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realclearworld

Lady in White Beaten, Arrested (UPDATED)

Here's how that big softy pragmatist raul castro treats a peaceful protester in Cuba, a woman participating in a peaceful march for the release of her imprisoned loved one:

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More from Breitbart via AFP:

Police detained about 30 people as they marched in Havana Wednesday in a protest led by the mother of a political prisoner who died in a hunger strike, an AFP journalist witnessed.

The so-called "Ladies in White" were heckled by hundreds of government supporters as they marched through Havana with the mother of Orlando Zapata, who died in a prison hunger strike February 23.

Police moved in and female officers forced the dissidents into two buses, which drove off to an unknown destination.

"We are protesting peacefully and we are not going to get on the bus of a government that has kept our family members in prison for seven years," said Laura Pollan, the leader of the group, just before being forced on.

As police were taking the women away, Margarita Rodr?ez, a housewife in a crowd of some 300 pro-government demonstrators, shouted: "Board them by force, it's what they deserve. This is a provocation."

The Ladies in White, a group of wives and mothers of political prisoners, had been staging marches every day this week to mark the anniversary of a 2003 crackdown that jailed 75 opposition activities, 53 of whom are still behind bars.

The women began the day Wednesday with prayers in a Catholic church before setting out, apparently intent on visiting dissident Orlando Fundora, who was jailed in the 2003 crackdown but later released for health reasons.

At the head of the march was Reyna Luisa Tamayo, Zapata's mother, who has charged that her son had been tortured in prison and that his death on the 85th day of a hunger strike amounted to "premeditated murder."

The incident sparked international outrage and new calls for Havana to free political prisoners.

The government says there are no political prisoners in this Caribbean nation of more than 11 million people, and claims there is no torture and that dissidents are paid pawns of the United States.

A day after Zapata's death, activist Guillero Fariñas, 48, began his own hunger strike to press for the release of 26 political prisoners in need of medical care.

Hospitalized a week ago in the central city of Santa Clara, he is being fed intravenously on doctors' orders.

Meanwhile, a virulent campaign launched by state media to counter what it says is a "defamatory" campaign against Cuba in Europe intensified last week after the European Parliament passed a resolution deploring Zapata's avoidable death.

Every day, the Cuban media has denounced the mistreatment of immigrants or "police brutality" in countries like Spain, France and Germany.

They accuse Europe of pursuing a "neo-colonial" and "subversive" policy together with the United States to "destabilize" a revolution already struggling with a serious economic crisis.

"After the Americans, it is now our turn to experience a degradation in our relations with the government" of Raul Castro, said a European diplomat, who said he was unsure what would happen at a meeting of the European "troika" with Cuba in Madrid April 6.

In Madrid, Oscar-winning Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar has signed a petition calling for the immediate release of all political prisoners in Cuba, his production company said on Tuesday.

Several personalities, including Spanish-Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa, are among some 5,000 people who have already signed it.

The petition calls for "the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners in Cuban jails and the respect of the exercise, promotion and the defence of human rights throughout the world."

But if Zapata's death has upset Havana's traditional relations with the European left, Cuba still enjoys broad support in Latin America where elected governments in Brazil, Uruguay and Bolivia have come to its defense.

"Imagine what would happen if all the bandits detained in Sao Paulo went on hunger strike and demanded their freedom," said Brazil's President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, a friend of the Castro brothers, refusing to intercede on behalf of some 200 Cuban political prisoners.

12 comments to Lady in White Beaten, Arrested (UPDATED)

  • Felixthe3rd

    Looking at that photo boils my blood. Just imagine your mother, aunt, grandmother, being carried off like this. Fucking enrages me.

  • Felixthe3rd

    ...In Telemundo, al Rojo Vivo, they are going to report on it with video of the incident.

  • pototo

    I saw in the Reuter's article that the rapid Castro supporters chanted "the streets belong to Fidel". How condemning that they admit that they do not belong to Cubans.

  • Paraphrasing Hans Frank (executed at Nuremberg for war crimes and crimes against humanity), all I can add is that a thousand years will pass and the guilt of the castro brothers and their odious and evil regime will not be erased. Proof? Look at the photos of the willing participants in the beatings: low-tech Einsatzgruppen...

  • Well, George?...I say we're making phenomenal progress! The vocal backers of Castroite savagery used to number in the millions! To wit:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUPqsh52QPc

  • drillanwr

    Cindy Sheehan and her Che/Castro/Chavez-lovin ilk have no idea how good they have it here.

  • Rayarena

    Has anyone seen any coverage of this vile attack in the English speaking mainstream media? All of the coverage, I've seen has been either on the Internet [not the printed press] or on Spanish-speaking TV.

    The pro-Castro Mothers of La Plaza de Mayo who were never treated so vilely by the Argentine Junta were constantly covered and favorably editorialized by the English Speaking MSM.

  • Wahiro

    Only a Coward hits and drags a woman.
    Hijos de Puta !

  • pototo

    After seeing these women stand for freedom I am ashamed to consider myself a man. May the men in Cuba act like men and come to their aid.

  • Mr. Mojito

    [i]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUPqsh52QPc[/i]

    I wonder how many of that cheering million strong throng now lives on Calle Ocho? I'd say a good number :(

  • firefly

    The Ladies in White weren't "heckled by hundreds of government supporters." By now the MSM should be able to recognize that all the individuals involved in "this incident" work for the Cuban Secret Police, the Rapid Response Brigade, or the CDR. They are told to dress in civilian clothing to pass themselves off as "Cuban government supporters." All these "investigative MSM geniuses" need to do is review every video taken of previous "incidents" to realize that it's always the same faces.