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on 8 April 2009
This book is a well written and informative account of the rise of Hugo Chavez and related leaders in Latin America. The current edition has been updated from the orignal book by the addition of a chapter taking events to Dec 2007. There are 6 appendices - two of them speeches, one by Chavez and one by Morales.

The main theme of the book is the popular, populist policies of Chavez and his regional allies. The second prominent theme is the right-wing anti-Chavez rhetoric of most of the media. The second theme is indisputable given the massive pro-military coup coverage given to the failed military coup of 2002.

If you are a reader of books by Noam Chomsky and / or David Barsamian - you will find the form and content very much in the same line.

If you dislike the person or politics of Chavez, Morales or Castro - this book will not change your mind.

If you are undecided or want a counter-view to the generally prevailing negative one of Chavez this is a good book to start with.

Five stars for being relevant, well written and overall a good rejoinder to much of the media coverage of the Bolivarian Movement.
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on 27 May 2012
Amazing insight into the latin American politics and the foreign influence. The role of so called free media, serving interest of their foreign media investers. The book is worth reading, eye-opening facts. Overall, hard to digest for many.
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on 21 March 2013
This book is a series of essays on the emergence of Hugo Chavez's Venezuela and his Bolivarian movement. It is written in Ali's usual accessible but erudite style and has interesting insights into Chavez's influences and those such as Evo Morales who he has inspired. I have not given it five stars as it is not comprehensive and because the hardback edition is marred by small print which makes it harder to read especially Ali's extensive footnotes. The publishers Verso need to address this problem as it blights other of their books too.
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