Obama blasted by Latin America’s leftist leaders
President Barack Obama, long believed to be part of America’s political left, is being denigrated by South American leaders who originally applauded his election in November 2008. Some of statements coming from several leaders appear to mirror those from coming from the American left.
For example, Bolivia’s Marxist leader, Evo Morales, complained about Obama’s role in the Libyan conflict by saying the U.S. President should be forced to return his Peace Prize to the Nobel committee.
Meanwhile, Cuban dictator – and devout communist – Fidel Castro advised Obama to beg for the forgiveness of the Chilean people for the 1973 coup against former Chilean President Salvador Allende that was aided by the U.S. government.
President Hugo Chavez, who presented Obama with a copy of his book during a conference dinner in 2009, appeared to come out of left field this week when he accused President Obama and United States of pursuing control of Libyan oil engaging in military attacks against Libya.
Chavez has long considered Libya’s despot Col. Moamar Khadhafi a friend and comrade in his antagonism towards the United States. Not surprisingly Chavez reportedly offered Khadhafi asylum in Venezuela if he is deposed.
Obama’s discussions and speeches addressed mostly economic cooperation with Latin American allies such as working with Brazil in its oil exploration and production.
His visits to Chile and El Salvador are likewise part of his goal of boosting the U.S. economy through greater trade.
During his press conference with Chile’s President Sebastian Penera, Obama reiterated his economic goal of acquiring broader trade agreements. He also spoke of environmental issues and the need for cooperation in fighting drug gangs..
Obama acknowledged there is room for improvement in U.S. relations with Latin American countries, but stopped short of his trademark apologies for past wrongs or perceived wrongs perpetrated by the U.S. government.
“It’s very important for all of us to know our history and obviously the history of relations between the U.S. and Latin America have at times been extremely rocky and have at times been difficult,” said Obama during a press conference in Brazil.