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Venezuela's Changing Foreign Policy Towards the United States: A Holistic Analysis
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
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This thesis analyzes the changing relationship between the United States and Venezuela since 1980. In the last five years this relationship has become increasingly strained. The thesis takes a holistic approach and looks at international, domestic, and individual levels of analysis to determine the causal factors in Venezuelas shifting foreign policy. The findings suggest that the new international environment and Venezuelas petroleum reserves create the ability for Venezuela to slow integration with the United States. Domestic factors explain this approach as an attempt to protect different interest groups. At the individual level, President Chavez is a headline grabber but is not a significant source of bilateral tensions. The findings indicate that the new international environment and Venezuelan political and economic culture are the important variables in explaining Venezuelas relationship with the United States.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE