Leadership: Marching Off the Cliff in Venezuela


March 3, 2006: The Venezuelan armed forces have been ordered to revise all military education, training, and guidelines so they conform with "Bolivarian" principles. Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez has invented a new political movement based on "revolutionary principles" that hearken back to the 19th century South American liberator Simon Bolivar. The new army doctrine includes a dose of Cuban ideas on the subjects of revolution and world view in general. The new concepts include operational and tactical doctrine. Although Cuban doctrine has been found effective in some areas, this is not the case with the "Bolivarian" principles. President Chavez' "Bolivarian" ideas about war making have essentially been made up out of whole cloth, with neither professional analysis, wargaming, nor field trials, to test them. Thus the effectiveness of the Venezuelan Armed Forces will very likely decline precipitously.


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