“If disorders flare up in Iran as a result of nationalization, the Russians may intervene, grab the oil, even unleash World War III. To call Mossadegh a fanatic may be correct, but it explains almost nothing. Mossadegh is a far more complex character than the most baffling men the West has yet had to deal with, including misty yogis like Nehru and notably unmisty commissars like Josef Stalin…. Mohammed Mossadegh, with his faints, his tears and wild-eyed dreams, is a whirling dervish with a college education and a first-rate mind.” - Life magazine, 1953, quoted in Stephen Kinzer’s The Brothers: John Foster Dulles, Allen Dulles, and Their Secret World War (2013)
“For a fleeting few years the South American nation of Venezuela and its histrionic late President Hugo Chavez made waves on the global stage. While he upended the country’s economy and exploited class conflict at home, he blamed the world's woes on the U.S., insulted the American president at the United Nations, and exhorted other leftists in the region to challenge the prevailing economic model and follow his path to ‘21st century socialism’.
Since Chavez died, the world mostly stopped paying attention. That, however, may soon change.
The Venezuelan people have endured a catastrophic economic collapse that is sure to grow worse in the months ahead. If someone had set out to destroy the country they could hardly have done it more effectively than Chavez and his chosen heir, who has followed the same disastrous policies, driving the country into the abyss.
As his predecessor did, Maduro blames the shortages on the opposition, on his political enemies, and on the rich. But the real reason why the economy is simply not functioning is that the government has introduced wrong-headed policies that defy all logic.” - Frida Ghitis, CNN oped, days ago