Mr. Chavez, little more than an oil-empowered hooligan...
Precious! Even more so coming from somebody that has been beaten up by the Russian mafia (all mafias in Russia are pretty much the same, be they ordered by the KGB or by the bosses trafficking in women slavery, just to name one of the many specialties).
But the article of Kasparov is also full of irony: he congratulates Chavez for losing by 2% last December and Mugabe from having the nerve not to publish his electoral defeat. Using such examples he cannot be anymore direct in condemning the total electoral fraud that takes place in Russia. Sure enough if he had written his article after reading the latest in Zimbabwe arresting opposition leaders, Kasparov could have added some irony on his own personal safety.
The eerie similarity between the motives of Chaevz and Putin to remain in power are stated so well by Kasparov that it sent a shriver down my spine:
Mr. Putin and his gang really care about: total control inside of Russia and legitimacy outside of Russia.
Legitimacy in Western eyes is clearly important to Mr. Putin. Otherwise, why not simply change the constitution, or ignore it entirely, and remain as president for a third term? Why did he even bother with the rigged elections?
The answer: the hundreds of billions of dollars flowing out of Russia in the hands of Mr. Putin's oligarchs need a safe home.
Change Putin for Chavez and Russia for Venezuela and you can write exactly the very same sentences equally applicable to Chavez's regime.
Now the question that remains is will Chavez cheat as openly as Putin did in the latest electoral farce in Russia? Will the new reserve Chavez created act as the army thugs of Mugabe rounding up victorious opposition leaders? Worry not, the answer as early as late 2008. One thing is certain: the world will protest mildly at best and will keep cashing in all the dollars coming out of Venezuela. Who said that globalization of capitals was bad? Certainly not Chavez in private....
The rest of Mr. Kasparaov is equally good, read it all! You also get Olympics China and Tibet, as the perfect contours of the brave new world ahead of us.