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Breaking News: Reports Suggest that Hugo Chavez is in Critical Condition at a Cuban Hospital UPDATED

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Note: This is, as of yet, an unconfirmed story.  However, since Communist dictatorships are very secretive in such matters, I will follow the story.

Sources have revealed to FOX News Latino that Venezuelan dictator, Hugo Chavez, is hospitalized, in critical condition, at a Cuban hospital.

Hugo Chávez extended stay in a Cuban hospital is because he is in critical condition, according to a report in El Nuevo Herald.

The Venezuelan president, who was last seen in public June 9 and last heard from on June 12, on a phone call with Venezuelan state television, was said to have been treated for a pelvic abscess in Cuba.

During the call Chávez said that medical tests showed no sign of any “malignant” illness.

But according to the report in El Nuevo Herald, Chávez finds himself in “critical condition, not grave, but critical, in a complicated situation.”

The Miami newspaper cited U.S. intelligence officials who wished to remain anonymous.

Foreign Policy also has some discussion on the situation…

Because of the force of Chávez’s personality and the cult he has built around it, there is no successor to lead his movement in Venezuela. At long last the opposition may finally be able to take power, free the press, and undo the constitutional crisis he has thrown the oil-rich nation into. Any change in the status quo could have major geopolitical implications, particularly in regards to Cuba– the Castro brothers maintain the communist island’s energy mostly through deals with Chávez. However, we should not be too optimistic; because Chávez has completely undone the constitutional order in Venezuela, his absence from power could conceivably thrust the nation into civil strife or an even worse dictatorship. It must be watched closely.

I would agree with the blogger at Foreign Policy, Robert Zeliger.  Given the nature of Chavez’s regime, a power vacuum would result at his passing, or even during an extended absence.  Dictators such as Chavez usually have considerable egos, and therefore exert a great deal of personal control over all matters of state.  This leaves the system unable to function without him.

While I hesitate to ever wish for anyone’s demise, Venezuela would benefit, in the long run, if Chavez never returned.  However, this story has very little to go on, and may not for some time.  If you recall, we usually didn’t hear about the demise of Soviet Premier until a successor clawed his way to power-usually after a great deal of disinformation.   As such, I will revisit this as more information becomes available.

Related Post: AshBrook Center

H/T: Memorandum

UPDATE#1: Lonely Conservative has posted, providing that the culprit might be prostate cancer that has metastasized….

Venezuela News and Views has been following the events closely and are great resource of any of the goings on in Venezuela. He quotes a spanish language source Gustavo as he rethinks the possibility that Hugo Chavez may indeed be in serious medical trouble. “I do not know how trustworthy is Gustavo’s source, but the thing is that his “conspiracy theory” matches so many things so well that, that as Italians would say, si non e vero, e ben trovato.  And thus, even if this blogger is always reticent on reporting rumors, for once he will make an exception.”

From the post Chavez croaking? Well, maybe…

In short, Chavez would be suffering from a prostate cancer that has metastasized.

This already would explain several things: why Chavez never remarried; why he occasionally seems to get all bloated; why his ample clothing when he does an extended cadena as it could hide adult diapers better; why the mystery around the whole thing as prostate surgery for a macho man is tantamount to recognize that he is not that macho anymore.

Since the post of Gustavo is in Spanish, follows my interpretation of his text in English.

Apparently the “knee” problem was a way to hide the prostate surgery which today can be dealt well enough in a couple of weeks.  But if we are to believe Gustavo the post biopsy was not encouraging and they decided to do some advanced body scans which in Venezuela can only be done in a couple of private clinics.  Not only Chavez entourage would not trust the discretion of private clinics but it would have been also an admission that the “socialist” care was not as performing as the “capitalist” care since the regime had not been able to match the equipment of the private sector for “el pueblo“.  Thus the trip to Cuba.  One caveat here: where would have Chavez got prostate surgery in full discretion?  Has he set an O.R. inside Miraflores or Fuerte Tiuna?

If this is confirmed, it would be a game changer for the Venezuelan people.  If Chavez is out of commission, or even dies, his government, which is based mostly on his personality cult, would likely fall into disarray.

I have to admit that everything we have right now seems to be based on second hand reports and conjecture.  I have fully considered that when covering this story.  With the implications so significant for Venezuela, and the region as a whole, I’ve decided to cover it, with the caveat that a lot of it is, at this point unconfirmed.

More as it comes.

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  • http://lonelyconservative.com Unlikely Hospitalist

    Thanks for the link, Matt.

  • Pingback: Hugo Chavez in Critical Condition? Dead? Rumors are Flying | The Lonely Conservative

  • http://conservativesonfire.wordpress.com Jim at Conservatives on Fire

    Your reading of the Venezuelan One is right on the money. For now it is all rumors. The key date to watch is is July 5, the 200th anniversary of the country. Chavez has had huge ceremonies planned for a very long time. We’ll have to wait and see if the celebration is postponed or if someone else takes his place. The most frequently heard rumor is prostrate cancer. Not necessarily fatal but in his case it would definitely be Ego busting.

  • http://teresamerica.blogspot.com/ Teresa

    May the Lord’s Will be done. While I hate to wish ill on anyone Chavez’ demise would be a blessing from God IMO. We’ll just have to wait and see whether this rumor turns out to be true.

  • http://presentdiscontent.wordpress.com/ Don

    I can see it now, Matt. Sean Penn, Tom Hanks and Alec Baldwin will rush to Venezuela to hold a candle light vigil for Ol’ Hugo.

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