HAVANA: Nato is a “military mafia,” the war in Afghanistan is “genocidal” and US President Barack Obama deserves the prize for the “best snake charmer” who ever lived, Cuba’s Fidel Castro said Monday.
In an article published in response to the Western alliance’s weekend summit in Portugal, the former Cuban leader called Nato an “aggressive institution” that ignored “billions of persons suffering from poverty, underdevelopment, shortages of food, housing, health, education and jobs.”
Castro, 84, communism’s most visible living figure, led Cuba from the 1959 Revolution until he stepped down for health reasons in 2006, handing over the presidency to his brother Raul.
Castro called Nato “a bird of prey sitting in the lap of the Yankee empire,” that was used by the United States to wage “the genocidal Afghanistan war.”
He brushed off ambitious plans unveiled at the Lisbon summit that would have Western leaders press Kabul to take over security by 2014, predicting they would eventually “hand over power to the Afghan resistance, in defeat.”
The United States is “going through a difficult phase as the result of its war exploits” and using its “enormous media resources to maintain, dupe and confuse world public opinion,” Castro said.
“Obama already admitted that his promise to withdraw US soldiers from Afghanistan may be postponed… After the Nobel Prize, we would have to award him with the prize for ‘the best snake charmer’ that has ever existed.”
CARACAS, Venezuela — During his most recent blanket television broadcast, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez took the opportunity to embrace President Obama, inviting him to join him in the construction of a new world order.
Chávez was responding to President Obama’s recent quip about diverting Air Force One in order to pay Caracas a visit. Leaving a NATO summit in Portugal, the president joked, according to a tweet by CBS reporter Mark Knoller, about having “AF-1 fly home via South America so he could visit Hugo Chavez.”
“Well, Obama, if you said that,” Chávez remarked, “we’ll receive you here. I’d shake your hand again.”
The Venezuelan leader, who has abolished term limits and shut down independent media outlets, praised Obama for his charisma and invited the president to come to Venezuela.
“I hope you’d land in Maiquetía [Venezuela’s main airport] one day,” Chávez remarked on live television. “We would embrace you, you know.”
Chávez went on, jovially stating that, were Obama to pay him a visit, both leaders would “sit down to talk, to eat socialist arepas,” a corn-based pancake popular in the country.
Chávez also insisted that his regime did not represent a threat to the United States.
“Break the stereotype,” Chávez said. “Don’t listen to those reports, which are filled with lies, saying we are a threat. No, Obama, let’s build a new world where we can all live in peace.”
Imma git all emotional-like …