Colombia: May 4, 2005

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Colombian security forces may be operating inside Venezuela. A number of FARC officials known to have been in Venezuela have subsequently turned up in Colombian custody, or dead. It is not known whether the government of Venezuela is supporting or opposing such covert Colombian operations. The Venezuelan government did make a big stink when one FARC official was grabbed with the help of Venezuelan police, and then quickly taken to Colombia. On the surface it would seem reasonable for the Chavez government to oppose such covert operations, but there are more devious possibilities armed foreign fighters (i.e., the FARC) inside Venezuela could as easily form the basis for opposition to Venezuelan president Chavez as they now do against Colombia. Allowing the Colombians to wipe out the FARC inside Venezuela could help Chavez, while preserving his credentials as a nationalist revolutionary -- he could publicly blast such actions while privately benefiting from the removal of a potential enemy.

 

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