Pat Robertson!

For those who haven’t already heard, Pat Robertson, televangelist, 700 Club host, and sophisticated political analyst/geopolitical consultant, advocated on American TV the assassination of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez:

“You know, I don’t know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we’re trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it,” Robertson said. “It’s a whole lot cheaper than starting a war … and I don’t think any oil shipments will stop.”


For those who haven’t already heard, Pat Robertson, televangelist, 700 Club host, and sophisticated political analyst/geopolitical consultant, advocated on American TV the assassination of Venezuela’s President Hugo Chavez:

“You know, I don’t know about this doctrine of assassination, but if he thinks we’re trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it,” Robertson said. “It’s a whole lot cheaper than starting a war … and I don’t think any oil shipments will stop.”

I’ll spare the comments on a political culture when such a man can make such comments on television. I’ll spare the commentary on what that means. But let me quote Richard Gott, whose earlier book on Venezuela I highly recommend and whose recent book I am planning to read:

The fingers of mad preachers are usually far from the button, but the untimely words of Pat Robertson, easily discounted in Washington and airily dismissed by the state department as “inappropriate”, might yet wake an echo among zealots in Venezuela. A similar call was made last year by a former Venezuelan president. Assassinations may be easy to plan, and not difficult to accomplish. But their legacy is incalculable. The radical leader of neighbouring Colombia, Jorge Gaitán, was assassinated more than 50 years ago, in 1948. In terms of civil war and violence, the Colombians have been paying the price ever since. No one would wish that fate on Venezuela.

It’s something a lot of us have feared for some time…

Author: Justin Podur

Ecology. Environmental Science. Political Science. Anti-imperialism. Political fiction. Teach at York U's FES. Author. Writer at ZNet, TeleSUR, AlterNet, Ricochet, and the Independent Media Institute.