Venezuela: Target for Reds

Archive Report

Venezuela and Communist Ambitions

President Romulo Betancourt of Venezuela, a Communist himself for a brief period 30 years ago, was praised by President Kennedy during his recent visit to Washington as the “No. 1 enemy” of the Reds in Latin America. Betancourt obviously welcomed the accolade. He views his government, which has instituted land and tax reforms and which is using revenues from its oil resources to help raise the living standards of Venezuela's masses, as a sturdy obstacle to further Communist gains in the Americas. Kennedy indicated agreement when he toasted the Venezuelan chief executive, Feb. 19, as a symbol of what the United States wishes for “our sister republics of the hemisphere.”1

Venezuela's exposed position has drawbacks. Communists, some trained in Cuba and supplied ...

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