“Venezuela’s problems are “precisely why Cuba has tried – in its own prickly, nationalistic way – to open the door to the US, and why the US needs to move forward rapidly with its rapprochement [to Cuba]…If the US can ease the sense of insecurity that’s guiding Cuban actions in Venezuela, they will be in a better place to cool the Venezuelan situation and to play a constructive role in the processes of change in Cuba, too.” (Cuba “expert” Christopher Sabatini.)
Now where have we heard something like this before?………
OH!!!…….I finaly remember!!!–Wasn’t that Cuba “expert” opinion (both academic and governmental) in the U.S. from 1957-61–but regarding the perils of not sufficiently indulging and feting Castro and thus pushing him into the arms of the Russians??? (Raul Castro had a KGB-handler since 1954, by the way.) Then hasn’t it remained the recommendation of “enlightened” and “expert” parties ever since?
And how has this “expert” policy recommendation worked out? Well, let’s take a trip down memory lane, shall we:
The U.S. Central Intelligence Agency started wooing Fidel Castro before he was even in “office.” To wit:
“Me and my staff were all Fidelistas,” (Robert Reynolds, the CIA’s “Caribbean Desk’s specialist on the Cuban Revolution” from 1957-1960.)
“Everyone in the CIA and everyone at State was pro-Castro, except (Republican) ambassador Earl Smith.” (CIA operative in Santiago Cuba, Robert Weicha.)
Their advice was taken and January 7, 1959, thus marks a milestone in U.S. diplomatic history. Never before had the U.S. extended diplomatic recognition to a Latin American government as quickly as “we” bestowed this benediction on Fidel Castro’s that day.
Nothing so frantically fast had been bestowed upon “U.S.-backed” Fulgencio Batista (note the obligatory prefix, used in every MSM and “scholarly” mention of him) seven years earlier.
Then during Castro’s first 16 months in power, the U.S. State Dept. made over 10 back channel diplomatic attempts to ascertain the cause of Castro’s tantrums and further “engage” him. Argentine President Arturo Frondizi was the conduit for many of these and recounts their utter futility in his memoirs.
Result: In July 1960 Castro’s KGB-trained security forces stormed into 5911 U.S. owned businesses in Cuba and stole them all at Soviet gunpoint – $2 billion were heisted from outraged U.S. businessmen and stockholders.
In July 1961, JFK’s special counsel Richard Goodwin met with Che Guevara in Uruguay and reported back to Kennedy: “Che says that Cuba wants an understanding with the U.S., the Cubans have no intention of making an alliance with the Soviets. So we should make it clear to Castro that we want to help Cuba.” (Soviet GRU agents, mostly Spanish Communist exiles, started “advising” Castro and Che in Feb. 1959, many roomed in Che’s very Tarara mansion. How Che managed a straight face during this conversation with a Camelot Latin American “expert” requires an article of its own.)
Result: Soviet nuclear missiles locked and loaded in Cuba a year later–and pointed at Goodwin and Kennedy’s very homes.
In 1975, President Gerald Ford, (under Henry Kissinger’s influence) allowed foreign branches and subsidiaries of U.S. companies to trade freely with Cuba and persuaded the Organization of American States to lift its sanctions.
Result: Castro started his African invasion and tried to assassinate Ford. You read right. On March 19, the Los Angeles Times ran the headline “Cuban Link to Death Plot Probed.” Both Republican candidates of the day, President Ford and Ronald Reagan, were to be taken out during the Republican National Convention. The Emiliano Zapata Unit, a Bay area radical group linked to the Weather Underground, would make the hits.
In 1978 President Jimmy Carter in a good-will gesture, lifted U.S. travel sanctions against Cuba and were poised to open full diplomatic relations with Castro.
Result: More thousands of Cuban troops spreading Soviet terror (and poison gas) in Africa, more internal repression, and hundreds of psychopaths, killers and perverts infiltrated onto the boats and shoved our way on the Mariel boatlift.
In 1982 President Ronald Reagan sent Alexander Haig to meet personally in Mexico City with Cuba’s “Vice President” Carlos Raphael Rodriguez to feel him out. Then he sent diplomatic wiz Gen. Vernon Walters to Havana for a meeting with the Fidel Castro himself.
Result: Cubans practically take over Grenada, El Salvador and Nicaragua. (But unlike the aforementioned Democrats, Reagan responded to Castro’s response–and with pretty salutary results.)
Pres. Clinton tried playing nice again in the 90’s.
Result: Three U.S. citizens and one resident who flew humanitarian flights over Florida straits (Brothers to the Rescue) murdered in cold blood by Castro’s MIGS. Castro agent Ana Belen Montes moles her way to head of the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Cuba division, resulting in the deepest and most damaging penetration of the U.S. Defense Department by an enemy agent in modern history.
President Obama is now playing nicest of all.
Let’s hope this U.S. administration has the sense, vision and courage to eschew archaic, counterproductive, clearly-failed cold-war policies regarding Cuba. Let’s hope they shun the advice from a tiny–but wealthy and influential–cabal of self-interested parties who have been influencing US-Cuba policy for WAY too long.
P.S. ( I SWEAR that picture of Cuba “expert” Christopher Sabatini is NOT photoshopped.)