THE AMERICAS: Cool Eye for Dictators

A U.S. District Court last week ordered Venezuelan ex-Dictator Marcos Pérez Jiménez to stick close to his Miami Beach mansion for 60 days so that he can be in court when his successors make their case for extraditing him on charges of murder, embezzlement and complicity in murder and embezzlement. As the out-of-season strongman put up $25,000 bail, a Miami Beach neighbor, Radio Station Owner A. Frank Katzentine, squawked loudly: "If he is such a bum, why did the U.S. decorate him [in 1954] with the Legion of Merit?"

Pérez Jiménez—bemedaled then, beset now—symbolizes a growing U.S. distaste for dictators....

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