Sunday, November 29, 2009

Election Farce in Honduras

U.S.A. conveniently looks the other way while coup d'etat thugs hold an “election” in their favorite banana republic

Since the coup d'etat in Honduras on June 28, 2009, Barack Obama's administration has given us very high sounding pronouncements, while behind the curtains they continue to support the School of the America's thug who trashed democracy in that Central American country.

I am not surprised at all. The United States government, led by Republicans or Democrats, always allies itself with the oligarchical elites who exploit the suffering masses. I do not to repeat the long list, since the dark history of U.S. foreign policy is known to all throughout the world.

The presidential election being held today in Honduras by the military gorillas is clearly an illegal farce. The candidate who the imperialists support will easily win this electoral charade.

Fulgencio Batista also held an “election” in 1958. People did not vote. Like the one being held in Honduras today, the people knew it was a farce. Less than a year later the Cuban people kicked Batista out of power. The imperialist have not forgotten. Cuba's present system is not the type of “democracy” which the Yankee imperialists prefer.

But I also put the blame for the putsch in Honduras on the governments of Brazil, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Cuba and others. All they did was respond to the U.S. supported military coup d'etat with worthless speeches and inconsequential newspaper articles.

The military coup in Honduras was the first salvo fired by Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in their little war against the ALBA countries. It was followed by the establishment of six U.S. military bases in right wing and fascist Colombia. The imperialists are protecting the cocaine profits of their buddies in that joke of a country and preparing the military overthrow of the Chavez government.

It is all about money, the only thing that capitalist U.S.A. cares about.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Cuba does not deserve this criticism on human rights

The real abuse taking place in Cuba is the crippling and inhumane American blockade

Rob Miller
The Guardian
Thursday November 26, 2009

Your article on the Human Rights Watch (HRW) report on Cuba gives little context of the complexity of US-Cuba relations (Hopes of new dawn dashed as Fidel Castro's brother cracks down on dissent, 19 November).

You report that president Raúl Castro "has kept up repression and kept scores of political prisoners locked up", but ignore that these include individuals accused of receiving US government money who were jailed for being paid agents of a foreign power – a crime punishable in every country in the world.

And you make scant reference to the inhumane US blockade, recently voted against by 187 countries at the UN. The blockade should surely inform any debate, since it permeates every aspect of Cuban life. You only repeat HRW's accusation that it is a "pretext for Havana to crack down on dissenters".

HRW appears to care little for the human rights abuses the blockade inflicts on Cubans. Its 123-page report is more concerned with how the blockade "alienates" US policy internationally. Maybe this politicised view is not surprising since HRW's Latin America director, José Miguel Vivanco, recently accused Cuba of having the "worst human rights record in the region". In a region where trade unionists are assassinated, homosexuals murdered and children live in poverty with lives blighted by drugs, violence and abuse, Cuba does not deserve such an unjust title.

The Guardian failed to report, let alone devote an entire page to, Amnesty International's more even-handed July 2009 report, The US Embargo against Cuba, which stated that the "impact of the embargo on the human rights of Cubans has received insufficient attention from the US government". Rarely do we read about the multimillion-dollar lobbying by groups intent on demonising Cuba to justify the blockade, nor US funding – $45m (£27m) in 2008 – for Cuban individuals and organisations. Such hostility has intentionally kept the island in a state of siege.

Six words out of 1,400 in your article recognise "acknowledged advances in education and healthcare". But where are the reports on the 40,000 doctors providing healthcare in 80 developing countries, the 1.5 million who received free sight-saving operations, the thousands of students from poor countries receiving free medical scholarships?

The former UN general secretary Kofi Annan said: "Cuba demonstrates how much nations can do with the resources they have if they focus on the right priorities – health, education and literacy." However, you quote Brian Latell, senior research associate from the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies, who claims that "no organised or potentially threatening opposition of any kind is tolerated". We are not told that his organisation is based at Miami University, the academic heart of the rightwing Cuban exile community, nor of its funding by both the US government and the Bacardi family, infamous financial backers of the blockade. Also not mentioned is Latell's background as a former CIA officer for Latin America.

Nobody claims that Cuba is perfect, but the country does not deserve such pariah status. Anyone who genuinely wants to improve human rights should start by demanding an end to the blockade.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

A Machetera translation: Defending the Revolution

Dialogue, Debate, Confrontation. Toward a Delimitation of BoundariesEspañol

By Enrique Ubieta Gómez for La Isla Deconocida

Translation: Machetera

November 24, 2009

I believe in ideas, in revolutionary reason. I support the Cuban Revolution from a reasoned perspective, from an argumentative perspective. I am convinced that it is possible to discuss and analyze every success and every failure of these 50 years, and that on balance, the revolutionary process will always come out favorably. I don’t shirk from debate.

But I’ve also understood that the war against socialism, against the Revolution, is not a “scientific” or “academic” crusade for truth; that its adversaries are not theoreticians obsessed with proving that they are right (although some of them teach or are academic professionals), rather, they are individuals who for a variety of motives – personal history, ideological, or simply economic – desire its destruction. I’ve proven that there is a network of transnational interests that play hard: they lie or mislead and they are betting that their (verisimilitude) version will come out the winner in the media “show;” that which takes over the mind of the spectators. A network that chooses the exact words that should be used and repeats them in order to describe every subject and object, every event (regime rather than government, embargo rather than blockade, Castro rather than Fidel or Raúl, as the people refer to them). That people manufacture them, plant them, and that the media can close the doors and windows on any argument that reveals the trap. That dialogue is for the deaf, because the objective is not who’s right, but who will maintain or take power.

Therefore, it’s essential to differentiate the three possible levels of interaction with countries or people removed or even ideologically opposed to the revolutionary process. With those who recognize and accept the historical legitimacy of the Revolution, and are disposed toward seeking common ground for agreement in order to co-exist, dialogue is possible and necessary.

With those who disagree with our criteria and consider us mistaken, but argue their position in a serious way, there can be a debate. Debate is a healthy exercise as it allows for the discovery of strengths and weaknesses in the way we see things. Dialogue is to find a common space for co-existence; debate to clarify divergent or contrary positions. Both pre-suppose a respect for the rights of others and exclude impositions.

But if the objective is not to convince, but to impose, if the country or the person who disagrees has as their ultimate goal the defeat of their adversary, the taking of power, if there is an expressed intention to subvert, then we are talking about confrontation and the right of the Revolution to defend itself. It’s what Marx called the class struggle.

The ultimate strategy of the Revolution and its historical sense is one of unification: unification of different, disagreeing people, in a common project. That was the strength of José Martí and also Fidel Castro. The first spoke vehemently of a homeland “with all and for the good of all,” but neither political “freaks” nor the annexationists were included in that. Fidel explained it another way: “Within the Revolution, everything [this includes those who don't share it]; against the Revolution, nothing.” And earlier, he said: “No-one has ever supposed that all men, or all writers, or all artists ought to be revolutionaries, just as no-one could suppose that all men or all revolutionaries ought to be artists, nor that every honest man, by the fact of being honest, ought to be revolutionary. To be revolutionary is also an attitude toward life, to be revolutionary is also an attitude toward existent reality (…)” And, he said: “The Revolution should try to win over the majority of the people through its ideas; the Revolution should never give up counting on the majority of the people; counting, not just on the revolutionaries, but on all honest citizens that although they may not be revolutionary, in other words; those who although they may not have a revolutionary attitude toward life, would be on her side.”

Dialogue and debate are requirements for which we assume full responsibility. Knowing that we’re not dialoguing or debating the archaeology of monoclonal cells, but our lives, the future of our children. Therefore, passion is inevitable, and I would say, necessary. This passion does not diminish the “scientific” reach of the arguments; it illuminates them. And something more: he who lacks passion, who cannot bring his feelings, his emotions to the debate, lacks a real objectivity. One cannot speak – for or against – the Revolution, without feeling it. And one must differentiate the insults of those who have no arguments or those who would try to silence their opponents (this is the real meaning of “cyber-chancleteo“), from the “qualifiers,” sometimes indispensable in order to understand the position being refuted. To say “counter-revolutionary,” or “mercenary” when the shoe fits, is to grant an essential argument to the discourse. Hiding these qualifiers is to obstruct understanding of the facts. Dispensing with solid arguments, repeated but true, only because they’ve been used before is to weaken revolutionary discourse.

When an individual lends himself to street theatre well financed by transnational media – these media who don’t want to report anything besides that which has been previously established in the script for subversive correspondence, and align themselves with the interests that openly act to topple socialism in Cuba, find themselves facing the people. Assume the codes of war for power. The Revolution has the right to defend herself. And she will. And the hundreds of thousands of Cubans who defend her will be there to shout “Viva Fidel!” and “Viva Socialismo!” Revolutionaries know how to debate and we also know how to fight.

Machetera is a member of Tlaxcala, the network of translators for linguistic diversity. This translation may be reprinted as long as the content remains unaltered, and the source, author, and translator are cited.

Ballet Nacional de Cuba rendirá tributo a Casa de las Américas en su 50 anniversario


Lago de los Cisnes

Cubadebate

24 Noviembre 2009

Alicia Alonso y el Ballet Nacional de Cuba rendirán homenaje a los 50 años de Casa de las Américas, con una gala el próximo día 29 en la sala García Lorca, del Gran Teatro de La Habana.
El programa, que estará también en cartelera el sábado 28, incluye Elegía por un joven,    Fabio Di Celmo In Memoriam  , coreografía de Alicia Alonso, con música de Antonio Vivaldi y vestuario de Pedro Moreno.

Esta obra, dedicada a Fabio, el joven italiano asesinado por acciones terroristas contra Cuba en el Hotel Copacabana, muestra personajes simbólicos que representan algunos valores morales o humanos de su época.

También se anuncia Lucía Jerez, ballet en un acto y tres escenas, inspirado en un libreto de Fina García Marruz sobre la novela Lucía Jerez, de José Martí, coreografía de la prima ballerina assoluta, música de Enrique González Mantici y diseños de Frank Álvarez.

En los roles protagónicos aparecerán la primera bailarina Viengsay Valdés, además de Yadil Suárez, Gretel Morejón, Jessie Domínguez, Ivis Díaz y Dayron Vera.

Fundada en 1959 por Haydee Santamaría, y actualmente presidida por Roberto Fernández, la Casa de las Américas divulga, investiga, auspicia, premia y publica la labor de escritores, artistas de la plástica, músicos y teatristas.

De igual modo acoge a estudiosos de la literatura y las artes, cuya comunicación fomenta el intercambio con instituciones y personas de todo el mundo.

(Con información de la AIN)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Fraud increases in capitalist U.S.A.

The story was reported today prominently in the top half of the the first page of the digital edition of the New York Times under the byline of Manny Fernandez.

Here is how the scam went according to New York State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo: a “non-profit” organization named United Homeless Organization (UHO) was incorporated in the Democratic Party controlled state. They placed tables on the streets of New York City asking for “donations” to help the homeless. The president of UHO, “a formerly homeless Bronx man named Stephen Riley, and its director, Myra Walker, used tens of thousands of dollars from the group for personal expenses while failing to provide any services for the homeless.”

The expenses, the lawsuit of the Attorney General of New York State said, “included premium cable television service at Mr. Riley’s apartment; restaurant meals; trips to Cleveland, Mr. Riley’s hometown; and shopping purchases from Game Stop, the Home Shopping Network and the Website for Weight Watchers.”

“The table workers would pay Mr. Riley and Ms. Walker a $15-per-shift fee to use the group’s tables and materials, and keep the rest, according to the Cuomo lawsuit. It said that Mr. Riley and Ms. Walker used the fees as “their personal kitty,” routinely flouted nonprofit and charitable solicitation laws and failed to maintain accurate records of revenue and expenses.”

“Mr. Riley and Ms. Walker admitted in testimony to Mr. Cuomo’s office that the group has no program for providing food or clothing to the homeless. The organization does not run a shelter, soup kitchen or detox center, and does not give any of its money to other homeless charities, according to the Cuomo lawsuit. Mr. Riley and Ms. Walker are the only directors on the group’s board.”

There are thousand of so-called non-profit organizations operating in the United States. It is very obvious that many of them are nothing but plain vanilla capitalist scams and frauds.

If a so-called non-profit capitalist organization asks you for a donation or a contribution, you better investigate first. The money could very well end up in the pockets of criminal capitalist hucksters.

"My vote is for sale" signs in the U.S. Congress: How much are you willing to give me for my vote in favor of continuing the Cuba embargo?

More transparency would shine light on power of special-interest contributions

Tuesday, November 24, 2009 1:03 PM PST

Nov. 24 Daily News editorial

Lobbyists and other apologists for the current money-driven system of funding political campaigns often dismiss critics with the counterintuitive claim that big donors seek nothing more than good government. If so, some contributors must be pleasantly surprised by the return on their investment.

Public Campaign, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit provides the latest evidence of the impact these special-interest contributions can have on the lawmaking process. A study released by the organization earlier this month demonstrates how big money from a small group has help sustain the economic embargo against Cuba long after the policy had outlived any usefulness it may have once had.

According to a report by Associated Press Hispanic affairs writer Laura Wides-Munoz, Public Campaign identified many instances in which members of Congress changed their positions on Cuban policy within months of receiving campaign donations from the U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC, a group that supports tough U.S. sanctions against the island nation. The study named at least 18 lawmakers who changed their votes once they began receiving donations from the PAC. Among the examples cited by Wides-Munoz was U.S. Rep. Mike McIntrye, D-N.C. McIntrye had consistently voted to ease the embargo until 2004, when he changed is position to support the embargo. McIntrye has since received $14,500 from the PAC.

McIntrye told Wides-Munoz that he’d had a change of heart with regard to the embargo that had nothing to do with campaign contributions. That may be, but McIntrye and others who chose to get tough on Cuba around the time this PAC began contributing to their campaign war chests are swimming against the popular tide on this issue.

Support for sanctions against Cuba has been declining for several years now. This is the case even in Florida’s large community of Cuban exiles. Exit polls following the 2008 congressional elections showed that taking a hard line against Cuba no longer guarantees the support of Florida’s Cuban voters. U.S. Rep. Bill Delahunt, D-Mass., told Wides-Munoz of an increasing disconnect between those who support the hard-line U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC and the majority of the Cuban-American community. Polls show supporters of the embargo may no longer constitute a majority, according to Wides-Munoz.

This is how money can distort the political process — giving a disproportionate voice to special interest donors representing a minority. Big money donations, more often than not, buy access and influence. This can both distort and corrupt the democratic process. Limits on contributions are no sure remedy. They often risk tripping over the Constitution. Also, where there’s a will, there’s always a loophole. The best medicine for this money-driven system is transparency. Voters who can follow the money can make informed decisions at the polls. That prospect is likely to have greater influence on politicians than any campaign donation.

Turn on the lights on the cockroaches (i.e. The Infamous 53) and see them run for cover

JG: United States Representative Gerald E. Connolly is a United States Representative elected to Congress from the 11th district of Virginia. He is a member of the Democratic Party. He also has the dubious distinction of being one of the Infamous 53, a group of Congressmen who recently wrote a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposing the freedom to travel to Cuba for all Americans.

One of his constituents recently wrote an open letter to him. It was published by the digital edition of The Fairfax Times.

We reproduce below the open letter.

Open letter to U.S. Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-Dist. 11):

As the son of a Cuban immigrant and a constituent of the 11th District of Virginia who voted in favor of your candidacy in 2008, I was very surprised to see that you co-signed a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Nov. 3 supporting the current failed U.S. policy toward Cuba. As a supportive constituent, I was equally disturbed to learn that you received $2,000 in campaign donations from the ultra-conservative U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC that supports our country's five-decade-old blockade of Cuba which has only caused hardship and misery upon the Cuban people and has not succeeded in getting the Castro brothers to reform Cuba's communist system or relinquish power. On the contrary, America's counterproductive policy has emboldened them and perpetuated their continued iron-fisted control of the island.

I was also disappointed to see the drafters of this letter so clearly misrepresent President Barack Obama's policy vis-a-vis Cuba. The drafters mislead Speaker Pelosi by claiming that "President Obama has demonstrated his support for the remaining sanctions." In truth, Obama has publicly favored a policy of constructive engagement with the Cuban government. He has liberalized travel restrictions and recommenced diplomatic discussions with Cuban officials. Obama has also taken steps to alleviate tension with Cuba by turning off a sign atop the U.S. diplomatic mission in Havana that used to display anti-government messages, and by arresting and prosecuting Luis Posada-Carrilles, the alleged mastermind behind the bombing of a Cuban passenger airliner that claimed 76 innocent lives in 1976. It is, therefore, deceptive to claim that Obama supports the current sanctions policy against Cuba.

In order to support positive democratic change in Cuba, I hope you will: (1) return the funds you received from the ultra-rightist U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC; (2) un-sign your signature from the Nov. 3 letter; and (3) become a co-sponsor of the Freedom to Travel to Cuba Act (HR 874) which currently has 179 co-sponsors in the House and 33 in the Senate. The position that I espouse is more in tune with the views of your constituency and the American public at large which, according to polling data, overwhelmingly favors an end of the embargo and the travel ban.


Daniel Rubiera Zim, Vienna

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JG: Bravo Mr. Rubiera Zim! Very well said! But you do have one factual mistake in your open letter. Barack Obama does favor the continuation of the genocidal Cuba embargo/blockade.

That criminal enterprise has inflicted death and suffering among the Cuban people and has caused over $96 billion dollars in damages to the island's economy. Barack Obama is continuing those sanctions.

The Cuba embargo: 'The answer my friend is laying in the wind'

How can the current executive branch leadership of the United Sates continue to enforce the Cuba embargo/blockade? Are they myopic or just plain stupid?

How can they arrogantly ignore the wishes of 187 civilized countries at the United Nations? For 18 years in a row the General Assembly has condemned, by big margins, the genocidal embargo/blockade which the imperialists continue to enforce against Cuba.

The fact of the matter is that they continue to foolishly pursue policies that are solely based on 'might makes right.' Yankee imperialist arrogance at its best!

Many Americans thought that Barack Obama would show leadership and courage. He has not. Instead, as I have said in previous posts, what he has given us is more of the same crap pushed by his out-of-touch predecessor, George W. Bush. Meet the XXI century American versions of Tweedledee and and Tweedledum.

Are there any difference between the Republican Party and the Democratic Party? Not when it comes to continuing our failed policies toward Cuba.

The U.S.will accomplish more if they were to use a little honey instead of the over used stick.

Audacious Barack H. Obama has shown us that the words pragmatism and decency do not exist in his lexicon when it comes to enforcing arrogant and failed policies. He is about to make the same mistake when it comes to Afghanistan. He will continue to support the corrupt Hamid Karzai, just the same way that Lyndon B. Johnson supported the equally corrupt Ngo Dim Diem

Barack Obama must pull a Nixon out of his hat of tricks: end the Cuba embargo/blockade and re-establish normal diplomatic relations with the Caribbean island.

Is he up to it? I doubt it! He is not showing the necessary leadership to tackle important issues. The way he is going he may well become a one term president, as his approval rating slips below 50%.

Monday, November 23, 2009

European Union commissioner says they will place less emphasis on human rights when dealing with Cuba

By Tom Evans, CNN

November 23, 2009 8:26 p.m. EST

A European Union commissioner Monday told CNN's Christiane Amanpour that Europe's policy toward Cuba in the future will place less emphasis on human rights in the island nation than now.

The EU commissioner for development and humanitarian aid, Karel De Gucht, who is just back from a visit to Havana, Cuba, told Amanpour, "We have relations with a lot of oppressive regimes and we have a special regime for Cuba. It makes no sense singularizing them."

His comments come amid indications that Spain, which will hold the presidency of the EU for six months beginning in January 2010, intends to soften the organization's policy toward Cuba. The European Union currently criticizes Cuba's human rights record, but does not support the U.S. trade embargo against Havana.

-----

JG: Looking at the declarations of both Australia and the European Union, (see the previous post also), it appears that Barack Obama is going to be the odd man out. When is he going to realize that the rest of the world does not support the United States? And last November 2008, when we elected him, we thought that he was an intelligent person. He has demonstrated since then that he is not. Does 187-3 mean anything to him? Wake up and smell the roses, Mr. President!

Australia and Cuba strengthen diplomatic ties

AFP

November 23, 2009

HAVANA — Cuba and Australia have decided to strengthen their 20-year relationship, Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Stephen Smith said Monday at the start of a two-day visit to Havana.

"I see my visit here very much as the first step in our relationship to enhance good working and productive relationships between Australia and Cuba," Smith told Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez.

Smith's visit, the first by an Australian foreign minister in 15 years, comes two decades after Canberra moved to establish closer relations with Latin America and the Caribbean.

"Australia wants to enhance its engagement with Latin America and the Caribbean, not just with individual countries like Cuba, but also about working close to development regional organizations like CARICOM," Smith said, referring to the Caribbean Community.

He said he was pleased at how Cuba and Australia have been working "much closer together" in the past two years in international organizations "particularly in the United Nations."

Rodriguez said Cuba "appreciates" Australia's role in the international community and noted how both countries shared common views on issues including climate change, free trade and in opposing unilateral restrictive measures.

"I am deeply thankful for Australia's vote (in the UN General Assembly) against the United States' (economic) embargo of Cuba and we are pleased with the progress our relationship is making," said Cuba's top diplomat.

The two officials signed a memorandum to establish regular contact and political consultation between their two foreign ministries.

Smith also met Monday with Cuba's first Vice President Jose Machado, to discuss developing scientific, cultural, business projects, according to local media.

Bilateral trade between Cuba and Australia reached 11.5 million dollars in 2008, more than half in Australia's favor.

Senator Feingold targets Radio Marti as wasteful spending

Radio Ink

November 23, 2009: Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI) has launched a "Spotlight on Spending" series to highlight items in his Control Spending Now Act, which includes 40 items that, the senator says, will reduce the government deficit by more than half a trillion dollars.

The first provision featured by Feingold's press office is Radio Marti, launched in 1983 to broadcast 24 hours of programming designed to undermine the Castro regime. TV Marti debuted in 1990. Both are operated by the Office of Cuba Broadcasting under the Broadcasting Board of Governors.

Feingold's office cites Radio and TV Marti as wasteful, among other reasons, because their signals are jammed by the Cuban government and their audiences are small. The Broadcasting Board of Governors has also said that they fail to meet journalistic standards of "balance and objectivity."

Feingold said, "This relic of the Cold War attempts to broadcast radio and TV signals into Cuba that virtually no one tunes in to. Government studies show that Radio and TV Marti are riddled with problems, and fall short of journalistic standards. As we progress toward a more modern and constructive relationship with Cuba, Radio and TV Martí no longer have any real diplomatic or fiscal purpose."

How Barack Obama and the Yankee imperialists are 'marketing' Yoani Sanchez

November 23, 2009

Marketing war heats up among Cuban "dissidents"

Operation Marketing

Esteban N. Martínez for CubaDebate

Translation: Machetera

The interview President Barack Obama granted the “blogger” Yoani Sánchez is the culmination of a project I feel like calling Operation Marketing; aimed as it is at the promotion and visibility of a new counter-revolutionary figure in Cuba, in the face of the worn out and battered “dissidence,” fighting like a pack of wolves with fangs bared in search of their prey…money.

The promotion of Yoani Sánchez began some time ago, when Grupo PRISA granted her the Ortega y Gasset prize and another publication put her on their list of the “World’s (100) Most Influential People,” although in her country she was completely unknown.

The torrent of prizes and recognition began to fall like “manna from heaven,” while press agencies, newspapers and websites, for the most part run by the rightwing, gave her the space to make her visible to the eyes of the world.

From the very beginning, Generación Y, the media platform designed for this digital project, counted on a broad architecture: German servers, replication in 18 languages and other technological means to set up the machinery, conceived outside Cuba and launched on the Internet under the duplicitous label of sourcing from Cuba.

Whoever has followed Yoani’s trajectory and those who sponsor her, know how the “blogger’s” positions have gone from a lukewarm criticism of the revolutionary Cuban project, to more openly aggressive ones, in search of a confrontation.

One of the first actions in this escalation had to do with the self-titled musician Gorki Águila, when the new “star” of citizen journalism launched a campaign in favor of the rocker, who’d starred in more than one scandal, but that story dissolved when the Cuban authorities only fined him. According to Yoani they tried to sentence him to a long prison term and now he’s wandering about elsewhere.

The Havana Book Fair was the other stage chosen by those who pay Yoani Sánchez to make her presence felt. At that event and to a miniscule audience, she was the star in another production staged on the outskirts of the main event dedicated to books and reading in Cuba.

Afterwards, there were other activities outside the Cuban capital. Yoani took her Ortega y Gasset prize to leave it at the shrine to the Virgin “Caridad del Cobre” in Santiago on the eastern end of the island, taking advantage of the trip to try to seek converts, manipulating and deceiving young people in order to try to get them to jump in her counter-revolutionary car, and then doing the same at the other end of the island, Pinar del Río, where she went with the same subversive intentions.

For “PRISA’s daughter” as she had now come to be known by certain media, she aligned herself increasingly with the enemies of the revolution, appearing frequently in articles and interviews with Radio Martí and Miami’s El Nuevo Herald, mouthpieces for the most retrograde positions and loudspeaker for the Cuban-American mafia located in Florida.

The story of skirmishes and other incidents is a long one, as she began to seek at all costs to make herself visible; counting on the complacency of the major media, charged by shadowy forces with making people believe that there is a transcendent political figure in Cuba who is opposed to the project which sustains the Cuban people.

With this voluminous record, Yoani Sánchez and her sponsors began the real Operation Marketing in recent weeks, beginning with a ridiculous episode: the “blogger” showed up disguised as a German tourist at a debate sponsored by Temas magazine, where to her surprise she was recognized, despite her wig, colorful clothing and garish handbag.

Coming off badly in the eyes of the “Montagues and Capulets,” Generación Y’s queen began to weave a new story, where she reported to the four winds that she’d been “kidnapped,” and beaten by state security agents.

Without cross-checking the facts and without verifying anything, plenty of media ran with the story about the “kidnapping” and “beating” of the famous “blogger.” Hundreds of articles circled the planet from one end to the other on that story, which Yoani herself could not back up, even with the BBC, when she could not present any proof of the blows she’d received.

But not everyone got on the boat of lies, and many have been questioning the script. One skeptic was the La República newspaper, who went to look for the doctors who attended Yoani and found that none of them found the least physical evidence for the supposed aggression.

Certainly, in a country where even lost dogs are called for on the radio by their owners, it sounded odd, like a media fabrication; something that even “classic dissidents” could appreciate once they saw their dollars endangered, heading now toward the “competition.” In a desperate attempt to call for attention, Martha Beatriz Roque and her acolytes put on their own “show,” complete with “hunger strike” and news of her “serious health problems,” but the climax was yet to come, and it came on Thursday with Obama’s answers to Yoani Sánchez’s questionnaire.

Doubting the legitimacy of the answers and wondering whether they were written by Obama or his advisers adds nothing to the debate. What’s interesting are the questions and the head of the empire’s answers to them.

Yoani Sánchez’s questions were aimed at subjects that would allow the person being asked the ability to drive forward his points of view, trying to blame the Cuban side for not moving forward on a path to better relations on both sides of the Florida Straits. Questions about essential subjects in the Cuba-United States dispute remained outside the journalistic realm of inquiry.

The economic and financial blockade by the world’s greatest power against the Cuban people was barely hinted at, left aside, without delving into the billions of dollars that this criminal policy has caused the Cuban economy and which constitutes the biggest drag on the island’s economy. Nor were the effects or strategies of a blockade designed to “kill through hunger or disease” and which has caused so much suffering for the Cuban family and is today repudiated by the entire planet, touched upon.

Nor were the consequences of the biological war against Cuba promoted by previous administrations among the questions – a war which through the introduction of plagues and illnesses damaged crops, animals and caused the death of Cubans, including more than a hundred children, when murderous hands introduced the dengue virus during the 1980’s.

The inconsistent position of the North American government in the struggle against terrorism was off the table, whereby a confessed killer like Luís Posada Carriles struts around the streets of Miami along with other terrorists and not a finger is lifted to extradite him to Venezuela, where he is wanted for blowing up a civilian Cuban airliner with 73 people on board, while five anti-terrorist fighters are enduring long sentences following a dirty, rigged trial in Miami, the capital of terrorism against Cuba.

The consequences of the Cuban Adjustment Act, a legal monstrosity classified as a “murderous law” for its role in promoting and stimulating illegal departures from Cuba, the cause of a slew of incidents and a long list of deaths in the waters of the Florida Straits, and which today fosters an unscrupulous business in human trafficking involving the Miami mafia along with criminals from other countries – also off the table.

The presidential response to the questioner about military intentions against Cuba is contradicted by factual reality; a Fourth Fleet armed to the teeth is sailing throughout the region, the permanency of the illegal Guantánamo Naval Base on a portion of Cuban soil and the construction of seven North American military bases in Colombia tell a different tale and constitute a threat not only to Cuba but to the entire continent.

Beyond questions and answers, the intention of Yoani Sánchez and those who promote her is to gain greater global visibility in a Marketing Operation, a game which Barack Obama has joined, whether consciously or encouraged by his advisers, and one which leads to a well worn path where he will find that the firmness of the Cuban people is an insurmountable hurdle.

Machetera is a member of Tlaxcala, the network of translators for linguistic diversity. This translation may be reprinted as long as the content remains unaltered, and the source, author, and translator are cited.

The U.S. Government and the World’s Great Media Empires Are Using “Mercenary Bloggers” in Their Offensive Against Cuba

By J.P. for La República

Translation: Machetera

The world’s great media empires have undertaken a merciless offensive against the Cuban revolution, offering spectacular coverage to any kind of mercenary blogger movement such as that of Yoani Sánchez or her husband, who receive a spectacular amount of money for the articles they write against the Cuban government and against a supposed censorship that appears rather insignificant in the light of the wide coverage they obtain worldwide.

Last week it was Yoani who issued a denunciation for having been attacked by Cuban agents, but not only was she unable to show any kind of proof of the attack, the doctors who attended her, who were interviewed by La República, did not find any evidence of any kind of aggression. Later, it would be her husband, Reinaldo Escobar, who would denounce being hit and attacked by a crowd who reacted to his attempted provocation, with shouts in favor of the Cuban revolution. However, Escobar did not suffer even a scratch from this supposedly “uncontrolled mob.”

These events also coincide with the President of the United States, Barack Obama, elevating Yoani Sánchez to the altars of imperialism by answering a series of questions that she posed and congratulating her for her anti-Castro blog. It just so happens that Obama didn’t waste a moment in answering the questions of the mercenary blogger but still has not answered a series of questions that he was sent months ago by Fidel Castro himself. Questions such as “Is it correct that the President of the United States should order the assassination of any person worldwide, no matter what the pretext?” “Is it ethical that the President of the United States should order the torture of other human beings?” “Is state terrorism an instrument that ought to be used by a country as powerful as the United States so that peace might exist on the planet?” Or, “Is an Adjustment Law that only applies as a punishment against one single country, Cuba, in order to destabilize it, good and honorable, even though it takes the lives of innocent children and mothers? If it’s a good thing, why is the right to automatic residency not granted to the Haitians, Dominicans and those from the rest of the Caribbean countries, as well as the Mexicans, Central and South Americans who die like flies along the wall at the Mexican border or in the waters of the Atlantic and Pacific,” among others.

However, governmental support for the salaried bloggers doesn’t come only from the United States. Apparently, in Spain, next week the Congress of Deputies will debate its support for Yoani Sánchez, the “defender of freedom,” and opposition to the supposed persecution “that the Cuban regime maintains against Yoani Sánchez and other democrats in the Caribbean country.”

It’s curious that there should be a debate over the support of someone who claims to be censored and yet enjoys ubiquitous international media coverage, of someone who says she’s been attacked but cannot provide any proof of the attacks, and who claims to be a defender of freedom and democracy in Cuba but doesn’t hesitate to ally herself with the United States, a country that for the past 50 years has attacked her country, militarily and economically.

Machetera is a member of Tlaxcala, the network of translators for linguistic diversity. This translation may be reprinted as long as the content remains unaltered, and the source, author, and translator are cited.

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JG: Those were very good questions that were posed by Cuba's revolutionary leader, Fidel Castro, to U.S. president Barack Obama. Fidel should not expect any quick answers. Obama is only interested in creating problems for Cuba's Socialist sytem and neither the goverment of Cuba nor its peole should waste any of their time with talks with Obama. He, like his predecessor continues pushing and trying to further the political agenda of the Batistianos in Miami.

UNICEF official urges countries to learn from Cuba on children's protection

www.chinaview.cn 2009-11-21 13:55:26

HAVANA, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- The representative of UNICEF, or the UN Children's Fund, in Cuba said here Friday that Cuba is among the countries that have best implemented the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and that countries in the world should learn from Cuba on the protection of children's rights.

Jose Juan Ortiz, speaking at celebrations marking Universal Children's Day, said Cuba, still under an economic embargo and is suffering from frequent natural disasters, has significantly reduced child mortality and improved child nutrition -- to levels that can rival those of developed countries.

The cause of the amazing achievements in children's protection in Cuba lies in the government's political will, he added.

All countries in the world should follow Cuba's example and strive to provide better conditions for children in judicial and social welfare fields, Ortiz said, adding that in this way most countries would be able to meet the targets set by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

On Friday, Cuba held a variety of activities nationwide to celebrate Universal Children's Day.

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JG: In capitalistic United States, President George W. Bush vetoed twice health insurance for children. The U.S. government is only interested in protecting capital.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Yoani Sanchez: Agent Provocateur?

It is obvious that Yoani Sanchez and her triple ugly husband, Reinaldo Escobar, are serving the interests of those who have not given up trying to destabilize and/or overthrow Cuba's Socialist government.

The post which follows this is in Spanish, so those who do not speak the language of Cervantes will not be able to read the article from Spain's Newspaper La Republica. The video is from the doctor who treated Yoani Sanchez. He states that there were no visible injuries to her body.

How much is being paid to Yoani Sanches and other so-called dissidents by the government of the United States?

I challenge bloguera Yoani to tell the public how much does it cost to publish her blog. The website for her blog is in Germany, not inside Cuba, so the title of her blog, 'Desde Cuba' is an outright lie.

Tell us Yoani, who pays for your blog? According the Yankee imperialists, who never stop promoting her, the average monthly salary in Cuba is $17.00. From that amount she also wold have to buy food. Tell us Yoani, how can you publish your blog and eat at the same time?

I smell a rat! Could the C.I.A. be secretly and covertly funding Yoani? I wouldn't be surprised!

Barack H. Obama is Yoani's latest cheerleader. What a fraud Barack Obama is turning out to be when it comes to the Cuba issue. No difference between George W. Bush and Barack H. Obama. He is turning out to be another phony, like Bill Clinton, who wanted to bomb Havana in 1996. That explains why Obama put Hillary at the State Department. She and her husband are experts in trying to bring "libertad" (made in U.S.A., of course) to the Cuban people.

Cuba, now more than ever, must be extremely alert. Obama is not a trust worthy person. I would not give him the time of day.

The Yankees want to be able to return to Cuba to screw the Cuban people again, like they regularly did during 1902-1958.

El pueblo cubano se cansa de Yoani Sanchez

LaRepublica.es

Jóvenes a ritmo de conga y gritos en favor de la Revolución mandan callar al marido de la bloguera anticastrista

00:50h. del Sábado, 21 de noviembre.

Guillermo Nova | La Republica | La Habana

El viernes 20 de noviembre Reinaldo Escobar, marido de Yoani Sanchez, intento reventar un acto de la clausura de la Feria Universitaria del Libro y la Lectura (FULL) en la centrica calle 23 esquina a Avenida de los Presidentes, de La Habana, pero el juego le salió mal.

Cuando los jovenes habaneros disfrutaban de la oferta de libros a precios rebajados y musica de los grupos de artistas aficionados, el marido de la bloguera cubana se plantó delante de los medios de prensa extranjeros presentes y dijo que se encontraba alló como señal de duelo por una supuesta agresion a su esposa la semana pasada.

Los cubanos ya se cansaron de tanta provocación y a ritmo de conga los jovenes que participaban en el evento empezaron a gritar de manera espontánea "esta calle es revolucionaria" y "abajo la gusanera" o "Raul seguro al yanki dale duro".

Lo curioso del hecho es que agentes de la seguridad a los que Yoani Sánchez tantas veces ha denunciado por presuntas agresiones y acoso, tuvieron que ser los que sacaran del lugar a su marido para que no sufriera la ira de un pueblo que se ha cansado de tantas provocaciones.

La supuesta agresión que denuncia la bloguera cubana, fue totalmente desmentida, en declaraciones en exclusiva a La Republica, por los propios medicos que la atendieron y que en ningun momento le encontraron lesion alguna, ademas estando ella conforme con el examen medico que le realizaron.



La bloguera cubana Yoani Sánchez denunció que el pasado viernes 6 de noviembre a las 1745 (hora local), fue arrestada durante 25 minutos por un grupo de hombres vestidos de civil, que la metieron en un coche y la golpearon para impedir que llegase a una manifestación pública en una céntrica avenida habanera. LA REPÚBLICA desmonta la mentira

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El Reporte de Reuters (In English)

Husband of Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez attacked

Sat Nov 21, 2009 12:18am EST

Health Care Reform is in doubt because of four WEAK KNEES Democrats

On the issue of reforming our failed Cuba policies, I blame The Gang of 66, The Infamous 53, and yes our current decider in chief, audacious Barack H. Obama. They continue to cater to the wealthy and nutty right wingers in Miami. In the case of the Gang of 66, they received $270,500.00 for their votes in 2007. In the case of the Infamous 53, they have received up to $800,000.00. They have visible signs which state “My vote is for sale! How much will you give me?” In the U.S.A., money rules politics. The talk about representing “the people” and about “democracy” is for the consumption of the gullible sheep. No wonder that more and more Americans don't bother to vote. In the small town where I live, a recent election to elect new city councilmen only had a turnout of 9% of the registered voters. The plutocrats and the corporate fascists rule our political and economic system.

Comes now the avowed reform of our extremely expensive and not-so-good health care system. It is not universal now. It will not be universal if it is enacted this year or next year. Of the 47 million Americans who do not now have health insurance coverage, the “new” reform will only cover 30 million Americans. It does not cover all residents, like it is the case in Canada, Great Britain, France and Cuba (remember Michael Moore's 'Sicko'?).

There are four week knees Democrats, Ben Nelson (Nebraska), Mary Laudrieu (Louisiana), Evan Bayh (Indiana) and Blanche Lincoln (Arkansas). They could kill the current Senate bill. If they do, SHAME ON THEM!

If the 'public option' is removed from the current bill in the U.S. Senate, independent Bernie Sanders (Vermont) and Sherrod Brown (Pennsylvania) may also vote against the bill. All 40 Republicans, good obstructionists that they are, are fanatically opposed to what they call “socialist” reform. These 40 idiots wouldn't know what Socialism really is if it was staring them on their faces.

And of course, closet Republican Joe Lieberman will vote with the NO! Troops.

Health care reform may well be dead. The U.S.A. will continue to be the laughingstock of the industrialized world because of its total disregard for the well being of its citizens.

We will continue to have the Republican Party's Health Care Plan: “Don't get sick! If you do get sick, die quickly!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Dos Preguntas


Esto es con respecto a la excelente película Cubana titulada Viva Cuba del director Juan Carlos Cremata Malberti.

1) En la escena final, cuando Jorgito y Malú llegan a la Punta Maisí, el fondo musical es tal vez en el lenguage Yoruba u otro lenguaje Africano. Alguien sabe cuales son las líricas (palabras) de ese fondo musical, pues yo creo, pero puedo tal vez estar equivocado, que explica tal vez el desenvolvimiento de esa escena final. Ya yo tengo una opinion de como fue el fin, pero quiero saber si otras personas tienen diferentes interpretaciones del dramático final.

2) Alguien sabe si la música ha sido compilada en algun CD que este a la venta, ya sea dentro o fuera de Cuba? Yo tengo el DVD, y me gustaria comprar el CD de la música del soundtrack.

Eso es todo.

Para aquellos que no han visto Viva Cuba, se las recomiendo. Es una de mis películas Cubanas favoritas, despues de la dictadura Batistiana y del triunfo de la Revolución.

MSNBC/Associated Press dicen lo sigueinte sobre Viva Cuba en la cubierta posterior del DVD: "No es una película sobre política --- es una pelicula humana."

Tuenen razón.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Statetement of Philip Peters: "Time to Lift the Ban on Travel to Cuba"

November 19, 2009

PDF File of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Chairman Berman’s opening statement at hearing, “Is it Time to Lift the Ban on Travel to Cuba?”

U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Verbatim, as delivered

Americans have the right to travel to Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, which seeks a nuclear weapons capability in violation of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty. We can go to North Korea, which threatens to destabilize East Asia with its nuclear weapons program. And even during the darkest days of the Cold War, our citizens could visit the Soviet Union.

Yet the vast majority of Americans are still prohibited by law from travelling [sic] to Cuba. It is the only country in the world where our people are not allowed to go.

I am no fan of the Castro brothers. In my book, they are dictators and despots.

The Cuban people are still denied the right to choose their own form of government. They are jailed arbitrarily. They are denied a free press, freedom of assembly, and freedom of expression. The recent beating of renowned Cuban blogger Yoanni Sanchez as she walked to a peace march says it all.

But let’s face it. By any objective measure, the nearly fifty-year-old travel ban simply hasn’t worked.

This fact is clearly understood by the American people. Recent polls indicate that 64 percent of Americans, and a full 67 percent of Cuban-Americans, support allowing all American citizens to travel to Cuba.

It’s clearly time for a change.

This hearing is not about ending the entire Cuban embargo. When President Obama abolished travel restrictions on Cuban-Americans earlier this year, he made it clear that the larger issue of the embargo was a debate for another day. Unlike the travel ban, the economic embargo does not implicate the fundamental human rights of U.S. citizens. Today we will focus on whether we should scrap the restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba.

The travel ban has prevented contact between Cubans and ordinary Americans, who serve as ambassadors for the democratic values we hold dear. Such contact would help break Havana’s chokehold on information about the outside world. And it would contribute to improving the image of the United States, particularly in Latin America, where the U.S. embargo on Cuba remains a centerpiece of anti-Washington grievances.

Proponents of the travel ban argue that we should not make any change in the law without a reciprocal gesture from the Cuban regime. I believe it is a huge mistake to treat the travel issue in this manner.

Letting US citizens travel to Cuba is not a gift to the Castros – it is in our national interest. Waiting for a concession from Havana before we do something on behalf of our own citizens perversely puts the Cuban government in charge of that decision.

I understand the concern that allowing Americans to travel to Cuba would put money in the hands of the Castros. But the reality is that a significant portion of these funds would also aid the underground economy and the small self-employed sector, strengthening an important foundation of independence from Cuba’s authoritarian regime.

At the end of the day, the importance of depriving the Castro regime of some additional financial resources is far outweighed by our interest in accelerating the spread of democratic ideas and supporting the development of a healthy civil society in Cuba.

For too long, our policy decisions about Cuba, including the travel ban, have centered on hurting the Castro regime rather than helping the Cuban people. But this has led to the worst possible outcome: In an effort to make the Castros feel the sting, we have made the Cuban people cry. It is time to make the well-being of the Cuban people the driving force behind our policy toward the island.

Lifting the travel ban will benefit both U.S. and Cuban citizens. We need to let Americans be beacons of hope; they will bring freedom with them.

Let thousands of U.S. visitors chip away at the Castro information monopoly with thousands of small cuts. Let the residents of 19 US cities actually travel to their sister cities in Cuba. Let Americans and Cubans openly discuss human rights and market-based economics and Hollywood movies on streets, beaches and in cafés throughout Cuba – and take the U.S. government out of the business of deciding what should be discussed and which Americans should do the talking.

The freedom to travel is an important thread running through American history – from the settlement of the West, to the road trips inspired by author Jack Kerouac, to the exploration of outer space. The Cuba travel ban is squarely at odds with this uniquely American value, and constitutes a disturbing infringement on the right of our citizens to freedom of speech, association, and to travel.

Except under the most extreme circumstances, the government has no business telling us where we should go or with whom we should talk. It is beyond absurd that the Treasury Department – through a humiliating and Kafkaesque licensing process -- is in the position of deciding which American church groups can and cannot visit religious leaders on the island, and which of our artists and musicians are allowed to collaborate freely with their Cuban counterparts. This is Big Brother government at its worst.

Last week we celebrated the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. We re-lived the moments when East Germans and West Germans, after years of separation, came together as one.

There is also a wall in the Cuban context – invisible yet very real – and to the extent that our policy has erected this barrier, we must begin to tear it down. I want to experience, as we all do, the joyful day when Cubans on the island and Cuban-Americans are also re-united.

It’s time to trust our own people. It’s time to restore the right of Americans to travel to Cuba.

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JG: Some very good points about the failures of U.S. foreign policy toward Cuba, mixed with the usual anti-Cuba capitalist garbage.

BTW, Mr. Chairman, traveling only has only one l.

Very poor reporting by the Washington Post

The Washington Post "reported" today on Thursday's Hearing at the Foreign Relations Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Paragraph one: Talks about Yoani Sanchez.

Paragraph two: Talks aout La Loba Feroz.

Paragraph three: Talks about Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla.)

Wait till the official PDF file of the transcript of 'who said what' is placed on the website of the committee. The committee says that it takes six to eight weeks. Snails, not rabbits are in charge of producing the PDF file.

The Washington Post only publishes anti-Cuba dribble. It is understandable. They are capitalists who hate Cuban Socialism.

Latest developments on the most recent Yankee imperialist witch hunt for 'Cuban spies'

Reuters reported today at 6:46 p.m. the following: "A former U.S. State Department official and his wife pleaded guilty on Friday to charges that they spied for almost three decades for the Communist-led Cuban government."

JG: When it comes to the capitalist-led United States government, and if it is a pronouncement of theirs about the Cuban government, I am very skeptical, and most of the time it is just a pack of lies spouted by the capitalist-led United States goverment.

Who knows what kind of pressures and/or threats were brought upon on this unfortunate elderly couple. Were they threatened with "torture"? The imperialists are extremely adept at this type of intimidation. They are the most violent violators of human rights in the whole world, together with their Zionists partners in Israel. These two capitalist-led governments are the most serious threat to peace in the world on the XXI century.

The Infamous 53: Same Old Crowd with a Few New Dogs

As you probably know, a group that I have dubbed The Infamous 53, recently sent a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposing freedom for all Americans to travel to Cuba. Transcripts of the letter were available on the Internet. What was not ready available was the actual names of the 53.

An alert reader of Cuba Journal sent to me a PDF file link with the text and the signatures and the names of the 53.

I was not surprised. The Infamous 53 are led by U.S. Rep. Debbie 'Dubbya' Wasserman-Schultz, the leader of the equally infamous Gang of 66.

The 53, like the Gang of 66, are anti-Cuba, and take cash "contributions" from the fascist U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC. One report in the Internet said that the 53 had received as much as $800,000.00 for their anti-Cuba votes, now or in the future.

36 of the 53 (or 68% of the Infamous 53) are also members of the Gang of 66.

There are a few new dogs in the Infamous 53.

Below are the 53 names. If you want to reform our failed Cuba policies, (real reform, not the Obama type which continues to cater to the Miami right wingers), I urge you not to vote for any of the 53 in the next congressional election in 2010.

G66 after the name denotes that they are also a member of the Gang of 66.

The Infamous 53

Debbie Wasserman Schultz (G66)
Gary Ackerman
John Adler
Jason Altmire (G66)
Robert Andrews (G66)
Michael Arcuri (G66)
Joe Baca (G66)
John Barrow (G66)
Melisa Bean (G66)
Shelley Berkley (G66)
John Boccieri
Allen Boyd (G66)
Bruce Braley (G66)
Christopher Carney (G66)
Ben Chandler (G66)
Gerald Connoly
Henry Cuellar (G66)
Joe Donnelly (G66)
Eliot Engel (G66)
Bill Foster
Gabrielle Giffords (G66)
Alan Grayson
Phil Hare (G66)
Alcee Hastings (G66)
Brian Higgings (G66)
Paul Hodes
Patrick Kennedy (G66)
Larry Kissell
Ron Klein (G66)
Suzanne Kosmas
Frank Kratovil (G66)
Daniel Lipinski
Daniel Maffei
Jim Marshall (G66)
Mike McIntryre
Michael McMahon
Kendrick Meek (G66)
Charlie Melancon (G66)
Brad Miller (G66)
Patrick Murphy
Scott Murphy (G66)
Frank Pallone (G66)
Bill Pascrell (G66)
Pedro Pierluisi
Mike Quigley
Steven Rothman (G66)
John Salazar
Heath Shuler (G66)
Albio Sires (G66)
Ike Skelton (G66)
Zachary Space (G66)
Robert Wexler (G66)
David Wu (G66)

Obama continues traveling in Dubbya's Road

When it comes to the issue of U.S.-Cuba relations, Barack Obama, due to his inexperience and naiveté, continues traveling the failed road of his ten predecessors. This is due, I believe, to the typical arrogance of American presidents. They think they own the world. The facts of the matter is that they don't.

If he truly was interested in better relations with countries that he deems as enemies of the United States, he would sit down at a true negotiating table and discuss the issues involved, without resorting to the stupid idea that "I am a world power and you are a pygmy and you have to agree to my dictates." That is not the mentality of a true statesman.

I did not like Richard Nixon, but I give him credit for having recognized the world as it was during his presidency. He re-established diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China. That act you will not see Barack Obama replicate in regards to Cuba. He does not have the necessary wisdom. He is a captive of polls, empty slogans and clever political marketing.

So, he chooses for his latest pronouncements on Cuba none other than the despretigiada and publicity seeking blogger who is, inside Cuba, a creation of the anti-Cuba news media of the United States. Inside Cuba she is inconsequential and a left zero.

He states, according to Momento24, that he would be willing to take a trip to Cuba when "“all its people can enjoy the same rights and opportunities” of the rest of the continent.

This is the typical U.S.-inspired garbage which is published on a daily basis in Gusanolandia, a.k.a. Miami, Florida.

It is very early in Obama's presidency, but given the fact that he chooses empty slogans over making truly outstanding and pragmatic decisions, he will probably end up as another mediocre president.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Gerardo Hernández y su pájaro


17 Noviembre 2009

Había una vez un pajarito que se hizo amigo de un preso. Ambos estaban encarcelados en Estados Unidos, ambos compartían injusta prisión por defender a Cuba de acciones terroristas.

La historia comienza así. El 4 de junio de 2009, el mismo día de su cumpleaños, Gerardo Hernández tuvo noticias de aquella criatura. Se enteró por un preso de apellido Lira, que trabaja en la fábrica que está dentro de la prisión. Lira y un guardia limpiaban los techos con una potente manguera y sin querer o sin saber, destruyeron un nido que protegía a tres pichones. Dos de ellos
murieron tras el golpe, pero uno quedó vivo. Eran tan pequeños que ni plumas tenían. Posiblemente estaban recién salidos del cascarón.

El guardia se conmovió y sintiéndose responsable, le permitió a Lira que se lo llevara escondido al interior de la prisión e intentara salvarlo. El preso llegó con el pajarito en la palma de su mano y sin saber qué hacer con él, comenzó a preguntar a otros presos. Alguien sugirió: “Preguntémosle a Cuba [como llaman a Gerardo los otros presos], que a él le gustan los animales y seguro sabe de eso”. Así fue que llamaron a Gerardo y él vino a la celda donde tenían al animalito.

La primera reacción de Gerardo fue silbar, imitando lo que él suponía hiciera la madre del pichón. Movió los dedos de las manos, como si fueran pequeñas alas. Milagrosamente, el pajarito abrió su pico. Gerardo comenzó a darle migas de pan y luego, introdujo sus dedos en el agua y dejó correr las gotas cayeran suavemente en el pico del pajarito.

Gerardo no quiso llevárselo a su celda, pero todos los días pasaba para alimentarlo. El problema era que al principio el pequeño no quería comer con nadie, salvo con Gerardo. Un día se le ocurrió ofrecerle al pajarito unas hilachas de pescado y después el bribón ignoraba las migas del pan. Comenzaron a crecer sus plumas y Gerardo le enseñó entonces a comer solo. Le ponía los trocitos de alimento en la palma de su mano y el pajarito venía con toda confianza.

Sin embargo, los presos estaban preocupados. En caso de inspección, el pequeño sería un problema.Como ya estaba más grande, lo sacaron la patio para que volara libre. El pajarito volaba un poco y regresaba al hombro de Gerardo. Cada vez que intentaba volar con otros pájaros, lo rechazaban a picotazos. Poco a poco ganó confianza. Gerardo entraba solo al pabellón
donde vive, pero cuando salía otra vez al patio, el pajarito se asomaba también para verlo.

En una ocasión estaban muchos presos en el patio. Alguien le dijo a Gerardo que por ahí andaba el pajarito posado en los alambres de púas. Gerardo silbó y frente a todos los presos, el pequeño apareció de la nada y se posó en su hombro. Increíble. Todos hablaban de esta historia.

Al pajarito lo llamaban Cardenal, porque Gerardo le pintó las plumas de la cola con un marcador rojo, para distinguirlo de los demás. La pintura lo afectó un poco. El pajarito perdió las plumas de la cola, pero por breve tiempo. Después las recuperó, con su color natural. Sin embargo, el nombre se quedó: Cardenal.

En una ocasión otro preso encontró al pajarito en el patio con el pico abierto. Hacía mucho calor, tenía sed. Lo tomó y se lo dio a Gerardo. Él lo ocultó dentro de su gorra para entrarlo sin que lo vieran. Por supuesto, se dieron cuenta de que algo extraño tenía en la cabeza. “¿Qué tienes debajo de la gorra?”, y él dijo: “Nada”. Cardenal también respondió piando como loco. “No me digas que lo estás entrenando para llevarle mensajes a Fidel”, reaccionó uno de los guardias riéndose.

La historia no terminó todavía. Gerardo se lo llevó a su celda y le preparó un lugar para que se quedara allí. Jugaba con él, se le posaba en el hombro, en la cabeza. Cuando Gerardo estaba escribiendo, venía a entretenerlo y el cubano le daba una palmadita cariñosa, para que lo dejara tranquilo. Entonces Cardenal se escurría por la espalda hasta donde la mano amiga no podía alcanzarlo. A veces se acurrucaba en el cuello de la camisa del preso y allí se dormía. O picoteaba la oreja del amigo y cuando Gerardo sacudía la cabeza, Cardenal se mudaba a la otra oreja.

En una ocasión en que Gerardo había soltado a Cardenal, este voló hasta el comedor y aterrizó en el plato de un preso grande y fuerte que estaba comiendo un pedazo de pollo. El preso agarró al pajarito en sus manos para apretarlo y alguien le gritó: “No lo mates. Es de Cuba”. El grito lo tomó desprevenido. El hombre soltó a Cardenal y preguntó asombrado: “¿Y quién coño es Cuba?”

Gerardo en realidad estaba muy preocupado. A cierto guardia no le hacía ninguna gracia el pajarito. Durante una inspección, el guardia había obligado al preso a soltar a Cardenal y cerrar la puerta después. El pajarito regresó luego estropeado. Gerardo lo dejó unos días más en su celda para que se recuperara. Y en eso hubo un lockdown (incomunicación aplicada a todos los prisioneros) y siempre que hay lockdown hay registros.

Cuando Gerardo escuchó que estaban registrando por espacio que queda entre el piso y la puerta, lo empujó hacia afuera. Cardenal salió volando, dentro del pabellón donde está la celda de Gerardo. Al llegar el guardia, vio la caja donde vivía Cardenal. Gerardo le dijo que ahí vivía su amigo, por voluntad propia: “El problema es que yo lo saco para afuera, pero el pajarito vuelve; yo no tengo la culpa”. “Mira si te voy a creer que el pajarito va a volver”, le contestó el guardia, que hace el ademán de irse como diciendo: “estás loco”. Gerardo silbó dentro de su celda y el guardia se quedó frío viendo como regresaba el animalito. Sin equivocarse, Cardenal
identificó el lugar de su amigo en la enorme galería de celdas del primer y segundo piso, todas exactamente iguales.

Cardenal llegó a la celda de Gerardo. Miró por la rendija, pero no pudo entrar (esto sucede durante lockdown). Allí se quedó quieto hasta que el mismo Gerardo, conmovido, abrió la ventanilla por donde meten la comida y Cardenal entró. Unos días después hubo otro registro. Cuando los guardias llegaron a la celda de Gerardo éste les dijo que tenía un pajarito, para que no se fueran a asustar si les volaba encima. Le dijeron que tenía que soltarlo, pero como ninguno de ellos lo podía agarrar, llevaron a Gerardo hasta la puerta del pabellón para que el mismo lo soltara. Como estaban en lockdown, Gerardo y el pajarito salieron por el pasillo escoltados por los guardias. Todos los presos los vieron a través de la rendija de sus celdas, y comenzaron a gritar: “Se llevan a Cuba y al pajarito al hueco” y comenzaron a golpear las puertas en protesta. El guardia gritó: “¡Cálmense! No lo llevo al hueco; solo vamos a dejar libre al pájaro.”

Esa fue la última vez que Gerardo vio a Cardenal. El lockdonw duró un mes sin que el pabellón se abriera. El cubano no pudo salir y Cardenal no pudo entrar. El pajarito había estado dentro de aquella dura prisión de alta seguridad desde el cumpleaños de Gerardo, el 4 de junio hasta el 16 de julio, un día después del aniversario de bodas Gerardo y Adriana.

Y colorín colorado este cuento (que no es cuento) se ha acabado.

(Alicia escribió esta historia de memoria dos horas después de escuchársela a Gerardo en una visita que ella le hiciera a la cárcel de máxima seguridad de Victorville, California. Él después revisó y corrigió el texto, que Alicia quiere entregar a la Casa Editora Abril para que sea publicado para los niños.)

(Gerardo cumple una condena de dos cadenas perpetuas más 15 años, por cargos que no fueron probados durante un jucio sumamenteprejuiciado en Miami.)

Gerardo Hernández Nordelo nació en Ciudad de La Habana el 4 de junio de 1965, el tercer hijo del matrimonio de Gerardo Hernández Martí y Carmen Nordelo Tejera, ambos fallecidos. Se graduó en 1989 en el Instituto Superior de Relaciones Internacionales (ISRI) “Raúl Roa García”. Un año antes, en 1988, contrajo matrimonio con su actual esposa, Adriana Pérez O’Connor. Es caricaturista y artista gráfico, trabajos que realizó en Cuba y Estados Unidos. A mediados de los años noventa, cumplió misiones en Estados Unidos dirigidas a prevenir a Cuba de acciones terroristas, planificadas y ejecutadas por organizaciones contrarrevolucionarias radicadas en Miami. El 12 de septiembre de 1998 fue arrestado junto a cuatro compañeros, que sufrieron como él un juicio plagado de irregularidades y prejuicios en Miami. Lo condenaron, sin evidencias, a dos cadenas perpetuas más 15 años que cumple en la prisión de alta seguridad de Victorville, California.

Publicado por Cubadebate.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Sides gear up for fight over U.S. ban on travel to Cuba

Wide support for repeal is countered by demand for political reforms

By Mary Beth Sheridan
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 19, 2009

A battle over Cuba policy is escalating in Congress, with proponents saying they have their best chance in years of repealing the ban on U.S. tourist travel to the island.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee has scheduled a hearing Thursday to galvanize support for scrapping the ban as opponents rally to block any changes. Proponents have lined up a powerful and diverse roster of supporters, including U.S. farmers, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and Cuban American veterans of the Bay of Pigs and the Iraq war. The travel site Orbitz has collected over 100,000 signatures on a petition to eliminate the ban.

The congressional maneuvering comes as the Obama administration makes small-scale efforts to engage the Cuban government. President Obama in April removed limits on Americans' visits to relatives on the island and allowed U.S. telecommunications companies to operate more freely there. But Obama has insisted that Cuban democratic reforms precede normalized relations.

A report issued Wednesday by Human Rights Watch said there had been little change in Cuba's repressive policies since Fidel Castro relinquished power to his brother Raul three years ago, with scores of Cubans detained as political prisoners in that period.

Travel to Cuba by Americans was effectively banned in 1963. In 1977, the Carter administration eliminated most travel restrictions, but many were reimposed by subsequent administrations. A growing number of lawmakers have argued in recent years that the sanctions have not been successful. But President George W. Bush threatened to veto bills softening the sanctions and tightened travel regulations.

In recent months, a bill ending the travel ban sponsored by Reps. Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) has picked up 178 co-sponsors -- approaching the 218 votes needed for passage. With Democrats controlling the White House and holing a significant majority in Congress, proponents say they think their moment has come.

"There's a better chance of passage than ever before," said Rep. Howard L. Berman (D-Calif.), chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee.

But supporters of the ban have fought back and say they think they can block the bill. Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-Fla.) sent a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi this month signed by 53 Democrats opposing any loosening of sanctions.

"Cuba has not even come close to warranting a change in their relationship with the United States," the congresswoman said. Her letter said loosening sanctions "would send a devastating message to Cuba's opposition movement and legitimize an ailing dictatorship."

Worried about the split in the Democratic caucus, some lawmakers are now looking to a bipartisan bill being drafted by Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin C. Peterson (D-Minn.) and others that could pick up extra votes by both abolishing the travel restrictions and reducing barriers for U.S. farm exports to Cuba. No action on the travel ban is expected before early next year.

While the House could muster the votes to lift the travel ban, it faces a tougher fight in the Senate, where a prominent Cuban American -- Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) -- has indicated that he will try to block it.

Pro-embargo groups have dramatically shifted their campaign contributions to Democrats since the party took control of Congress in 2006, according to a study released this week by Public Campaign, a nonprofit group. For example, the U.S.-Cuba Democracy Political Action Committee gave 76 percent of its donations to Democrats in the past year, the study found. During the 2004 election cycle, the anti-Castro group overwhelmingly supported Republicans, according to the study.

Overall, the study found that embargo supporters have contributed more than $10 million to federal candidates since the 2004 election cycle. The group also identified more than a dozen lawmakers who changed their position on easing the embargo within months of receiving money from anti-Castro groups.

Mauricio Claver-Carone, a board member of the U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC, said such contributions are "a laughable fraction" of the resources of agricultural and business groups who are pushing to relax sanctions.

Staff writer Dan Eggen contributed to this report.

Hearing on "Is it Time to Lift the Ban on Travel to Cuba?"

United States House of Representatives
Committee on Foreign Affairs

Full Committee

Howard L. Berman (D-CA), Chairman

Is it Time to Lift the Ban on Travel to Cuba?

You are respectfully requested to attend the following open hearing of the Full Committee to be held in Room 2172 of the Rayburn House Office Building.

Date Thursday, November 19, 2009
Time 10:00 AM

Location Room 2172 of the Rayburn House Office Building

Witnesses

General Barry R. McCaffrey, USA, Retired
President
BR McCaffrey Associates, LLC

Ambassador James Cason
Former Chief of Mission
U.S. Interests Section, Havana, Cuba

*** Ms. Miriam Leiva
Independent Journalist and Founder, Ladies in White

Mr. Ignacio Sosa
Executive Board Member
Friends of Caritas Cubana

** Ms. Berta Antunez
Sister of Former Political Prisoner Jorge Luis Garcia Perez ("Antunez")
Pro-democracy Activist

*** Mr. Philip Peters
Vice President
Lexington Institute

Note
**Witness affiliation has been corrected.
***Witnesses have been added.

All content maintained by the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs | 2170 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC 20515 | (202) 225-5021

Statement of Cuba's government on Human Rights Watch report

Following is a statement from the Cuban diplomatic mission in Washington on the Human Rights Watch report. The Miami Herald translated from the Spanish original:

Cuba does not recognize the legality nor the moral authority of HRW as an organization that defends human rights.

HRW is an organization that analyzes this issue from a discriminatory, selective and above all politicized perspective. Its evaluation of human rights in Cuba is illegitimate and illegal.

The history of HRW with respect to Cuba has always been marked by the distortion of the Cuban reality, and obedient to the mercenary service of the anti-Cuban sectors.

The presentation of this report in a news conference precisely today has no other intention than to divert the public's attention from the hearing by the international relations committee of Congress on the elimination of restrictions on Americans' travel to Cuba. That audience will be tomorrow. No doubt, a strange coincidence!

Once again, José Miguel Vivanco and his organization lend themselves to the anti-Cuban media show. HRW's attitude is cynical and manipulative, when it says that it ``supports the lifting of the embargo'' (but) uses the same arguments that the U.S. government uses to maintain and justify the blockade and attack Cuba.

HRW however did not comment on the recent report, `Public Campaign,'' on the actions of the anti-Cuban PAC US-Cuba Democracy . . . which shows that money rules politics as well as the the positions toward Cuba of some lawmakers in this country. . . . Could it be that HRW also receives some of these ``donations?''

Cuba reiterates its unwavering willingness to hold a frank and open dialogue on any topic, on the basis of mutual respect. However, we do not tolerate any effort to trample and manipulate our right to free self-determination and sovereign equality.

Alberto Gonzalez

Press Officer

Cuban Interests Section. Washington


Source: The Miami Herald

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JG: Human Rights Watch has not been appointed by anyone or any world organization to judge other governments. There are many NGO's in the United States whose sole purpose is to provide their hierarchy with well paid jobs and to send to the "gullible sheep" weekly letters or emails asking for "contributions". They are just another very lucrative business in Yankeeland.

Industriales team for the 49th National Baseball Series of Cuba


Lanzadores (Pitchers):

49 Ián Rendón De La Nuez
74 Arleys Sánchez De La Cruz
43 Odrisamer Despaigne Orue
28 Frank Monthiet Herrera
57 Alexander Carrera Álvarez
04 Joan Socarrás Maya
27 Yohandri Portal Carrasco
72 Roberto Rodríguez Guerra
59 Brian Ruiz Platt
38 Frank Javier Menéndez
94 Rodolfo Fernández Parrilla
68 Jorge Félix Castillo Martínez
32 Armando Rivero Luzardo
98 Carlos A. Martínez Pimarino
69 Ernesto Bazo Lledo

Jugadores de posición (Position Players)

23 Jokel Gil Acosta
58 Lisban Correa Sánchez
45 Frank C. Morejón Reyes
30 Ricardo Fabián Gómez
55 Alexander Malleta Kerr
12 Raiko Olivares Ríos
10 Rudy Reyes Erice
18 Leugím Barroso Hernández
17 Juan Carlos Torriente Núñez
13 Roberto Carlos Ramírez
24 Yasmani Tomás Bacallao
56 Carlos A. Tabares Padilla
14 Yohandry Urgellés Cobas
63 Serguei Pérez Guillén
44 Eliut Torres Ramírez
25 Irait Chirino Arroyo
15 Stayler Hernández Apesteñiz

Cuerpo de Dirección (Directing Staff)

11 Germán Mesa Fresneda (Manager)
08 Juan Bravo Prescot
10 Omar Linares Izquierdo
23 Julio Romero Socarrás
54 Roberto Ramos Pérez
75 Carlos González Martínez
Enrique Pacheco Ruiz Cb
Dr. José A. Álvarez Martínez
Ramón Cabrera Rodríguez
Pablo Gutiérrez Véliz
Lister Rojas Martínez
Arlys Zamora

U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, faithfull servant of Miami's Cuban Mafia

Cuba cites nonpartisan report in attacking Menendez stance on embargo

By The Jersey Journal

November 17, 2009, 7:20PM

Cuban officials attack U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez for receiving the most campaign contributions from a PAC that supports the embargo against the island's government.

Since the report by the nonpartisan group Public Campaign came out on Monday, bloggers and others have been on the Internet with the report's theme. It came to the conclusion that members of Congress who had supported reducing sanctions against Cuba instead backed the status quo, earning them nearly $11 million in contributions since 2004 from the anti-Castro U.S.-Cuba Democracy Political Action Committee and its donors.

The Cuban Interests Section in Washington, which is as tantamount to calling it an embassy, attacked the notion that money decides U.S. policy. A spokesman for the Cuban government specifically targeted U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez.

"It is interesting and scandalous that Sen. Bob Menéndez [D-N.J.] was one of those who received the most money for maintaining this type of policy against Cuba," Cuba spokesman Alberto Gonzalez wrote. "Evidently, one must question whether his interests respond not to the Cuban community but to an issue of money ... "

------

JG: When it comes to the Cuba issue, capitalist politicians in the U.S. Congress vote based on which special interest gives them the most money, which they euphemistically call "contributions". They are money mercenaries of the worst kind. Menendez has always been a poster boy for them.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who contributes to the U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC?

Open Secrets has published a list of contributors to the most vociferous anti-Cuba PAC in the United States, The U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC, headquartered in Miami, Florida.

It includes Name, City, State, Zip Code, Occupation, Date and Amount Contributed.

Click here to go to the first page of the report.

RECAP: how the Miami Mafia buys the votes of corrupt U.S. politicians

To preserve the US embargo of Cuba, the US-Cuba Democracy PAC and the network of hard-line Cuban American donors:

• Made donations of 10,777,692 US dollars since the 2004 election cycle

• Gave to at least 337 federal candidates through the PAC, 53% of whom received reinforcing individual donations from hard-line Cuban-American donors

• Vastly increased Cuban-Americans’ donations to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) even as the DSCC has underperformed in overall fundraising compared to a similar point in the 2007-2008 election cycle

• Provided significant resources to their champions (with contributions aggregating as high as 366,964 USD), who include fifteen top recipients. Some of these champions recycle contributions to, or raise money for, other members, thereby building their power base to help stop Cuba policy changes

• Targeted donations to recipients whose voting record shows a shift in their position on Cuba policy, including seven who took money and switched their positions on dates that were in close proximity to one another

• Provided, through the PAC and the network of donors, more than 850,000 USD to 53 members of Congress who recently publicized their opposition to changes in the policy just weeks before a key committee hearing on travel to Cuba.

Source: Merco Press

-----

JG: U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC, on how they buy votes in the U.S. Congress: "We do it the old fashioned way: We pay for them."

U.S.A has the best politicians (Republicans and Democrats) money can buy.

The last bullet is the most important one: the 53 politicians who wrote the famous letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, (where are the names?) got a better deal for their votes than the Gang of 66 did in 2007. $850,000.00 vs. $270,500.00.

If any reader of Cuba Journal has the names of the Infamous 53, please send it to my blog. I have not been successful so far in finding the 53 names.

Lift the ban --- let Americans visit Cuba

BY RICHARD G. LUGAR and HOWARD L. BERMAN
www.lugar.senate.gov

U.S. law lets American citizens travel to any country on earth, friend or foe -- with one exception: Cuba. It's time for us to scrap this anachronistic ban, imposed during one of the chilliest periods of the Cold War.

Legislation to abolish restrictions on travel to Cuba has been introduced in both chambers of Congress. And on Thursday the House Foreign Affairs Committee will hold a hearing examining the rationale for the travel ban.

This ban has prevented contact between Cubans and ordinary Americans, who serve as ambassadors for the democratic values we hold dear. Such contact would help break Havana's chokehold on information about the outside world. And it would contribute to improving the image of the United States, particularly in Latin America, where the U.S. embargo on Cuba remains a centerpiece of anti-Washington grievances.

While opponents argue that repealing the travel ban would indicate approval of the Cuban human rights record, many human rights organizations -- among them Freedom House and Human Rights Watch -- have called for abolishing travel restrictions.

There is no doubt that Raúl Castro's government continues to ban most political activity not controlled by the Cuban Communist Party. Opposition parties are illegal, virtually all media remain state controlled, and Cuba has the highest number of political prisoners of any country in the Americas. But isolation from outside visitors only strengthens the Castro regime.

U.S. travelers' dollars, furthermore, could aid the underground economy and the small self-employed sector permitted by the state, strengthening an important foundation of independence from Cuba's authoritarian system.

Travel ban defenders view sanctions as leverage over the Cuban government and their abolition as a concession. But over the last five decades, it has become clear that isolation will not induce the Castro regime to take steps toward political liberalization. Conditionality is not leverage in this case.

Our current approach has made any policy changes contingent on Havana, not U.S. interests, and it has left Washington an isolated bystander, watching events on the island unfold at a distance.

Finally, while travel restrictions are contrary to our foreign policy interests, they also impede the right of Americans to freedom of speech, association and to travel. Sometimes a travel ban may be necessary, but nothing about the Cuba situation today justifies such an infringement on our basic liberties.

The Obama administration has already made a move in the right direction by lifting restrictions on travel and remittances for Cuban-Americans and opening the way for greater telecommunications links with the island.

It is now time for the Congress to take the next step for all Americans.

Sen. Richard G. Lugar, R-Ind., is the ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Rep. Howard L. Berman, D-Calif., is chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Source: The Miami Herald

Monday, November 16, 2009

The "Democracy" which the gusanos practice in Miami


General Fulgencio Batista taught the Miami Gusanos what type of "democracy" to practice. It is a political system based on violence toward those who have a different opinion from the one you violently push on others. They start with verbal violence, and from there they graduate to actual physical violence.

In this picture, published in an AFP report, it shows two Miami fascists trying to beat up a person whom they dislike.

The report also talks about how the anti-Cuba gusanos are shifting their "funding" to try to bribe the Democrats, now that their party controls the White House and the two houses of the U.S. Congress. It will be an easy task for them. When it comes to "cash contributions" the Democrats are more corrupt than the Republicans. The gusanos will make sure that they will send a large "contribution" to U.S. Representative Debbie 'Dubbya' Wasserman-Schultz, the capo di tutti capi of the Cuban Mafia in South Florida.