Tag Archives: Castro

Darkness At Noon In Cuba

Over half a century ago, Arthur Koestler wrote the famous novel, “Darkness At Noon” which depicts how those who created the Communist revolution in Russia based on noble aspirations eventually became the same cruel tyrants as those they had overthrown. Esteban Morales, a dedicated Cuban Communist, will undoubtedly wind up in prison for printing an article which appeared on his website that charged Cuban Communist leaders with the crimes of greed and corruption. He wrote, “it has become evident that there are people in government and state positions who are preparing a financial assault for when the revolution falls.” He charged they were preparing to quickly transfer government businesses to private interests–their own– if and when the current communist regime collapses. Rumors are circulating in Havana about corruption in use of government planes by government leaders who made considerable money for their use.

All revolutions eventually become the essence of what they wiped out. Many years ago there was a comic strip named, Pogo, in which one of the characters shouts, “we have met the enemy and he is us!” Cuban Communists imprison and torture dissidents just as Fidel Castro was beaten when captured by the Batista government. The Castro brothers are more alike what they wiped out then what they attempted to create.

Cuba–The Dream That Failed!

I recall watching on television in California as we witnessed Fidel Castro’s troops enter Havana and be greeted by cheering crowds. The dictatorship of Batista was not over and Cuba could finally enjoy the freedom its people longed to experience. Castro was not only warmly anticipated by Cubans, but by those throughout the world who wanted the end of brutality and repression by a government. No one would have dreamed in those heady days of liberation that fifty years hence, a Castro would still lead Cuba. No one would have dreamed that fifty years later Cubans would lack freedom of speech or that gays would be in prison. Now, there increasingly are reports of thousands of young Cubans fleeing to other nations in hope to experience a lift that entailed meaning. Ecuador last year received over 27,000 Cubans.

Professor Ricardo Matinelli bluntly stated the obvious about the quiet exodus of youth. “It’s a sign that the revolution has failed so they don’t want to talk about it.” Fidel is old and obstinate, Raul fears to upset his brother and stagnation rules in a Cuba where all too many earn $20 a month.

Cuba Will Not Surrender To Democracy!

Fifty years ago a dream was born and died in its infancy, the dream of a free and democratic Cuba in which ideas could be expressed with imprisonment or torture. Fidel Castro led an army whose goal was to end the bestial regime of the dictator Batista and its abuse of human rights. Fast forward fifty years and Fidel and his bother Raul are still in power, after all, if you believe in human rights doesn’t that mean the Castro brothers are supposed to rule indefinitely? The Cuban Communist government is under extensive pressure from human rights groups over the imprisonment of writers and dissident authors. On February 23, Orlando Zapata Tamayo died after a hunger strike in his strike to further freedom in his land. The only response from Raul Castro was his communist government will not yield to “blackmail.”

The Castro boys have forgotten everything that advocated before they obtained power. Raul ranted against western powers and made clear “we will never yield to the blackmail of any country or group of countries, no matter how powerful they may be.” Unfortunately, the power of freedom has long left the heart and soul of the Castro boys. All that remains is a poor imitation of the dictator, Batista.

Cuba–The Dream That Failed!

Fifty years ago, I sat glued to a television screen in January, 1959 watching the bearded heroes of Cuba swing joyously down the streets of liberated Havana and felt pride in the efforts of these young Cuban men and women who had driven out the hated dictator, Batista. Today, the dream of a free Cuba has long since died under the stifling control of the Castro brothers and all they represent of ancient rhetoric about freedom that exists in their minds, but not in the reality of the everyday lives of Cubans. Hundreds of dissident voices are locked in jails and gays and lesbians are persecuted by a regime that ostensibly represented the new world of freedom. Each week, the Dames de Blanco (Ladies in White) march together to St.Rita’s church in protest in protest against the imprisonment of their husbands who dared to speak out for freedom in Cuba.

The “Revolution” has brought excellent free medical care to the population and its schools produce excellent graduates in many areas such as medicine. People have sufficient, if boring, food and there are no outward differences between people as exist in capitalist nations. Hopefully, the Obama administration will restore relations with Cuba and open the door for more freedom and a better standard of living. Fortunately, the old anti-Castro crowd in Miami is now old and their children may be more receptive to dialogue.

Obama Urges A Campaign Of Change

Fesh from weekend victories in primaries around the nation, Barack Obama is beginning to make slight shifts in his campaign in order to address the more important strategy of dealing with the threat of Senator John McCain. Obama has begun to zero in on what he terms are Hillary Clinton’s inability to “break out of the politics of the last 15 years.” In particular, he pounded away at failed policies in Latin America. Obama argued it is not sufficient to continue expressing the mantra of “I oppose Castro or I oppose Chavez.” He pledged to visit Latin America and directly challenge Chavez policies and to work with people of the region in developing new programs.

Hillary Clinton understands as well as any insightful political leader our policies towards Cuba make no sense, but her ongoing fear to cause controversy block action on her part to urge new policies in Latin America. Barack Obama is willing to take the risk of alienating some Cuban voters in Florida in order to create new Latin American directions. He is willing to blast President Kibaki’s vote fraud in Kenya which Senator Clinton will not address.

A 21st century world requires new thinking. Barack Obama understands the winds of change are sweeping Africa and Latin America and is wlling to meet with leaders in those areas of the world to explore new directions. He is willing to meet with Iranian leaders rather than play it cool and conservative knowing full well such audacity risks angering some voters in America. Senator Clinton is intelligent but she fails to realize this century requires bold new thinking. Senator Barack Obama has demonstrated over the past few days his ability to gain support from all sectors of the United States.

Hopefully today’s votes in primaries will provide additioinal evidence that Obama’s bold new vision is one the American people support. The times they are a’changing and a new leader will move this nation into a world in which diversity of thinking is embraced.