Venezuela's president continued his criticism of President Bush after the pro-Chávez legislature declared that the 9/11 attacks were `self-inflicted.'
BY PHIL GUNSON
Special to The Miami Herald
CARACAS - When Venezuela's leftist President Hugo Chávez called President Bush ''the devil'' in a U.N. speech in September, many thought his ''anti-imperialist'' rhetoric had reached rock bottom.
But fresh depths have since been plumbed. [Plumb them! Plumb them!] The Venezuelan government, to judge from recent events, officially regards Bush as a genocidal Nazi who arranged the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to justify aggression against other nations.
In a speech Tuesday, Chávez criticized the decision of an Iraqi court to sentence former dictator Saddam Hussein to the death penalty. ''If sentencing is to be done,'' Chávez said, ``the first one to be given the most severe sentence this planet has to offer should be the president of the United States, if we're talking about genocidal presidents.''
RESOLUTION ON 9/11
His comments, which were fairly typical of his recent attacks on Bush, came shortly after the publication of a resolution by Venezuela's legislative National Assembly describing the 9/11 attacks as ''self-inflicted'' and after an exhibition at the Foreign Ministry building in Caracas in which Bush was portrayed as a Nazi storm trooper.
The resolution, which appeared in the official government gazette in mid-October, primarily criticized Washington's decision to build a wall along the Mexican border to keep illegal immigrants out.
But in its fourth paragraph, it calls on the U.S. Congress to ``demand that the government of President Bush explain the self-inflicted attack on the World Trade Center and its victims, the supposed aircraft that crashed into the Pentagon and the links between the bin Laden family and the Bush family.''
The resolution, drafted by the deputy chairman of the Foreign Affairs Commission, Carlos Escarrá, was passed unanimously by the 167-member assembly, all of them Chávez supporters after an opposition boycott of elections last December.
Both Chávez and Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro have referred several times in the past to suspicions that the 9/11 attacks were planned by the Bush administration, and have called for an inquiry.
But this appears to be the first time that the term ''self-inflicted attack'' has been used without qualification.
Asked how the legislature had reached that conclusion, Escarrá said that ''evidence and testimonies'' had emerged in the United States and that ''for the rest of the world, there is no longer any question'' that 9/11 was not an al Qaeda attack. ...
Miami Herald, November 9th 2006