View Full Version : Chavez health setback creates uncertainty in Venezuela

02-22-2012, 11:17 PM
Feb 22 05:43 PM US/Eastern
President Hugo Chavez's revelation that his cancer may have returned has plunged Venezuela into a period of deep uncertainty as it ramps up for what many expect to be the most closely contested presidential elections in years.

Less than 24 hours after Chavez disclosed that doctors have found a new lesion that is likely cancerous in the same area where a malignant tumor was removed last year, what-next scenarios have begun to proliferate in the local media and among analysts.

Chavez could still tap a successor to run in his place, the October 27 elections could be delayed, or he could just muddle through with a campaign message that shifts attention from the state of his health to the legacy of his Bolivarian revolution.

But underlying the speculation are deeper fears of the unpredictable consequences of a vacuum of power in a country that has been dominated by Chavez, 57, since he came to power in 1999.

"No one needs to be alarmed, and no one should start celebrating: because independent of what my personal fate may be, this revolution is on its way and nobody and nothing is going to stop it," Chavez said Tuesday.

The opposition response to the news has been muted, with its unified candidate Henrique Capriles setting a gentlemanly tone by wishing Chavez a speedy recovery.

"To my opponent, as a child of God that I am, I wish him a successful operation, a quick recovery and a long life," Capriles wrote in his Twitter account@hcapriles.

The 39-year-old governor of the populous state of Miranda, which includes a large swath of Caracas, was elected sole candidate of the opposition by an overwhelming margin in February 7 primaries that drew a large turnout.

So far, Capriles has refused to rise to bait thrown out by Chavez, who in campaign appearances last week called the younger man a "pig" and vowed to "pulverize" him in the elections.

Recent opinion polls have given him a lead over Capriles -- a center-left moderate -- but around a third of Venezuelans say they are still undecided.

Chavez, who had declared himself cancer-free after surgery in June and four rounds of chemotherapy, had displayed signs of picking up the pace of his schedule in recent months, resuming weekly television and radio broadcasts, delivering rousing speeches and greeting supporters.

In a television interview Tuesday, Chavez acknowledged he may have to slow down if the lesion is found to be malignant.

"If it is malignant, I would be going into a different phase... certainly localized radiation therapy," Chavez said.

He said he would go to Cuba in the coming days to have the lesion removed, and then tests would determine if it is cancerous. But he said the chances it is malignant "exist and are high."

Despite his insistence that the cancer has not metastasized, Chavez has provided no details about the type of cancer or his condition, which has added to the public uncertainty.

Brazilian oncologist Carlos Dzik told AFP that cancerous cells may have grown back if the surgery to remove the tumor did not get everything. "That is what we call a local recurrence of the tumor," he said.

Luis Vicente Leon, head of the polling firm Datanalisis, said the health setback "could generate a temporary effect of popular solidarity, as it did the first time, but the magnitude would probably not be as great, because it is no longer a surprise."

He said Chavez should come up with some "new ideas to compensate" for his health problems, and possibly rely less on the strength of his flamboyant personality and more on the legacy of his socialist revolution.

He might also identify one of his lieutenants as a potential successor, he said.

Among those mentioned as possible successors are Vice President Elias Jaua, Foreign Minister Nicolas Maduro, National Assembly President Diosdado Cabello and Chavez's brother, the governor of the state of Barinas, Adan Chavez.

"Perhaps he won't want to do it quickly, because it would spur rumors of his sickness," he said.

Other analysts note that the elections won't be formally convened until the end of March, so the National Electoral Council could still change the date. Or the president, whose current term ends on January 10, could decide against running for another six-year term.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.19c6f015037ad49f6c0152f8c115030 2.801&show_article=1

02-23-2012, 01:28 AM
...........plunged Venezuela into a period of deep uncertainty........
Gasp! Really??!!

Somehow, that phrase just cracks me up.:smile:

02-23-2012, 04:31 AM
I hope Chavez has his penis fall off, suffer unimaginable pain and has his insides eaten out buy parasites before he dies.