A top Venezuelan general says the United States is still a threat to his country although Barack Obama won the 2008 presidential election.
“The interests of the United States will always be the same. Obama will be able to manipulate some foreign policy, but in essence the goals and intentions of North America will stay the same: to dominate the world,” said Operations Command chief General Jesus Gonzalez.
In an interview with AFP on Thursday, Gonzalez said Caracas would buy weapons from Russia and China in the next five years to defend its oil reserves from enemies like Washington.
“The enemies of Venezuela are all those who want to set up here. I don’t doubt that the United States wants to come to look for oil. We have to be prepared: ‘If you want peace, prepare for war,’” said Gonzalez.
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The general pledged to construct armed forces that were clearly defensive, better equipped and trained.
“We want to be very strong, but in a highly dissuasive direction. So that any country in the world thinks not once but 10 times before coming here,” Gonzalez said.
Since 2005, Russia and Venezuela have signed arms contracts worth over $4.4 billion to supply Caracas with fighter jets, helicopters, and Kalashnikov assault rifles.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev is to visit Venezuela this month as the two countries are planning joint naval exercises in the Caribbean.
Earlier, Russian heavy nuclear-powered missile cruiser, Peter the Great, accompanied by three other ships went through the Caribbean Sea to hold exercises with Venezuela’s navy from Nov. 10 to 14.
“The intention is to get closer to them (Russia) because they are supplying us with our defense needs,” Gonzalez said, adding that the exercises would include ‘navigation, rescue and communication’.