The world may grumble when Chavez stifles the free press of Venezuela. We quietly complain when he and his supporters violently crack down on student protestors opposed to constitutional changes designed to enhance his power. But one thing we will not tolerate is harsh words directed at departed foreign leaders.
This would not do. Spain's current PM, the leftist Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, took the high road:
“President Aznar was democratically elected by the Spanish people and was a legitimate representative of the Spanish people. President Hugo Chavez, I think there is an essential principle to dialogue, and that is, to respect and be respected, we should be careful not to fall into insults.”
Spanish King Juan Carlos was more to the point:
“Why don't you shut up?"
Indeed. Why doesn't Chavez just shut up? And since I am not encumbered by the rules of civility the govern diplomacy, I'll pull a Chavez of my own: He's an idiot. The term 'fascist' has a very specific historical and political meaning, and the more you throw it around inappropriately, the stupider you sound. You may disagree with Anzar's politics, but he wasn't a fascist.
Not only is Chavez a grade-A dumbass, but he also suffers from delusions of grandeur:
“I do not offend by telling the truth. The Venezuelan government reserves the right to respond to any aggression, anywhere, in any space and in any tone. I speak the truth to kings, to imperialists, to Bush.”
Hmmm. A leader busily suppressing democratic rights while following what appears to be a pseudo-messianic quest. Wow. That sounds a bit...well, you know.
Screen-cap of King Juan Carlos listening to Chavez at the Ibero-American Summit. You can't tell, but he's working up to some serious pwnage.