Saying so, of course, is premature. At the same time, Nicaragua relies heavily on Venezuelan cooperation. Tinoco said $500 million in annual aid is provided.
He's also concerned about CELAC's future (the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States). It's comprised of 33 countries. Potentially it's an OAS (Organization of American States) alternative.
Fulfillment remains a distant aspiration. Maduro hopes it'll achieve regional energy independence, social development in areas of food, health and education, beneficial environmental development, independence from predatory international lending agencies, and other benefits.
On February 23, 2010, it was established. It has miles to go to transform hope to fulfillment. The jury remains very much out.
Other regional countries also depend on Chavez. Bolivia is an important political and economic ally. So is Ecuador.
Rafael Correa's presence in Havana to welcome Chavez on arrival signaled the importance of their relationship.
He and others wonder if Chavismo will be the same without him. Hopefully they won't have to find out.
A Final Comment
Hope springs eternal. Reality can't be ducked. Family members, physicians, and government officials close to Chavez revealed little about his cancer.
It goes without saying that multiple surgeries for the same one in the same area give pause to worry. It's not a good sign.
At the same time, Chavez's age, indomitable spirit, and superb care offer hope for a full recovery. The will to live is a powerful positive force. It's pitted against an aggressive illness.
Dr. Salvador Navarrete claimed once to have been Chavez's personal physician. Venezuelan doctors said not so. More on their comments about him below.
On October 21, 2011, Medical News Today published his assessment of Chavez's health. The Mexican newspaper Milenio Semanal published them. He claimed the following:
"President Chavez has a tumor in the pelvis, called sarcoma. These are retroperitoneal tumors, at the base of the pelvis."
"From an embryological point of view (how it started, its origin), it could be mesodermal, ectodermal or endodermal."
"Information I have received from the family is that it is a sarcoma, an aggressive tumor with a very bad prognosis - and I am nearly completely certain this is true."