Pat Robertson vs. Hugo Chavez
The often-wacky televangelist from Virginia Beach is at it again, opining that the United States should consider assassinating Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez before he is able to do us harm by collaborating with terrorists. (Is that what Jesus would do?) The threat posed by Chavez is real, but his most likely victims in the near term are other countries in Latin America, not the United States. Robertson's words were like sweet music to Chavez, who needs periodic evidence of U.S. malicious designs in order to rally popular support and justify his authoritarian regime. The strong disavowals from the State Department were appropriate but counted for absolutely nothing among leftist-nationalist circles in Latin America, where Uncle Sam is seen as a demon. See Washington Post. I've watched Robertson's "700 Club" a few times, and most of it is pretty good: accurate news reporting, though with a focus on topics of interest to evangelical Christians, and a variety of lively features, much like the "Today" show or "Good Morning America," but with a more wholesome "flavor." But when Pat starts to talk, all bets are off...
Plane crash in Peru
The fact that at least 57 of the 98 passengers and crew survived the crash of a jet in the Peruvian jungles seems to have been a miracle. The survivors said there was storm-induced turbulence as the plane prepared to land near the town of Pucallpa, but there was no warning of the impending disaster. Those who escaped the burning wreckage had to wade through swamps before being rescued. See CNN.com.