Chavez is a Terror Master: U.S. Intelligence

More proof that Venezuela’s leftist strongman Hugo Chavez is aiding communist insurgents attempting to overthrow the democratically elected government of Colombia (from today’s Wall Street Journal):

BOGOTÁ, Colombia — A cache of controversial computer files closely tying Venezuela’s President Hugo Chávez to communist rebels seeking to topple Colombia’s government appear to be authentic, U.S. intelligence officials say.

The trove — found on a dead guerrilla leader’s laptops during a military raid in March — is likely to ratchet up pressure for the U.S. to impose sanctions on one of its most important oil suppliers.

The files that have been made public so far have largely confirmed Mr. Chávez’s well-known sympathy for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. But a review by The Wall Street Journal of more than 100 new files from the computers suggests that Venezuela has broader and deeper ties to the FARC than previously known.

These documents indicate Venezuela appears to be making concrete offers to help arm the rebels, possibly with rocket-propelled grenades and ground-to-air missiles. The files suggest that Venezuela offered the FARC the use of one of its ports to receive arms shipments, and that Venezuela raised the prospect of drawing up a joint security plan with the FARC and sought basic training in guerrilla-warfare techniques.

“There is complete agreement in the intelligence community that these documents are what they purport to be,” a senior U.S. official said. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has been sharing its assessments with the White House, this official said.

Washington’s stance is likely to hurt Venezuela’s already deeply strained relationship with the U.S., its biggest trade partner. It could also add pressure for the U.S. to declare Venezuela a state sponsor of terrorism, alongside Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria, and impose sanctions……

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