Published March 05, 2013
Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, who died Tuesday after 14 years as president, was known for the immense power he wielded and his socialist diatribes, but also for his high-profile clashes with U.S. leaders.
The following is a timeline of Chavez's derisive comments and confrontations with the United States government.
August 2005: Chavez expels the DEA from his country, calling the U.S. government under George W. Bush the "most savage" and "cruel" in the world.
February 2006: Chavez says, "Hitler would be like a suckling baby next to George W. Bush."
September 2006: In perhaps his most infamous U.N. speech, Chavez uses the U.N. General Assembly stage to lambaste Bush. "The devil came here yesterday," Chavez says on stage. "And it smells of sulfur still." Chavez also holds up a Noam Chomsky book during that appearance as he continues to rail against America.
September 2008: Chavez kicks out the U.S. ambassador; the U.S. does the same for the Venezuela ambassador.
April 2009: Chavez gives a book to President Obama called "Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent." The virulently anti-American book tells how for 500 years Europe and then the U.S. exploited Latin America, leaving it impoverished and governed by corrupt leaders.
July 2009: The Obama and Chavez administrations agree to return their ambassadors.
December 2009: Chavez, at a Copenhagen climate conference, says he "still" smells sulfur after Obama speaks at the conference. "The Nobel Prize of War just finished saying here that he is here to act. Well, show it sir. Don't leave by the back door," he says.
December 2010: Venezuela revokes the agreement to allow the U.S. ambassador in the country; the U.S. again revokes the visa for Venezuela's ambassador.
December 2011: Chavez calls Obama a "clown."
March 5, 2012: Venezuela's government, before announcing Chavez's death, expels two U.S. diplomats accused of spying on the military. The U.S. State Department rejects the allegations.