Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is dead, according to Vice President Nicolas Maduro. Chavez had been battling cancer for the last two years.
The Venezuelan president had close ties with Cuba’s Castro family, making numerous treks to the island country for cancer surgeries and treatment over the last year.
He was an antagonist to the West, particularly the U.S., and was very sympathetic “to Libya, Iran, and Iraq.”
Throughout his many terms as Venezuelan President, Chavez was able to nationalize industries, seizing many assets–including some U.S. oil and gas assets–along the way.
While trying to convince Christians to embrace communism in 2010, he ridiculed anyone who stood against him, including priests whom he dismissed as supporting the wealthy instead of the people.
Last October, Chavez claimed he would vote for President Barack Obama if he could.
Elections to fill the void left by Chavez are yet to be scheduled.