Fidel Castro: 1926-2016

Still Loved, Still Hated!!
 With No In-betweens!!
    {Please note: The essay I promised to post today about why I started this blog and when I planned to end it has been postponed till Wednesday, November 30th. That's because I still need to get final permission from an individual so I can use the real name to substantiate one of the key points in that essay}
       To the delight of these airline workers, this American Airlines jet made history today -- Nov. 28, 2016 -- flying from Miami to Havana. It became the first commercial flight from the U. S. to Havana in over half-a-century. On August 31st JetBlue Airlines had made history with a flight to Santa Clara but today the floodgates opened to the Cuban capital of Havana. In coming weeks American, JetBlue, Delta, Spirit, Frontier, Southwest and other carriers will fly from U. S. cities like Miami, Orlando, Tampa, Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Newark and Houston to Havana and nine other Cuban cities. This is all part of President Obama's startling overtures aimed at normalizing relations with Cuba, already creating thousands of new jobs and new friendships in both the U. S. and Cuba. In Cuba, for example, 8,000 homes are now renovated and renting out rooms to tourists using U.S.-based Bed & Breakfast websites to secure the customers and the payments. In the U. S., thousands of workers -- like the American Airlines employees holding the Cuban flag above -- are ecstatic over the sane advances made by President Obama's Congress-defying Executive Orders. President-elect Donald Trump is vowing starting on Jan. 20-2017 to reverse all of Obama's sanity and decency regarding Cuba with Executive Orders of his own to keep cowardly promises he made to Cuban hardliners in Miami's Little Havana neighborhood. But most decent people, including most Cuban-Americans in Miami, favor Obama's overtures to Cuba, not Trump's threats. Also, if Trump carries through on his Cuban insanity and cruelty, he will anger thousands of U. S. businesses and workers, and not just airlines...not to mention disappoint every nation in the world based on the resounding 191-to-0 pro-Cuba/anti U. S. vote in the UN.  
        This morning -- Monday, November 28th, 2016 -- the Morning Joe show used its two hours on MSNBC to prove why it is nothing more and nothing less than a propaganda machine masquerading as broadcast journalism. Mika and Joe want the world to know that Fidel Castro was the worse killer-terrorist in the history of the world and that the Batista/Mafia/Diaz-Balart dictatorship Fidel Castro overthrew and chased back to U. S. soil was composed of the kindest, sweetest, most honorable people that have ever walked the face of the earth -- namely Havana first and then Little Havana in Miami since 1959. Mika and Joe  -- as boldfaced liars -- used a host of people such as the Havana-born Lincoln Diaz-Balart to prove their anti-Castro venom. Lincoln is the rich and visceral son of Rafael Diaz-Balart, a rich and powerful Minister in the Batista-Mafia dictatorship who became very quickly one of the richest and most visceral anti-Castro zealots who founded the very first anti-Castro paramilitary unit on U. S. soil. Lincoln, who resigned a safe seat in the U. S. Congress to concentrate more on anti-Castro work in Miami, has a rich and visceral anti-Castro brother, Mario, entrenched now in the U. S. Congress and another rich and visceral brother, Jose, who is entrenched as a key news anchor on NBC and MSNBC. The indelible Diaz-Balart connection to the criminal Batista-Mafia dictatorship in Cuba and since 1959 to the most indelible and controversial anti-Castro actions in Miami and in Congress is absolutely never mentioned by the mainstream U. S. media. But those extremely biased zealots can go on almost any television program in America and rant endlessly about Fidel Castro being the worst human being in history -- " a pathological liar and murderer" were among the milder accusations this morning. Mika and Joe agreed wholeheartedly, of course, with everything Lincoln Diaz-Balart said as they did with Carlos Curbelo, another Miami contribution to Congress, and other anti-Castro extremists. Finally Mika and Joe posted a decent quotation from President Obama about the death of Fidel Castro and then they mocked and laughed at the words of a very decent American president. They then posted on the screen a quotation by Justin Trudeau, the 44-year-old Prime Minister of Canada, who praised Castro's contributions to the Cuban people, namely rescuing them from the Batista, Mafia and Diaz-Balart dictatorship that Castro defeated only to chase the rich leaders to U. S. soil. Laughing and mocking President Obama and Prime Minister Trudeau while loudly praising the one-sided diatribes from the likes of  Lincoln Diaz-Balart this morning shows Mika and Joe to be outright propagandists.
        The typical anti-Castro zealot on CNN this morning -- Nov. 28th -- was Boris Sanchez. Like MSNBC, CNN will only hire Cuban-American broadcasters such as Sanchez who are violently anti-Castro and pro-Batistiano. So the Boris Sanchez diatribes against Fidel Castro this morning almost brought tears to the eyes of co-anchors Chris Cuomo and Alyson Camerota. The Boris Sanchez story about his granddad and dad in CASTRO'S CUBA would also have brought tears to my eyes...if I had believed it. Networks like MSNBC and CNN only hire anti-Castro/pro-Batistiano Cuban-Americans as so-called "broadcast journalists." There are no exceptions to that rule, but they have monopolies and they get away with, as the national approval ratings and respect for broadcast journalism today is at record lows in single digits. Propaganda from alleged journalists like Boris Sanchez or from alleged and unbiased Castro experts like the Diaz-Balarts is an insult to journalism, democracy and the American people. This morning's critique merely proved what I already knew. It reminded me that the last Cuban-American journalist, Emilio Milian in Miami who told the truth about Batistiano terrorism, got car-bombed. It reminded me that Marco Rubio from Miami was in the U. S. Senate still claiming that his parents escaped the tyranny of Castro for the freedom of Miami...till it was pointed out by the Washington Post and the St. Petersburg Times that Rubio's parents had escaped the tyranny of Batista's Cuba long before there was any prospect that Castro would chase the Batistianos, the Diaz-Balarts, etc. off the island -- all the way to Miami, essentially. A suggestion to Boris Sanchez: Instead of assuming your viewers are idiots, tell the truth or at least try to appear truthful.  
       Beginning precisely at 10:29 P. M. on November 25, 2016, the abiding love and the equally abiding hatred of Fidel Castro has flashed all around the world. In that light, I though Cubaninsider readers would like to know the history of the above photo, because even Fidel Castro winks made history, you know, after his history-making Cuban Revolution on Jan. 1-1959 defeated the combined might of the powerful Batista dictatorship that was backed by the even more powerful Mafia and by the ultra-powerful United States. The all-out efforts of those three precise enemies failed to either assassinate Castro or recapture his supposedly vulnerable island in the next half-century, adding immeasurably to both his fame and his impending legacy. Therefore, you need to know the history {confirmed by the BBC} behind the wink, such as the question that spawned it and the words he buttressed it with in his reply to the awed young lady:
           The fawning female fan
                   "Uh, Fi..., Mr. Castro, I do so much admire your life!" 
           Fidel winked and then backed it up with these words: 
                   "Honey, if you like my life you will love my legacy." 
      After the triumph of the Revolution, to the utter chagrin of the all-business/no frills revolutionary leader Celia Sanchez, Fidel was deluged with and by young fawning female fans, especially from the United States and Germany. It got so bad that Celia famously installed two big bodyguards to keep them at bad. Still, many...like the session above...got past the bodyguard buffers and Celia's ire to have collective and individuals sessions with Fidel. He prefers redheads; Dalia, his devoted wife from 1980 till he died last Friday night at age 90, was a redhead and they had five loyal sons together. Three other famed redheads historically linked to Fidel {because they allegedly bedded himwere famed Hollywood starlets -- Maureen O'Hara, Rita Hayworth, and Beverly Aadland. Publicists for O'Hara and Hayworth denied the rumors of sexual trysts with Fidel but when it came to Aadland there was simply too much proof to deny it, with even confirmations from Celia's outrage and Errol Flynn's admitted compliance,  connivance or conspiracy.
       In 1959 Errol Flynn was still a Hollywood superstar in his 50s but by then he was significantly worn down by his indulgent lifestyle, which included his then quite gorgeous 17-year-old redheaded girlfriend Beverly Aadland. Like most Hollywood superstars, Flynn was enchanted with Fidel Castro's astonishingly victorious and female-powered Cuban Revolution...especially the fact that so many young Cuban women -- such as the teenage Tete Puebla {who today is a General in the Cuban army} -- were among the most effective and famous guerrilla fighters while women like Celia Sanchez, Haydee Santamaria and Vilma Espin were not only prime fighters but also major decision-makers, with Celia actually having more decision-making power than Fidel because he was her biggest backer. Flynn in 1959 rushed to Cuba and made a movie -- "Cuban Rebel Girls." As you can see from the above poster, Flynn played the Fidel character and Aadland -- "Errol Flynn's 17-year-old protege in her first starring role" -- played the Celia role. And as you can see, because Celia was not a redhead, Aadland's hair had been dyed. She actually should have been playing Tete Puebla, the black Cuban female guerrilla fighter who began annihilating Batista soldiers by the time she was 15. In 1959 Puebla, like Aadland, was 17 but Flynn hadn't learned about Tete's heroics yet so he scripted Aadland's role to equate that of the famed Celia in the Revolutionary War.
       Errol Flynn's movie, for example, included this scene that shows Beverly Aadland as Celia Sanchez helping to bandage Fidel Castro's wounded leg with Errol Flynn playing Fidel. Once during the war Celia actually did bandage Fidel's leg after it was grazed by a bullet. Fidel called it "a scratch, not a wound." 
       Indeed, Fidel Castro simply could not turn down redheads, especially in the halcyon days of 1959 and 1960 when it seems every redhead wanted to bed him. In 1959 a beautiful German redhead named Marina Lorenz debarked in Havana from a ship captained by her father. They are shown above with Fidel. Later Marina had some very private sexual hook-ups with Fidel, documented by historians and BY HER
       Marina Lorenz was born in Bremen, Germany in August of 1939. She is now 77 and lives in the United States. As you can see in the above photo, she still has RED hair to honor her memories of Fidel Castro. But in 1960 -- as told in her book and recounted by Wikipedia and other sources -- Cuban exiles working for the CIA put immense pressure on her to kill Fidel. The CIA knew she was one of the few people who might be alone with him and they teased her with photos of Fidel with other redheads. Jealous of other alleged Fidel lovers, Marina accepted their offer. She arrived back in Havana with CIA-directed poison in a toothpaste tube, the brand and type that she knew Fidel used. She was to replace his tube in his hotel bathroom with her poisoned one. Indeed, she was alone with Fidel in that Hilton Hotel room. At one point soon after arriving, she told him she had to go to the bathroom where she intended to make the toothpaste switch. But he touched her left shoulder and stopped her. Looking down into her face, he said, "Marina, you came here to kill me, didn't you?" Too startled to speak, she just stared up at him, finally shaking her head in the affirmative after realizing she would not leave that room, or at least Havana, alive. But she did. He escorted her to the door and motioned down the hallway for a bodyguard. He told him, "Treat Marina kind, as my friend. Whatever she wants, till you take her to the airport." To this day the 77-year-old Marina lives with the memory that he treated her kindly "even after he knew what he knew." She deeply regrets that the CIA used her youthful jealousy in one of the closest assassination plots the CIA ever concocted to kill him. It is a reflection that Celia Sanchez always had friends high-up in the U. S. government, including the CIA. The tip-off Celia received about Marina's last visit to Havana in 1960 is an example of the tips that helped save Fidel's life, Celia's life and the life of their precious revolution.
       When I was in Cuba in 2004 to research my biography of Celia Sanchez, I was directed to the city of Trinidad to interview a female guerrilla fighter named Sylvia who had fought with Celia. That's where I got documentation of that lady's most memorable battle, so memorable I used a whole chapter to tell it. Celia got a tip from an officer at Fort Benning in Georgia that the CIA's "best-trained assassin" was about to sneak onto the island with the "express purpose" of killing her. This was 1954 when Fidel was in prison on the Isle of Pines and had never laid eyes on Celia but knew all about her exploits. The information came from a U. S. officer that Celia trusted. She made two other quick contacts using a transmitter phone-hookup at one of her remote base-camps. Celia was told the would-be assassin's code-name was "Modesto" and he was a Cuban-American with ties to Modesto, California. She was provided descriptions of Modesto and his "two likely accomplishes." Modesto had a black mustache and a scar near his left ear. Also, she was told the three killers would report to and operate from a Batista military barracks on the edge of Santiago de Cuba that Celia was very familiar with. She was told the exact day Modesto left Fort Benning for Cuba via "a small boat off a ship." With that information and always with the info provided by brave peasants in the region, Celia used an 18-person guerrilla unit that included Sylvia to daily monitor Modesto's movements in a U. S. army jeep. He frequented a dirt road in a 15-mile radius outside the barracks and the three assassins often patrolled on foot searching for signs of Celia such as via binoculars by day and campfires at night in an area she was known to have base-camps. Modesto after about five days of patrolling would return to the barracks for supplies. Celia, with her own binoculars, watched them return to the barracks one last time. The next time Modesto's jeep kicked up dust on that dirt road, he rounded a curve and the jeep screeched and slid into a fallen tree that blocked his route. The three men leaped from the jeep and only managed to get off several hasty shots before they were mowed down by a hail of guerrilla fire. Sylvia told me, "Celia herself turned over the bodies of the three men so she could check their faces, wanting to make sure she got Modesto. The first two were not him. But the third one was. Celia then turned to us and said, 'It's him. Now let's get the hell out of here. Those shots weren't silent.' It was my first assignment with Celia, but not the last. We were always so confident. We all were. Because of Celia. She was always so damn precise. We didn't think we could lose, no matter the odds." Celia was also aided with solid tips from U. S. sources, such as the info that saved Fidel from Marina Lorenz's poisonous toothpaste and Celia from Modesto.
   Also, Celia Sanchez had a very good pair of binoculars  
      Via the social media and news updates, this graphic of Fidel Castro has been ubiquitous online these last few days of November following his death at age 90. The prescient quote attributed to Fidel back in 1973 was authentic and is documented by a BBC video. Fidel made the statement after being asked a question by a U. S. newsman and his reply, although merely off-the-cuff in answer to a question that irked him, was indeed prophetic: "The United States will come to talk to us when you have a black president and the world has a Latin American pope." The world knows that Barack Obama is the first black United States president and that Argentine native Pope Francis is the first Latin American pope. Lo 'n behold!! Fidel lived long enough to see his prophecy come true, didn't he? Both the black President and the Latin American pope came to talk to Cuba on very friendly, kind and supportive terms. Many historians have stated that Fidel "out-smarted" ten U. S. presidents to carve out his revolution, his longevity and his legacy. Jesuit schoolteachers confirmed that Fidel's IQ was "so off-the-charts it couldn't be measured." There are many confirmed examples of the teachers using Fidel's photographic memory "to entertain his classmates." One Jesuit teacher wrote, "I would select an esoteric book with small print and have Fidel silently read one whole page and then take the book back and have Fidel recite the whole page to the class. It was uncanny, almost scary...and funny." {Uncanny...almost scary...funny. That also describes his 1973 quote-prediction.
            This photo shows Fidel Castro making a speech at the United Nations in 1960. This speech catapulted Fidel into the Guinness Book of World Records. That's because the speech was exactly 4 hours and 29 minutes long, by far the longest in UN history. For years Fidel was famous for making 6 and 7 hour extemporaneous speeches in Cuba's hot sun with as many as a million people in attendance. You can see a 6 minute, 38 second clip of this speech on YouTube by using the title: "Fidel Castro Speech at the United Nations." A 2:57 YouTube video entitled "Mr. K and Castro at the United Nations" shows Fidel getting off a Soviet airplane to arrive in New York for his 1960 UN speech. He is stopped by a swarm of reporters and answers questions in English. Another clip shows a reporter asking him why he came on a Soviet and not a Cuban plane. He replied, "The United States is brave enough to shoot down a Cuban plane but not brave enough to shoot down a Soviet plane. The Soviets, they have nuclear stuff." The reporter laughed but Fidel wasn't joking. Earlier in 1960 Fidel had survived the CIA plot to kill him using the poisoned TOOTHPASTE TUBE delivered by his young lover Marina Lorenz. And years later -- on Oct. 6, 1976 -- a famed Cuban-American CIA and anti-Castro terrorist-assassin masterminded a successful plot to blow up a child-laden civilian Cuban airplane USING ANOTHER TOOTHPASTE TUBE, this one packed with plastic explosives!! 
         The extreme act of terrorism that blew Cubana Flight 455 into the ocean -- killing all 73 on board including children and 24 teenage athletes -- has resonated loudly throughout the Caribbean and Latin America every day since October 6, 1976. Yet, because the Cuban narrative in the U. S. is tightly controlled by powerful Cuban-American extremists, few Americans to this day know about the only civilian airplane ever downed in the Western Hemisphere by an act of terrorism. That Cuban narrative -- ESPECIALLY THIS LAST WEEK OF NOVEMBER-2016 -- is screaming loudly about what a "sadistic killer and terrorist" Fidel Castro was. And Americans are not supposed to know that those screams are coming loudest from Cuban-Americans that Cuba and Latin America as well as the U. S. government well know support killer-terrorist still using the U. S. government and the U. S. media to seek revenge against Fidel Castro...or now his legacy...for kicking them or their parents off the island at the start of 1959. The alleged well-know bomber of Cubana Flight 455, thanks to unchallenged members of Congress from Miami, is today a heralded citizen of Miami who engages in anti-Castro and anti-Obama demonstrations in Miami's Little Havana sanctuary.
        A plethora of de-classified U. S. documents -- such as this one addressed in 1976 to the still-living Henry Kissinger -- leave no doubt that the highest echelons of the U. S. government knew right away...and still knows today...the terrorists who bombed Cubana Flight 455. But because of the U. S. government's unique and long-standing ties to Cuban and Mafia anti-Castro forces, the U. S. government is not capable of dealing with even the most notorious Cuban-American terrorists, and the U. S. media is too intimidated to be anything other than a propaganda conduit for diatribes against Castro and in support of the Batista-Mafia regime the Cuban Revolution transplanted to Miami back in 1959, two long generations ago. 
   Outside the U. S., victims of Cubana Flight 455 are mourned. 
 And outside the U. S., people know their history. 
U.S.-Cuban history includes a civilian airplane bombing.
        And speaking of the Guinness Book of World Records, Fidel Castro -- in addition to that UN speech in 1960 -- has another prominent mention. Many historians and documentaries, and now the Guinness Book, confirm that Fidel survived more assassination attempts than any person in history -- OVER 600!! But as the photo above indicates, they didn't seem to faze him too much although perhaps they should have. Most of the attempts were carried out by three of the most skilled and well-funded units in history -- the CIA, the Mafia and the Batistianos. The Journal-American reporter who showed Fidel the headline depicted above got this quotation from him: "And I thought the U. S. taxpayers had stopped funding Operation Mongoose." Operation Mongoose was the code-name of the most-famed CIA program that right-wing thugs in the Eisenhower administration passed along to the Kennedy administration in January of 1960. The sole purpose of Operation Mongoose was to "Kill Castro." For two years the Kennedy administration carried through on the inherited plans for the Bay of Pigs attack on Cuba in April of 1961 and Operation Mongoose from 1960 till 1962. Then by November of 1963 the popular President Kennedy realized that the CIA and not Castro was the real enemy. That's when John Kennedy famously did two things: One day in the Oval Office, as two of his top aides -- Pierre Salinger and Arthur Schlesinger Jr. -- later confirmed, JFK threw a tirade and screamed, "If I could I would blow the CIA to smithereens!" A few days later he told all of his top aides that his "top priority" when he returned from Dallas was to "normalize relations with Cuba." But on Nov. 22-1963 he returned from Dallas in a coffin. Those are historic, unchallenged facts, like Operation Mongoose. And, sadly, they say a lot more about the United States than they say about Cuba. And what they say loudest of all is this: EVEN THE GREATEST AND STRONGEST DEMOCRACY IN HISTORY IS VULNERABLE IF ITS CITIZENS ALLOW A FEW THUGS TO ACT ON THEIR BEHALF, which includes putting the Mafia in Cuba in 1952; allowing the overthrown Batista regime to resurrect itself on U. S. soil in 1959 and in the U. S. Congress by the 1980s; boondoggles and crimes such as Operation Mongoose, the Bay of Pigs attack; unpunished and continuous terrorism such as befell Cubana Flight 455; and a continuous embargo of Cuba that the entire world now condemns with a 191-to-0 vote in the United Nations. Apathy, cowardice, and stupidity on the part of American citizens are far more to blame than the greed and criminality of a few thugs, many of whom have been allowed to get away with such things as the unending genocidal embargo and bragging about the bombing of a child-laden civilian airplane while calling Fidel Castro names that best describe them.
Aug. 13, 1926 - Nov. 25, 2016. 
      Although he would not admit it, his life and his impending legacy define the United States even more than they define Cuba. The latest proof of that is two-fold: {1} The 191-to-0 pro Cuba/anti-U. S. vote in the United Nations that Americans are programmed not to even consider; and {2} the morbidly anti-democracy celebrations in Miami on November 25th that the U. S. media was obliged to cover JUST LIKE a scared media in a Banana Republic would have been obliged to cover such shenanigans. In other words, because of Fidel Castro and what he wrought, Americans today are supposed to believe that zero is a larger number than 191 because the 191-to-0 configuration out of the UN tends to cast a positive glow on both Cuba and Fidel Castro. But in the United States, which has been badly reconfigured by the Batistianos since 1959, that is not permitted. And that's why Fidel Castro, the life he lived and the legacy that follows, says more about the United States of America and its democracy than he says about his island of Cuba.  



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