“You know, I don’t know about this doctrine of assassination, but if [Chavez] thinks we’re trying to assassinate him, I think that we really ought to go ahead and do it. “–Pat Robertson, 700 Club, August 22, 2005 Click here to see the entire video http://mediamatters.org/items/200508220006
Pat Robertson doesn’t like Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and he knows how to handle people he doesn’t like. Apparently Robertson has discarded his “What would Jesus do?” bracelet and replaced it with one that says “What would Stalin do?”
Chavez is not a lovely person. I wouldn’t vote for him. He admires Castro, he’s too manipulative. He’s clearly a frustrated totalitarian. Robertson called him a “strong arm dictator.” That is, of course, a lie. Chavez is the democratically elected leader of Venezuela. He’s up for re-election soon and he’s looking good in the polls. The Venezuelan people like him and everything else is none of our business.
So why is Robertson suddenly calling for his death? He says Chavez is going to make a launching pad for “communist infiltration and Muslim extremism all over the continent.” I’m surprised he didn’t throw in Darwinism. It’s the latest in a long string of lies from the mouth of this fundamentalist “religious” leader. He’s hoping you won’t notice the difference between communism, Islamism and socialism or that Venezuela is 98% Christian and unlikely to have anything to do with Islamists.
Chavez has been critical of Bush, calling the invasion of Afghanistan “fighting terror with terror.” He tried to nationalize Venezuela’s oil industry and failed. He says he wants to reduce Venezuela’s dependence on the US as a market for their oil. Venezuela is the fourth largest supplier of oil to the US. In Pat Robertson’s mind, that is the kind of evil that merits the death penalty.
Vice President Jose Vicente Rangel said Venezuela was looking into its legal options and asking for a response from Washington.
When Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfield was asked about Robertson’s remarks he said “Our department doesn’t do that kind of thing. It’s against the law. He’s a private citizen. Private citizens say all kinds of things all the time.” The glaring omission in that statement is some kind of acknowledgement that Pat Robertson was wrong to suggest that the US commit a cold blooded murder.
Acording to a CNN story, State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said Tuesday that Robertson has the right of any private citizen to say whatever he wants, but added that the televangelist’s remarks “do not represent the views of the United States. . . . His comments are inappropriate and, as we have said before, any allegations that we are planning to take hostile action against the Venezuelan government are completely baseless and without fact,” McCormack said.
Vice President Jose Vicente Rangel called Robertson “a man who seems to have quite a bit of influence in [the US].” He’s right about that. Robertson credits himself with delivering the ’04 election Bush. Like most fundamentalist leaders, he is deep in bed with the Bush administration. Rangel added sarcastically Robertson’s words were “very Christian.”
Don’t believe me, though. Listen to Pat Robertson preaching his version of Christianity: