- By P.J. Aroon
At this weekend’s Summit of the Americas, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez reached out to Secretary Clinton to talk about posting ambassadors in Caracas and Washington. (And based on the April 18 photo above, it looks like Clinton in return did a bit of reaching out, too, in the literal sense.)
An Obama administration official told CNN, “We don’t know yet if Chávez is serious. … We’re not rushing into this.”
Clinton might agree about the rushing part. When she was running for the presidential nomination in 2007, she told CNN, “I don’t want to see the power and prestige of the United States president put at risk by rushing into meetings with the likes of Chávez and Castro and Ahmadinejad.”
Remember, Chávez is the man who last month called President Obama an “ignoramus” and said “he should read and study a little to understand reality.” (I suppose that’s why Chávez gave Obama a copy of Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent.)
Still, it looks like Clinton’s State Department is happy about the tiny baby step taken in the U.S.-Venezuela relationship. The department’s spokesman Robert Wood said, “This is a positive development that will help advance U.S. interests, and the State Department will now work to further this shared goal.”
Photo: PRESIDENCIA/AFP/Getty Images
Joshua Keating is associate editor at Foreign Policy and the editor of the Passport blog. He has worked as a researcher, editorial assistant, and deputy Web editor since joining the FP staff in 2007. In addition to being featured in Foreign Policy, his writing has been published by the Washington Post, Newsweek International, Radio Prague, the Center for Defense Information, and Romania's Adevarul newspaper. He has appeared as a commentator on CNN International, C-Span, ABC News, Al Jazeera, NPR, BBC radio, and others. A native of Brooklyn, New York, he studied comparative politics at Oberlin College.| Passport |
Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at email@example.com.
Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.
A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.
Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C.| The Cable |