Saturday, September 17, 2005

So I found this article when purusing the net. I found another interesting one at CNN which led me to this one. I make no statement one way or another. I just thought that everyone might like to check this out: I had no idea there were rallies like this one out there. Guess FOX just doesn't have the coverage it used to.... Here is the link to CNN's version.

"Published on Tuesday, August 9, 2005 by the Australian Associated Press
Venezuela Warns Against US Invasion

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has told thousands of visiting students that if US forces are to invade his South American country, they will be soundly defeated.

The US government has strongly denied Chavez's claims that it is considering military action against Cuba's closest ally in the Americas.

But Chavez said the US government, which "won't stop caressing the idea of invading Cuba or invading Venezuela," should be warned of the consequences.

"If some day they get the crazy idea of coming to invade us, we'll make them bite the dust defending the freedom of our land," Chavez said to applause.

He spoke during the opening ceremony of a world youth festival bringing together student delegations from across the world and convened under the slogan "Against Imperialism and War."

Chavez called the United States the "most savage, cruel and murderous empire that has existed in the history of the world."

The Venezuelan leader said "socialism is the only path," and told the students the collective goal is to "save a world threatened by the voracity of US imperialism."

Earlier, the students waved flags, danced in traditional dress, and held signs praising socialism, Cuban leader Fidel Castro and Ernesto "Che" Guevara.

More than 300 students from the United States shouted out their disapproval of US President George W Bush, chanting "Get out Bush!" Other students chanted: "Bush, fascist - you're a terrorist!"

Some 15,000 youths from 144 countries traveled to Venezuela for the week-long festival and conference, organizers said.

Chavez wore a red shirt like many of the students, and embraced delegation leaders as their groups marched past.

The ceremony was held in Venezuela's military headquarters in Caracas. Troops looked on while students passed carrying colored flags and shouting: "We will overcome!"

This year's World Festival of Students and Youth is the 16th. The first, in 1947, was held in Czechoslovakia, and during the Cold War most host countries were aligned with the Soviet bloc.

Apart from the former Soviet Union, other host countries have included Romania, Poland, Finland, Cuba, the former East Germany and North Korea.

The week-long gathering will include musical performances, panel discussions and an "Anti-imperialist Court," which in past years has condemned the US government's actions.

While tensions have grown between Chavez and Washington, the Venezuelan leader has built close ties with countries from Iran to China.

Chavez expressed his support for Iran's new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, saying he expected to continue strengthening relations.

He said that like Venezuela, Iran was a country that had been "attacked" for many years by "the hand of imperialism."

Chavez, whose country remains a major supplier of oil to the United States, also is sharply critical of the US-led wars in Afghanistan and Iraq."

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