Friday, March 7, 2008

How Chavez Eats and Keeps His Cake

By Tony Karon

"The surest sign of the relative decline of U.S. power is the fact that regimes that are militantly at odds with Washington — think Chavez in Venezuela, or even the Islamic Republic of Iran — are able to routinely defy the U.S. because they have something to offer that Washington needs. (Oil, in the case of Venezuela, and in Tehran’s case, the prospect of stability in Iraq.) And that suggests that for a host of more powerful and less ideologically committed regimes in the developing world — from Turkey to Brazil, Indonesia to South Africa — there is an unprecedented opportunity to advance their own interest by refraining from aligning themselves with any single bloc, but instead cutting deals with various power centers....."

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