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Posted June 21, 2008 by publisher in Cuban Art

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By LAURA STEWART | The Daytona Beach News-Journal

Alberto Jones paused in front of Daniel Serra-Badue’s 1941 painting, “Cuban Sweets,” and smiled.

“These are typical treats, homemade cookies with fruit in them, mostly guava,” said the Palm Coast resident, a native of Cuba.

Then he turned to another painting in the Cuban Foundation Museum, at the Museum of Arts and Sciences, and frowned.

“But what about the children of Cuba, who have never seen these works - and never will,” said Jones, 69, who has lived in the United States since 1980.

“My feelings are mixed. I’m proud about who we are, as Cubans, and angry because these works are here and not in Cuba, where they belong,” he said. “It hurts to think they’ve been deprived of the opportunity to see and enjoy such marvelous arts.

“These works belong to the people of Cuba.”

Yes, and no - not as long as the art is in the small museum, frozen in place half a century ago by the Cuban Revolution.

“The city is going to keep the exhibits at least until there is a more friendly government in Cuba,” said the city’s personnel director in 1962, after “Castro’s government” requested the art’s return. No official actions have happened since, and as far as museum and city officials know, Cuban officials have not called back.

The official story is on a bronze plaque at its entrance: “The Cuban Foundation Museum Collection was given generously by President Fulgencio Batista and his wife Mrs. Marta Fernandez Batista to the city and to the people of Daytona Beach in 1957,” it proclaims.

But the collection didn’t exist in 1957, the year the Batistas made a different gift to the city. They had lived in luxurious exile in Daytona Beach from 1945, following Batista’s presidential term, until 1948, when he won a senate seat. In 1952, he seized the presidency again, in a “bloodless coup.”

After 1948, the Batistas kept their home at 137 N. Halifax Ave., added an adjacent piece of property and bought a larger place for retirement, the former Olds mansion at 129 N. Halifax.

Life in Havana became more uncomfortable. Fidel Castro’s revolutionary brigades began attacking Batista’s regime in 1953, forcing him to live in a state of siege. He relished the welcome Daytona Beach provided on March 24, 1956: “Batista Day,” with its speeches, toasts, dinners and parade - and his last visit to his Florida home.

To return the favor, Batista played host to 16 city officials, among them Mayor J.H. Long and his wife, on a 1957 Havana junket. The highlight came at 5 p.m. Oct. 28 in the Presidential Palace’s Room of Mirrors, when he gave his properties at 137 and 145 N. Halifax Ave. to the city, and formalized the Cuban Foundation and its museum.

The properties, valued at $125,000, would become the museum - with renovations paid for by Batista - and Halifax Historical Society headquarters. The Cuban museum “will be maintained from the income of a $50,000 endowment fund Batista has established,” The News Journal noted. And, according to Batista’s local attorney, B.F. Brass, “all exhibits will be provided by the government of Cuba.”

A series of exhibits “will illustrate Cuban progress in art, history, culture, science and industry. They will be kept up to date by the Cuban government,” Brass said. But there was a reverter clause: If Batista’s former home was used for anything but the Cuban museum, the deed became “null and void.”

On June 4, 1958, two Cuban Air Force C-46 cargo planes landed at Municipal Airport. Along with workers to unload and install paintings, ceramics, photo-murals, a bust of Jose Marti, furniture, a working model of a sugar mill and other objects - everything for the museum’s first exhibit -were crates that did not go to the museum. Labeled “To Senor Presidente, Fulgencio Batista,” they went to his home.

When the museum opened on June 29, it showcased Cuban culture, from colonial times to 1958. Six rooms on the ground floor featured the island’s sugar, tobacco, fishing, hardwood and mineral industries.

Ceramics, a library and paintings filled the second floor. On the third level were a large map of Cuba, photographs and glassware. Throughout the museum, Cuban music played from more than 100 recordings.

“One room houses works of contemporary art; another has exhibits of 18th and 19th century art; and the third, 20th century works,” The News-Journal noted on Aug. 11, 1958. “In all, there are 39 paintings by some of Cuba’s best-known artists.

“There are portraits of Cuban heroes, scenes from everyday life, and landscapes depicting the beauty of Florida’s neighbor to the south,” among them modern works that had won first-place purchase awards in Cuba’s annual National Salon.

“Exhibits at the museum are to be exchanged periodically with others from the Cuban Museum in Havana,” the writer noted. “No exchanges have been set yet, however.”

They never would be.

At 2 a.m. on Jan. 1, 1959, recognizing that Castro’s forces were closing in, Batista fled Havana on a DC-4 loaded, according to reports, with up to $700 million in cash and art. Denied entry to the United States - where Batista had lost support in part to his regime’s perceived rampant corruption and brutality - the deposed dictator flew to the Dominican Republic before settling in Portugal. Batista died in 1973; Marta died in West Palm Beach in 2006.

For Tere Batista, now president of the Cuban Foundation that runs the Cuban museum, the story of the Daytona Beach collection is part of her childhood.

“I grew up hearing that the museum in Daytona Beach had come from my grandfather and his wife Marta,” Tere Batista, 43, a resident of Miami, said Thursday. But those works which went on temporary loan to the Cuban Foundation Museum 50 years ago are still here, part of a legacy that decades ago became a legend that has been endlessly repeated.

It’s one that fascinated Museum of Arts and Sciences director Wayne Atherholt. He studied old News-Journal clips in silence for long minutes late last week, and finally spoke.

“I’m amazed,” he said. “I never knew this - what a story. And what an opportunity for possible cultural exchanges with Cuba.”

Jones hopes so. “This art wasn’t his,” he said. “So how could Batista give it away? It belongs to the people of Cuba.”

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  1. Follow up post #1 added on June 23, 2008 by Ricky Bombay

    Daytona remains one of the most corrupt cities in the country. From its roots involved with organized crime during the Batista era to today’s daily abuses of the public trust to finance personal pet projects of a few wealthy campaign contributors.

    The Museum of Arts and Sciences has enjoyed very little patronage from the general public given the demographics of a city mired in poverty and despair, yet it is often used as a banquet hall to hold extravagant parties for the wealthy museum Trustees and their friends. These are the people in control of Cuba’s looted art treasures and will fight tooth and nail to hold on to them.

    They need the pretty pictures to decorate their ostentatious balls and parties and a 501c nonprofit organization to write off overvalued or unsaleable assets.

  2. Follow up post #2 added on June 23, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Interesting insight. Thanks.

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  3. Follow up post #3 added on June 24, 2008 by manfredz with 464 total posts

    can see this issue (looted art treasures) coming up after relations between the US and Cuba thaw, just like it did between Eastern and Western Europe with progress on some items and not getting anywhere on others.

  4. Follow up post #4 added on June 24, 2008 by cubanpete with 127 total posts

    Interesting, indeed.  The Museum would appear to offer a lot more than its Cuban collection, including a planetarium.


    For change (cambio) we can believe in.

  5. Follow up post #5 added on June 24, 2008 by cubanpete with 127 total posts

    Oops.  Try:  http://volusia.com/daytona/museum.htm

    For change (cambio) we can believe in.

  6. Follow up post #6 added on June 27, 2008 by L.H.

    The Daytona Beach News-Journal fired Laura Stewart on June 23, 2008.

  7. Follow up post #7 added on June 29, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Interesting! We must all remember that Batista RANSACKED the Cuban treasury of all its funds and fled the country, with the help of the USA, ofcourse.
    Honest criticism is healthy, but we must never forget the murderous rule of Batista and Machado, aided and abetted by the good old USA.

  8. Follow up post #8 added on June 29, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    Don’t forget to do all your homework. The US supported Castro until he showed his true communist colors.

    So, why would the US support Batista and Castro? I think Miami supported Batista but I’m not sure Washington supported him. They probably recognized his government but the US certainly did not help him steal from the Cuban government.

    I think he was turned away from Miami and had to go to the Dominican Republic.

    So, more facts please.

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  9. Follow up post #9 added on June 30, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, It is you who is ill informed. You have no basis for your , “I think”, simply because you are without the facts. There are a number of books out there, for your edification, written by those who certainly were not friends of Fidel.
    Please Sir, before you spout your untruths, take a look at history, and not the kind written by the USA. I spent a lot of time reading up on Gandhi, Nehru, Mandela, Fidel, Che, Allende, Lumumba, amongst other because I am interested in a broad perspective. From these readings I form my own ideas and opinions. I would never venture a guess as to what your source of information is!
    Oh! and why would the USA support Batista! The answer is simple, my dear Watson, BIG US BUSINESS and GAMBLING INTERESTS!

  10. Follow up post #10 added on July 15, 2008 by Alberto N. Jones

    I concur with everything said by Varsi and also agree with him, about the lack of historical facts on the part of the publisher.  Let me add one unpublished, well documented fact to desmystify all of this nonsense about the United States supporting Fidel Castro in overthrowing the Batista regime.  The opposite is true.

    Until the last days of December (27-28) 1958, when the Cuban Air Forces under orders of General Tabernilla conducted indiscriminate straffing, bombing and reduced to scorched land, villages and communities in the Sierra Maestra, Sierra Cristal and other regions in Oriente, they would fly back to the United States Naval Air Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where they switched crews, refuelled their aircarfts, loadede bombs, napalm and bullets   in order to continue their murderours killings of innocent peasants.  Numerous pictures of these Cuban Air Force criminals exists, with their aircrafts on the runway or when they are seeing lounging in the FLAW Restaurant, adjacent to VC-10 airport.

    Lt. Commander Hahn, then head of the DIA on the US Naval Base, conducted numerous meetings with the head of the Batista military garrison in Santiago de Cuba, plotting a self-inflicted coup-de-etat, in a failed attempt to deprive the rebel forces of their victory, proving these actions started long before the Bay of Pigs or Missile Crisis.

    And finally, the huge Arroyo Blanco plot in 1962, in which tens of Cuban exiles, were trained in Guatemala, Nicaragua and Miami, were re-entroduced to the US Naval Base, dressed in fake Cuban Army fatigue, sneaked out of the Base with orders to produce a self-inflicted attack on the Base, which would justify this installation and other US military resources to come in and retaliate against such attack.

    These actions are standard procedures that were applied in 1898 with the sinking of the Maine, The Alamo, the Gulf of Tonkin and others.

  11. Follow up post #11 added on July 15, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Wow. Here we go again.

    Varsi reincarnated. I guess he tapped out and brought in the next guy.


    Please tell me the name of the book that shows all your “facts”.


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  12. Follow up post #12 added on July 16, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, Here e go again…you are a one note sleep walker who allows his hatred to obscure tthe facts of history. I recommend that you read “Fidel Castro…My Life”, by Ignacio Ramonet, go to the library of congress, and more recently released CIA papers. I remember my parents telling me that a person’s ignorance can only be superceded by their stupidity”. I suspect that that saying comes close to describing you.
    If you need more education, I suggest you stop at your local library. And I just heard that Fox News will hire anybody, usually the leftovers. Have you tried offereing them your services! They dony fact check!

  13. Follow up post #13 added on July 16, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    Using harsh or offensive words towards those misinformed, does not help in clarifying or setting historical facts straight.  I do reiterate and agree with the previous writer, of the dire need of the publisher and probably,  many of his readers, to widen their horizon by going back HIS 101.

    History should be based upon accurately compiling facts, not one’s desire or any attempt to re-write it to our choosing.  That’s why, increasing amounts of people around the world are discovering the hidden, disgraceful side of United States history, that had been cleverly masked by hundreds of salaried historians, hollywood distortions and an escapist media.

    It took many years for the world to know about the massacre at Gun Ri in Korea, Mi Lai in Viet Nam or the horrendous crimes that were committed in Abu Ghraib, Baghram Base, tens of torture CIA centers dispersed around the world, Hiroshima or the heartwrenching picture of a 15 year old child, being tormented by beasts in human bodies at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

    Have we ever been told, how the United States intervened and supported the government of Jose Miguel Gomez in 1912, enabling it to conduct the massacre of over 3000 members and non-members of the Independent Party of Color in Oriente?

    Let me close by saying to the publisher, his audience and everyone who reads these notes, that these crude words are not a sign of anti-Americanism.  They are simple facts that have led this nation to where we find ourselves today.

    Supporting these facts and refuting any personal labelling by Americanists,  are more than 200 years of loyal service that was provided by myself and my family at the now infamous Guantanamo Bay, Cuba since WWII, when most assumed we were defending the best of this world.

  14. Follow up post #14 added on July 16, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    All I asked for was a book that I can read that has all your facts in it.

    You make a lot of serious allegations then call me ignorant.

    And please, don’t ask me to read anything written by Fidel.

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  15. Follow up post #15 added on July 16, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, a quick English 101…I did not say that the book was written by Fidel Castro. The book was written by Ignacio Ramonet, one of Europe’s foremost writers, and a contibutor to El Pais, wwhich is perhaps’s the most authoratative Spanish language newspaper. Further, please go to the Library of Congress archives, and read the facts (for a change) as recently declassified CIA documents confirm.
    There are other magnificient books, one actually written by a conservative columnist. I found the book refreshing, and provided me with a perspective of Fidel, which was rather enlightening.
    Please forsake your ostrich mentality, and educate yourself as to what is really honest history, not one writtten just to appease the ignorant.
    Sadly, your hatred is so deep rooted that you find it difficult to learn the truth, just because it will burst your bubble. Your are a bib boy, you can deal with the disappointment.

  16. Follow up post #16 added on July 16, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    A “bib boy”. Well I’ve never been called that before grin

    I’m sure you meant big boy.

    The only thing I hate is propaganda because it is the worst kind of lie.

    I have been following Cuba since 1998. I have read all about Fidel, the history of Cuba, the Cuban Americans, Bush, the Embargo etc etc from many sources all the way from CANF to Granma.

    I subscribe to Granma International and get the newspaper every week.

    I know propaganda when I see it. I know Granma’s shit propaganda and I know CANF’s shit propaganda and I don’t like either.

    So, just to be clear, you don’t need to encourage be to become “educated” about Cuba. I know about the good things like Escozul and organiponicos and Cubanidad. I know about the bad things like neighborhood intimidation, espionage and repression.

    I know the good and bad about the dual health care system, the dual currency system, the faked statistics and fluffed up articles.

    I know about the wet foot dry foot policy, the Cuban Five, Posada and Santiago Alvarez. I know about the Miami Mafia, Radio Marti and all the other misinformation that goes on in the US and Cuba and finding truth in my quest for information to post at this site is like finding a needle in a haystack.

    A haystack of bullshit.

    So, when propagandists like you and others who work directly or indirectly for the Cuban government (or maybe are just simply brainwashed lovers of communism) come here and pretend like you are not one of the above, I get a little pissed off because it has been going on for years.

    The Havana Journal is about the truth.

    Not the Miami truth. Not the Washington truth. Not the Cuban government truth. Each has their truth and lies and I’m the one who has to wade in it every day.

    There. That was actually pretty therapeutic. grin

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  17. Follow up post #17 added on July 17, 2008 by Cubana with 282 total posts


    Well said. I notice that Alberto N Jones has provided no documentary evidence for his “facts”.

  18. Follow up post #18 added on July 17, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher two things strike me. One your extreme language when you cant respond to intelligent conversation and secondly, your claim of the truth in the Havana Journal. I am glad that your interest in Cuba goes way back to 1998. I have been interested in Cuba, the Caribbean and Latin America for the past 50 years. I remember Allende, Gaitan, Peron, and how the USA helped bring down the democratically elected Govts. As much as I hated the Nazi-Apartheid Govt of S.Africa, I did enjoy open discussions with many of them. in Fact my daughter married an Afrikaner. An open mind is the best form of education.
    Once again, please go to the Library of Congress for the facts, or are you afraid of the truth so that you can wallow in your bile!

  19. Follow up post #19 added on July 17, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    I’m done responding to you.

    I’m happy to have an intelligent discussion but haven’t seen anything intelligent from you yet.

    Why do you always have to change the subject when I ask for facts?

    Because there are no facts in propaganda.

    This is not the place to talk about other countries as much as you would like to lump everything together in your fight against your perception of Imperialism.

    Thanks for being the propagandist that you are so others can see how far out there you people are.

    Sad really.

    You would be much happier with the truth.

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  20. Follow up post #20 added on July 17, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    My personal regret at this time, is to have participated in this one-sided, hate- blinded, knowledge-allegic site, in which distortion, lies and innuendo seems to be the basis of its existence.

    If this site had a different values, Rob could have answered “Cubana” demanding I provide evidence of my statements.  I am not in the referral business.  Those interested in expanding their understanding of life, should visit a library, suscribe to intelligent magazines or simply Google your doubts.  That seems to be difficult for Cubana, Rob and comparsa.

    On 7/15, I provided Rob with a number of reading points and his response was to: Keep the comments on the site, there is not enough hours in the day to reply to everyone who sends me an email like this.

    Enough, for trying to be decent and avoid embarassing anyone openly.  Sadly, hiding your heads in the sand, calling others names or hoping the world would be the anarchist views that you expouse, will get us nowhere.

    Cuba, like it or not, will continue to strive against all odds.  It is not because of its system, it is not because of any of us, it is not because of its enemies doing the impossible for its destruction, it will do so, because of its right to determine its own future, its inalienable right as most other countries, to decide for itself and to fulfill the dreams of its forefathers.

    Since you seems to be in need of reference, please read Jose Marti, Antonio Maceo, Bonifacio Byrne, Carlos M. de Cespedes and more recently, the one you hate so much.

    Tragically, Rob purport to be so patriotic, to care so much for the wellbeing of the Cuban people, I am amazed how you have not expressed one word of outrage, denouncing the blatant robbery of the Cuban arts from its people.

    Complicit, sell-out and annexionists have always being bred in the same country that Marti, Maceo and thousands like them were born.

  21. Follow up post #21 added on July 17, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    You have not embarrassed me at all. Your comments expose your true agenda of pure propaganda.

    I can handle the truth but it certainly doesn’t come from you.

    Also, please don’t pretend to be a former Navy man working at Guantanamo. You can’t pull it off.

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  22. Follow up post #22 added on July 17, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    Ignorance, Ignorance, what terrible things you can achieve!!! 

    Poor Rob, he does not know that up until 1964, approximately 2000 Cuban civil servants worked in administration, maintenance, service, housekeeping and some even as spies on the United States Naval Base in Guantanamo? 

    And today, there are still three Cubans, Henry, Simono and another one, still making that daily trek.

    Please kid,  READ!!!!!  You do not need to do this to yourself.

    Because of your great interest in Cuba, you could probably do something for hundredes of those loyal ex-employees of the United States Naval Base, many of whom have died, others are old or sick, who have not received a “Penny” of their Retirement Benefit in 40 years, because the US Government have righteously decided, that as long as they continue to live with their families in Cuba, their pension will remain “Frozen” in Pennsylvania.

    And for you guys always demanding “References, documentation and facts”, please write to or call: The United States Office of Personnel Management, Retirement Operations Center, PO Box 45, Boyers, PA 16017 to corroborate these statements.

    And speaking about the US Naval Base, you probably do not know either, that for the past 50 years (Remember the stolen arts that started this exchange) the Cuban government have refused to cash a $4,000.00 yearly check from the US government for the 40 square miles illegally occupied by the US Naval Base, which includes, the FIFTH BEST NATURAL BAY IN THE WORLD!!!

    Do you know of any other renter in the world, that FIFTY years have been insufficient for them to be evicted or return stolen arts to its rightful owner?

    How would you feel Rob, if someone exerting their superior power, blackmail, bribe or whatever other tricky method, rented your home and turned it into a crack house, illegal bar/gambling/prostitution venue or a torture center as Guantanamo Bay is, and you cannot do anything about it?

    You may come to regret starting this exchange.  You will need at least 20 years of reading, to begin to understand your surroundings, which is more than hatred, ignorance desire.

    May history be kind with you and yours.

  23. Follow up post #23 added on July 17, 2008 by manfredz with 464 total posts

    may i just add my 2 centavos worth.
    There are, in my opinion many historical injustices that have been and are continued to be made by both sides against each other.
    Arguements that are one sided and do not recognize that are, again in my opinion , of limited use.
    Discussion of historical injustices are interesting from a historical perspective and important for an understanding of current situations but should be posted without a passion as they sometimes are, because nobody is wearing the white and black hats, both sides have grey hats on.
    again, just my 2 centavos worth.

  24. Follow up post #24 added on July 17, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    So, you admit that you have never worked for the US Navy at Guantanamo Bay?

    You are useless too.

    If you want to think that you are right and I am wrong, I encourage you to start your own site so you can educate the world about your hero Fidel Castro and how the US is solely responsible for everything that is wrong with Cuba.

    Honestly, you people disgust me.

    Don’t be afraid of freedom.

    Cuba consulting services

  25. Follow up post #25 added on July 27, 2008 by Charlie Cox

    Last Thursday the regional Radio Station in Daytona beach, WELE 1380 am, in the popular program, Big Talk with Big John ran a new expose of the Museum of Arts and Sciences in Daytona Beach, the museum holding the people of Cuba’s looted artworks.

    The Museum past president is Marc Davidson, the CEO of the Newspaper that fired Laura Steward days after exposing the connection between the Museum and Batista and his organized crime ties. Remember it was Batista who gave shelter to Meyer Lansky, Lucky Luciano, Frank Costello and the rest of the leaders of US mafia. And, thanks to the corruption in Daytona Beach, Batista was able to have a safe house to store 40 years worth of loot.

    Davidson is also the same guy that just lost a $129 million Federal lawsuit for abusing his shareholder, Cox Enterprises. Cox sued the newspaper, Davidson and several associates for Fraud and waste of company assets among other things. Court documents reveal that the newspaper had on the payroll over 50 people that did absolutely no work for the newspaper, but for various personal projects and cultural endeavors of the Davidson family. They like to donate to various endeavors, for as long as someone else foots the bill.

    Nice people indeed. These are some of the people that control the looted Cuban artworks which are used to decorate their ostentacious parties at the Museum.

    Learn more about corruption in Daytona Beach at htp://www.daytonapost.com

  26. Follow up post #26 added on July 27, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Wow. Heavy stuff.

    I saw the author of Havana Nocturne on The Daily Show. He said Batista got over $1,000,000 per week in cash brought to the Presidential Palace from the mob’s casinos EVERY WEEK.

    Great guy no doubt.

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  27. Follow up post #27 added on July 27, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    May I begin by thanking Mr Big John, Ms Laura Stewart and every other decent person who have felt offended by this despicable action and have reproduced in their newspapers, blogs, websites or any other means, “A bit of Cuba in Daytona Beach, Daytona Beach News-Journal 6/13/08

    Ms. Laura Stewart painstakingly documented irrefutable evidence in this Award Deserving Journalistic Research, clearly demonstrating how Cuba’s dictator Fulgencio Batista stole over 700 million dollars in public funds, priceless pieces of arts, jewelry and other valuables as he fled that country on Janaury 1, 1959, some of which was donated to the Cuban Foundation Museum, which is presided over by his grand daughter out of Miami.

    As painful as it is to see the children of Cuba wickedly deprived of their arts, culture and patrimony, so is it, the complicit silence of moralists, ethicists, clergy, educators, intellectuals and others, who have chosen to turn a blind eye, hoping this revolting act with will go away, by pretending it never happened.

    None of the culprit so far, have come out to deny or denounce these and other incontrovertible facts.  They are relying on their powerful social status to keep the media silent and into oblivion, divert different law enforcement institutions from looking into this matter or someday, when they become desperate, they may be inclined to do what they do best in south Florida, provide a picture and a bag of cash to known killers, silencing the messenger.

    It is too late for that!  The world already knows.

  28. Follow up post #28 added on July 28, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    I love the Publisher’s intelligent response. Wow! Certainly ranks up there with my favorite Bushism referering to Africa as a country.
    I guess we now have a new yardstick for testing one’s IQ, The PUBLISHER’s belt size

  29. Follow up post #29 added on July 28, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    Stay on topic.

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  30. Follow up post #30 added on July 29, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    I am on topic. Your ignorance

  31. Follow up post #31 added on July 31, 2008 by YoungCuban

    If I may, I suggest for everyone to see the documentary entitled Zeitgeist which you can view at http://www.zeitgeistmovie.com

    I spent 14 years in the US armed forces and came to my own conclusion about how things are ran not only in my own government, but elsewhere.

    My opinions are not based on this film,but more so being an eye witness to the truth.

    Both parties in these forums can go back and fourth until each turn blue, none shall ever know the truths that lie beneath of what we’ve been taught to believe is the truth, unless, you were there.

    My opinion on Cuban/US relations is as followed.

    Nada es lo que aparece.

    Nothing is, as it seems.

  32. Follow up post #32 added on July 31, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    Thanks for your service to this country.

    I took a quick look through that movie and it stinks of a Michael Moore propaganda film where it’s made to look like a documentary but it is a fantasy.

    Sure, there are always forces at work but in the end, progress is made in a free country. In a totalitarian state like Cuba, there is no progress that is not allowed but a few of those in Cuba.

    So, I’m more inclined to go along with conspiracy theories in Cuba than in the US.

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  33. Follow up post #33 added on July 31, 2008 by YoungCuban

    Publisher of all people on here I think you know me the most,you know jy history of the YUCA movement I once spearheaded etc.

    But answer me this, lets just say,that if I was to tell you that American secret service men have along been in Cuba, and none the less sent to ” protect ” Fidel.

    What would be your opinion on that?

    I suggest to, ” read between the lines. ”

  34. Follow up post #34 added on July 31, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I would find that to be very interesting but not too surprising. I’m sure that kind of stuff goes on all over the world.

    I’m guessing you are suggesting that the secret service is in Cuba to protect Fidel from the radical right wing groups that have wanted to kill him in the past?

    This would make sense. The US government would not want to be blamed for killing Fidel.

    Something like that?


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  35. Follow up post #35 added on July 31, 2008 by manfredz with 464 total posts

    that would be ironic ...the US secret service trying to prevent the CIA (trained) assassins from killing Castro ....

  36. Follow up post #36 added on July 31, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    For heavens sake, since we are interested in expressing ourselves, could we please do so, by contributing something to the body of this article, “The Invaluable Pieces of Stolen Arts From Cuba”,  that have been illegally held for half a century in Daytona Beach, in a revolting complicity by hundreds of the best and brightest of this state!!

    Had these priceless pieces of arts been stolen from any Hollywood celebrity, New York tycoon, New Jersey Maffia Boss or any anti-Cuba grupuscule in south Florida, would we be toying with these simplistic ideas, knowing that the CIA have trained thousands of Cuban-americans and from other nations in terrorism, the art of torture, murder, demolition etc., and would provide at the same time, protection to their arch enemy in Cuba, who have exposed and diseminated their dirty tricks around the world for nearly fifty years?

    Please, lets elevate the level of the discussion, by joining every decent, fair and honest individual,  irrespective of each individual political, social, religious or sexual preference, in demanding this patrimony be returned to their rightful owner, the Children of Cuba.

  37. Follow up post #37 added on August 03, 2008 by Alberto N Jones

    Three days after my last posting, there are no serious takers for an in-depth,  moral and principled discussion of this matter.  Most seems interested in the simplistic, anti-Cuba theme of dissidents, independent journalists,  independent everything else or the individuals in Miami and Washington, who have stolen thousands of US-AID/Cuba Transition funds, allocated for their salaries.

    Two years ago, on July 4th, 2006, the Orlando Sentinel published “Roosevelt’s pistol found by DeLand history buff”, written by Rebecca Mahoney.

    Reading this article it is easy to establish where our values are and I quote:

    The gun, which had been stolen and recovered once before, never surfaced on the black market; a reward never yielded any valid leads.  One member of the FBI team that hunted for the gun devoted much of his career to the search, but it was as though the revolver simply vanished.

    Although the stolen pieces of Cuban arts in the Museum of Arts and Science in Daytona Beach surpases tens of times the value and morality of this gun, no FBI agents have been moved to call, take a look, visit the museum or call Batista’s grand daughter in Miami, the leader of the gang.

    After the death of T Roosevelt, this revolver became the cornerstone of Sagamore Hill’s permanent collection, a pice much admired by TR aficionados and gun enthusiasts.

    “This is a very significant piece of American history, ” said Philip Schreier, senior curator of the National Firearms Museum in Virginia.  This little revolver has a real story.

    “It didn’t make us look great when it disappeared,” said Verone, who added, the museum now has a state-of-the-art security.

    Anderson, who turned in the gun was queried by the FBI’s anti-theft division, which later sent agents from the FBI’s Daytona Beach office to DeLand to collect the gun.

    Apparently the Museum of Arts and Science in Daytona Beach have an effective, state-of-the-arts security system, that is capable of keeping off its premises, thieves willing to break in or law enforcement personnel interested in entering, reviewing the origen of some of its objects or talk to anyone about their doubts.

  38. Follow up post #38 added on September 09, 2008 by Charlie Cox

    The alarms the Museum of Arts and Sciences needs are alarms to prevent looting by its Trustees. They could not care less about the provenance of these works yet they covet what they mean to decorate their parties.

    And why, you ask, doesn’t the state get involved?, just look at the list of Trustees… The largest campaign financers and supporters of the very same corrupt politicians that have destroyed Daytona Beach.  Their reach extends to the Florida Legislature and even control of the Florida Commission on Ethics.

    Even Capone didn’t have it so tightly controlled…

    Voters are tired of that, and they kicked out State Atorney Tanner for not investigating and prosecuting corruption in Daytona City Hall. Tanner was strongly supported by the same people with a vested interest in preserving corruption in this poor city. While Tanner ignored the many criminal complaint against Daytona Officials, his cronies benefitted greatly, from city contracts to land grants, purchases of over-priced properties with city funds and even the funding of personal hobbies and indulgences from taxpayer monies.

    No wonder Daytona Beach is considered one of the most corrupt cities in the United States. This goes back all the way to Batista and the infection is today as strong as it was then.

  39. Follow up post #39 added on August 17, 2011 by manzo

    Perhaps the Art world should look at returning the art work and books stolen/looted by Fidel and his goons from Cuban Families. Perhaps Sotheby’s and the other auction houses should stop selling and profiting from this stolen art. Perhaps everything that has been stolen and looted by Castro should be returned to their rightful owners and their families!!!!!

    Now that’s Real And A known fact that everyone ignores! Don’t ignore it!

    Now that’s a cause to be taken up!

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