Oil's New Boss

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez strikes a fiery chord as host of a landmark OPEC summit. Is this a cartel the world should fear again?

It's easy to see how the various princes, sheiks and emirs might have felt a bit out of place at last week's 40th-anniversary summit of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. For one thing, members of the famously fractious group (given up for dead only a couple of years ago amid plummeting oil prices) hadn't been able to see their way through the wars, political infighting and price gouging to convene such a gathering for a quarter-century.

The other jaw dropper was that instead of making a quick jaunt to a neighboring desert kingdom, the heads of state and their massive...

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