A Special Cubaninsider Note

Why it started; Why it ends
 The Lion In Winter has died, age 90. 
     I started Cubaninsider about five years ago and this is about its 600th essay, with about 550 still posted and about 50 deleted for being totally out-dated. No one else has ever written or influenced a word on it and I have never made a penny off it because I think ads would distract from the photos, which I deem important, and I would never take a penny from a propaganda-lobbyist to influence my content.
       According to Alexa Rank, the top Online bean-counter, Cubaninsider has received as many as 7,005 pageviews in a single day and exceeded in excess of 50,000 pageviews in some months. It is strictly a one-trick-pony operation and I am told it gets more pageviews than some Cuban-related blogs that have more than 25 paid employees and contributors, including the extremely well-funded and fiercely anti-Castro propaganda rag Capital Hill Cubans run by Mauricio Claver-Carone, whom I consider the most dangerous individual appointed so far to President-elect Donald Trump's Transition Team. 
       Two things in all these essays that I have yet to explain are: {1} Why I started this blog; and {2} Why one of the everlasting shocks of my life came in 2004 when a 21-year-old Cuban female soldier and an also still-living Cuban media executive picked me up at the Victoria Hotel in Havana and drove me to meet Fidel Castro at his home. In the essay to be posted tomorrow -- Monday, Nov. 28, 2016 -- I will explain #1; then in the following essay that will be posted Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2016  I will explain #2. After that, because of what happened at 10:29 P. M. on Nov. 25-2016, I will cease publishing Cubaninsider for good...unless the special lady who persuaded me to start it persuades me to continue it, which I don't think she will have the heart to do.
And lastly:
           This photo, I believe, explains why Fidel Castro's legacy will always say even more about the United States than it says about Cuba. The image is courtesy of CBS TV-Miami and it depicts a 44-minute, 21-second news conference that took place while a massive and loud celebratory demonstration heralding Fidel Castro's death was taking place outside in Miami's Little Havana section. Neither the news conference nor the wild demonstrations surprised anyone. Years ago, networks such as CNN had bought parking space near the famed Versailles Restaurant in anticipation of Castro's inevitable death. 
      The above news conference featured four visceral Cuban-American members of Congress from the Miami area although a fifth, Senator Marco Rubio, was elsewhere apparently holding his own news and celebratory event. On the left above is Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart; he actually resigned his safe seat in Congress to apparently create and expand other even more visceral anti-Castro endeavors. Second from the left is Congressman Carlos Curbelo. Standing before the microphones is Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who began Miami's anti-Castro path to the U. S. Congress way back in 1989 when Jeb Bush was her Campaign Manager on the way to getting permission to be Florida's two-term Governor. On the right is Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, Lincoln's younger brother. The Diaz-Balart brothers' anti-Castro zealotry comes naturally; their father Rafael was a key Minister in the Batista dictatorship before fleeing the Cuban Revolution in January of 1959 and becoming one of the all-time richest and most powerful anti-Castro zealots on U. S. soil. Ros-Lehtinen's family-oriented anti-Castro passion direct from Havana-to-Miami is just as strong as that of the Diaz-Balarts. The quartet never has to explain why only anti-Castro zealots can get elected to Congress from Miami even though the majority of Cuban-Americans in Miami are moderates who prefer President Obama's sane and peaceful overtures toward Cuba and desire an end to the embargo, which has been the Batistiano's congressionally mandated Crown Jewel since 1962...a Crown Jewel unanimously condemned by all the nations of the world via a 191-to-0 UN vote. 
        I watched this news conference online via CBS TV-Miami. Each of the quartet took turns, first in English and then in Spanish, excoriating Fidel Castro while seeming to imply that the Batista-Mafia dictatorship was as sweet and kind to the Cuban people as a Mother Teresa government might have been. Ros-Lehtinen called Fidel "a sadistic murderer" apparently to distinguish him from the Batista-Mafia leaders he chased to Miami. Actually, the sadistic murderer label during Ros-Lehtinen's long rant was one of her milder depictions of Fidel. It reminded some, I assume, of the Jim DeFede article, when he was the top columnist at the Miami Herald, that excoriated Ros-Lehtinen and the Diaz-Balart brothers for their support of famed and self-avowed terrorists such as the infamous Luis Posada Carriles. DeFede's outrage concerned how Ros-Lehtinen and the Diaz-Balarts had used their congressional and other power to get Posada and 3 others out of a Latin American prison to safe havens in Miami. If you take time to dial up that article, you'll note that DeFede asked Ros-Lehtinen to comment on his disclosures and she refused. But she doesn't miss chances to use the media to vent her morbid, slanted excoriations of Castro.
       Each of the above quartet seemed to conveniently confuse Fidel with Batista, simply because they can. For example, Mario Diaz-Balart raved about Fidel's "terrorism and narco-trafficking." Ummm, interesting. History proves -- with actual photographic and written documentations -- that the prime reasons the Cuban Revolution was spawned by Celia Sanchez and Fidel Castro in 1953 were the murders of Cuban children apparently to serve as warnings to Cubans not to resist the Batista-Mafia rule that created mass poverty and starvation among everyday Cubans while the Batistianos, Mafiosi and U. S. business interests were robbing the island blind, with the Mafia engaged in wholesale gambling, drug and prostitution rackets. As for terrorism, Miami stalwarts such as the still-living Posada Carriles and the late Orlando Bosch not only bragged about decades of extreme terrorist acts against Fidel's Cuba but are tied by Latin American history and declassified U. S. documents to such horrendous acts as the bombing of the child-laden Cubana Flight 455 civilian plane. When Miami's top Cuban-American newsman, Emilio Milian, complained on the air against such terrorism against innocent Cubans, Emilio was car-bombed. {You might want to Google "Emilio Milian" and "Cubana Flight 455" and "Jim DeFede's Anti-Terror Article" because, for sure, they are not going to be mentioned by the mainstream U. S. media}. While Milian got car-bombed, DeFede only got fired although the last I saw him he was working at CBS10 in Miami; and yes, I exchanged emails with Jim to ascertain if he was still standing. I was, frankly, surprised...but pleased...he was.
      And lastly {I promise}. Assuming...I believe...that Americans are either totally stupid or totally scared, Ros-Lehtinen, speaking to the choir at the Nov. 25th news conference, turned and praised Lincoln Diaz-Balart for "writing" in the U. S. Congress some of the Cuban legislation that exists to this day and that was excoriated by that 191-to-0 vote in the United Nations. As noted, Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart's father Rafael was a key Minister in Batista's Cuban dictatorship before becoming with his four powerful sons a key anti-Fidel zealot in Miami. The U.S.-Cuban conundrum dictates that people like Lincoln Diaz-Balart "write" devastating Cuban directives that become "legal" and seemingly eternal U. S. laws that easily get sanctioned in Congress but then get a resounding 191-to-0 denunciation in the United Nations. {Unanimity doesn't impress Banana Republics but should, I think, impress a democracy}. WOW. Such laws and such things as the above news conference shame the U. S. and democracy, I believe, while also, in my opinion, unmercifully harming 11 million innocent Cubans on the island...all in the self-serving guise of harming the last six decades of Fidel Castro's 90-year life. And now that Fidel Castro has died of old age, I assume the adjustment in Miami and in Congress will be to maintain current very lucrative anti-Fidel laws and maybe craft some new ones to...you know...harm his legacy, the one that began at 10:29 P. M. on November 25th, 2016. WOW. Uh, did I already say that? If so, sorry. I was thinking about the kids aboard Cubana Flight 455.
Tomorrow I'll answer that #1 for you.
Yes, especially the United States.   


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