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Unformatted text preview: ama administration's move to "reset" relations with Maduro is doing more to legitimize him as the rightful heir to Venezuela's presidency than to resuscitate relations between the two governments. The move showed itself to be even more naive after Maduro accused the United States of plotting to poison Chavez shortly after the strongman's death.¶ Washington must realize that a strategy of engagement alone will not ensure a renewed and improved partnership with Caracas. Failure to realize this will not only undermine whatever influence America has in the months ahead, but also send a troubling signal to Venezuela's increasingly united political opposition. The Obama administration should instead pursue a more principled policy towards a postChavez Venezuela. In particular, it should:¶ Pressure Caracas to implement key election reforms. Venezuela's opposition faces formidable obstacles. Interim President Maduro will use the government's nearmonopoly control of public airwaves, its established networks of political patronage and lastminute publi...
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- Summer '12