Publius Pundit in this post mentions Chavez visit to Vietnam, a current stop in his world tour that has already taken him to Russia, Belarus and Iran. His bombastic rhetoric has amused his fellow oil-rich strongmen in Moscow and Belarus, and was tolerated by the more cautious mullahs - who needed Venezuelan votes in the U.N. for their schemes. But, it appears to not play well in the country that Chavez had called "North Vietnam" as if it were 1967. As the B.B.C. noted the "two countries pledged to work together in oil, gas, mining and agriculture". But, the Vietnamese cancelled two stops of the trip, including a visit to museums exhibiting shot-down US Aircraft - a prime venue for Chavez trademark anti-imperialist tirades. As Robert Mayer mentioned, the present government of Vietnam does not "want to sour ties with the United States, and any deal they can make with Chavez is strictly business and small potatoes." From the B.B.C.:
Mr Chavez's original schedule had included a visit to the military museum which contains the wreckage of shot-down American aircraft.
He was also due to visit the 'Peace Village' which looks after children suffering from health problems blamed on defoliating chemicals used in the war by the US.
However, those elements of his trip have now been cancelled.
Vietnam has worked hard to build closer relations with Washington in the past 15 years.
The US Congress will soon hold a crucial vote which will determine whether Vietnam will join the World Trade Organisation this year.
These issues press more heavily on the current Vietnamese government than talk of alliances against imperialism.
Funny how, the Vietnamese succesfully apply principles of Chavez bogeyman 'neo-liberalism', including trade pacts, with prudent social investment, while Chavez works to stop trade pacts for other countries, and makes a mess of his country. And while Hugo has been on his excellent adventure, a serious electoral opponent might have appeared, which would end this kind of junkets.
Tip Of The Hat to