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Why Venezuela?

Some readers have noticed that I have started a new bilingual blog, Venezuela Report, which I am hoping to develop into an informative platform for discussion and debate about this Latin American country. Other readers are asking exactly what I think I am up to, venturing so far away from my pigeon-holed pastime of writing about Russian politics, energy, and business.

Let me attempt to answer some of these questions. 

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For one, I have been working on legal cases in Venezuela for some 15years now at this point, including a major hotel dispute about nineyears ago which had some considerable political elements.  I’ve alwayshad a strong fascination with the country, its brilliant and kindpeople, and often volatile politics.  Anyone who’s been reading thisblog for the past two years knows that this has been a subject offrequent interest to me, especially the comparison between Russia andVenezuela (one that is shared by others).

Second, is of course my new client, Eligio Cedeño, a political prisonerof the Venezuelan state.  In my preparation for his defense, I havebeen reading, listening, talking, eating, drinking and breathing thecountry’s political affairs, and it seemed like an opportune time tostart a blog to discuss not only the situation of rule of law and political prisonersin Venezuela, but also the wider implications of what is happening inthe country. I am counting on the help of many others I met during mylast trip there, so I assume that it will take on a strong “forum”character.

Lastly, I want to reassure you that this Russia-focused website is notslated for any kind of changes, and in fact we are looking forward tobringing in more and more voices from inside theh country to cutthrough the foggy lens of mass media assumptions about events there. The sections labelled “Americas” and other areas will continue to post info about Russia’s relations with this region – in fact there might be some cross posting done.  The Spanish-language version of my main page will continue to be focused on the Russia issues.  So why not take a moment, and check out the latest piece on Venezuela Report,and let me know your thoughts.

As always, thanks kindly for reading.
Robert Amsterdam