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Posted August 22, 2011 by publisher in Cuba Human Rights

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Rob Sequin | Havana Journal

With the global financial crisis, ongoing Arab Spring and now the fall of Muammar Gaddafi’s in Libya, there must be a collective worry for the world’s last remaining dictators and authoritarian governments.

Since free or cheap goods and money from other countries to dictatorships are in short supply and with the Internet being a collective unifying force that appears to be more powerful than many military governments, no leader in any repressive country can wake up in the morning without wondering if their country will be next to see an uprising.

The world’s people are demanding their freedom. People are tired of living under repression and now they can easily organize online.

With the spreading of the Arab Spring, I feel compelled to write this article posing the question… Is Cuba next? First, let me explain my reasons for posing this question.

The Arab Spring Contagion

Samia Nakhoul of Reuters from Beirut writes “The implosion of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s 41-year-old rule will put a new spring in the step of the Arab revolutions and demonstrate once again that these entrenched autocratic governments are not invincible.”

Rami Khouri, a Middle East analyst said this Arab Spring is an important development because “it shows there are different ways in which Arab regimes will collapse. It just shows once you get a momentum developing and the right combination—a popular will for change and regional and international support—no regime can withstand that.”

Today President Obama said “The people of Libya are showing that the universal pursuit of dignity and freedom is far stronger than the iron fist of a dictator.”

David Rothkopf of Foreign Policy writes about the Conclusions and implications of the fall of Gaddafi.

Many people, including myself, have given up trying to predict the end of the Castro regime but I think we can all agree that it is not a matter of IF the Castro’s Communist regime will end, it is a matter of WHEN it will end. Fidel and Raul must be feeling international political and economic pressures to give the Cuban people more freedoms and human rights respect. Yes, Raul has proposed many economic reforms but VERY FEW political reforms. That might work for China but Cuba is NOT China.

Will the Arab Spring affect US Cuba policy?

Also, worth mentioning here, will President Obama change his Cuba policy from the current approach of allowing more Americans to travel to Cuba to a more, hard-line approach as President Bush tried… and failed. With justice served to Osama bin Laden, Hosni Mubarek of Egypt and now with Gadaffi on the run, will President Obama take credit for the downfall of these men and set his sights on the Castro brothers regime? I doubt it but since President Obama wants to win in November 2012, his vision and motivation may be corrupted by hard line, selfish advisers from Miami. Hopefully he will not start taking advice from the selfish politicians like Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Mario Diaz-Balart, Debbie Wasserman-Shultz and Senator Menendez… all who have been wrong about Cuba for their entire political careers. Sanctions do not work against Cuba and they will never work but I’ll save that argument for another article.

I hope President Obama elects to engage the Castro’s rather than to try to alienate them. Regarding Chavez in Venezuela, President Obama should play hard ball with him since he is trying to destroy Venezuela as Fidel Castro did to Cuba.

Cuba - A State Sponsor of Terrorism

Agree or not, Cuba is on the US state sponsor of terrorism list. I think that Cuba’s place on the US state sponsor of terrorism list is more political than based on any facts that Cuba actually sponsors terrorists. Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Syria are all on the list but North Korea is not? How about Pakistan since that’s where Osama bin Laden was living for years and that government didn’t know about it? What a joke. How about the fact that anti-Castro terrorist and murderer Luis Posada lives as a free man in the US and is seen as a hero to old exiles in Miami.

Gaddafi coming to Cuba?

On August 4, I wrote an article about the Finance Secretary from Libya making a visit to Cuba. I found it odd at the time and now have to wonder if the Finance Secretary may have been asking Raul Castro if he would accept Gaddafi should he have to flee Libya. Interesting right? I would hope that Raul would have the sense to not allow Gaddafi to seek exile in Cuba. 

If Gaddafi did land in Cuba, I see that as being more of a Fidel Castro move than a Raul Castro move. Gaddafi in exile in Cuba would certainly be a financial and cultural disaster for Cuba so I don’t think that Fidel is in charge that much where Raul would let him ruin everything that Raul has started. A younger Fidel would probably welcome Gaddafi and that brings me to Hugo Chavez. I can definitely see Chavez taking Gaddafi as an a “victim of US imperialism”.

Gaddafi coming to Venezuela?

According to The Telegraph, Gaddafi could flee to a country not signed up to the International Criminal Court such as Venezuela or Cuba.

A source told The Telegraph that Hugo Chavez’s Venezuela was looking the most likely destination if Gaddafi were able to, and chose to, flee Libya. Hugo Chavez has condemned NATO operations in Libya as an attempt to seize control of the country’s vast oilfields. “Chavez would take him as a victim of Western Imperialism,” the source said.

As recently as this morning, Chavez is supporting Gaddafi. If Chavez welcomes Gaddafi, you can expect democratic governments to condemn Chavez and bring all kinds of political pressure on him. Chavez will probably love the attention but this ultimately would be terrible for Cuba.

More Freedoms

I am no great political thinker, writer or analyst but I can’t help but to speculate on how people want their freedoms today in a collective way. The internet enables people to be free in many ways. Facebook and Twitter allow people to unite or at least find like minded people and that freedom of assembly can give way to hope for a change in one’s government and ultimately the hope for a better future.

Even in the US, we have the Tea Party (a movement I support) where millions of people have “assembled” online and at the voting booth to demand more freedom and less intrusion from our own government. In the US, we don’t need to take up arms and fight the government with bullets, we fight within the political process of freedom of speech, freedom to assemble, freedom of the press and free elections.

Now I know this is a reach but hear me out… Hewlett Packard has decided to get out of the computer manufacturing business. How the hell is this relevant you ask? Apple, Google, smartphones… these are the rebels fighting against the desktop computer and software that is only available on one computer. Today we want to be free from the computer for information and free from software that lives on one device. Microsoft. Are you listening?

Gene Marks of Forbes writes about Google buying Motorola Mobility where he compares Microsoft to the Roman Empire, a truly repressive government. He speculates that Microsoft (sort of a repressive regime since they USED TO own all computer operating systems and force us to do things there way).

He goes on to talk about how Google/Motorola/Android and Apple are freeing people from the desktop computer and Microsoft’s empire so oddly enough, I think his story is relevant to the Arab Spring uprisings. We all want to be free from any authoritarian regime. We are smart enough to make good decisions for ourselves.

So, is Cuba next?

Unfortunately not.

1. The Castros, by design, control all communication in Cuba. All the press is controlled by the government. All the radio and TV is controlled by the government. The Internet is by design slow and restricted. (Don’t let anybody tell you the US Embargo is to blame for any of this). The Castros do not want people to communicate because they know what can happen. When people communicate they can share ideas and find like-minded people and then assemble and then demand freedoms… way too risky for a failed political experiment called, oddly enough “La Revolucion”. Fidel and Raul do not want to have another Revolution in Cuba.

2. The Committee for the Defense of the Revolution is a Cuban government operation which is like having a Resident Assistant in every college dormitory. Every neighborhood has an active CDR staffed with people loyal to the Cuban government. It is their job to spy on their neighbors and to report any suspicious activity to the Cuban government. They get rewarded for reporting all of their neighbors’ “suspect” activities… and you would be surprised what is considered a “suspect” activity.

3. Since most all activities are illegal in Cuba, MOST Cubans have to break some law every single day of their life just to survive. The Castros have locked down the entire country in what many call and “island prison”.

In summary, I wish Democracy minded rebels well in their quest for freedom and democracy and I sincerely hope this ultimately leads to a new Cuban government where the Cuban people can enjoy a political process of freedom of speech, freedom to assemble, freedom of the press and free elections.

  1. Follow up post #1 added on August 23, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Anya Landau French comments about Cuba’s listing on the state sponsor of terrorism list while North Korea or Libya is not on the list.

    She also illustrates the right wing nut that is Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.



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  2. Follow up post #2 added on August 23, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Information and people want to be free.

    Special report: In Libya, the cellphone as weapon

    When Muammar Gaddafi’s government shut off the cellphone network in Misrata in the early days of Libya’s uprising, it wanted to stop rebel forces communicating with each other. But the power of a modern phone goes beyond its network.

    Both rebels and government soldiers have used their phones to take pictures and videos of the conflict, a digital record of fighting from both sides. With the rebels now in Tripoli, the capital, and Gaddafi’s whereabouts unknown, those gigabytes of potential evidence may play a role in any war crimes cases.



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  3. Follow up post #3 added on August 24, 2011 by Shatabdi Das

    Yes, you are right, in this world of internet, the facts cannot remain hidden. This goes for all the countries, even for the US and its allies, who think themselves as the proprietor of DEMOCRACY. For these people democracy is bombarding other counties for oil and other natural reserves, interfering with the works of elected governments who are not in favour of these imperialists. This is happening from ages, with powerful media propagation the imperialists have always tried to justify their acts of insanity. Remember history is never going to forget the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Vietnam war, invasion of Bay of Pigs, making of Osama Bin Laden to remove the communist government of Afghanistan, sending troops to Hatti, the 1st Iraq war, trying to topple the democratically elected government of Venezuela and even a small communist state of India “West Bengal”, killing of innocent Afghans, the destruction of Iraq on the pretext of WMDs, now its Libya and this list will never end. But let me assure you that the hypocrisy is exposed by only one man called Julian Assange, whom the US and its allies consider on of the biggest threat. This is the age of internet and people has access to Wikileaks also.


  4. Follow up post #4 added on August 24, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Typical Communist response.

    Accept no blame and shift the discussion away from the fact that Castro’s Communism is a failure.

    We get it. Cuba good. US bad.



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  5. Follow up post #5 added on August 24, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Sarah Stephens - Director of the Center for Democracy in the Americas writes Get Cuba off the List of State Sponsors of Terror



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  6. Follow up post #6 added on August 25, 2011 by miguel

    The publisher refers (comment # 1 above) to a very reasonable comment by Anya Landau French in The Havana Note on the absurdity of listing Cuba as sponsor of terrorism, while terrorists like Posada Carriles are given refuge and applauded in the US. The publisher himself in the article above terms Posada “a terrorist and a murderer”.

    Very well. But it made me remember a remark from the same publisher on the Cuban Five (“our convicted Cuban Five felons”), http://havanajournal.com/politics/entry/havanatimes.org-is-pure-cuban-government-propagenda/, comment # 6, December 19, 2008. In this comment the publisher shows much indignation concerning a proposed exchange of the Cuban Five for imprisoned opposition activists in Cuba.

    First: I can only understand his indignation as a reflection of indifference to the prisoners in Cuba, i. e. he seems to join in a cynical game where the opposition activists are mere pawns sacrificed to discredit the Cuban government (see my comment # 77 to same story as just referred to).

    But the publisher’s remark on the Five is also interesting in the actual context: It is flagrantly inconsistent with his dissociation from the terrorist Posada Carriles and his supporters in Miami, WHOM THE FIVE WERE SENT TO LOOK AFTER.

    Such inconsistency can be explained benevolently by dilettantism alone, but one is tempted to suspect that our publisher’s dissociation from the terrorists in Miami is not entirely sincere.


  7. Follow up post #7 added on August 25, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I’m not happy that Posada is a free man but I respect the US legal system.

    I have not followed the Cuban Five. I only know what I know from the far left who claim their innocence but in this case too, I respect the US legal system.

    Right. The same US legal system that let OJ get away with murder.

    Is Posada guilty? Yes.

    Is OJ Simpson guilty? Yes.

    Is Alan Gross guilty? Yes.

    Are the Cuban Five guilty? Yes.

    I think I am consistent.



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  8. Follow up post #8 added on August 26, 2011 by Yeyo with 411 total posts

    Comparing the five cuban spies jailed in the US to the pro democracy dissidents in Cuba is like comparing Moammar Gadhafi with President Obama.
    Come on, they were state security officers sent to spy on the US government as they had been doing for the last 50 years.
    They were found guilty by the same justice system that decided that Elian’s father had the right to have his son. I do not remember the pro Castro crow including Castro himself saying anything negative of the system back then.
    The fact and the matter is that Castro had been able to manipulate the public opinion of lot of people that has no idea of what is going on in Cuba to publicly push his agenda.


  9. Follow up post #9 added on August 26, 2011 by miguel

    Publisher, comment #7

    Fundamental error: The question here is not about the SYSTEM, but of individual CASES.

    To respect a country’s legal SYSTEM does not imply to accept each and every DECISION taken within the same system. That would presuppose a flawless system which never existed.

    The publisher agrees: He himself refers to cases, where he thinks that US courts of justice came to wrong decisions (Posada and Simpson). I. e. he disavows himself.

    More inconsistency: The publisher confesses that he is unfamiliar with the Cuban Five case (strange for an American who pretends to be familiar with Cuban affairs). And nevertheless he states categorically that the Five are “guilty” (of what?), because “I respect the US legal system”.

    The attentive reader will notice that the publisher here is involving himself in a mess of absurdities: “I respect the US legal system”. “Is Posada guilty? Yes” (ALTHOUGH the court in El Paso said No). “Are the Cuban Five guilty? Yes” (ONLY because the court in Miami said Yes).

    Alan Gross has nothing to do with the US legal system.

    Let the readers consider, if the publisher is consistent.

    I suppose that the Cuban Five case simply is an uncomfortable theme for him to deal with.


  10. Follow up post #10 added on August 29, 2011 by Yeyo with 411 total posts

    One way or the other the fact is that the so called “Cuban five” were five spies working for foreign power.
    By the way I heard that one of them is now talking and cooperating with the government.


  11. Follow up post #11 added on August 29, 2011 by miguel

    Yeyo’s comments have nothing concerning my statements on the inconsistency of the publisher’s views of Posada and the Five. No one here has COMPARED Cuban opposition activists with the Five – that would be irrelevant. I have only repeated that indignation towards a prisoner exchange indicates indifference to the prisoners in Cuba. Their campaign value in prison was apparently given higher priority than their liberation.

    The debater seems not to know that the Five were never convicted for espionage, only for the (somewhat arbitrary) “conspiration to commit espionage”. That there is no evidence that they furnished the Cuban government with any classified information was confirmed by the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta. See http://www.ca11.uscourts.gov/opinions/ops/200117176.opn3.pdf , pages 72 and 80-82.

    I notice that the publisher seems to know more about the case of the Five, than he wants to admit, denominating them by the vague term “felons”, instead of “spies”. But if he only knows the case of the Five “from the far left who claim their innocence” here are two links to official documents from Amnesty International and The UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention:

    http://www.amnesty.org.en/library/asset/AMR51/093/2010/en/9911673a-a171-49db-b757-581f2fbdfe11/amr510932010en.pdf

    http://sites.google.com/site/otherpages/u.n.workinggrouponarbitrarydetention

    I would like to see a Castro critic with sufficient moral integrity to dissociate himself from the trial of the Five. It is not enough to dislike Posada.


  12. Follow up post #12 added on August 29, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    miguel,

    I am not going to let a wannabe Communist hijack these comments and change the subject as is standard practice when the subject matter is too close to home.

    Your next post about anything Cuban Five related in this article “Tunisia, Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt, Syria, Libya… Is Cuba next?” will be deleted.

    The Cuban Five have NOTHING to do with this topic.

    Stay on topic.



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  13. Follow up post #13 added on August 29, 2011 by miguel

    I’m sorry, but why did you not send a similar message to Yeyo?


  14. Follow up post #14 added on August 29, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Good point.

    Yeyo, stay on topic.

    However, Yeyo is not a wannabe Communist who needs to change the subject to protect himself from intelligent dialog.



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  15. Follow up post #15 added on August 29, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Miami Herald Editorial

    The spark of disobedience

    OUR OPINION: Small protest in Cuba brings anti-regime defiance



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  16. Follow up post #16 added on August 30, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    I support the ladies’ courage to march and of course I support freedom of speech but author Aamis L. Perez of Cuba’s Pro-Freedom ‘Resistance’ Movement Is Growing needs to tone down his commentary if he wants to be taken seriously.

    He ends by saying “The big story in 2011 Cuba is that freedom is on the march, and it is very good news.”

    Ah, “on the march” with four women?

    He also is a bit inflammatory with his remarks “The women were detained, beaten, and threatened, but vowed to continue their struggle for freedom.”

    Beaten? That’s news to me. I think the author should quote a source in order to have some credibility and to avoid sensationalism.

    I hope there are many more protests and expressions of freedom with video so we can see these protests for ourselves.

    Of course we do not know what happens after they are taken away but unless the women themselves say they were beaten, a writer should not make such a statement.



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  17. Follow up post #17 added on August 31, 2011 by miguel

    The celebrations of the overthrow of Gaddafi (a bit more reserved when it comes to the events in Tunisia and Egypt) could make one remember the similar celebrations of the overthrow of the shah in Iran 1979.


  18. Follow up post #18 added on September 03, 2011 by terry rohan

    Cuba says he was distributing satellite telephones and other communications equipment, this story came out today, in 2009 some guy was paid by the US govt to smuggle componamnts into Cuba to make Briefcase servers to use for the insurrection they were eventually successful with a year later in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, the arab spring.

    crimes against the state got this guy 15 years, but what he was trying to do could have got him the rope.


  19. Follow up post #19 added on September 04, 2011 by Rich_Haney

    An excellent post, Rob, regarding your comments about Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Mario Diaz-Balart, Debbie Wasserman-Shultz, and Senator Menendez…and the equally asinine inclusion of Cuba on the Sponsors of Terrorism list. However, your analynis of the possibility of Cuba undergoing an Arab Spring-type rebellion is off base. You state that the Castro “control” of “all communications in Cuba” will prevent such a happening. If the Castros controlled all communication in Cuba please inform me how dissident Joani Sanchez is ubiquitous in the U. S. media (and blogs such as yours, the Huffington Post, etc.). And please inform me if the Castros control what the AP, BBC, Reuters, CNN, CBS, etc., etc., bureaus in Havana report on a daily basis. Do the Castros tell those entities what to report or what not to report? And famed dissidents such as Oswaldo Paya, Elizardo Sanchez, Oscar Elias Biscet, etc., can go to the U. S. Interests Section building in Havana and call the entire world with their anti-Castro rants. My friend Tracey Eaton, whom I met in Cuba, was for eight years head of the Dallas Morning News bureau in Atlanta. In his last such article from Havana Tracey said never was he told what to write or not to write. (Tracey is now a Florida professor and has the superb blog Along the Malecon). So, I disagree with your premise that the Castro control of all communication in Cuba accounts for the protection of the government. Instead, the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution, and their block-by-block dominance, have protected the island rather successfully since 1959. But above that, the inherent Cuban love for sovereignty was more pronounced on the island than I have ever encountered anywhere else. The Castro legacy, when he dies, will continue to benefit from that. From 1492 till 1959 foreign dominance of the island prevailed; to the majority Cubans, Fidel (for all his failures) represents sovereignty. That’s why a return of foreign dominance has not occurred since 1859 and counting—despite the enormous wealth, power, and support of the zealous Cuban exiles.


  20. Follow up post #20 added on September 04, 2011 by Rich_Haney

    Sorry, the correct spelling is “analysis” and “foreign dominance has not occurred since 1859” should be “1959”.


  21. Follow up post #21 added on September 04, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    @Rich,

    You are right, the Cuban government never pressures reporters. Never happens.

    Cuba revokes accreditation of Spanish journalist

    One of Spain’s largest media groups says Cuba has revoked the accreditation of its longtime correspondent on the Caribbean island for alleged bias and negative reporting, the latest in a series of steps by the communist government targeting foreign journalists and news organizations.

    Cuba’s international press center informed Vicent his permit was withdrawn “irrevocably,” according to El Pais.

    Several correspondents based on the island have not had their press credentials renewed in recent months, and some have left.

    And your ignorant Communist propaganda reply would be???



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  22. Follow up post #22 added on September 04, 2011 by miguel

    It had been easier for the publisher to answer Rich Haney (comment # 19) that his (the publisher’s) statement is about INTERNAL communication, not reporting for foreign audiences. 

    I agree with him that internal communication in Cuba to a very great extent is under government control.

    I agree with Richard Haney that nationalistic feelings (I would add: with good help from Miami) in Cuba greatly favour Castro.


  23. Follow up post #23 added on September 04, 2011 by Rich_Haney

    Rob, your rather insipidous reference to me as an “ignorant Communist” reminds me of the Joe McCarthy and Richard Nixon eras, very dark days in the U. S. democracy. McCarthyism was coined in 1950 in honor of the Wisconsin Senator who died an alcoholic at age 48 in 1957 but not before he spawned disciples like Nixon, and possibly you. I am, in fact, such a visceral pro-democracy and anti-Communist advocate that I fervently abhor Western democracies, particularly the U. S., supporting dictatorships whether they be left-wing Communists or right-wing Fascists. That’s why I’m so passionate about the Cuban Revolution, because I think it says a lot more about the U. S. than it says about Cuba. It says, for example, that the U. S. should not have supported the Batista dictatorship in Cuba (or the Trujillo, Samosa, Pinochet, etc., etc., dictatorships) and that the U. S. should not have allowed the ousted Batista/Mafia dictatorship to be reconstituted on U. S. soil—namely, Miami and Union City. You seem to think any U. S. - backed dictatorship is fine, or any U. S. - associated terrorist act, such as the 1976 bombing of the Cuban plane, is fine, or the Bush administration paying reporters for the Miami Herald to write anti-Cuban articles, etc. is fine. To make your “Communist” case against me you invented a little lie because I never, ever mentioned that Cuba “never pressures reporters.” I said the AP, CNN, CBS, NBC, the BBC, Reuters, and other Western media have regular bureaus in Havana and I don’t think they would be there if Cuba told them what to report or not report.  Instead of saying “Hey, there are no Western reporters allowed in Cuba” you resort to making up something I didn’t say…ala McCarthyism. You make a big deal about Cuba kicking out a longtime Spanish reporter, and that’s fine, but are you saying that makes Cuba unique and that it’s always correct to assume whatever Cuba does is wrong because Cuba did it.  Was it fine or was it a bit undemocratic for the Bush administration to pay thousands of tax dollars to Miami Herald (and other) reporters to write anti-Cuban articles? Shasta Darlington, one of CNN’s Havana-based reporters, had a very Cuban-loving article recently but I don’t think Cuba paid her for it and I don’t think Cuba booted her off the island after she wrote a very (fair) anti-Cuban article this week. But, of course, if you have evidence that Shasta was paid for the pro-Cuba article or booted off for the anti-Cuba article, then let me know and I’ll blast Cuba too. The great “Patriots” McCarthy and Nixon thought it was fantastic for the U. S. to overthrow a newly democratically elected President and install (for 19 years) a killer-dictator (Pinochet). I disagree with McCarthy and Nixon (and apparently you) on that score but, Rob, that doesn’t make me a “Communist.” I adamantly oppose all dictatorships—Communist, Batistiano, Mao, or whatever. I wish a plethora of self-ordained, “democracy-loving patriots” did the same. It really didn’t matter whether it was a democratic or Communist terrorist that killed the little 7-year-old girl and 72 other innocents in the Cuban airplane; what matters is it was a terrorist who slaughtered innocents. You indicate everything Yoani Sanchez says is the gospel and everything Josefina Vidal says is a lie. I disagree with that premise and happen to think Josefina is the more honorable person, but that doesn’t mean I’m a Communist and it doesn’t mean you are wrong. I strongly agree with Vidal, Celia Sanchez, Haydee Santamaria, Melba Hernandez, Vilma Espin, Tete Puebla, Marta Rojas and other Cuban women who believe/believed in Cuban sovereignty and who chose to live out their lives on the island fighting for what they believe in. I do not think the majority Cubans still on the island should be continually persecuted because they treasure sovereignty as opposed to foreign dominance. I think Josefina Vidal would make a better future leader of Cuba than Ileana Ros-Lehtinen. You have a right to disagree with me but not the right to flagrantly call me something I am not. There are two sides to the U.S.-Cuban conundrum and disagreeing with those who support vile dictatorships or those who blow up airplanes filled with children does not make one “pro-Communist” as you imply.


  24. Follow up post #24 added on September 05, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Rich,

    You write “I fervently abhor Western democracies, particularly the U. S”.

    I rest my case.

    Either you have never been to Cuba and think the Revolution is a beautiful thing or you live in Cuba and work for the Cuban government.

    I call it like I see it based on many years of experience with US haters/Commie lovers like yourself.

    You are an ignorant Communist wannabe or a loyal ignorant Communist.

    Take a break then send in the next propagandist.

    Now back to the topic “Tunisia, Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt, Syria, Libya… Is Cuba next?”



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  25. Follow up post #25 added on September 05, 2011 by miguel

    Disloyal use of quotations are not uncommon in heated debates (or from incompetent debaters), but this is worthy of Mark Twain: Compare the third clause of Rich Haney’s comment # 23 with the publisher’s response # 24.


  26. Follow up post #26 added on September 05, 2011 by Rich_Haney

    Rob, you are the most arrogant bully I’ve encountered in a rather long life, and you are also a blatant liar as I think Miguel (whom I don’t known) or anyone else can readily ascertain. You attack me for saying, “I fervently abhor Western democracies, particularly the U. S…” and, being the liar you are, you conveniently leave out the rest of the sentence, which states that I hate Western democracies when they support and/or install killer dictators, such as Pinochet in Chile or Batista in Cuba, etc. It seems that is precisely what you like best about democracies. You imply to your readers that I live in Cuba; I live in Charlottesville, Va., near Monticello. You imply I’ve never been to Cuba; you communicate with the fine journalist Tracey Eaton, my friend, on his blog Along the Malecon. Why don’t you ask Tracey if I met him in Cuba? In calling me a “U.S. hater/Commie lover” you are using precisely the same language Joe McCarthy and Richard Nixon used in attempts to destroy scores of decent people before McCarthy-Nixon themselves ended up as pariahs in the cesspoll of American history. Your unconscionable support of U. S. - friendly dictators makes you feel like a great patriot (just like McCarthy and Nixon professed to be) but you are anything but. You attack me for feeling badly, for the U. S. democracy, for the bombing of the civilian Cuban airplane and then for the bragging in the U. S. media that “It’s the biggest blow yet against Castro,” “There were no innocents on that plane,” etc. By your reckoning the little 7-year-old girl and scores of teenage athletes on that plane deserved to die if it “hurt Castro.” I disagree with you that U. S. support of terrorists or dictators is nice and commendable. Everyone who knows me knows I am fiercely anti-Communist,  pro-democracy, and pro-America. To cowardly and stupidly say otherwise makes you out to be a liar and a bully…and clearly a Joe McCarthy-Richard Nixon wannabe. On the island of Cuba there are millions of nice, innocent people who do not deserve to continually be battered by self-ordained good-guys who benefit from their battering. It’s fine with me if your heroes are the likes of Luis Posada Carriles but I deserve the right to disagree with you on that score. And big, bad bullies have never scared me in the least. Continue your paroxysms but realize that when you batter masses of innocent people or attack with lies those of us who believe little 7-year-old girls should not be murdered for someone’s political advantage or for revenge against some adult, you will be challenged. And no, Rob, I’m neither “ignorant” nor “Communist” and I believe you are being anti-American by resorting to McCarty-Nixon tactics to demean anyone who disagrees with your defense of vile dictators and terrorists.


  27. Follow up post #27 added on September 05, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    You blind utopian Communist wannabes are just sad.

    1. I think Posada should get extradited and convicted of the crimes he committed but we are not going to talk about that here because it is off topic.

    2. Your words speak for themselves. I have nothing that I need to defend.

    STAY ON TOPIC!

    So, Tunisia, Bahrain, Yemen, Egypt, Syria, Libya… Is Cuba next?



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  28. Follow up post #28 added on September 14, 2011 by publisher with 3905 total posts

    Nick Miroff writes about why there has not been a Cuban Spring.

    “One disadvantage often cited by Cuban activists is that they operate at a significant technology deficit. The island is one of the least-connected countries in the world, and though many young people have mobile phones, most lack access to Facebook, Twitter and video-sharing sites because of internet restrictions and scarce bandwidth.”

    And that’s by design… probably from as early as January 2, 1959, the second day of Fidel Castro’s lockdown.

    Don’t blame the Embargo for this one.



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  29. Follow up post #29 added on September 30, 2011 by Yeyo with 411 total posts

    The fact is that all the media is owned by the government and hence controlled by Castro.


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