No Choice for Cuba Now

A Need to Shed U. S. Ties
A Key Cuban Leader Agrees
       The Tweet depicted above was sent around the world at 6:02 A. M. on Nov. 28-2016. Although it was penned by an American rogue, it instantly garnered international headlines because the rogue is Donald Trump, the President-elect of the United States of America. A little later in this essay I'll tell you how an important lady in Havana...the island's top Minister regarding U. S. affairs, in fact...reacted to Trump's insanely indecent but very serious threat. He is about to become, after all, the leader of the Free World and the world's most powerful Commander-in-Chief. But right now, as a democracy-loving American, I will make this suggestion to that lady in Havana: "Your nation is supported by a 191-to-0 vote in the United Nations with even the United States, as long as the decent President Obama is in the White House, refusing to sign on to what ALL the nations of the world consider America's Cuban policy -- at least the major part left uncorrected by Obama -- to be obscenely cruel and criminal, and directed by a Batistiano minority headquartered in Miami and the U. S. Congress. And starting on Jan. 20-2017 also headquartered in the White House. Therefore, despite the advances Obama has provided Cubans and Americans, you and Cuba have no choice now: You should cut all diplomatic ties with the United States and concentrate your time on dealing and negotiating with any and all of the rest of the nations in the world, the nations not dictated to by a handful of what now are second generational rich and powerful Batistiano  thugs. The nations of the world recently voted 191-to-0 to support  your Cuba and oppose America's Batistiano policy directed at CubaAmericans have been taught by the U. S. media and by unchecked Batistiano propagandists to ignore the unanimity of that vote, but you shouldn't ignore it. The Trump threats are real; he just named to his Transition Team the top anti-Cuban zealot and fund-raising lobbyist in Washington. You are probably the best diplomatic negotiator in the Western Hemisphere, but negotiating with the Trump crowd would be a waste of time. Negotiating with the rest of the world, which supports Cuba, would not be wasting your time.
      Almost the same instant that Donald Trump's Tweet was flashing around the world, so was this photo taken in Havana by Enrique De La Osa for Reuters. I've always believed that a photo is worth a thousand words...sometimes a million, it seems. This one shows two Cubans, who have lived all their lives on the island with Fidel Castro, sincerely mourning the 90-year-old revolutionary's death at 10:29 P. M. Friday, Nov. 25th. After media clowns Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski yesterday morning paraded an array of extremely biased Batistiano propagandists on MSNBC, they posted the extremely decent and intelligent quotes on the screen from American President Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau...and then laughed at and mocked those quotes. Propagandized Americans, if they happened to have been watching, probably took it in stride because that is what they have come to expect from the U. S. media -- propaganda masquerading as news. Instead of seeking "news" from America's propaganda networks, Americans, I think, should switch to decent programming such as, say, the Smithsonian Channel that fills its airways with brilliantly produced documentaries that are both topical and historic. If Joe and Mika on MSNBC put the above photo on their screen, they would probably laugh at it and joke about it just as did with the decent and sincere quotes from President Obama and Prime Minister Trudeau.
     The U. S. media is neither decent enough nor competent enough to have earned the right to comment on this photo taken by Adalberto Roque for Agence France-Presse and distributed worldwide by Getty Images. It depicts Cuba in its 9-day mourning period for Fidel Castro. Cubans and the Cuban government itself have a right, should they so choose, to mourn the historic event in manners they choose.
       This Miami Herald photo this week also says a thousand words -- or maybe a million! In the middle...that's Havana-born Ileana Ros-Lehtinen who has been entrenched in the U. S. Congress from Miami since 1989. Uh, do you detect the celebratory glow on her face because of the death of 90-year-old Fidel Castro. That's, uh, interesting because a once-great Miami Herald columnist, Jim DeFede, in his closing days at that Little Havana newspaper, excoriated Ros-Lehtinen and the two gentlemen she is with in the above photo for their incredible support of Miami's most famed and notorious anti-Castro terrorists -- including Miami's heralded anti-Castro citizen named Luis Posada Carriles. DeFede asked Ros-Lehtinen to comment on his excoriation, and she refused. But, as you well know, she is ubiquitous in rushing to microphones to depict Fidel Castro as the worst human that has ever lived while always, directly or by implication, touting the gracious kindness of the Batista-Mafia dictatorship he overthrew but only chased as far as Miami and the U. S. Congress. Ros-Lehtinen and the two gentlemen with her have extreme family ties dating back to the Batista rule in Havana and to the most hardline Cuban exiles in Miami. AND OF COURSE, they have extreme ties to the Bush dynasty. Ros-Lehtinen, for example, began the Little Havana parade to the U. S. Congress in 1989 when Jeb Bush was her Campaign Manager. Although she backs Trump's cruel assaults on Cuba...verbal now and perhaps physical later...she didn't vote for him. She wrote in the name "Jeb Bush," her mentor. And oh, yes! I mentioned the two gentlemen with Ros-Lehtinen. That's, uh, Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart on the left and his brother Mario on the right. Both have been elected from Little Havana to the U. S. Congress. They are the sons of the late Rafael Diaz-Balart who was a rich and powerful Minister in Batista's Cuban dictatorship and, like his sons, a rich and powerful anti-Castro zealot in Miami's Little Havana. At a news conference Nov. 26 celebrating Fidel Castro's death, Ros-Lehtinen at one point turned and congratulated Lincoln Diaz-Balart for writing in the U. S. Congress some of the most stringent anti-Cuba/pro-Batistiano legislation that to this day remains "legal" laws of the United States. She was apparently referencing the purely anti-democracy Helms-Burton Bill that the rest of the world opposes 191-to-0 but Americans are supposed to be too scared or to ignorant to oppose. Of course, all this week you will see Ros-Lehtinen and the Diaz-Balart brothers ranting and raving about the evils of Fidel Castro across the U. S. networks, networks that have neither the guts nor the integrity to inform their viewers why Ros-Lehtinen and the Diaz-Balart brothers are so biased against Fidel Castro while obviously having such fond memories of the Batista-Mafia dictatorship that roiled, robbed and ravaged Cuba from 1952 till the break of dawn on January 1, 1959. Hidden behind the protective wall of the U. S. media, are they roiling, robbing and ravaging America now?? A pertinent question; and one the media will ignore.
      In sharp contrast to the gutless Bush administration that preceded Obama's, and the gutless Trump administration that will soon succeed him, President Obama in the past 8 years has shown great respect and decency for 11 million innocent Cubans on the island and for the U. S. democracy. While Bush left office with an approval rating in the 20s and Trump will be very lucky to leave or be kicked out of office with a 5% approval rating, Mr. Omaha currently has an astonishing, for a two-term President, approval rating of 55%. One reason for that is his brave and decent Cuban policy that coincides with the 191-to-0 UN condemnation of the U. S. Cuban policy that Mr. Obama has tried so hard, against imposing odds -- a dysfunctional Congress and an incompetent media -- to correct. Study the image above, particularly the Obama quote: "Cuba does not need to fear a threat from the United States." He made that statement back in March when he became the first sitting U. S. President to visit the island since 1928. But he made that statement when he assumed that neither a Bush or a Trump would succeed him in the White House. So as November turns to December and January of 2016 is right around the corner, Cubans on the island now have every reason TO FEAR A THREAT FROM THE UNITED STATES. Because Mr. Obama is a great and decent man and should also be respected for being a great and decent President, I remain incensed that two typical network anchors -- Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough -- mocked and laughed at Mr. Obama and his office while displaying his official quote about the death of Fidel Castro on their MSNBC screen and right after so lavishly agreeing with the ultra-biased comments of the Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart, the visceral son of a former key Minister in the brutal Batista dictatorship. President Obama's official statement consisted of three long paragraphs that, without laughing or mocking him or his office, Americans should read in its entirety. Listed below are some of his key comments that show respect for the Cuban people and for America:
            IN PARAGRAPH ONE: "At this time of Fidel Castro's passing, we extend a hand of friendship to the Cuban people." 
           IN PARAGRAPH TWO: "During my presidency, we have worked hard to put the past behind us, pursuing a future in which the relationship between our two countries is defined not by our differences but by the many things that we share as neighbors and friends -- bonds of culture, commerce and common humanity." 
         IN PARAGRAPH THREE: "Today, we offer condolences to Fidel Castro's family, and our thoughts and prayers are with the Cuban people. The Cuban people must know that they have friends and partners in the United States of America." 
           As President Obama well knows, former Presidents like John Kennedy and former Cuban-American newsmen like Emilio Milian in Miami have been unmercifully targeted for saying decent things about Cuba, but less decent than the words and actions of Mr. Obama. One reason for those targetings is the fact that, since 1959, transplants from the ousted Batista dictatorship have so successfully cultivated their venom using the U. S. media as a very useful propaganda pipeline and conduit.
For example, on Nov. 28-2016 -- the first Monday morning after the death of Fidel Castro -- MSNBC co-anchors Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough spent much of their two-hour broadcast lavishing praise on the outlandishly slanted comments of a host of extremely biased Cuban-Americans such as Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart who was born when his father Rafael was a powerful Minister in Cuba's soon-to-be-ousted-and-chased-to-Miami Batista dictatorship. Then Mika and Joe followed up those outrageously biased on-air comments by posting on the screen President Obama's sane and decent comments. That's when Mika and Joe laughed at and mocked those words as well as President Obama and the office he holds. And in doing so, Mika and Joe were also laughing at and mocking decent Americans, decent Cubans, democracy, and the broadcasting industry. That morning, Mika and Joe were wearing expensive clothes similar to those shown above. THEY SHOULD HAVE BEEN WEARING THEIR CRAZY CLOWN OUTFITS.
      The 44-year-old Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, was in Madagascar {above} on the morning of Nov. 26-2016 when he was awakened and told about the death of Fidel Castro. Trudeau has been a friend of Fidel Castro all his life, first meeting him as an infant because Pierre Trudeau, Justin's father and former Prime Minister of Canada, was one of Fidel Castro's all-time greatest friends, almost on a par with Nelson Mandela, the South African civil rights icon, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez, the Colombian generally considered the all-time greatest Latin American writer/author and famed as the hater of fiendish U.S.-backed dictators such as Batista in Cuba, Trujillo in the Dominican Republic, Pinochet in Chile, etc. While in Madagascar, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau wrote and issued to the world an official statement about the death of Fidel Castro. The exact and complete words of that statement follow: 
                "It is with sorrow that I learned today of the death of Cuba's longest serving President. Fidel Castro was a larger than life leader and served his people for almost half a century. A legendary revolutionary and orator, Mr. Castro made significant improvements to the education and healthcare of his island nation.
        "While a controversial figure, both Mr. Castro's supporters and detractors recognized his tremendous dedication and love for the Cuban people who had a lasting affection for 'el Comandante.'
               "I know my father was very proud to call him a friend and I had the opportunity to meet Fidel when my father passed away. It was also a real honour to meet his sons and his brother Raul Castro on my recent visit to Cuba. On behalf of all Canadians, Sophie and I offer our deepest condolences to the family, friends and many, many supporters of Mr. Castro. We join the people of Cuba today in mourning the loss of this remarkable leader." 
             To repeat, those were the exact and complete words in Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's official statement about the death of Fidel Castro. Mika and Joe, right after posting President Obama's official words and then laughing and mocking them, also posted some of Mr. Trudeau's words...and also laughed and mocked them. WITHIN HOURS of releasing his official statement depicted above, Justin Trudeau received right-wing death threats warning him not to return to Cuba for any ceremonies related to Fidel Castro's death. The warnings were heeded and Mr. Trudeau's aides quickly announced that he would not do so. A biased or right-wing media contributes greatly to such threats and disruptions of the world order. The likes of Mika and Joe -- patriotic chest-pumpers -- don't think people like President Obama and Prime Minister Trudeau have the right to freely express opinions about a world landmark such as Fidel Castro, but they think Havana-born U. S. extremists like Lincoln Diaz-Balart should have all the airtime they request to vent their venomous, unchallenged views.
       This, by the way, is a photo of Justin Trudeau embracing Fidel Castro in 2000 in Montreal at the funeral of Pierre Trudeau, Justin's father and the former Prime Minister of Canada. Fidel was a pallbearer at Pierre's funeral. This week Justin, now the Prime Minister of Canada, has received death threats if he returns to Cuba for Fidel Castro's funeral. During the 9-day mourning period, there will be a funeral but Fidel's body was quickly cremated Saturday morning after his death late Friday night, Nov. 25, 2016. A few days before Fidel died, Justin was in Cuba but could not see him because Fidel's wife Dalia felt he was too ill. It is also believed that Justin Trudeau, because of the cremation, did not intend to return to Cuba.
      Remember the Donald Trump Tweet posted at the top of this essay, the tweet in which the President-elect threatened to quickly "terminate" President Obama's positive overtures to Cuba? Josefina Vidal remembers it. In the past 15 years as Cuba's Minister in charge of relations with the United States, it has been her responsibility to take note of such things and react to them. She has done so with absolute brilliance and, if that were not so, the viciously determined and Batistiano-powered Bush administration {that preceded Obama's decent administration} would have demolished Revolutionary Cuba's hard-earned sovereignty. Now Ms. Vidal has come to realize that the upcoming Batistiano-powered Trump administration is a replicate of past Bush administrations, only now, to quote Ms. Vidal, "There seems to be more of an urgency in Miami, Congress and soon the White House to reclaim Cuba." Just about the last straw for Ms. Vidal was that Nov. 28th "terminate" Tweet from Trump. Her reaction...study her expression above when she is irked or frustrated...was: "Does Trump mean he will terminate Obama's advances or does he mean he will terminate 11 million Cubans to make sure the old Miami Cubans reclaim Cuba before the last of them dies of old age?" Trump's use of the word "terminate" irked Ms. Vidal, as it should irk everyone.
       If you think Josefina Vidal has memorized every word of Donald Trump's Nov. 28th Tweet as President-elect, you might like to know that she has virtually memorized every word and gesture of Trump's pre-election speech back in October to the old Little Havana Cubans in Miami still very nostalgic about their Brigage 2506 attack on Cuba way back in April of 1961. That's why, in making "termination" promises to remaining Brigade 2506 veterans back in October, Trump stood before a huge Brigade 2506 banner.
       Now put Josefina Vidal's comment in perspective, the comment fueled by Trump's Nov. 28th "termination" Tweet that backed up his October "termination" speech to the surviving Brigade 2506 old-timers that still dominate the politics if not the majority opinions in Miami's Little Havana district. In case you have forgotten it already, here is Vidal's reaction, the one that counts the most right now in Cuba: "Does Trump mean he will terminate Obama's advances or does he mean he will terminate 11 million Cubans to make sure the old Miami Cubans reclaim Cuba before the last of them dies of old age." Trump will have about 4,000 nuclear weapons when he becomes Commander-in-Chief on Jan. 20, 2017. Just two of those weapons -- one landing south of Havana and the other north of Santiago de Cuba -- could "terminate" all 11.2 million Cubans on the island...if indeed that's what Trump meant. Josefina Vidal doesn't have any sophisticated weapons at her disposal. But she is a lot smarter than Trump...and a lot more decent than the current passel of Trump's Cuban advisers. With Trump's presidency on the horizon and visceral Miami Cubans dictating Cuban policy to both Congress and to the U. S. media, Vidal has just about concluded -- despite all the headway she brilliantly negotiated with Obama's team -- that she has no choice but to begin shedding all ties with the nearby United States of America and concentrate on the 191 nations that support Cuba, not the one that may want to "terminate" her very vulnerable but quite pugnacious island.
And by the way
    Alexa Rank is the top bean-counter of how many page-views significant blogs get each day, each month and all-time and it rates this one-trick-pony pretty highly. I was surprised to see that a Cubaninsider essay I posted back in August of 2013 has itself recently been getting over a thousand page-views a day. That essay is entitled "The Seven Best Books About Fidel Castro." So I googled it to ascertain why it was getting so many hits this week. The death of Fidel Castro is a primary reason, of course, but I also noticed it is still topical and I still stand by it. The seminal book depicted here -- "Guerrilla PrinceThe Untold Story of Fidel Castro" -- makes the Top Seven list of best Fidel Castro books. Geyer is the long-time conservative U. S. columnist who is not a big fan of Fidel's but her intense research was outstanding and beautifully chronicled and sequenced. Geyer, I think, best captures the all-important relationship between Fidel and his soulmate Celia Sanchez, including the fact that Celia was the "only one that could over-rule him" and the additional fact that Fidel spent three days contemplating suicide after Celia died of cancer on Jan. 11, 1980. But Geyer's "Guerrilla Prince" only makes #4 on that Top 7 list, so the top three must be seriously great, right? They are, and so are the bottom four. You can check them out by just Googling "The Seven Best Books About Fidel Castro."


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