“The empire stood naked. I do not know what the United States is going to do. Well, they do not care about this. But how many things have been disclosed! They disrespect their allies with all these spying activities!” Chávez said during a cabinet meeting broadcast by state-run TV network Venezolana de Televisión (VTV)
Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez said on Tuesday that leaks of diplomatic correspondence by whistleblower website WikiLeaks have exposed a "naked empire." Chávez added that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton "should resign, it is the least she can do" given the seriousness of the revelations.
"The empire stood naked. I do not know what the United States is going to do. Well, they do not care about this. But how many things have been disclosed! They disrespect their allies with all these spying activities!" Chávez said during a cabinet meeting broadcast by state-run TV network Venezolana de Televisión (VTV), Efe reported
The Venezuelan president said that according to the documents leaked by WikiLeaks, the United States "refers to its allies in a very unusual way." The documents show "an attack against governments, people and international organizations."
The United States "is a failed and illegal state that disrespects ethical principles, and has lost respect for its own allies... and this (the documents leaked by WikiLeaks) shows it clearly," he added.
"I have to congratulate the people of WikiLeaks," Chávez said, and his director, Julian Assange, "for their courage and bravery."
"This man (Assange) has gone underground; he is making statements in a secret place. He even fears for his life," Chávez said.
Chávez criticized the reaction of the US Secretary of State, who on Monday condemned in harsh terms the "theft" of diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks and said that "it is an attack on the United States and the international community."
Clinton should resign, Chávez suggested. "It is the least she can do, together with all those other spies and delinquents working in the State Department. They should give an answer to the world rather than attacking and saying that it was a theft," the Venezuelan president said.
Chávez was outraged because the documents leaked by WikiLeaks show that Clinton allegedly ordered a "study on the mental health of Argentine President" Cristina Fernández. The Venezuelan head of state expressed his solidarity with his Argentine counterpart.
"Somebody should study Mrs. Clinton's mental state," said Chávez.
Translated by Gerardo Cárdenas
In the latest attempt to plug the leaks to smuggling, Venezuela began nightly closures between 10 pm and 6 am of its official border crossings along the Colombian border.