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Posted April 11, 2005 by mattlawrence in US Embargo

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‘One darned thing after another’: That’s how former Secretary of State Dean Acheson once defined foreign policy. The latest “darned thing” for the United States is Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Posted by Senior Editor on 2005/4/10 13:18:00

For no apparent reason, the leftist strongman is arming Venezuela to the teeth. He’s also supporting local narcoterrorists and other Latin revolutionaries.

Chavez idolizes Cuba’s Fidel Castro, is chummy with Libya’s Moammar Khadafy and was a Saddam Hussein pal. He’s made nasty remarks about President Bush and “suggestive” public comments about Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

According to Gerver Torres, a former Venezuelan government minister, Chavez’s “main motivation now is to do everything he possibly can to negatively affect the United States, Bush in particular . . . trying to bring together all the enemies of the United States.”

It’s tempting to write off Chavez simply as Latin America’s latest tin-pot dictator, but that would be a mistake. Venezuela’s own “Fidelito” has the potential to cause real trouble for the United States ó right in our own backyard.

Recognizing our economy’s Achilles’ heel, Chavez has threatened to cut off oil exports to the United States. Venezuela is our fourth-largest source of oil, providing 15 percent of U.S. oil needs (1.5 million barrels a day). This threat can’t be ignored.

Curtailing exports would push already high American gas prices through the roof. Cognizant of this fact, Chavez recently proclaimed: “We have invaded the United States but with our oil.”

Sure, it would be painful for Venezuela to cut off the 60 percent of its oil exports bound for the American market. But Venezuela is already looking to diversify its oil clientele beyond Uncle Sam.

Last December, Caracas struck a huge deal with Beijing for oil and gas sales and investment in Venezuela’s energy sector.

Venezuela is stirring the security pot, too, sowing fear among its neighbors. From Russia, Chavez is buying 50 advanced MiG-29 fighters, 40 helicopter gunships and 100,000 AK-47 assault rifles. He’s also bought arms from Spain and Brazil.

A cashiered former army colonel, Chavez also plans to increase the size of the army reserve as “an honorable answer to President Bush’s intention of being the master of the world.”

Gen. Bantz Craddock, commander in chief of the U.S. Southern Command, finds Venezuela’s weapon extravaganza worrisome because Chavez’s motives are unclear. “We’re wondering just what the intent here is,” the general told the Senate in recent testimony.

One of Washington’s main concerns is the possibility of a conventional war between Venezuela and its neighbor Colombia, the U.S.‘s main regional ally. At a minimum, Venezuela’s oil-induced buying binge could set off a regional arms race.

There’s also the possibility that some of el presidente’s new “toys,” especially the AK-47s and ammunition, could fall into the hands of Colombian FARC narcoterrorists.

The FARC is seeking to overthrow the government of Colombian President Alvaro Uribe. Bogota received some $3 billion in U.S. assistance over the last several years to support its fight against narcotraffickers and leftist rebel groups.

Chavez is rumored to be supporting the FARC, letting it use the Colombian-Venezuelan border area to recuperate and resupply.

Elsewhere, Chavez is mentoring Bolivian revolutionary Evo Morales, whose comrades recently tried to force President Carlos Mesa’s resignation in an effort to take control of the National Assembly.

In Peru, it’s been alleged that Chavez bankrolled the rogue army officer who tried to incite December’s rebellion against President Alejandro Toledo. Chavez denies all of this, of course.

Many Americans will find it hard to take Chavez seriously, but his capacity for regional troublemaking shouldn’t be discounted, especially as oil prices rocket.

Fortunately, the Bush administration recognizes this and is beginning to craft a new policy to deal with Chavez. The best approach will include working with other regional leaders to contain and isolate him, while not inflaming the dictator’s popular support at home.

Chavez recently announced his intent to export his “Bolivarian revolution” (read: Cuban revolution). Considering his disastrous socialist economic and repressive political record at home, we’d better stop him before he gets started.

  1. Follow up post #1 added on April 11, 2005 by abh with 244 total posts

    What was this taken from?  Newspaper?

  2. Follow up post #2 added on April 11, 2005 by waldo with 264 total posts

    Caesar administration crafting a new policy and best approach to deal with Chavez is nothing new, but more of the same beaurocratic BS. It has been used against Castro for over four decades and continues to fail and counterproduce. 

  3. Follow up post #3 added on April 11, 2005 by abh with 244 total posts

    Yeah exactly, that’ why I was trying to figure out where this opinion came from.  Was this an editorial from a major newspaper?  To me, it comes across as the editorial from more of a small town paper.

  4. Follow up post #4 added on April 11, 2005 by YoungCuban with 409 total posts

    Great thing would be for ALL Latin American countries to unite as one,then we shall see who runs the show.

  5. Follow up post #5 added on April 12, 2005 by Cubana with 282 total posts

    It was in the New York Post on April 4.

  6. Follow up post #6 added on April 12, 2005 by cajio with 26 total posts

    Not only the Bush administration, but also previous. the Clinton, Bush (papi), Reagan, Carter, Ford ,Nixon, Johnson,  Kennedy and the Eisenhower administration knows that there is only one Castro.

    Chavez is like ” un merengue en la puerta de un colegio” , he wonít last long.

  7. Follow up post #7 added on April 12, 2005 by mattlawrence with 69 total posts

    The Miami Herald

  8. Follow up post #8 added on April 13, 2005 by GregoryHavana with 196 total posts

    This thing you said about Chavez being “un merengue en la puerta de un colegio” that won’t last long. Hmmmmm….I think you should read your history a bit more closely, because they said the same thing about Fidel in 1959….

  9. Follow up post #9 added on April 13, 2005 by abh with 244 total posts

    Wow, I thought it was a pretty pathetic piece, that’ horrible that it’ been in the major newspapers. 
    As far as Chavez not lasting long, he’ already been elected by a huge majority, survived a coup attempt, and then survived a recall.  Seems to me he’ not going anywhere anytime soon…

  10. Follow up post #10 added on April 14, 2005 by waldo with 264 total posts

    Chavez is going only one way, forward. He has great support from the poor, workers, military, farmers, low muddle class and the mayority of the students; what else could be needed? Furthermore, he is working under the carmas of Bolivar, Marti, Zapada, Sandino, Geronimo, Sucre, Che and others. He also has plenty of oil, and most important: he is no merenge.

  11. Follow up post #11 added on February 22, 2008 by Yeyo with 411 total posts


  12. Follow up post #12 added on June 29, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Pathetic piiece of garbage! The USA supported the FAILED coup against Chavez! The USA has armed Colombia to the teeth, ostensibly to fight FARC, yet some Colombian (US puppets) have been charged with supporting the RIGHT WING PARAMILITARIES, who also support the Narco Trafficers.
    Did we not hear a cacophony of spew against Chavez by US legislators and the Bush administrations. It seems that the USA vcan do anything it wants without accountability. However, no one should have the gall to question its motive.
    There is a wonderful book out, “Fidel Castro- My life”, by Ignaco Ramonet. This is not a book for bigots and the single minded. It’s really an education.

  13. Follow up post #13 added on June 29, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    What is your annual pay from the Cuban government?

    You really think that that book by Castro is educational?


    More facts Varsi and less propaganda. Seriously.

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  14. Follow up post #14 added on June 30, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, your comments are beneath contempt. Perhaps I was under the misinformation that this site was an open forum for intelligent discussion. Sadly, you just proved my point, that when there is intelligent discussion, you resort to spew, a trait common amongst the uninformed!
    Seriously, you only promote propaganda! Have you read the book? I suspect not. Perhaps it is u who is on the payroll of some wing nut group. It is all about education-pro and con!

  15. Follow up post #15 added on June 30, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Try having this dialog in Cuba.

    Can’t happen.

    Why? Because Fidel won’t allow it.

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  16. Follow up post #16 added on June 30, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    It may well be true that political debate in Cuba is not as open as in other countries, but what does that have to do with my criticism that you calling a Havana Journal contributor (Varsi) an employee and propagandist of the Cuban government? Your response was rather vacuous and does not contribute in any way to an intelligent debate on Cuba that this website is supposed to facilitate. This is what is at issue.

  17. Follow up post #17 added on June 30, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Any rational, thinking person cannot support Fidel Castro’s style of government. So, he is either working for the Cuban government or is brainwashed by Fidel’s lies.

    I give a long leash to lots of people here and I’m not trying to get rid of Varsi but he needs to be honest and not try to pretend like he is some wordly, rational thinker who thinks that Fidel is actually doing great things for his people.

    I am perfectly willing to have an intelligent debate but I won’t put up with propaganda.

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  18. Follow up post #18 added on June 30, 2008 by Yeyo with 411 total posts

    Publisher Varsi and Gregory should go and live in Cuba for a while. Without dollars, like regular Cubans live. 6 months and lets see what would be their opinion by then.

    There is nothing better for a human being that his own experiences.

    It is amazing to hear that somebody can call the book from Ramonet a “good book”. It is completely filled with one sided history of Cuba given by the dictator that has ruled the Country for the last 49 years.

  19. Follow up post #19 added on June 30, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    Publisher…I would say it is rather audacious of you to determine who is rational and who is not. Have you ever been to Cuba? Better still, have you ever spent some time in Cuba? It is sad that you see things in such black & white dichotomies. There are in fact some well meaning and rational people who do support Fidel’s system of government. It is rather unsophisticated of you to lay out blanket statments to the contrary.
    Is this a website where all views are tolerated, or do you have some sort of divine power to determine who is “well-meaning and rational” and who is a “propagandist or brainwashed”? Sadly, I thought it was a more pluralistic site…

  20. Follow up post #20 added on June 30, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    First, you don’t sound like the Gregory I know. Is this a comment by someone filling in for Gregory?

    Second, I agree with Yeyo. I think Varsi should a) at least visit Cuba and see what the country is like or b) stop pretending like he is not working for the Cuban government as a propagandist.

    The book was spoken by Castro to a sycophant and unedited. I don’t have to read that book to know what is in there… subjective comments by someone who insists on keeping his country and his people in third world living conditions when it does not have to be and it’s not because of the embargo… Varsi.

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  21. Follow up post #21 added on July 01, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publiser, it is obvious that you cannot tolerate opposing points of view. Respect must always be given to view points, even if we disagree with them. However, it certainly appears that you are one with no tolerance for Intelligent discourse, but rather employ the pulpit of spreading spew and bile. I gave you credit for having this forum. Incidentally Ignacio Ramonet, the author was an Associate editor of El Pais, ahighly respected Newspaper in Spain. But then, I am sure your reading material is restricted to the Miami Herald, Newsmax and other right wing media.
    Sadly, by your own admission “I do not ve to read the boo…” speaks volumes of your small mindedness, lacking the capacity to look at other points of view.
    And for those out there, who accuse me of being a propagandist on the payroll of the cuban Govt, is this the best you can come up with! This certainly speaks volumes of our level of Global education.

  22. Follow up post #22 added on July 01, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    “Respect must always be given to view points, even if we disagree with them.”

    Do you think your hero Fidel Castro would ever say these words?

    Funny how all the Castro supporters who stop by here all demand to be heard yet free speech is not allowed in Castro’s utopia.

    So, Varsi, I can tolerate opposing points of view, can your hero?

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  23. Follow up post #23 added on July 02, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, it is u who calls Fidel my Hero!. I remember, when living in S. Africa, how the USA and Israel supplied the Nazi S. Africa with arms, and even nuclear weapons to destry us, Angola, and Namibia. Free Speech was not tolerated in S. Africa, your silence and those of your ilk uttered not even a peep. And Please dont tell me u attended all those demonstrations protesting the Nazi Regime in S>A> We, S. Africans of the browner kind, remember the contribution of Fidel and the Cuban people in securing our freedom, when the USA, Israel and Europe were supporting our suppression and slaughter. Just Ask your buddy Big Time Dick Cheney about his vote on S. Africa.
    You see we remember our friends, and Cuba was there when we needed help! Where was Reagan? Unlike the USA, Cuba expected nothing but the continued friendship of the S. Africans. When Nelson Mandela was elected President, The USA tried to impose its anti=Castro will upon him. He responded by telling the USA that S. Africa as a sovereign nation had an inalienable right to choose its own friends. And Cuba is a FRIEND.
    And Cuba can count its friends amongst the world’s elite: Mrs. Mitterand, Noam Chomski, Nelson Mandela, Jimmy Carter, Garcia Marquez, and the list goes on! Are these esteemed leaders and intellegencia propogandists, too, on the payroll of Cuba? But then again, given that you see the world through blinders, you might not have heard of these highly respected leaders!

  24. Follow up post #24 added on July 02, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Typical response from a propagandist.

    Change the subject.

    Varsi, you are either brainwashed by communism or on the payroll. That is very clear.

    Please stop clogging up these pages with meaningless crap.

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  25. Follow up post #25 added on July 02, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Perhsaps, you Mr. publisher that’s brainwashed and in need of a colonic. A sad commentary for one who purports to be open minded. And if intrelligent discourse is deemed crap by your esteemed self, then sad is the day for alll those who believe in the freedom of speech.

  26. Follow up post #26 added on July 02, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I guess you’re right.

    I don’t have an open mind when it comes to an idealogoy that destroys the hopes and dreams of its people.

    I don’t have an open mind when it is a crime to have freedom of speech.

    I don’t have an open mind when I am supposed to just listen to Fidel but not question Fidel.

    Shall I go on?

    How many times have you been to Cuba?

    Or, if you live in Cuba… how many times have you left Cuba?

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  27. Follow up post #27 added on July 03, 2008 by Cubana with 282 total posts


    Varsi does have a point about the support that Cuba gave to the anti-apartheid movement. It is such a pity that people like Nelson Mandela (who should know better given the many years he was unjustly imprisoned) are so silent about those like Oscar Elias Biscet who are currently unjustly imprisoned by the Castro regime.

  28. Follow up post #28 added on July 03, 2008 by abh with 244 total posts

    I think Cubana brings up an underlying issue that is beneath all of this:
    Cuba and Fidel Castro have the image of being rebels and heroes throughout the globe, but there is especially a passionate fraternity between those in the third world who believe that the Cuban revolution is a powerful symbol of a victorious fight against imperialism.  I will never forget the South African professor who said that he can never forget the support of the Cuban government and—one cannot deny—the personal commitment of Fidel towards his country fighting against the apartheid regime.  Without the Cuban troups’ help, the racist South African forces may not have been driven out.  The same with a Black man from the West Indies I once ran into in the Havana airport who was excitedly exclaiming to anyone and everyone as he entered Cuba for the first time, “Where is my hero?  Where is Fidel Castro?”
    Clearly these people might have different points of view if they had to live in Cuba for an extended period of time.  My point is not to support their argument here or deny it.  What Cubans can take from this reality is something that comes to their aid.  International solidarity from countries like China, Venezuela, Brazil etc. is basically the main economic stimulis on the island.  The challenge is to transition this into a viable domestic economy that has many trading partners but is also self-sustainable.  I would argue that this has been the main challenge of Cuba for the last 100 years.

  29. Follow up post #29 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    Publisher… I would like to clarify something regarding your position on the present Cuban government. Is it true that you have essentially chosen to take a principled stance regarding the Cuban government and therefore avoid supporting them in any way (either politically or materially) because you believe the government is inherently undemocratic and repressive? Please confirm whether this is true or not.

  30. Follow up post #30 added on July 03, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Happy to clarify…

    I don’t have to believe that the Cuban government is undemocratic or repressive.

    That is a fact since 1959.

    Really? You want to argue that the Cuban government is democratic or not repressive? I’d love to read this one.

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  31. Follow up post #31 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    Is this a ‘yes’ to my question? Let me ask you again: Is it your position, based on moral principles, to avoid supporting or strengthening in any way (either politically or financially) the Cuban government? I want to clarify your position, so please answer the question.

  32. Follow up post #32 added on July 03, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I guess I will say yes.

    I am anti-communist, anti-repressive governments, pro-freedom of everything pretty much.

    So, “moral” principles? I am not a religious person if that’s what you are asking.

    I don’t not want to support the Castro government but I am not saying that EVERYTHING Castro does is bad but I am saying that MOSTLY he is bad because he won’t allow basic human freedoms or a free market economy.

    I blame Castro for Cuba’s terrible economy and terrible rating in the world economy.

    I am anti-embargo but do blame it for most of Cuba’s problems. Most of Cuba’s problems are Castro’s fault. 

    Does that explain it?

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  33. Follow up post #33 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    So does that mean you support immediate and unconditional economic relations between Cuba and the United States?

  34. Follow up post #34 added on July 03, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I think I’ve had teeth pulled easier than this grin

    No. I don’t support immediate and unconditional economic relations but there is a Plan B in there somewhere.

    I’m not a right wing old school Miami exile and I’m not a Castro apologist. I would like to see Bush and Castro BOTH ease up a bit but now neither can because both have said and done too many stupid things that won’t let them out of their ideological and political past.

    However, Bush is gone in 2009. Castro (either one) will continue to be (s)elected year after year after year after year.

    How’s that?

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  35. Follow up post #35 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    You just said that you do not support immediate and unconditional economic relations with Cuba? Why not? What are your SPECIFIC reasons for not supporting an immediate and unconditional lifing of the embargo against Cuba so that Cuban products can freely flow to the US, and vice versa?

  36. Follow up post #36 added on July 03, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I think Raul Castro should give the US a reason.

    Make it easy for us to ease the trade and/or travel Embargo.

    Maybe release some political prisoners (and please don’t say there are no poltical prisoners in Cuba)?

    Maybe allow another party besides the Communist party to be (s)elected to ANY political position in Cuba?

    Maybe allow for ownership of private property?

    Need I say more?

    How about you?

    Why are you asking so many questions? This is not the Gregory that I have known in the past.

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  37. Follow up post #37 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    Then let me pose this question to you: do you support unconditional economic relations with China, Vietnam or Saudi Arabia? I am sure you must, since beyond doubt you use products from these countries in your personal life. Arguably, the governments of these countries are even more repressive and brutal than the Cuban government and they are definitely not democratic. It strikes me how so many Americans have one standard for Cuba and another for other countries. So, how do you explain your apparent double standard? Or surprise me and tell me you do not use products from these other countries.
    p.s. I am definitely the Gregory you have corresponded with before. However, I was under the impression that your approach towards Cuba was more moderate and was disappointed by your treatment of Varsi. It was not justified for you to accuse him, even rhetorically, of working for the Cuban government or being a propagandist and your denigrating remarks did not add value to the debate. More surprisingly, I thought that you would have been someone to support an immediate and unconditional lifting of the embargo on Cuba. And finally, I do not believe you have ever spent any significant time in Cuba, if at all, so even more the reason to be cautious in passing judgment on others regarding their views of Cuba’s reality. Remember my friend, I have lived there for 15 years (several of them on the Cuban libreta, without a hard currency income), so I have an insight that you do not. Does this make me right and you wrong? No…but it does give some credibilty to my claim that people of good will can see more positive things that negative things in the Cuban system.

  38. Follow up post #38 added on July 03, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    You are making my head spin. I think you have spent too much time Cuba because you don’t sound like the English guy that I used to know.

    I don’t like China but I buy their stuff.

    However, I’m not going to have this conversation with you. China and Cuba are different. You want to make them the same.

    And “people of good will”... like Varsi?

    You guys cannot make a strong argument that Castro’s way is good for the Cuban people no matter who you line up or what you say. I feel bad for the propagandists because not only do they not realize that they are repressed but they try to be like Fidel and make lame arguments for a failed system.

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  39. Follow up post #39 added on July 03, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    I think I overestimated you. I thought you would have been able to at least attempt to put forward an argument of why you are happy to use products from China (you don’t even mention you happy use of products from Vietnam or Saudi Arabia) but at the same time insist that Cuba complies with certain conditions before you trade with them. The contradiction is embarassingly obvious…but all you can muster is to say that China and Cuba are “different”. And, conveniently, you have not mentioned whether you have ever been to Cuba, let alone lived there. I would respect the anti-Castro position if held by a person that has actually lived in Cuba (ie. a Cuban American), but you do not fit that category Rob. Do yourself a favor and visit the island before you pass yourself off as an expert. Oh, I forgot….your own government does not allow you to visit the island.
    p.s. I am not an “English guy”....I am a Canadian-Cuban hybrid.

  40. Follow up post #40 added on July 05, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    Ah…the sweet sound of silence. I guess the people living in glass houses realized they should stop throwing stones (ie. Publisher and his coterie of followers who love to criticize Cuba at the same time as they consume products from other undemocratic and repressive states like China and Saudi Arabia). Good to see you guys have recognized your hipocrasy.

  41. Follow up post #41 added on July 05, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    I’m still here. I just don’t see much reason to engage you since you have become a propagandist for the Cuban government meaning that you have lost your logic and reason, something I respected about you in the past.

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  42. Follow up post #42 added on July 05, 2008 by Gregory Biniowsky

    I think the sad fact is that you do not have a justification for your hipocrasy. But if you want to simply call me a ‘propagandist for the Cuban government’ instead of responding, so be it…. This speaks volumes of the depth of your analysis…or lack thereof. People reading this can make up their own minds. And actually, if people want to make up their minds, they can go to Cuba, something you have not done. I respect the Cuban Americans for their views, whatever they may be, because they know both sides. You Mr. Publisher do not.

  43. Follow up post #43 added on July 05, 2008 by Yeyo with 411 total posts

    I consider my self a fairly educated person but have a hard time understanding this people (Gregory and Varsi).
    Gregory if you really have visited Cuba, where have you been?
    Have you heard of the thousands of people that had been thrown in jail for only giving their opinions? Have you seen or heard of the mob (pushed and paid by the government) beating women, men, Childs and elderly people only because they have the guts to say what they believe in.
    I’m completely sure that once you become aware of this you would likely change your mind.
    I also can not see the point in comparing Cuba with China, Viet Nam and Saudi Arabia.
    I do consider those regimes repressive but I can guarantee you that they are hundred times better than Cuba.
    I favor the immediate removal of the embargo. However not because it is immoral or anything else, (at the end of the day every Country have the right to do business which whoever they want) but because it is a stupid measure that have done nothing other than give justification to the Castro regime to oppress more the Cuban people.
    The main reason why Cuba is in that economical debacle today is Fidel Castro.
    The main reason why Cuban people have been suffering over 48 years now is Fidel Castro.
    The main reason why Cuban families with all sort of ideologies had been separated for many years is Fidel Castro.
    The main reason why you can not say openly what you believe in Cuba is Fidel Castro.
    If the South Africans consider Fidel Castro such a good person they can take him there.

    I just want to mention that I don’t belong to any Miami organization or the Mafia whatsoever, in fact I don’t even live or have lived in Miami.
    I am simply a free person that believes on the freedom of speech and all other basic human rights.

  44. Follow up post #44 added on July 05, 2008 by manfredz with 464 total posts

    can’t say i’ve been to china, vietman or saudi arabia but have been to cuba, and although i can see that freedom is quite limited in Cuba , I still think the Cubans have more personal freedom than most Chinese and Vietnamese.  And to compare the personal freedom of women in Saudi Arabia and Cuba .....

  45. Follow up post #45 added on July 05, 2008 by GregoryHavana with 196 total posts

    Yeyo…You obviously need to read more about China and Saudi Arabia before you “guarantee” that they are “a hundred times better than Cuba” in terms of human rights. It is this kind of ignorance that allows the United States to maintain such a double standard regarding Cuba. Yeyo, simply go read some Amnesty International reports on the countries and make your own comparison. Amnesty International does not say Cuba is perfect, but also does not say that there is systematic torture, disappearances, or extrajudicial executions in Cuba like there are in other countries that the US is happy to have relations with. Which leaves the hipocrasy of those in the US who want to embargo Cuba but are content to buy goods from countries that deny the vote to women, torture people, and slaughter people like China and Saudi Arabia do. All I ask is that you read a bit more before you make rather inane ‘guarantees’...

  46. Follow up post #46 added on July 06, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Yevo, I am glad that yu are singularly unanimous is your assertion that you are a faily well educated person. Please take a look at countries like Jordan, Turkey, Israel( persecution of the Palestinian people), Saudi Arabia, et al. Perhaps, like our esteemed publisher, your hatred for Fidel far outweighsthe reality. And by Amnesty’s last count, there are about 300 dissidents in jail, not the thousands u claim. On another point, if the Cubans are so repressed, why has it been a struggle tget atleat 10, 000 signatories to the Valera Project?
    And as far as South Africa is concerned, Fidel is a friend, when Reagan, Cheney, Burton, Helms, Msrgret Thatcher turned their backs on our fight, not just for our freedom, but for our right to be recognized as human beings. Just to remind you, Reagan supplied war machinery and nuclear weapons to Israel who sent them to the Nazi’s in S. Africa to “obliteate”, those of us who opposed the Govt., most of us not being of the fair skin. Yes, S. African will always look to Fidel as a friend, unlike the likes of u who choose the Nazi types over humanity. And finally, what you call oppression in Cuba, is a Sunday scholl picnic compared to what we experienced in S. Africa. Please go out and educate yourself, rather than wallow in the swill that’s being pushed down the throats of the citizenry.

  47. Follow up post #47 added on July 06, 2008 by publisher with 3905 total posts


    You make a good post but engaging with Varsi and Gregory will get you nowhere. They change the subject and try to make the argument about us and not about Fidel.

    To Gregory, I would appreciate it if you stop posting as Gregory because now I know you are not the original Gregory that I exchanged great posts with a couple years back.

    To Varsi, I can only guess that you know “Gregory” or have been trained in the same school.

    If you two guys can’t be honest about who you are then nothing you say here can be taken seriously.

    If you want to be taken seriously, tell me that you are working for the Cuban government and that’s fine. All people are welcome even if they are completely wrong all the time grin

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  48. Follow up post #48 added on July 06, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Mr. Publisher, Any American citizen that is in the employ of a foreign govt. here in the US, especially in the role you cast Gregory & I, must be registered with the State ept. I guess you did not know tha. Sadly, your univerese of knowledge is so miniscule, it will probably fit in a pea. Further, you parade as a PUblisher! Sadly, you give all publishers. on both sides of the cpin, a bad name. I would hate to venture a guess as to how you casme by that moniker.
    Please get your facts right, not just wild speculation u spew to attempt the other readers, and yourself!
    Question: have you ever travelled outside the USA, or your state?

  49. Follow up post #49 added on July 06, 2008 by GregoryHavana with 196 total posts

    The bottom line is that Mr. Publisher has never travelled to Cuba, or at least has never spent a significant amount of time there….and he has these paranoid delusions about people who see positive things in the Cuban system as being employees of the Cuban government….and he is completely unable to justify the double standard he holds over Cuba in regards to economic engagement. But neither you nor I are going to be able to convince such a parochial mind to see things differently.
    As for yourself, I agree completely with the admirable and noble role that Cuba played to defeat apartheid in South Africa. I have many friends who fought in Angola against the South African and South African/U.S. backed forces. As we all know, Cuba is not a perfect place (there are many intrinsic problems with the Cuban system that I know only too well), but there are many important and progressive acheivements of Cuba that people like Publisher and his cohorts are unable to see because of their ideological blinkers (just as they are unable to see their own hipocrasy when happily dealing with more repressive regimes).
    Varsi, you are obviously a person with a sophisticated and cosmopolitan understanding of global politics and you are welcome to contact me the next time you are in Havana.  And poor Publisher…his government doesn’t even allow him to see the reality of Cuba for himself…

  50. Follow up post #50 added on July 07, 2008 by Varsi Padayachee

    Gregory, Thank you. I will take u up on your offer of the invitation.

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