Congressman Connie Mack (FL-14), the Ranking Republican of the House Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere, today condemned Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez for issuing an arrest warrant for Dr. Guillermo Zuloaga, the president of Globovision, and Dr. Zuloaga’s son, William Zuloaga Siso.
Dr. Zuloaga, who heads one of Venezuela’s last remaining independent television stations, has been charged with allegedly “making false and offensive remarks about President Chavez.”
Mack, who appeared on CNN’s “Larry King Live” this week to debate filmmaker Oliver Stone about his new documentary that propagandizes Chavez’s greatness, said:
“Once again, Venezuelan strongman and thugocrat Hugo Chavez is using his power to quash any free and independent thought in Venezuela. This arrest warrant follows a long list of threats, censorship, harassment, and even violence by Chavez against Venezuela’s independent journalists. Over the years, he has shut down RCTV and revoked the licenses of numerous radio stations. Sadly, it is only a matter of time before Chavez is successful in his attempt to shut down Globovision as well.
“What’s even more disturbing, however, is that here in the United States, we have people like filmmaker Oliver Stone who prop up a dictator and praise all that he has done for the Venezuelan people.
“What more evidence do Oliver Stone and other Chavez sympathizers need that Hugo Chavez is a ruthless dictator who will stop at nothing to destroy freedom and democracy in Venezuela and across Latin America? They should join me in condemning this atrocious attack against freedom and the rights of the Venezuelan people.
“Our nation is great because people like Oliver Stone have the right to say anything he wants, even if it is praising a communist and two-bit dictator. The people of Venezuela deserve the same rights of free speech and expression.”