Hugo don’t lose that number

The map of misreading that the Obama administration applies to American foreign policy is vividly on dispaly in our approach to Honduras. We find ourselves standing shoulder to shoulder with Fidel Castro, Hugo Chavez and Daniel Ortega, all of whom seek to reinstate the president who was removed from office with the support of the country’s Congress and Supreme Court.
Now come Monica Showalter and her colleagues on the editorial board of Investor’s Business Daily to report that on Thursday last week, “Chavez really lost it, making a bizarre, out-of-protocol 11:15 p.m. phone call to U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Thomas Shannon urging the U.S. to ‘do something,’ suggesting a military invasion. Seems Chavez was losing sleep at night over Honduras.” Chavez’s night thoughts continue to trouble him:

[O]n his weekly variety show Sunday, Chavez made a long speech about his call to Shannon, hurling insults at the very country he wanted go to war for him. He blamed the U.S. for instigating the “coup” that removed Zelaya and maintained that the 600 U.S. troops stationed on Honduras’ Palmerola military base had a role in it.
Chavez insisted that our Central Intelligence Agency, State Department and Pentagon all conspired behind President Obama’s back to create the crisis. He demanded that Obama withdraw the U.S. troops, revoke the visas of Honduran officials and seize their assets. Then he threatened to foment a Honduran military revolt.
“Zelaya will return to his country. The government of Honduras will decide whether to kill him or not. He is willing to die,” Chavez said, gladly giving up his pal’s life for “the struggle.”
As of Tuesday, Zelaya, acting on cue from his sponsor, was calling for violence and disruption of trade with strikes and roadblocks. “The Honduran people have the right to insurrection,” he said.

IBD concludes that Chavez’s actions in the Honduras debacle are “nothing but the work of a dictator disguised in democracy’s clothing.” It would be nice if Chavez’s midnight phone call were to wake up others in the Obama administration besides Shannon.
UPDATE: Don’t miss Christopher Caldwell’s Weekly Standard cover story “Comrades in arms” and Ed Morrissey’s Hot Air post “Zelaya’s ultimatum.”

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