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August 24, 2005

Pat Robertson: Assassinate Hugo Chavez.

What is it we’re supposed to do? Condemn terrorism and similar outrages even if they do come from our own side?

I’m not sure that Par Robertson is in fact on my side. Religious fundamentalists of any stripe are not "my side" but as he’s identified as "right wing" and some people, rather absurdly, seem to think that I am also such, here’s my response to his latest:

America's leading televangelist appeared to take Christian fundamentalism into uncharted territory yesterday when he called for the assassination of Venezuela's president, Hugo Chávez.

Speaking on his own channel, the Christian Broadcasting Network, Pat Robertson said President Chávez should be targeted because he was a "terrific danger" whose country, a big supplier of oil to the US, was "a launching pad for communist infiltration and Islamic extremism all over the country".

Furthermore, killing the Venezuelan leader would be "a whole lot cheaper than starting a war ... We have the ability to take him out, and I think the time has come that we exercise that ability."

Err, no. Idiocy. Pure stupidity. However much I might desire, for the benefit of the people of Venezuela, that they were not lumbered with the incompentent Chavez, for the US to assassinate him would be the worst thing possible. The moral case against it is strong but not perfect...Robertson is correct in that if (note, if)  regime change becomes necessary (imagine, for example, that he launched a nuclear weapons programme...that might do it for me)  then decapitating the regime would indeed be a better way to do it than an all out invasion. But for the US to mess in its own backyard in this manner would be counter-productive, would engender vastly more problems right across central and southern America than it would solve.

Sadly, the only appropriate response is to allow him to continue, and to wait until he has thoroughly ruined the country, as he will. His Bolivarian revolution, while it is supported by oil, will fail, just as similar attempts in Cuba and Zimbabwe have, and for the same reasons.

August 24, 2005 in Religion | Permalink

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Comments

Is it too late, or was the supreme court judge vacancy filled?

Posted by: Angry Economist | Aug 24, 2005 11:05:44 AM

Great post!

One misnomer regarding the Guardian article,

America's leading televangelist

I seriously doubt that. Only put in since it fits the agenda of "crazed right-wing US Bible thumper says..."

As you rightly point out, Chavez will eventually cave at his own hands. Undermine and agitate Chavez, no need to run around talking about killing him.

Posted by: George Adair | Aug 24, 2005 12:20:56 PM

True.

Plus, of course, it is illegal to assassinate heads of state. Not that that will necessarily discourage someone who's judge is God...

Posted by: Devil's Kitchen | Aug 24, 2005 1:18:10 PM

Shame he wasn't in the UK when he said it, deportation to the US would have been amusing.
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,22989-1748674,00.html

Posted by: Timdifano | Aug 24, 2005 5:51:41 PM