More from Hugo Chavez, this time from his press conference in the UN basement. Unbelievable...
Q. Do you think Obama will change US foreign policy towards Latin America?
Chavez. I think that one of the serious failures of the US has been that for a long time it has underestimated and undervalued Latin America and the Caribbean. It has not only undervalued but it has mistreated. You may remember the Mexican president who said 'poor poor Mexico, so far from God and so close to the United States.' I hope that Obama turns around the vision of the White House, of the Dept. of State, of Latin America. ... The Pentagon is a state within a state. It is its own government. Obama should dismantle it. It remains to be seen if they'll let him. That is why I say may God protect Obama from the bullets that took Kennedy. They are saying he was not born in the US, that he is black, that he is crazy, I don't know what else.
Q. Would you like to meet Obama to see if he has 1 or 2 faces? Also, recently the US government has become alarmed over what they say is the South American arms race. Some accuse you of collaborating with Iran on nuclear programme.
Chavez. Well, one day they said, actually somebody in Colombia said, a minister, that they had seen through satellite a bicycle factory which belonged to Iran and Venezuela factory, because under the bicycles they were enriching uranium. I said to Uribe, aren't you going to set that record straight? And he said no, that's a personal opinion. ... Obama compared me with, who is this lady who sells a lot of things here, Oprah? Obama said that I resembled her because I gave her a book and the book I gave him "The Open Veins of Latin America." [It went from 177,000 to #1 in sales in hours.] The next day Obama told me, you're like Oprah! ... And I said let's do business, Obama. Socialist business. And those bicycles? We now call them "atomic bicycles" and they are very popular. We are selling through the Caribbean. They are good for children, pregnant women, and available with or without uranium!!
I don't think he is two-faced. When we met there was chemistry between us, there was affection. ... We shook hands. Because he smiled, what, you think we were going to threaten each other with a hammer? We were human beings. Last night I met a friend of Oliver Stone's who is a Japanese boxer and she almost punched me in the face, but that's what people wanted, they wanted to see us punch each other in the face. He came over and said hello how are you Chavez and I said how are you Obama? Obama and his labrynth, Obama president of a country that is not African, that is not Latin American. It is an empire, and it is the Pentagon, the Imperial Power. And there is Obama. God help him. I hope he can solve the major contradiction in which he lives.