opposition thinking in a post-Chavez period.
“SOLIDARITY” WITH ISRAEL?
Though he was in Jerusalem last week for the 28th International Mayors Conference, opposition lawyer and politician Antonio Ledezma took advantage of his publicly-ﬁnanced trip to meet privately with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as well as the country’s Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman. Asked about the closed-door meetings, Ledezma said he had used his time in Israel to spread “the message that the Venezuelan nation has respect for Israel”.
Ledezma told reporters he spoke with Netanyahu and Liberman about “the Venezuelan people’s solidarity with the Jewish community” and, “in addition, our (opposition) disposition to reestablish relations with the State of Israel under a new government presided by Henrique Capriles Radonski”.
“In contrast to the current political policy in Venezuela”, he said, “Capriles will re-establish our historical ties”.