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In 2007, a similar announcement was made by Ahmadinejad about the opening of Iran Air’s new Tehran to Caracas link, except that those flights do not accept open bookings, as transport for entrepreneurs or sightseers surely would. No, these planes are most likely carrying bad actors from the likes of Hezbollah, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and the Guard’s Quds Force.
Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez, who hates the U.S. as much as does Ahmadinejad, is the ideal Iranian ally. Chavez, who has visited Iran seven times, has made deals with the Islamic Republic worth an estimated $20 Billion according to Michael Rowan and Douglas Schoen in their Forbes article of 1/21/09, titled Terror at Hugo Chavez’s Hand. Israeli intelligence sources speculate that the weekly flights between Caracas and Tehran are used to transfer uranium from Venezuela to Iran, which is then purified by the Iranians.
Also considered is the possibility that the Tehran-Caracas flights are being used to transport weapons and Pasdaran – Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRCG) officers – to Venezuela in order to strengthen Chavez’s grip on Venezuela and transform it into a potential threat to the U.S. by installing long range missiles in Venezuela that can reach the U.S. Such a scenario is reminiscent what resulted in the Cuban Missile crisis of1962, when the Soviet Union supplied Cuba with missiles. The difference is of course that in 1962 President John F. Kennedy challenged the Soviets and the missiles were removed. The Obama administration is yet to challenge Ahmadinejad or Chavez.
According to an article in the German daily, Die Welt, of November 25, 2010, an agreement between Iran and Venezuela was signed during the last visit of President Chavez to Tehran on October19, 2010. The previously undisclosed contract provides for the establishment of a jointly operated military base in Venezuela, and the joint development of ground-to-ground missiles. Venezuela has agreed to allow Iran to establish a military base manned by Iranian missile officers, soldiers of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and Venezuelan missile officers. In addition, Iran has given permission for the missiles to be used in case of an “emergency”. In return, the agreement states that Venezuela can use these facilities for “national needs” – radically increasing the threat to neighbors like Colombia.
The German daily claimed that according to the agreement, Iranian Shahab 3 (range 1300-1500 km), Scud-B (285-330 km) and Scud-C (300, 500 and 700 km) will be deployed in the proposed base. It further stated that Iran also pledged to help Venezuela gain expertise in advanced rocket technology and that intensive training of their officers would be provided.
A few days after the report appeared in Die Welt, Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon held a press conference in his Jerusalem office, and invited Latin American reporters. He stated that, Venezuela has become Iran’s forward base in Latin America. Both countries have joined in a pact of mutual interests to form an axis that threatens not only the Middle East but America as well and the U.S. in particular.”
At the recently held CNN Florida Republican Presidential debate in Jacksonville, FL, Senator Santorum did not mince words about Obama’s Latin America policy when he said, “The policy under President Obama has been abysmal. We had a terrible policy on Honduras. Obama sided with Fidel Castro and Hugo Chavez. He was siding with leftists and Marxists, not standing up for our friends in Columbia.” Santorum’s warnings are dire and given the evidence he is correct in asserting that “It is long past time for us to respond.”
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