Venezuela Mobilization Comes Amid Continuing Concerns About Military Spending, Rebel Ties
MIAMI -- The specter of war looming over Colombia and Venezuela
following the recent killing of a Colombian rebel leader comes amid an
ongoing and significant increase in Venezuela's military spending in
recent years. Venezuela's military buildup and continuing concerns
about its government's ties to left-wing rebels provide a
worrying context for Venezuela's recent troop mobilization, though most
analysts still believe the chances are slim that the current crisis
will spark a military conflict.
Colombia's decision over the weekend to cross into Ecuador to kill rebel leader Raúl Reyes and 16 members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), who were reportedly camped just a mile from Colombia along the two countries' dense jungle border, apparently stirred the ire of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, who called for the deployment of thousands of troops and tanks to Venezuela's own border with Colombia. ...