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realclearworld

Apparatchik exposes deep corruption in Castro Kingdom

Juan Carlos Gálvez with vice president Machado Ventura on 14 December 2008 at the 7th Congress of the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution

Juan Carlos Gálvez with vice president Machado Ventura on 14 December 2008 at the 7th Congress of the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution

From Translating Cuba, via Capitol Hill Cubans and 14ymedio:

Must-Read: Real Corruption in Cuba Stems From the Very Top

An official with the Housing Institute denounces corruption and privileges, as well as reprisals taken against his family.

14ymedio, September 24, 2014 – Before leaving Cuba in October, 2013, the author of this accusation occupied an important post at the Housing Institute and, as a jurist, saw firsthand the intrigues perpetrated by high-level officers of the agency to illegally grant properties to elites and friends. As is shown in the accompanying photos, Juan Carlos Gálvez Migueles was an active participant in the political life of the Island. On December 14, 2008, Gálvez was elected to the national secretariat of the Committees for the Defense of the Revolution, and ratified as a member of the executive committee of that organization.

A lawyer by profession, Gálvez worked as a counterintelligence officer following his studies at the Eliseo Reyes Rodríguez “Capitán San Luis” Advanced Institute of the Interior Ministry. His problems started when he refused to collaborate in the legalization of mansions belonging to the children of ex-President Fidel Castro.

“I was disappointed in many things about the system that were drummed into me and that I was taught to defend. The blindfold fell from my eyes when I saw the problems of daily life in the real world of the average Cuban,” Gálvez told 14ymedio in an email exchange. “That system is not made for honest, sincere, hardworking people like me, where the more corrupt one is, the better.”

My Duty is to Denounce – I Am Not Afraid
by: Juan Carlos Gálvez Migueles

By these presents I wish to make a public statement about the violation being committed by officials of the Cuban State who represent the Provincial Housing Administration of Havana, against three women and a girl of just one year of age, with the intent of evicting them from the property located on 3rd Street, Building 15022, Apt. 10, between 7th and N streets, Altahabana neighborhood, Boyeros municipality. These women are: Sara Elvira Migueles Velo, 47-years-old; Rosaima Rodríguez Migueles, 17-years-old; Marinelvis Martínez Migueles, 24-year-old, mother of a one-year-old girl, named Aynoa. They are, respectively, my mother, sisters and niece.

The property from which the authorities want to remove them was acquired by this writer in May, 2012, when I was appointed Principal Specialist of the Havana Provincial Housing legal division, while in process of being named assistant legal director of this agency.

In August of 2013, I was accepted to participate in an advanced public administration course at the University of Extremadura, Spain. However, the Spanish embassy did not grant me a visa because I missed the deadline to submit some required original documents. At that point I decided to leave Cuba for good, due to various reasons that at present I don’t believe it opportune to divulge.

Continue reading HERE.

Extraordinary trajectory of one Cuban exile: familiar to us, big news to others

Dr. Felix Regueira

Dr. Felix Regueira

How many stories like this do you know of, personally?

Maybe dozens?  Hundreds?  Maybe it's your own story?

Every now and then some local newspaper far from South Florida scoops up one of these stories.   They think it's extraordinary.   Little do they know.

Quite often, these small local newspapers are the only news media that seem to have a reasonable approach to the history of the so-called Revolution and the exodus caused by it, even though they sometimes scramble the details.

In this case, the scrambling is somewhat intense: Though the article states that this young Cuban exile with a Gallego surname came to the U.S. directly after fleeing to Spain, a side bar (not included below) states that he obtained his Bachelor's and M.D. degrees in Galicia, Spain (Santiago de Compostela), and moved to the U.S. afterwards.  (Time to laugh: the side bar states that he obtained his degrees at the "University of Santiago de Compos Tela in Spain.")

God knows how he learned English in a remote corner of Franco's isolated Spain and what he had to do to get licensed in the U.S.   That would be another whole article.

And so would his parents' story, and his wife's story..... Well, you know.... all too well.

This is the Cuba killed by Castroism.  Multiply this guy's story by millions.  Time to weep: Castroism killed a rising giant of a nation and aborted its potentially brilliant future.

From The Victoria Advocate (Texas)

Doctor recalls fleeing Cuba, support of his parents

Six weeks before his 15th birthday, Felix Regueira made a decision that would change his life.

He left everything he had ever known - his home, country and parents.

Regueira fled Cuba in 1966, seven years after Fidel Castro overthrew the Fulgencio Batista dictatorship and created a communist country.

Regueira, now 62, practices pediatrics in Victoria and has done so for more than 30 years. He came to the Crossroads in 1979 because of the need he saw for pediatricians at a time when only three served the entire city.

Regueira said he never become what he wanted to be without making the bold move to leave.

He did it all so he could achieve his dreams.

"I am very lucky," Regueira said. "Fidel Castro made it so that males that were 15- to 40-years-old could not leave the country for military purposes."

Regueira said he had beautiful memories of his country before Castro took power. He said Cuba had a flourishing economy and radiated in culture.

Although he was young, he said, he felt the harsh turn of government. He turned to his grandfather to explain the meaning of communism.

"He said (communism) is what they have in Russia," Regueira said. "That means we're going to lose everything we have ever owned. Everything is going to be state-owned."

As years passed, Regueira said, Castro sequestered all of what Cuba's economy thrived on. He said the government took over international companies, then Cuban industries and finally prevailed over community businesses - like his father's grocery store.

"My father, who worked so hard at his store, became an employee of his own business." he said. "I told my parents, there is no future here. I had to leave."

Regueira said saying goodbye to his parents and brother without knowing if he would ever see them again was incredibly difficult.

Nevertheless, he said, he remained strong and boarded a plane to Spain, eventually landing in Miami.

"I knew with a system like that there is no freedom of choice," Regueria said. "The government dictates everything you will be. I was able to become what I wanted, and I gave my kids a chance at a future."

Regueria's parents and brother made it to the United States a few years later. Regueria said his mother worked as a seamstress and father as a butcher to put him and his brother through medical school.

Regueria's wife, Norma, also fled Cuba during the beginning of Fidel Castro's reign. Leaving was not easy - her father was imprisoned for two years under false accusation, slowing down the process.

The couple, who have been married for 42 years, both said they are living examples of immigrants working hard and prospering in America.

"We have to realize that there is poverty on the other side," Norma Regueira said. "I fully understand that there needs to be a land of law and order. We have to see that people from other countries have a lot to offer. We have to make the process of applying for citizenship more friendly so we don't continue to have desperation leading to breaking laws."

She said her husband encompasses great love for the work he does helping children.

"My husband is just a passionate man about what he does," she said. "Medicine is what drives him; it's his passion. I would not have it any other way."

The doctor, who built his own practice, said he could never see himself doing anything else.

"One thing I like about pediatrics is how children get better." he said. "They come in sick one day and the next day they are better. That stimulates my mind and body-that I'm doing something so fast and so good."

With all his success, Regueira always sticks close to his roots, and often reflects at the sacrifice his parents made for him and his brother.

"My parents are a great example of how to lose everything and start all over again," Regueira said. "They have never gone out of Miami, never went to a movie, never traveled. All they did was work all the time to help my brother and I. They made the ultimate sacrifice for us."

‘La Gigante Fantasia’: Hispanics and President Obama

 

Reports from Cuba: Another absurd prohibition

By Fernando Damaso in Translating Cuba:

Another Absurd Prohibition

Wandering around some of the shopping streets in Havana, with the objective of photographing shop logos embedded in the granite floors of their entrances, I was shocked at the Fontana store on Neptuno Street with the absurdity that accompanies us every dat.

When I was taking the picture, after having come to an agreement with the clerk who was sitting next to one of his dirty shop windows, a character who said he was the manager came out, angry, and told me it was forbidden.

On asking him why, he responded to me, upset, that it was an order from the superior bosses, adding: It is forbidden to photograph the floor, the store inside and out, the display windows and even the bars.

I smiled and answered him: Tell your superior bosses that it is forbidden to photograph the ruins that Havana has been turned into, cannot hide the reality

I’ve confronted this absurd situation in cafes, restaurants, shops, offices and other state property. It seems, indeed, to e a government regulation. Perhaps they think that someone could copy their primitive sales systems and abuse the public. Anything is possible.

But it’s not the case in private establishment, where they’re happy when people take pictures and the employees themselves will push the shutter for you, because it’s free advertising.

Clearly, between the private businesses and the state businesses there is a lot of difference: the former are pleasant, agreeable with good service, while the second, although the sell in hard currency, are dirty, disagreeable and with the worst service.

As a photograph is worth a thousand words, here I show you some that speak for themselves. The title photo is the sidewalk on Fontana, taken before the manager came out, the second is Neptuno between Consulado and Industria.

1411059814_clip_image004

1411059815_clip_image006

Any more questions…?

obam1obam2
Senator Barack Obama, Southern Illinois University, Jan. 20, 2004.

Any more questions why under President Obama the Cuba "embargo" means higher cash-flow from the U.S. to Cuba in 2013 than from the Soviets to Cuba in 1985? Any more questions why TWICE as many people (legally) visited Cuba from the U.S. in 2013 as visited Cuba in 1957? (when--as we all know--Cuba was a "U.S. tourist playground!"

And some say Obama doesn't keep his promises?...Sheeeeeeeit! Regarding Cuba he's a stickler.

EZRA144

"Le RRRRRONCA!!!"

Reports from Cuba’s Venezuela: Evidence of a wrecked economy: Daniel shops

Via Venezuela News & Views:

Evidence of a wrecked economy: Daniel shops

There are of course those that still think the regime has a plan. A plan it does: to hold on to power forever. But a plan to improve Venezuela economy, social situation, health care, etc.?  Dream on...

Between yesterday and today I visited two stores that speak volumes on how degraded the economic situation since Maduro destroyed any confidence that the business may have harbored. Not much to begin with... In short, since the "dakazo" of last November when Maduro organized official looting to empty all the stores from electronic goods to win the municipal election, these stores have simply not renewed their stock. And if on occasion something comes through it is because the regime has given them official dollars so they avoid again the high armed robbery the regime did against them last year.

We will start with the book store in Caracas that I tended to use. I had not been there in 6 months. Well, there is nothing.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-qSyfMHh8x_M/VCdkD0Jz65I/AAAAAAAAE9k/8Koq0dJ9aws/s1600/20140926_174111.jpg

We start with the travel section. Only three books from 2014, the not very good but cheaper Fodor for Hawaii, London and New York. Put to advantage because the other books are much older, including on the top shelf Zagat from 2002....  Not that it matters, we cannot travel anymore outside of Venezuela but the point here is that a major book store has such an non existent supply.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-GNv-mQ6SaDc/VCdkF5B6pQI/AAAAAAAAE9s/wLe42LMZWUI/s1600/no%2Bbooks.jpg

OK, so travel guides are a frivolous pursuit in a socialist country. Let's thus go to my favorite section in any bookstore in the world: History books.  There you go, nothing. Near to you there is about a dozen books of general history, and no good ones, the last remnant that nobody wants. Further behind the shelves for Venezuelan history books, Since they are printed here there is a little bit more of a choice, but not even a third of what it used to be a year ago. (apologies for the overturned pic...I cannot fix it up!)

Continue reading HERE.

‘Yesterday’s sacred symbols remain sacred today and forever!’

Lauzán:

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-mAQGV3EKOuQ/VCapGRWnJTI/AAAAAAAAhw4/kLvQoZKMfps/s1600/lauzan-perfume2.jpg

So Canada’s Cy Tokmakjian greatly valued “business by handshake…”

cy

From Babalu Blog today: Canadian businessman Cy Tokmakjian (seen above shaking on deal with valued business partner) gets 15-year prison sentence in Castro Kingdom

From Toronto's City Life Magazine (Oct 12, 2009):

"Tokmakjian Group was conceived from childhood dreams and born via skilled experience. During a time when deals were sealed with a handshake, Cy set out solo at 29, unbeknown to what the future had in store for him. “I remember shaking hands with Tony DeGasperis, when we were both small businessmen beginning our journeys,” Cy, 69, reflects.

Today he is one of Canada’s most successful transportation entrepreneurs...

camilo2deadche

"Shit, Cy. You got off easy! Castro shook our hands too, often and smilingly."

raul23Fidel laughing8

More ‘Top Secret’ plans to invade Cuba unearthed

More "top secret" plans to invade Cuba unearthed by "journalists" who more than a half-century later still don't have their facts straight on the Bay of Pigs invasion.

William Burrows in The Miami Herald:

Top-secret plan to invade Cuba declassified
http://www.miamiherald.com/opinion/op-ed/g9xmvo/picture2263337/alternates/FREE_960/bayofpigs.JPG


Captured Cuban exiles are lined up by Castro’s soldiers at the Bay of Pigs.GETTY IMAGES

The most popular analogy used to describe Fidel Castro’s turning Cuba into communism’s only bastion in the Western Hemisphere in 1959 was “cancer.” And the fear, to carry the analogy further, was that it would metastasize elsewhere in Latin America.

The CIA, therefore, decided that invasive surgery was needed and launched the Bay of Pigs invasion in April 1961. Lacking air cover, all 1,400 anti-Castro paramilitaries were killed or captured as they waded ashore. That was taken to mean that the Castro regime posed a potential military as well as a political threat to the area. It was decided that the best way to excise the malignancy was to cut it out.

A recently declassified top-secret memorandum from the Joint Chiefs of Staff to Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara, dated March 13, 1962 and titled “Justification for U.S. Military Intervention in Cuba,” suggested an invasion. The document made the reason for the invasion explicit: “U.S. military intervention will result from a period of heightened U.S.-Cuban tensions which place the United States in the position of suffering justifiable grievances.

“World opinion, and the United Nations forum, should be favorably affected by developing the international image of the Cuban government as rash and irresponsible, and as an alarming and unpredictable threat to the peace of the Western Hemisphere.”

The memorandum goes on to list possible staged provocations (as Cold War jargon had it) that would justify attacking and conquering Cuba: “A series of well-coordinated incidents will be planned to take place in and around Guantánamo to give genuine appearance of being done by hostile Cuban forces.”

The U.S. Navy opened a base at Guantánamo Bay in 1903 and maintains it in spite of strong protests by the Castro regime that it violates Cuban sovereignty.

One scenario called for sending friendly Cubans in their nation’s military uniform “over the fence” to stage what appeared to be an attack on the base, while another would have had them captured as saboteurs inside the base and a third had them rioting near the main gate.

But that was tame compared to what followed: “Blow up ammunition inside the base; start fires,” the memo continued. “Burn aircraft on air base (sabotage) … Lob mortar shells from outside of base into base. Some damage to installations … Capture assault teams approaching from the sea … Capture militia group which storms the base … Sabotage ship in harbor; large fires … Sink ship near harbor entrance. Conduct funerals for mock victims …”

Blowing up a U.S. ship in a “Remember the Maine” incident was suggested, as was developing a Communist Cuban terror group in the Miami area or Washington, sinking a boatload of Cubans trying to get to Florida, using an F-86 Sabrejet fighter disguised as a MIG to harass U.S. civilian aircraft and attack ships, faking the shootdown of a chartered airliner over the Caribbean, staging an incident “which will make it appear that Communist Cuban MIGs have destroyed a USAF aircraft over international waters in an unprovoked attack,” and more.

The Cuba Project, as the plan was unofficially called, was eventually shelved, most likely because the United States did not want to appear to be the kind of aggressor it was accusing the USSR of being.

Eighteen months later, Soviet transport ships were spotted carrying nuclear-capable ballistic missiles to Cuba that could reach Washington. The Cuban missile crisis was on.

William E. Burrows, a veteran journalist, has two degrees in international relations from Columbia University.

Sacrilege! Che and Hugo perfumes condemned, creators punished!

_77809119_77809113

Ha!  Perhaps the ridicule proved to be too intense?

Or maybe the High Priests of the Castronoid Church (a.k.a. "The Revolution") were genuinely offended because they were not consulted first?

Or was it the fact that the High Priests were not promised an appropriately exorbitant share of the potential profits?

Whatever the reason, someone in the highest circles of the Castro regime was not amused by the creation of bourgeois fragrances named after "Revolutionary" saints.

Those responsible for this sacrilege will be "disciplined," the Castro Inquisition announced.

In the process, by declaring the names of Hugo and Che "sacred," the Castro Inquisition has confirmed the fact that the so-called "Revolution" is a religion and has always been a religion.

Get to it, High Priests!  Hurry up with the scaffold.  Nothing whips up Revolutionary fervor better than a good old-fashioned Auto de Fe.....

300px-Auto_de_Fe

From the masters of understatement at the BBC:

Castro Inquisition bans Che Guevara and Hugo Chavez perfumes

The Cuban government has said it will take disciplinary action against a state pharmaceutical company that created perfumes named Ernesto Che Guevara and Hugo Chavez.

In a statement in the official Granma newspaper, the government described the project as "a serious error".

"The symbols of the Revolution are and will always be sacred," it read.

The colognes - Ernesto and Hugo - were unveiled on Thursday by state a laboratory in the capital, Havana.

Labiofam said Ernesto, the cologne named after the Argentine-born revolutionary who help Fidel Castro take over in Cuba in 1959, would be a woodsy and refreshing citric scent with notes of talcum powder.

Hugo, named after the late Venezuelan president, would offer a softer, fruitier fragrance with hints of mango and papaya.

"They will be very attractive colognes, but the names also mean a lot to us," said Isabel Gonzalez, vice-president for research and development for Labiofam during the launch.

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But the project was mocked in the social networks and criticised by supporters of the Cuban Revolution, who considered it disrespectful.

Labiofam had been in the process of developing stylised bottles and labels for the products before putting them on sale in Cuba and overseas.

"We didn't want to create propaganda, but rather pay homage to them and help their names endure," said on Thursday Cuban biochemist Mario Valdes, who led the scent design team.

The company said it had obtained the agreement of the families of Che Guevara and Hugo Chavez to use their names in the colognes. But that has now been denied by the Cuban government.

"The details of this irresponsible action were discussed in detail on Friday with the company's director and the employees who presented the products, which were still being developed," read the statement of the Executive Committee of the Ministers' Council, headed by Cuban President Raul Castro.

"The appropriate measures will be taken to deal with this serious error.

"Such initiatives will never be accepted either by our people or by the Revolutionary Government."

The voodoo business of Cuba’s economic index

A Miami publication creates a new Cuba economic index, using ahem... "an independent measurement."

orishas

The Cuba Standard Economic Trend Index, compiled by a team of Cuba-born economists, will offer a monthly outlook on Cuba’s economy by using an “independent measurement,” according to a statement released last week.

Organizers say the index will fill the “information gap” for potential investors, academics and others with an interest in Cuba’s economy.

"Although some variables are not available, indirect estimates can be made from other key performance indicators, which if known, will capture trends."

Continue reading Miami publication creates new Cuba economic index at the Herald.

Canadian businessman gets 15-year prison sentence in Castro Kingdom

Cy Tokmakjian

Cy Tokmakjian

No surprise here, except for the fact that Associated Press is actually reporting this story.

Foreign businesses that don't give the Castro Mafia their cut always find themselves in hot water.

Doing business with the Castro regime is a lot like doing business with any crime syndicate.

Hapless Mr. Cy Tokmakjian found out the hard way.  He obviously thought that greasing the palms of underlings and short-circuiting the upper echelon would help him keep more of his profits.

But noooooooooooooooooooooo!, as John Belushi might have said.

The top brass never allow anyone to cut them out of their take.

Given his age, this 15-year sentence amounts to life imprisonment for Mr. Tokmakjian, or a death sentence.  Same rotten deal as American hostage Alan Gross.

Will this shameless prison sentence deter foreigners from dealing with Castrogonia?

No way.  Those who do business with the Castro Mafia delude themselves so much that this will be seen by most of them as some aberration.

As long as you are making money, no one else's bad fortune matters much -- until you become the one with "bad fortune."

And "bad fortune" is so easy to encounter in a land where all business deals include some sort of "chantaje" or "estafa,"--  or extortion or dirty-dealing under the table.

This sentence is all about the top brass in Castrogonia sending a signal to all other foreign business people dealing with Castro, Inc.:  give us at the very top our cut, or we will punish you.

The only saving grace here is the fact that AP had the gumption to report on this charade, which the Castro regime tried to hide by announcing the sentence late on a Friday afternoon.

image

Castro regime slaps Canadian businessman with  15-year prison sentence

By Michael Weissenstein, The Associated Press

HAVANA - A Canadian company says its president has been sentenced in Cuba to 15 years in prison on corruption-related charges that Cuban officials call part of a widespread campaign against graft.

The Ontario-based automotive company Tokmakjian Group says its lawyers were notified Friday that Cy Tokmakjian was convicted and sentenced on a variety of charges.

Company vice-president Lee Hacker tells The Associated Press that firm managers Claudio Vetere and Marco Puche got shorter sentences.

Cuban officials have provided few details about the case.

But dozens of Cuban executives and government officials and a series of foreigners have been swept up in what is described as an attack on a culture of payoffs by foreigners.

The arrests sent a chill through international business people investing in Cuba.

The company's website lists its head office in Concord, Ont.

The website says it provides both transportation services and engine repairs.

A statement released by the company in July defended Tokmakjian against the accusations, saying they were "legitimate commercial transactions.''

It also said the trial, which ended June 21, was unfairly stacked against him.

The statement said Tokmakjian was held without charge for two years while the results of the investigation were kept secret, and then given just two months to present a defence.

It also said the Cuban court rejected 14 of 18 proposed defence witnesses, including international tax experts.

Cuba's Communist Party newspaper Granma has said Tokmakjian was accused of corruption to obtain benefits in contract negotiations, unauthorized financial transactions, illegally taking large amounts of money out of the country, falsifying documents to avoid taxes and payroll irregularities.

Chance_go_to_jail

“Rustic Vessel” of the Month: Cubans arrive in Key Biscayne after 10 days at sea

balsa

Nothing out of the ordinary here.

And it is the fact that this is commonplace that is most distressing.

motor

Fourteen Cubans from Camaguey build a "rustic vessel" out of scraps of wood and steel.  They improvise some flotation devices, find a propeller, bolt down an engine from an old Russian T-40 tractor, and off they go, headed north.

They are like rats fleeing a sinking ship, and they say so openly.  The so-called "reforms" that garner so much attention from the American and European news media are simply no reforms at all.

"I left because there is no future in Cuba.  You have to choose between buying shoes or buying food," said Rene Morales, one of the "migrants."

These fugitives were between the ages of 20 and 40, in other words, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of the so-called Revolution.

After ten days at sea, they came ashore on a beach in Key Biscayne on September 23rd.  Onlookers gawked at their crudely-built vessel, which resembled a beached whale, and some took photos.

The "dry foot" policy negotiated by President Clinton in 1992 allows these Cubans to stay in the U.S.A.  Had they been intercepted by the Coast Guard out at sea, they might have been given the same matching shirts, but would have been sent back to Castrogonia.

Whole story here in Portuguese, from Globo.com

cubanos

Successful "dry foot" Cuban rafters

 

Cuba’s battle shy cowardly dictator couldn’t find the entrance

It was always others who shed their blood for the dream of a democratic revolution, never the power mad psychopath bent on destroying the island of his birth.

From Translating Cuba, by Angel Santiesteban, Cuban dissident writer, blogger, and political prisoner.

The “Hero” Who Couldn’t Find the Entrance
by Angel Santiesteban

A great truth was revealed at the VIII Conference of the National Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba (UNEAC, by its Spanish initials).

We have to admit when our detractors speak the truth. There’s no other option than –for the sake of honesty– to accept how right they’ve been. Therefore, I have to admit that, yes, “The UNEAC is the Moncada of culture”*. It’s impossible to state it any clearer, for we know well the political, human, logistic, and leadership failures that the assault on the Moncada Barracks in 1953 symbolized, when the immature and terribly suspicious Fidel Castro stationed a select group to practice their aim in Santiago de Cuba. With neither suitable arms nor adequate preparations to confront the army, he sent them to a certain death.

How can intellectuals pretend not to recognize Fidel Castro’s cowardice, who — in spite of having gone to school in that city and having planned the attack — couldn't find the entrance to the barracks, when those who had never been there were able to get behind its walls?

It is infuriating to watch that documentary where Fidel Castro, leaning on a car of that era, explains how he was unable to find the entrance, yet the cars traveling ahead and behind him managed to penetrate the garrison, whose entrance is of such a size that a blind man could find it! But we already know that there’s nothing worse than one who doesn't want to see what’s in front of him.

That wasn't his only mistake. We know that, throughout the entire struggle of the Rebel Army, he never participated in a single battle; and he advised Raul Castro to do likewise: while leading his comrades in the midst of combat, the latter would abandon the fight only to appear days later when the town square had been taken. Fidel Castro not only couldn't find the entrance, he was unable to follow the sounds of gunfire on that fateful morning, nor could he redirect himself towards other posts during the shootout. On the contrary, he remained huddled, waiting for the end, and when he learned his soldiers were dead or captured, he sought shelter in a hole in order to finally turn himself in to the Catholic Church (which he never thanked for saving him), and reemerge as the hero.

Certainly, seen as a failure (the only way to comprehend this event), without a doubt, as the president of the UNEAC, Miguel Barnet, put it: “The UNEAC is the Moncada of culture”. He’s never been more right.

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Angel Santiesteban-Prats

Lawton Prison Compound. April, 2014

* Santiesteban is referring to the speech by Miguel Barnet at the opening of the VIII UNEAC Conference.

Translated by: Yoyi el Monaguillo

Sign the petition so that Amnesty International will declare the Cuban dissident Ángel Santiesteban a prisoner of conscience.

angel-minit-lawton

For further reading, I highly recommend The Moncada Attack: Birth of the Cuban Revolution by Antonio Rafael de la Cova available at Amazon.

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Ernest Hemingway’s Grandsons Continue Their Granddad’s Disgusting Legacy

heming4hemingway2fusilamientosHemingway's grandsons visit Cuban village

"Look Dos, if you write negatively about the communists the reviewers will ruin you forever." (Ernest Hemingway to a disgusted John Dos Passos, as the latter--once a starry-eyed pinko--fled Republican Spain. Hemingway's friend Dos Passos had been horrified and thoroughly disillusioned by the Communist massacres Hemingway was dutifully covering up while dutifully shilling for the Spanish Reds in 1936.)

"The Cuban Revolution is very pure and beautiful" (Ernest Hemingway, 1960.)

Ernest Hemingway’s Grandsons Continue Their Granddad’s Disgusting Legacy

Can you imagine the reputation of a literary figure surviving the disclosure that he worked (however briefly and ineffectually) for Hitler's Abwehr? And who proudly posed giving the stiff-arm Fascist salute?

Yet Ernest Hemingway worked for Stalin’s KGB, proudly posed giving the communist clenched fist, and nobody (among the “smart set”) seems to bat an eye.

And speaking of Hemingway’s grandsons John and Patrick. Earlier this month they signed on as Castro-regime travel agents by promoting tourism and fishing to the Stalinist island. Imagine the snark-fest such as Saturday Night Live, Jon Stewart, Bill Maher, etc. might indulge about a fishing tournament in a nation whose subjects (who pre-Castroism considered boat-ownership almost a birthright) are now prohibited by jail and torture-chamber from owning boats.

Even snarkier, the tournament is promoted by a pair of gold-digging celebrity progeny who make Paris Hilton look like Rosie the Riveter. Imagine such a thing--that is--if the beneficiary of their tourism promotion ad been a “U.S.-friendly right–wing dictatorship,” instead of a terror-sponsoring Stalinist dictatorship that craved to nuke the U.S.

Oh I know, I know , many folks out there with a bumper-sticker knowledge of Castroism and a fetish for swallowing and parroting utopian dogma as revealed by their cult leaders rather than examining the actual evidence of human action ( i.e. some libertarians) claim tourism to Cuba will magically eradicate Castroism. Then KGB-trained secret police and their torture-chambers will magically morph into unicorns and rainbows--if only given a chance.

Similar to another drug-addled utopian fantasist, all they are saying is: give tourism a chance.

You might recall the disaster for Southeast Asians when “peace was given a chance” in Southeast Asia (hundreds of thousands murdered in a “re-education” Gulag or drowned while attempting escape.) Well the tourism given a chance in Cuba has also ended disastrously for Cubans.

Our friends at Townhall help disseminate items little known outside the Cuban-American informational ghetto.

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"Le RRRRONCA!!!"