As Latin America’s Leaders Hail Democracy In Havana, Cuba’s Beatings Intensify
As Latin America's Leaders Hail Democracy In Havana, Cuba's Beatings Intensify
Hypocrisy: Gushing at Cuba's rulers, Latin America's leaders gathered in Havana this week to proclaim "democracy." And as Fidel Castro lapped it all up, real Cuban democracy advocates were being beaten by his goons.
Coming together as CELAC, the late Hugo Chavez's 32-nation club that prides itself on excluding the U.S. and Canada, Latin American "democratic" leaders met in one of the world's last remaining Stalinist redoubts to "deepen Latin American integration" as well as reaffirm "the preservation of democracy and democratic values, the validity of institutions and respect for rule of law" and "human rights."
Well, yeah. In such a hypocritical setting, it's not surprising that Nicaragua's de facto Marxist dictator, Daniel Ortega, felt comfy declaring an end to term limits and pesky elections in his own nation Tuesday.
Worst was what took place outside the conference. As Argentina's Evita wannabe "Presidenta" Cristina Fernandez made goo-goo eyes and gushed at dictator Castro, who has ruled his country for 55 years with zero democracy, the actual democracy campaigners outside received quite different treatment.
Courageous people such as the Ladies in White (wives of imprisoned dissidents), blogger Yoani Sanchez (who writes about conditions under Cuba's tyranny), Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet (who spent 20 years in Castro's dungeons for advocating Martin Luther King's civil disobedience), and democracy campaigners Marta Beatriz Roque and Guillermo Farinas endured beatings from thugs, warnings not to take their case to the delegates and baying government mobs that hurled excrement at them like zoo apes. And as the fulsome toasts to Castro flowed, many were imprisoned.
On one hand, it's expected that the likes of Ortega would be emboldened to declare dictatorship in a fraudulent setting like CELAC. But there's no excuse for real democracies — Brazil, Peru, Mexico, Colombia and others — to go along with such hypocrisy.
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