Even during the darkest days of the Bush administration, Venezuela made efforts to mend relations with Washington.
As the political relationship deteriorated between the Bush administration and Chávez, so, too, did collaboration on the U.S.-sponsored drug war.
Underscoring the highly sensitive political environment in Venezuela, U.S. diplomats alerted Washington in 2008 to an odd incident which had occurred at the Caracas airport.
It's a bit difficult to stay on top of all the U.S. diplomatic correspondence between various American embassies in Latin America. In an effort to stay afloat, I decided to sift through many of these Wikileak cables, taking note of intriguing, incendiary or just plain odd documents.
In an effort to stay on the good side of most all countries, Brazil is reluctant to offend those nations in its immediate neighborhood. WikiLeaks documents suggest that, for now, Brazil and the U.S. are somewhat ambiguous diplomatic partners.
Apparently, there is something in Chomsky's DNA that prevents him from discussing Latin America outside the context of U.S. imperialism. Thus, everything that transpires politically in the region must be compared with Washington's actions.
At long last, the meeting between Chomsky and Chávez took place in 2009 when Chomsky traveled to Caracas. In a video posted to YouTube, Chomsky looks a little awkward and uncomfortable as he stands next to Chávez.
Behind all of the lofty rhetoric and idealism, serious fissures remain within South America's leftist movement, both within individual countries and within the larger regional milieu.
Several terms refer to the same ethnic group and have produced what I call "happy talk," which contains economic and demographic truths but not proportional political or social clout.
Noam Chomsky has provided sympathetic commentary on Venezuela, and in 2009 Chomsky even met personally with Chávez in Caracas. It came as a slight surprise, therefore, when the professor of linguistics recently criticized Chávez.
In a new interview, Ozzie Guillen tells me the surprising story of why he was drunk during both his interviews for the White Sox Manager job and explains why he thinks actor Sean Penn is a loser for his comments on Venezuela.
Hugo Chavez's health saga has had ups and downs, but specially has born the trademark of the Cold War era. After 24 days of absence he arrived in Caracas under total secrecy. But what exactly is wrong with Chavez?
Right now, in Venezuela, the political chess game is underway, even to the point of analyzing options for succession. In Havana's Plaza of the Revolution the deliberations are also intense.
Will Ollanta Humala be the Peruvian equivalent of Venezuela's Chávez or Brazil's Lula? The answer, on which may hang Peru's torrid rates of economic growth, has become a parlor game.
Cristina Kirchner has moved her image to the political center to attract dollar investors. Instead of a dirty war, Argentina is fighting a war against food price inflation and syndicalists.
Walid Makled, Venezuela's Pablo Escobar had reached the pinnacle of wealth and power. It was short lived.