Friday, January 11, 2008

Better Yet, Call Them Activists

You can't make this stuff up.

Here we have Venezuelan thug Hugo Chavez calling on world governments to refer to terrorist groups as insurgents and by the fourth paragraph of the story, Reuters indeed refers to them as insurgents.

Why not just call them activists?

Colombia rebels not terrorists - Venezuela's Chavez
Venezuela's leftist President Hugo Chavez on Friday urged world governments to label Colombia's cocaine-funded Marxist guerrillas insurgents instead of terrorists, a day after rebels freed two women hostages.

Colombia's interior minister immediately denounced the call to meet a major rebel demand as "completely off-the-wall."

Chavez, who brokered the rare hostage release, said the rebel fighters, the FARC and ELN, "are not terrorist groups, they are armies, real armies that occupy space in Colombia."

Colombia's conservative President Alvaro Uribe later issued a statement saying the insurgents are indeed terrorists who fund their operations with cocaine smuggling, recruit children and plant land mines in their effort to topple a democratically elected government.

The FARC and ELN use kidnapping as a weapon in their decades-long war on the state. Along with right-wing paramilitary, they are self-financed through involvement in the Andean nation's multibillion-dollar narcotics trade.

"I ask you (Uribe) that we start recognizing the FARC and the ELN as insurgent forces in Colombia and not terrorist groups, and I ask the same of the governments of this continent and the world," Chavez said in his annual state of the nation speech.

Led by the United States, which funds Uribe's counterinsurgency war and has military advisers in the country, many allies of Colombia consider both groups terrorists.

"Colombia's violent groups are terrorists because the only thing they have produced is displacement, pain, unemployment and poverty," Uribe's statement said.

On Thursday, Chavez was showered with praise by governments from Argentina to France after the FARC set free Consuelo Gonzalez and Clara Rojas, politicians they had held for years in secret jungle camps.

Uribe and Chavez have bickered for months over the leftist's role in mediating a swap of hostages for guerrillas imprisoned by the government.

Chavez is determined to help free more of the dozens of politicians, soldiers and police the FARC hold, and has offered to open a "peace camp" in Venezuela.
Surely "Peace Mom" Cindy Sheehan will be in attendance.

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