By Emilio San Pedro
Mr Chavez reacted to the Colombian remarks during his radio address
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has sharply criticised the Colombian Defence Minister, Juan Manuel Santos, calling him a threat to the region.
The criticism came after Mr Santos said he would not rule out Colombian forces pursuing left-wing Colombian rebels in neighbouring countries.
Such a rash and half-witted move, Mr Chavez warned, would prompt a swift military response from Venezuela.
A Colombian incursion into Ecuador last year sparked a regional diplomatic row.
Not one to mince words - especially in the comfortable surroundings of his weekly radio and television programme - Mr Chavez also described Mr Santos as an enemy of Venezuela's and nothing short of a fascist.
The Colombian military incursion last year into Ecuador, in which a leading rebel Farc commander was killed, sparked one of the most bitter regional diplomatic rows in many years and led to both Ecuador and Venezuela sending troops to their respective borders with Colombia and a breakdown of diplomatic ties.
For his part, Colombian President Alvaro Uribe has distanced himself from his defence minister's remarks - calling them out of place and imprudent.
However, it is clear the Venezuelan leader is far from satisfied with that response by Mr Uribe.Speaking before his studio audience, Mr Chavez joked that he found it very strange indeed that Mr Santos had managed to retain his job despite making such incendiary remarks.