Thursday, December 3, 2009

Venezuela to Receive 6 Planes from China in 2010

Venezuela will take delivery in 2010 of the first six of 18 K-8 Karakorum trainer or light attack planes it bought from China, the Venezuelan Air Force's top commander said Nov. 27. "A total of 18, K-8 aircraft will be delivered, in addition to radar equipment that will help ensure national security," Gen. Jorge Arevalo told Venezuela's ABC news agency.

He said China would make three deliveries of the warplanes next year, the first of which will consist of six units. The two-seater K-8 fighters will be test flown by Venezuelan pilots in China before they are taken apart and shipped to Venezuela, officials said. A deal for the 18 jets was signed by Venezuela and China in late 2008. The aircraft is part of Venezuela's effort to upgrade its armed forces and gradually replace its mostly U.S.-made equipment.

Arevalo stressed the Chinese planes and radars were intended to boost Venezuela's defensive capabilities, adding: "We don't attack anybody." Venezuela and Colombia's military are on heightened alert after Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez recently complained of a U.S.-Colombian military base agreement he claims threatens regional peace. Russia, China and Belarus are Venezuela's main military suppliers. In September, Caracas said it had obtained a $2.2 billion credit from Russia to purchase nearly 100 T72 tanks and a series of anti-aircraft rocket systems from its strategic ally.


A very appropriate and intelligent response by the Venezuelan government to a political panorama characterized by an aggressor state on its border. Colombia, which invaded Ecuador almost 2 years ago, has now signed an extra-legal agreement with the U.S. military to base U.S. troops and mercenaries as well as equipment at at least seven Colombian bases. Many a country has been unable to maintain its military due to U.S. restrictions on parts and other technology for U.S. made equipment acquired when a government was more of the lapdog, lackey, lick-Uncle-Sam's-tailbone type. That time is rapidly disappearing in many parts of the world, including, rightfully so, in a significant part of Latin America. Of course, considerable effort is made by U.S. and other other capitalist media to attempt to blame a person, such as a Chavez, for all that is happening in Latin America. But the fact of the matter is that in Latin America, as in many parts of the world, people have seen through the U.S. rhetoric of democracy, freedom, and prosperity and, studying facts and history, have realized that small elites have benefitted to the detriment and great suffering (malnutrition, lack of education, repression, etc) of the vast majority. Gig's up, Uncle Sammy.

I would like to add that this equipments purchase is a direct response to the US reports, claiming that Venezuela is a country where no action against drug trafficking was taken place between Colombia and US-Europe. But at the same time, the US denied spare parts to Venezuelan air fighters and denied radar equipment supplies for air space control.

We will see, after the first drug smuggler is shut down, the US will claim human rights for the Colombian cocaine traffickers. Venezuela is evaluating the international law frame, to establish the correct procedure where unidentified flights disobeying the Air Force in Venezuelan air space, refusing to land immediately, might be destroyed on air.

Happy new year.
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