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Obama to Miami anchor: Hugo Chávez has not posed 'serious' national security threat

UPDATE: Read full story here.

Oscar Haza, a well known Miami Spanish-language broadcast journalist and anchor, scored an interview this week in Washington with President Barack Obama in which Obama said Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez has not posed a "serious" national security threat to the United States.

The full interview aired Tuesday night on A Mano Limpia, Haza's nightly show on WJAN-Channel 41, better known as América TeVe. The show had shown portions of the interview Monday night, with Haza live in D.C., and teased to the president talking about Cuba and Venezuela.

The Dominican-born Haza, who also hosts a daily morning radio show that recently moved to Univisión's WAQI-AM (710), better known as Radio Mambí, said he was one of eight journalists from eight swing states invited to the White House -- the only one from Florida -- to speak to the president and other administration officials as Obama pushed his plan to keep some Bush-era tax cuts but eliminate them for incomes greather than $250,000 a year.

Most noteworthy from Haza's interview with the president -- no surprise here -- were questions on Cuba and Venezuela, key issues for South Florida's Hispanic audience (and voters). "If I don't ask you about Cuba, I can't get back to Miami," Haza quipped, in English, before asking the president about a "perception" that he intends to further embrace relations with Cuba in a potential second term.

Obama said he had been "clear" and "consistent" in his position.

"I believe that there should be a way for us to resolve this 50-year conflict with Cuba, but it involves recognizing liberty and, you know, releasing poltiical prisoners and showing movement inside of Cuba," he said. "We've shown flexibility in remittances and lifting parts of the travel ban for family members, and I think that was the right hting to do. And my hope is that the Cuban government begins to recognize that their system is no longer working."

Haza then mentioned detained American Alan Gross and stepped-up repression on the island.

"We're not going to see big moves or major improvement in the U.S.-Cuba relationship if the Cuban leadership continues to do the same thing over and over again," Obama said.

Then, Haza asked about the alliance between Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and Iran.

"We're always concerned about Iran engaging in destabilizing activity around the globe. But overall my sense is that what Mr. Chávez has done over the last several years has not had a serious national security impact on us," Obama said. "We have to vigilant. My main concern when it comes to Venezuela is having the Venezuelan people have a voice in their affairs, and that you end up ultimately having fair and free elections, which we don't always see."

You can watch Haza's Tuesday night show below. The Obama interview is in English, with Spanish subtitles.

Comments

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whasup

Ugo Chabess has actually been beneficial to Florida ...

because he has caused many relatively wealthy Benessuelans to flee, with their money, to Florida.

Still, he is a power-mad snake whose dictatorship should be reviled--like any other such Latin American dictatorship from the left or the right--by the U.S.

Why is it in the last 20 years, only the dictatorships from the left are allowed to thrive in Latin America?

This includes the Castro family in Cuba and Ugo.

What is wrong with allowing the people freely to elect their representatives and make laws for their people?

Oh, that's right, such a bourgeois notion is anathema in the Weltanschauung of Marxians with their out-moded social-economic philosophies.

fishing in the florida keys

Castro family in Cuba and Ugo?

Steve

(( Oh, that's right, such a bourgeois notion is anathema in the Weltanschauung of Marxians with their out-moded social-economic philosophies. ))

If conservatives could be trusted to be fair and honest in politics and business. So that the poorest could at least get some decent employment and not be treated as animals. Conservative governments could do a better job IMO. But are just to greedy and could care less if the poor and working classes live or die.

JT

Idiot.

Mike

Obama is clueless

Dutra

Sounds like Hugo is becoming a "composite character" in the political life of Barrack Obama.

TurncoatStevens

Not like those Terrorist Tea Partiers!, who want to preserve the Constitution and keep are National
Sovereignty...

Tom Johnson

Don't think Chavez will be around for the next election. He has not been cured of cancer. Reckonthatis.com

Emil

He says that even though his NS team has been briefing him on the unusual amount of Iranian diplomatic travel and cargo. I think obummer is lying.

Larry Nichols

The economy is doin fune and the despot that collaborates with Iran and Cuba in an oil rich country that you could drive to is not a threat.

Remember, Mitt Romney is out of touch because his wife like horses and he has a nice car.

kimdi01

From one Marxist to another. They are both working towards the same goal: total government takeover of their respective countries and dissolving any semblance of democracy.

Fred

Hugo is a socialist. He has nationalized private companies. I am against this. But his people are starving. I really can provide no alternatives for him.

toledofan

What a joke, let's face it our President is clueless in Washington or at the very least oblivious to the world around him. One thing we can say for sure is that Obama and his Administraion have made America weaker and at the end of the day, at least for the moment, we'll allowed a guy like Chavez to have his 15 minutes of fame.

rplat

Obama wouldn't know a serious national security threat if it jumped up and bit him in the backside. This poor sick Republic is in deep trouble.

anita

wow, who are you people? Chavez has devastated Venezuela. Before he came to power, Venezuela was the "jewel" of South America, and look at it now. My brother and his family have lived in Caracas for over 30 years, I have been there numerous times, so I really am very familiar with the situation in VZ. Obama knows nothing and could care less. For him it is all about taking the US to the left, as far as he can get it. He does not care about the Hispanic plight, just wants your votes! Don't do it!! What has he done for you? NOTHING!!

Jeff Locke

Chavez nationalized private assets and business. He pandered to the underclass with government handouts to gain power. I think Obama considers him a role model.

Opinionated2

Meanwhile, a majority of the Venezuelans that have abandoned their country for ours will once again vote for Obama and his socialist ideals. How do I know this? My city is nicknamed Westonzuela.

akw

Obama is a idiot, a liar or both:

Iran has its private port in Venezuela - The Venezuelan government gave Iran the use of a shipyard in Paraguaná Peninsula that is used by the Islamic country as private port equipment and materials to enter under a cloak of secrecy, sources close to the situation. - June 25, 2012
http://www.elnuevoherald.com/2012/06/25/1237035/iran-tiene-su-puerto-privado-en.html

Iranian Missile Sites in Venezuela - June 2012 Advisory
http://latlongpacific.com/June%202012%20Advisory.pdf

Jasonn

Obama can't see past the end of his turned up nose most of the time. If he can't project nuclear tipped missiles based in Venezuela from recent events then he has his head up and locked.

sophie

Chavez is like all the other dictators who simply use the money of the hard workers/producers/creators and the experts now willing to run the oil affiliated companies, to stabilize their dictator positions with the masses....and he will be like all the other dictators when he runs out of other people's money and assistance and the formerly placated hordes turn against him.

Casey

Obama famously said during the 2008 election that Iran wasn't a threat because they're a tiny little country. I would ask Obama about the supposed Iranian missile base in Venezuela. German paper, Die Welt, reported in 2010 that Iran built a missile base, which could launch missiles capable of hitting many southern states.
caseybrownmyers.blogspot.com/2010/12/cuban-missile-crisis-in-venezuela.html

Robert Peterson

Saying Chavez hasn't posed a serious threat to U.S. security is like saying Castro didn't pose a threat to the U.S. back in the late 50's, just before he let the Russians plant ICBM's on his island! This Administration might consider being more pro-active in dealing with people like Chavez and knowing what to expect in advance of the actual event!

Dugway

If interviewed on September 10th, 2001, Obama probably would have said the same thing about Al Qaeda.

Folks, remember that this security assessment came from the same guy that has exclusive and instant authority to unleash the nuclear arsenal, so he must be correct.

Right?

Liz

Obama and Chavez smiled like old pals, Chavez gave him a book which I am sure he loved since they think the same way - Marxists!

You might might not like Romney but we need to get rid of Obama now~

Professor Sudz

Can any of you people who get your worldview from TV news tell me exactly what threat he DOES pose?

Doug

Whatever else you say about Hugo Chavez, he has reduced Jewish control of the media, etc. in Venezuela.

ObamaIsGodAwful

Obama and Chavez are both first string players on Team Marx.

The Rukh

That may or may not be true but...the real 'serious' threat is the Prez himself!

Peter Mandes

This is laughable, if the stakes were not of the highest sort - liberty. Chavez is a communist pig. That's no secret. 30000-40000 Communist Cuban agents masquerading as "advisers" are now deployed in Venezuela. They control the National assembly, the military, the intellingence services, energy, finance, the armed street gangs in Chavezs's employ. That Cuba and Chavez are drug-traffickers is well known to the american intellingence and the President. That Cuba and Chavez work to together to to destablize and overthrow constitutional latin republics is well known...i.e., HONDURAS. Speaking of Honduras, recollect that OBAMA sided with Zedyla (spelling?), the communist wannabe protege of Chavez and Castro openly punishing Honduras for adhering to THEIR constitution and laws. Who is this clown Obama kidding? He is one of THEM.

John Smith

When Obana sends out this kind of Memo that mans America is in great danger of invasion today. Chavez knows that Obamna has not corrected The Gulf of Mexico since the Oil spill he ignored and went on vacation. It is obvious this was an on purpose behavior for him

Chicago Nick

"Obama to Miami anchor: Hugo Chávez has not posed 'serious' national security threat"

That's because he's almost dead the past 2 years you freakin dolt. He called the former President Bush 43 basically beelzebub in the well of the US funded UN on US Soil.

That's enough to smoke him off the freaking tarmac in my world, along with the 200,000 other reasons.

astralweeks

That's as stupid as his "the private sector is doing fine," quote. Remember how the media tried to tell us he's the smartest man in the world? Liberals, your messianic leader is clueless.

 InfoWarrior

The threat? He is a Global Elitist Pawn as is are President and Future President who are puppeted as the front man to Destroy Democracies, ruin Economies, Start Wars, Destroy Human Progress in the fake stance of having a Green Planet i.e. Agenda 21 when the whole plan is to make us dirt poor living in filth while the Global Elite live in Luxury and then when the time is right they will start there main goal of Depopulation killing off 70-80% of the population. Sounds crazy huh, they have announced these plans through books and writings, but we have no real press that are brave enough to cover it. Who am I talking about, The Rothschild’s, the Rockefellers, Soros, and pretty much anyone involved with Bilderberg. There biggest road block is the US but with things like NDAA, The UN Gun treaty, The UN law of the Sea, they are paving the way with hardly any real opposition for their Global Government... TSA was a beta test to see how much we would put up with, and sadly its alot and now they are spearheading everything through.. They created the Economic collapses and will pose as our saviors.. They will probably create a pandemic or start World war 3... And strike when we are at our most vulnerable point..They have done this time and again since the Napoleonic Wars..Where they bet on both sides and reap the benefits of the countless deaths that paved its way.. We are all pawns, insects really to them, they feel endowed by their dark higher power as to be a higher species. And they will gladly replace us with Artificial Intelligence and leave a small population as slaves for their sick pleasures...Most will dismiss this not being able to hear the truth, it is too grand a scheme sounds too outlandish to believe, but that is how they operate..The bigger the lie the more outlandish the truth, Good hearted people will never believe it and go back to the safety and security of their programmed life, from TV,Movies, Sports,etc.. Free your mind and wake up...

Infowars dot Com...

D K

The biggest threat our nation faces is the trampling of our Constitution and the media blacked from reporting on the biggest story involving government corruption

http://BiggestCoverUp.blogspot.com/

Bob

you have be a complete moron to think Chavez is any kind of threat to the USA. Although thats never stopped Americans whining like little girls everytime a world leader stands up to them or they think their is a new boogie man to be afraid of. Quite pathetic really .

sally

Obviously freedom is not an issue these statements are motivated by donor needs

Venezuela Scum

Obama will still think its Bushes fault, when Hugo through his tribe in South Florida, sets off a dirty bomb in the Port of Miami, killing a whole bunch of innocent people. Remember on 9/11, as bad as Castro is, he did not mock the American people on 911, like Chavez and his country of maggots. Funny how Obama adores Venezuela and hates and loathes Colombia. And I would not trust any of the Venezuelans in South Florida either. remember they killed american oil workers in the 1930's and 1940's, and almost killed Nixon when he in Caracas as VP in the 1950's. They are filthy animals. Deport them all back

Dr. Hodgkinson

Chavez-Most of what he does is against American interests. Shipping tanker loads of petroleum to the Syrian government to continue the slaughter of their very own people and their support of Iran would certainly not qualify as a stabilizing influence in the world and to America. President Obama is again being quite disingenuous, but of course we are very accustomed to his distortions.

P.S. Does Professor Sudz really hear what Mr. Chavez says in his rantings?

EllieEnlightened

Birds of feather.

Hey_JC

Hugo Chavez poses no serious threat to us. Just like Saddam Hussein didn't in the early 2000's. Lets not make that mistake again.

StopIgnorance

Obama is correct - Chavez is not a serious national security threat (we continue to buy oil from them). But the number of ignorant comments - from Drudge's idiotic readers - shows why these people are clueless and dangerous when it comes to issues of national security and foreign policy. Here's an idea, instead of mindlessly following what others tell you why not read up on things and understand what a national security threat is. Oh yeah, that's write, reading and understanding is not part of conservartism. Peace out losers!

raymond

Of course Chavez is not a national security threat. Why is Obama saying this even an issue? It just shows that Obama is a sane person. Everyone knows there is no national security threat from Venezuela. Chavez is, at most, playing a game of ideas with Washington, and Washington is playing the same game back. The very idea that anyone in the U.S. should be scared of some kind of armed attack from Venezuela is laughable.

Reader11722

Romney and Obama both love illegals, yet another violation of our rights. The gov’t constantly violates our rights.

They violate the 1st Amendment by caging protesters and banning books like "America Deceived II".

They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by allowing TSA to grope you.

They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars.

Impeach Obama, support Ron Paul.

Last link of "America Deceived II" before it is completely banned:

http://www.amazon.com/America-Deceived-II-Possession-interrogation/dp/1450257437

PurpAv

Well, if you don't consider allowing Hezbolla to setup shop in your country or using the narcos as a political weapon, no, then there's no serious threat there at all.

zxdvzxv

Obama said that Iran didn't pose a threat either.

victorgospo

Chavez is a threat. However Obama and people who believe his BS are a greater threats to US security than Chavez.

detector

raymond and stopignorance are missing the point. No worries from attack from Venezuela is right. But these idiots have no vision of what the imbecile Chavez is doing with Iran. Now, that is another thing and a very serious one. But keep your ignorant liberal heads in the sand and you won't see what's coming. Iran is by far a bunch of animals that would do anything to hurt the US., Israel and anything that is not islamic. We have a bunch of inept, dumb, stupid politicians running our country. Hollywood is their moral compass and most of them have never been to a foreign country. Never created a job nor have been responsible for any payroll, much less put in a full honest day of real labor.
Very difficult to deal with total negligence and ignorance. Just keep spending, increasing the size of the Gov., Wasting money we do not have and taxing the job creators. It is going to be hilarious!!! Wait and see how much worse it will get. But those imbeciles on TV shows........ are leading these stupid people by the thousands.
God Help Us!! because.............. the unions and the pile of free loaders, lazy leaches won't! The best idea this people have is..............more taxes so we can spend and waste more!! Brilliant! Keep voting for them! Funny to the max, but the joke is on all of us supporting them.

Banksters Rob USA

Please excuse Emperor Obama, he has some White, Christain, Pro Lierty, Pro Constitution, Patriots to throw to the Lions now.

Hugbear281

OBAMA says Hugo Chavez, Socialist Marxist President of Venezuela, "Ugo poses no national security threat to U.S." !? Yes UGO poses a threat for these reasons...UGO assists Hezbollah through the FARC into the U.S. Mexican border....has trained the Mexican Cartel to carry out Hezbollah terror in Mexico...beheadings, killings...um 50,000 plus murders in the border since 3 years ago....50,000 human beings...yet Holder is stalling, criminally , on the FAST and Furious debacle....Wake up America....Is there a common denominator...of UGO CHAVEZ, OBAMA as marxist and Hezbollah , as the Muslim connection to derail America over the cliff...Smell the coffee!

Doctor_G

I'm sure in Barry Hussain's lilliputian mind, Chavez isn't a threat. Unless he has Ron Paul bumper stickers on his motorcade or wants to adopt constitutional principles in Venezuela.

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