Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Viva Cuba Libre!

By Capt. Fogg

Update: For how Castro's resignation might affect U.S.-Cuba relations, and how the leading presidential candidates (Obama, Clinton, and McCain) might respond to it, hopefully by changing course, see Steve Clemons over at The Washington Note. -- MJWS


Bush began to talk about the "blessings of Liberty" like some Chatty Kathy Doll when he heard of Fidel Castro's resignation as President of Cuba. He launched into a typically rambling riff about unfair elections and people rotting in prisons while the gods of hypocrisy smiled down on him like a proud parent upon a favored child.

No, I'm not a fan of Fidel, but many Cubans are and they see him as having provided a better life than they had when Cuba was run by a feudal corruptocracy owned by American interests, legitimate and otherwise. Many Cubans see their financial problems as something done to them out of spite and malice by our fair country and indeed our policies have hurt the common man while strengthening Castro and his party. I would hardly be surprised to hear that many Cuban patriots wonder if those blessings of liberty Bush extols are like the blessings we have afforded other countries whose resources we crave and the "fair" elections he describes would be like those we have squashed or rigged in places like Iran and Latin America and Vietnam.

It's not that I'm sad to see him step down and I'm hopeful that Cuba will be allowed to rejoin the world and its economy in my lifetime. As a lifelong fan of Earnest Hemingway I would love to follow his route from Key West to Cuba in my own boat and be free to return home without reprisals from my own government. Who knows? It may happen, but not now.
The embargo will remain in place, no move toward reconciliation will be made for despite the rapturous rhetoric about liberty, it's still all about the nationalization of US owned assets that offended our sense of entitlement so badly over 50 years ago. Cubans in Miami may be cheering Viva Cuba Libre, but in Washington the unheard prayer is Viva Coca Cola and Viva Cosa Nostra.

(Cross-posted from
Human Voices.)

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