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The Alba: Inside Venezuela's Bolivarian Alliance Paperback – May 18, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 276 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (May 18, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1477497625
  • ISBN-13: 978-1477497623
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,897,282 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By jmhumire on June 4, 2012
Format: Paperback
With the death of Hugo Chavez becoming ever so imminent, this book could of not come at a better time. While many of the "Chavistas" will try to cement Hugo's legacy as one of a revolutionary, this book gives a more accurate account of what Chavez legacy will leave behind as he created this political power project known as the Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas (ALBA) to systematically subvert institutions and destroy democracy (as well as peace and prosperity) throughout Latin America.

Joel Hirst gives the most comprehensive account to date of what lies beneath the surface of ALBA, dating back to its formative years and its ideological influence to its most recent set-back in 2009 in Honduras. Debunking the myth that ALBA is some type of "trade" agreement, the author exposes how the authoritarian populist leaders of Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua - and lets not forget the Castro's in Cuba - have used the guise of "fairness," "retribution," etc. to influence their citizens to allow them to pave the road towards 21st Century Socialism.

While the author covers all the state actors that make up ALBA, what is most intriguing and unique about this book is that the author covers the non-state actors as well. Entities like the CCB of Venezuela, funded by the FARC and in cohoots with narco-traffickers in Central America, have changed the center of gravity of ALBA to blur the lines between state and non-state authority. This maze of entities and social movements throughout the region have hoodwinked the populace into believing their efforts are legitimate, when in fact the legitimacy of all these countries has been lost.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Reformer on June 3, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book provides a thorough analysis of the alliance of the socialist-led countries of Latin America. These countries, led by Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, have mastered the art of "constitutional subversion" - get elected once and then set about undermining any opposition to their continuation in power. Cristina Kirchner, president of Argentina, seems to be the most recent left-wing leader to step on the gas toward authoritarian socialism by expropriating (stealing) Repsol, a Spanish-owned petroleum company that was operating in Argentina. Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Ecuador have also moved in to the realm of "democradura," the type of autocracy that moves slowly enough so that citizens don't suddenly notice their rights being snatched away. This process, executed properly, moves just slowly enough so as not to "frighten the horses," so to speak, so that the citizenry is not roused to revolution against the regime. This is the purpose of the ALBA alliance, though as the author notes, it has been often misunderstood and misrepresented as simply an economic trade bloc. Hirst does a great job of analyzing, in depth, what is truly behind this retrograde backslide into hemispheric fascism and communism that most thought was relegated to the dustbin of history in the 1990s. Congratulations to the author for taking the time to do a proper analysis of a nefarious phenomenon that will undoubtedly cast much of the continent into another "lost decade."
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The ALBA should be required reading for Latin America policymakers -- in each country throughout the Western Hemisphere.

Though Hugo Chavez has been dismissed by some influential voices in Washington as "not a serious threat," Joel Hirst expertly proves why this analysis is shortsighted.

Methodically tracing the roots, philosophy and methodology of Chavez's fervently anti-U.S. Bolivarian Alliance, this book is a must read for those interested in exploring the magnitude of the threat to freedom in Latin America. As Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador and Nicaragua inch closer everyday to the trainwreck that is Cuba, readers will learn why that's the case.
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Excellent book, every one in Latin America and the United States should read this well documented book. Be aware how fake democracies are a new way of dictatorships.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By mgresh on June 18, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent book that covers every detail of the Bolivarian Alliance of the Americas (ALBA). Each country involved in ALBA is discussed to include their political and economic history, internal leadership, and cultural norms that lead them to support Hugo Chavez. The research on 21st Century Socialism presented is also very detailed and the author makes the remarkable comparison to ALBA. The sophisticated alliance that Hugo Chavez created with other Latin America leaders is committed to anti-imperialism and new world order; a dangerous combination for our close neighbors to have and a situation that senior policy makers need to consider. Additionally, the author discusses the connection between Hugo Chavez and the alliance with Iran, other terrorist organizations, and drug runners.

The founding principles of ALBA demonstrate the organizational leadership of Hugo Chavez and his plan. The ALBA countries believe they are victims of American conspiracy leaving them underdeveloped; it is a new organization with no plan or direction, which makes it hard to predict their next move; ALBA can be self sustained by the naturally rich resources of Latin America; the economics are based on anticapitalistic values, but are not successful yet; they contain the majority to prevent representative democracy; ALBA countries partner with other ideological supporters (ETA, IRA, FARC, and Hezbollah) to build their new world order; and they gain political support from each other to avoid problems within the OAS and the UN.

This book covers such a wide variety of concerns for Latin America. You must read it to fully understand the threat ALBA brings to world order. The aforementioned topics only scratch the surface of Joel's in-depth research of ALBA.
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