World Baseball Classic March-2023


      The 2023 World Baseball Classic is now a week away. It starts for 20 baseball-loving nations on March 8th. Many of the teams are loaded with Major League superstars...especially the U. S. and Dominican Republic teams!! The U. S. has even eased its six-decade-old Embargo/Blockade enough to allow Cuba to have a few Cuban Major Leaguers next week when it begins play in Taiwan against the Netherlands.
    Today -- February 28th, 2023 -- the great baseball writer/scout Ben Badler at Baseball America has a long article about Cuba's World Baseball Classic entry this year.
      The Ben Badler article today, as shown above, begins with remembering Cuba's long history of loving baseball and producing a plethora of Major League superstars...but also has to deal with massive and unending sanctions by the superpower United States since the 1959 victory of the Cuban Revollution.
     Starting next week {March 8th-2023} Team Cuba will have a competitive lineup although the U. S. and Dominican lineups have nothing but Major League superstars and many believe that Japan will actually be the overall favorite because it has superstars from its own powerful Major League teams and some Japanese superstars from the U. S. Major League teams. But Team Cuba, as shown above, also has some Major Leaguers from both the U. S. and Japan...led by two great Cuba-born players in their prime from the Chicago White Sox -- switch-hittinng third baseman Yoan Moncada and brillant centerfielder Luis Robert. And starting next week the 2023 World Baseball Classic is being anticipated eagerly by millions of baseball fans, especially those in 20 baseball-loving nations!!!!!!!


The Lonely BUT LOUD Anti-Blockade Crusade

 February 26th, 2023!!

Bridges of Love to Cuba!!

From February of 1962 till February of 2023.


The U. S. Embargo vs. Cuba Is 61 Years Old

 It Started in FEBRUARY Of 1962!!

     On February 24th in the New Year of 2023 we are in the 61st year of the U. S. economic Embargo against Cuba.
    Each year in near unanimity the world at the United Nations loudly condemns the Embargo, and yet it exists year-after-year to apparently please a few key people in Miami and Washington. The purpose of the Embargo is supposedly to starve, deprive, and make miserable Cubans on the island to induce them to rise up and overthrow their revolutionary government. For over 61 years the Embargo has, indeed, starved, deprived, and made miserable generations of Cubans in Cuba...even as Revolutionary Cuba, somehow, hasn't yet been overthrown.
      This week in late February of 2023 the London-based worldwide Reuters News Agency used the above headline to inform the world about some of the current misery in Cuba, including  "three major blackouts" this week.
      "Those issues, officials say, have been exacerbated by the U. S. Cold War-era embargo on Cuba..." As this Reuters article late in February of 2023 informs the world, the U. S. embargo's six-decade-old purpose of starving, depriving, and making miserable 11 million Cubans in Cuba continues to fulfill its mission, except for overthrowing the revolutionary government.
    As February of 2023 is about to end, the U. S. EMBARGO of Cuba that began in February of 1962 is not about to end and, in fact, is stronger than ever. As usual, it doesn't matter that most of the people in the World and in the United States loudly condemn it. Thus...for over six decades Americans have been programmed to ignore the above seminal image of the United States.
      In 2016 the popular Barack Obama was finishing his two terms as President of the United States. He went to Cuba to tell the Cuban people on statewide television that: "Cuba Does Not Need To Fear A Threat From The United States." That year President Obama, during the United Nations vote, refused to allow the United States to support it!! Thus in 2016 all the nations of the world voted to end the EMBARGO of Cuba. But there was a problem to that U. S. and Worldwide unanimity: The U. S. still did not end or seriously ease it.
    Above the Reuters News Agency article explains that President Trump's designation of Cuba as a State Sponsor of Terrorism lumps Cuba with Syria and North Korea as a Terrorist Nation: "The rule ranks Cuba with Syria and North Korea, and assumes holidaymakers {from Cuba to the U. S.are complicit in terror activity." And President Biden has not changed that Trump designation, which the rest of the world calls "a bonkers rule."
    If the current U. S. President, the Democrat Joe Biden, is going to end or ease the Embargo/Blockade, the embattled everyday citizens in Cuba are hoping that: {1} Cuba should be removed from the U. S. list of Nations that support Terrorism; and {2} that the U. S. should remove Cuba from being punished by Title Three of the Helms-Burton Act, which Republican President Trump activated at the behest of Miami in 2019. Not even extremely pro-Miami Republican presidents such as George W. Bush would activate Title Three because even President Bush considered it too harmful to Cuban families.
    Today -- Feb. 24th-2023 -- an article written by Guillaume Long is getting international exposure. It points out that having Cuba on the U. S. List of Sponsors of Terror is wrong. He got his PhD in international policies from the University of London and is a senior policy analyst at the Center for Economic and Policy Research.
     It seems that a strong majority of the people around the world agree with today's article by Guillaume Long: "Biden Should Reverse Trump's Designation of Cuba as a "State Sponsor of Terrorism."
From today's Guillaume Long article.
    It happens that Cuba is the largest and perhaps the most beautiful island in the Caribbean. But it's strategetic location, due south of Miami, makes it very small compared to its neighbors such as Canada, the United States of America, Mexico, and even Venezuela and Colombia. But, since it was discovered by Columbus in 1492, Cuba has punched on the international scale far larger than its size would suggest. The imperative powers, starting with Spain in 1492, have spent all of the last 8 or so centuries trying to dominate and exploit Cuba. Thus trying not to be dominated in the last 8 or so centuries has kept Little Cuba in the headlines more than Cubans in Cuba have wanted.


President Jimmy Carter Cared About Cuba

 Other U. S. Presidents Want to Own it!!

    From 1977 till 1981 Jimmy Carter was President of the United States. He served just one 4-year-old term but he was perhaps the smartest {IQ wise} and most decent {for sure} President in United States history. He is now 98 years and last week chose to live out his final days at home in Plains, Georgia with only hospice care, declining further medical help. Among the U. S. presidents, Jimmy Carter displayed the most decent concern for the Cuban people in Cuba, and he was also the most frank U. S. leader regarding U.S.-Cuban Relations.
    In this speech at the University of Havana, as shown above, Jimmy Carter said: "I did not come here to interfere in Cuba's internal affairs, but to extend a hand of friendship to the Cuban people and to offer a vision of the future for our two countries and for all the Americas." Unfortunately, no other U. S. president has ever displaced such decency to either Cuba or to the Americas.
     In his long and heartfelt speech at the University of Havana, President Carter said: "I appreciate President Castro's invitation for us to visit Cuba, and have been delighted with the hospitality we have received since arriving here. It is a great honor to address the Cuban people." Both as U. S. President and as a U. S. citizen, Jimmy Carter showed respect for the Cuban people in Cuba, not just for the rich and politically powerfull Cubans in Miami and in Washington.
     In his speech to the Cuban people, Jimmy Carter said: "There are some in Cuba who think the simple answer is for the United States to lift the embargo, and there are some in my country who believe the answer is for your president to step down from power and allow free elections. There is no doubt that the question deserves a more comprehensive assessment." The unique decency, honesty, and intelligence of Jimmy Carter has meant that he has been the only U. S. President to assess U.S.-Cuban relations with such sincere words.
      As U. S. President and as a U. S. citizen, Jimmy Carter was not afraid to show respect for Fidel Castro...something that no other prime U. S. leader or would-be politician was/is allowed to do or was/is courageous enough to do.
      As President of the United States and as America's longest living ex-President, Jimmy Carter actually knew Fidel Castro. Moreover...Jimmy Carter said, as both men were nearing 90-years-of-age, "Instead of making political or financial advantages from disparaging everything about Fidel Castro, perhaps we need a government that is capable of discerning, or even admitting, that there has always been enough Cubans on the island who worship Fidel Castro, and that helps explain his longevity as well as his legacy. We should be honest when we assess why he has survived so long." In other words, Jimmy Carter -- as a U. S. President and as a U. S. citizen -- lived his 98 years on this earth as a unique man...and even unique enough to have both the courage and the insight to view Cuba as a sovereign nation, not just as a playpen and a piggy-bank.


Revolutionary Cuba Has Lasted For 64 Years


     Somehow...in January of 1959 the Cuban Revolution defeated the U.S.-backed & Mafia-backed Batista dictatorship and then the new leaders of Cuba, as shown above, rode triumphantly into Havana. And, even more amazing, in February of 2023 Revolutionary Cuba is celebrating its 64TH ANIVERSARY.
     Although she died of cancer 43 Years AGO, in 1980, Celia Sanchez Manduley remains a prime reason for both the triumph and for the longevity of the Cuban Revoluion. Moreover...she was feisty enough and insightful enough to have famously explained why and how the out-gunned rebels won!!!!!
     As a fearless and frontline guerrilla fighter during the Revolution, Celia Sanchez knew precisely why the rebels won their anti-Batista war.
   And after the triumph of the Revolution...with the 100% support of Fidel Castro...it was Celia Sanchez who laid down and wrote down the parameters that have sustained the Revolution for all these decades, including after her untimely death from cancer at age 59 on January 11th, 1980. Therefore...let it be known that history registers the definitive Celia Sanchez quotation that explains why and how her Revolution somehow won in 1959 and somehow in 2023 still rules Cuba: "We rebels...get far too much credit for winning the revolution. Our enemies deserve most of the credit, for being greedy cowards and idiots."
    For sure, the rebels would not have won the Cuban Revolution in 1959 without the unique determination and brilliance of Celia Sanchez. And, for sure, in February of 2023 Celia Sanchez remains the prime reason that the Revolution, somehowstill controls Cuba. Thus...it is appropriate in February of 2023 that her words still define her pugnacious island nation: "We rebels...get far too much credit for winning the revolution. Our enemies deserve most of the credit, for being greedy cowards and idiots."


Cuba's 11-Year-Old Genius


     A nice article today -- February 19, 2023 -- from Cuba. The 11-year-old Andy Maqueira is making headlines internationally for being a Table Tennis champion.
     This On Cuba News photo shows Andy Maqueira of Cuba {up front} winning his last international match against Jason Liu of the USA.


A Birthday That Cuba Cherishes


    The Commander Juan Almeida was born in Havana on February 17th of 1927 and died in Havana on September 11th in 2009. This week in 2023 his birthday, as usual, is being celebrated from Havana on the southwestern tip of the island to Santiago de Cuba on the southeastern tip. AND FOR GOOD REASON!!!!!
    From the start and to the end of the Cuban Revolution, Juan Almeida was at Fidel Castro's side as a vital guerrilla fighter, Commander, and General. And after they won their revolution on January 1st of 1959, Juan Almeida remained as one of the most powerful leaders in Cuba till the day he died in 2009.
     Both Fidel and Juan considered July 26th of 1953 as the start of their Revolution. That was the day they attacked Batista's Moncada Garrison in Santiago de Cuba...an ill-advised and over-matched unit of out-gunned rebels that got shot to pieces. Fidel and Juan survived but were captured and then imprisoned on the Isle of Pines, Batista's main prison. But they got out on May 15th of 1955 and resumed their Revolution. Knowing Batista had assassins monitoring their movements, they escaped to Mexico where they met a newly graduated Argentine doctor named Che Guevara who wanted to join the Cuban Revolution. Those three along with 78 other rebels then embarked on the dangerously over-loaded yacht named Granma to sail to the southeastern coast of Cuba so they could join the anti-Batista guerrilla unit led by the brilliant Celia Sanchez. But Batista got tipped off when the Granma yacht left Mexico and his spotter planes watched them reach Cuban shores. Ambushed, only 17 of the 81 rebels survived on or near the beach but the survivors included Fidel and Juan as well as other notables such as Raul Castro, Che Guevara, and Camilo Cienfuegos.
   This historic photo shows the incomparable Celia Sanchez giving Fidel Castro a telescopic rifle after she had saved the lives of the 17 Granma survivors.
    During their long lives in Revolutionary Cuba, both Fidel Castro and Juan Almeida repeatedly credited the heroism of Celia Sanchez for saving their lives and "saving the Revolution."
   One night in February of 1958  in his diary after he finally began to  believe the rebels could win their war, Che Guevara wrote these words about Celia Sanchez: "Once we do win this thing, let's not forget that it was because of Celia Sanchez."
    This photo and caption shows Juan Almeida and Celia Sanchez making sure a little Cuban girl had food to eat. Both Juan and Celia were vital to winning the Revolutionary War and then both remained powerful leaders in Cuba till they died. Juan died of a heart attack in 2009 at 78 and Celia died from lung cancer in 1980 at age 59. All of his adult life Juan wrote songs and he dedicated several of them to Celia, including "Dama un traquita"/"Give me a sip." In another of his songs he wrote, "Let me tell you about Celia, the flower that won the war for us."
Celia Sanchez
Juan Almeida

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