WikiLeaks: Doctors of Venezuela's Hugo Chavez disagree over his health

The Miami HeraldFebruary 28, 2012 

Doctors from Russia, Cuba and China have been bickering over the president of Venezuela’s health and are at odds about the leader's prognosis, according to a confidential email published by WikiLeaks.

On Monday, the controversial website released a cache of emails stolen from the Austin-based Stratfor analytical firm.

Among the communications was one from December 2011, describing how Russian doctors blamed Cuban medics for botching Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez's first cancer surgery and how they had to "clean up the Cuban team's mistakes."

According to the report, Cuban doctors thought Chávez had two years to live, while the Russian team gave him one year.

The analyst who wrote the report said her source was a “well connected” Venezuelan who is “anti-Chávez” and “working with Israel.” She gave him a “B” rating and said some of his information about the administration had checked out in the past.

In a statement Monday, Stratfor CEO and Founder George Friedman said his company’s email servers were hacked in December, and he called WikiLeaks’ decision to publish the emails “a deplorable, unfortunate — and illegal — breach of privacy.”

Friedman also said some of the email may be forged or altered to include inaccuracies and that the organization would not verify any of the communications.

In June, Chávez announced he had a cancerous tumor the size of a baseball removed during a procedure in Cuba. He returned to the island Friday, after a new lesion appeared near the site of the previous tumor. While he admitted the new lesion may be malignant, he has denied reports that the cancer had metastasized.

According to the WikiLeaks document, the source believed the cancer had started near the prostate and had spread to the colon, lymph-nodes and bone marrow.

To read more, visit

McClatchy Washington Bureau is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service