Chavez's Horse-Head Diplomacy
Contrary to forecasts, President Bush's trip to the region is drawing friendly welcomes. Hugo Chavez, by contrast, is making a laughingstock of himself by shadowing Bush's tour. It'll probably cost him.
As TV cameras focus on anti-U.S. street protests, off-camera, Bush seems to be doing fine on his Latin American trip. Chavez, by contrast, is the one making mistakes, ones that work to Bush's favor and will likely reduce Chavez's influence.
Unable to stand Bush's invitations from Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico to visit, Chavez organized a tour of his own, bullying Argentina, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Jamaica and Haiti into visits from him on a week's notice.
But in Latin America, Chavez's shadow tour looks less triumphant than desperate, with some saying Chavez resembles a spurned teenage boyfriend still trying to get attention.