Buenos Dias…grrmmphh (UPDATED)

I was so wound up after last night’s radio show that I couldnt get to sleep till the wee hours of the morning and right now I feel like I spent the night being used as a punching bag. The one thought that pitched a tent and made residence in my mind last night was this:
We are at a historical crossroad. On the cusp of a dawn. Despite all the “experts” and journalists assuring us that a transition in Cuba’s government has taken place, nothing has changed. As long as fidel castro is supposedly alive, regardless of whether he’s “calling the shots” or not, there has been no “transition.” fidel is the revolution and the revolution is fidel.
That said, and based upon that premise, what do you all think would occur, if, at the exact moment that the news of fidel castro’s death is announced, the US government lifts the embargo and all restrictions vis a vis Cuba?
Would raul castro be able to handle and maintain control of Cuba, or would no US sanctions lead to his demise?
Update: I’ve posted a couple of responses to this post below the fold that I received via email.

First, from Glenn S:

Your first port today leads to an even more interesting question.
How will the end game for Cuba’s communist party play out?
If history has anything to say here I think after Fidel dies;
– Someone/s in the military (it could be a week or it could be two years later) close to Raul, makes a deal with the evil empire.
– A military coup al la 1973 Chile ensues. It starts off with US Naval airstrikes on the ground-to-air defense systems the island has in place. US marines beach the island between each military outpost coordinated with their local counterparts.
– A small arms war breaks out between the US/Cuban counter-revolutionaries and the loyalist portions of the military. Raul and friends try to flee to Caracas via speedboat.
– The sanctions will be lifted but with Hollywood and Eurotrash’s constant whining there are still restrictions on entry and departure. A quiet period. Media is also restricted.
– Undesirables are deported, Embassies are closed and there protests of human rights violations by high-profile leftists at US Embassies and at airports around the world.
– Stories about what takes place during this time come to light a year after this occurs with Hollyweird taking the side of the left. Surprise! They tell stories and movies stating the atrocities that take place during this period ignoring the citizens that are dancing in the streets. These stories are trumped by the magnitude of the severe living conditions left by Fidel Inc. as well as documentation of some of their exploits. Including proposals with terrorists and genocidal dictators past and present. Many politicos and media celebrities will lose face here.
– Lawyers and Politicians, mostly from DC and Miami start entering the island with a free press. Now the fun really begins.

And second, from Dennis S:

Dear Val,
Upon the announcement of el commandante’s demise, if I were President Bush, I would immediately call a full blown press conference. I would have my Secretary of Commerce and junior Senator from Florida standing beside me, along with other key Cuban Americans and Cuban patriots. I would announce that the United States was unilaterally ending its embargo of Cuba and establishing diplomatic relations. I would not have informed Cuba before this announcment.
My goal would be to use the moment to maximum advantage, catch little brother and his cronies completely off guard, and erase the excuse that the United States is responsible for all of Cuba’s problems. Castro, Inc. would squeal like pigs. If they fear anything, it is Hyatt or Hilton moving in and taking away the hotel fiefdoms that Raul has granted his officers in exchange for their loyalty. The government hand out centers would disappear when the first Wal Mart opens. The shots we would be firing would be the precise weapons that Castro, Inc. cannot withstand: economic!
When Raul gets in touch with me to sue for terms, I would not offer what Marcos got: a plane out and safe conduct for his family. Well, perhaps some family members but he personally would be left to the justice of the people. Although the family members would have to head for Venezuela or Spain because they would be dead people walking in Miami.
It never ceases to amaze me in conversations with Americans, most of whom are clueless about Cuba, that in swallowing the media propaganda that Raul is a more pragmatic version of his late older brother, that during the so called revolution, when these psychos were up in the mountains with only a few dozen fellow travelers, that when the latest Batista informer was discovered among them, that el maximo may have ordered the execution, but little brother was the one who led the victim off and actually put the revolver to their head. He is a cold blooded murderer. It is one thing to order death, another to carry it out by your own hand. So I have no sympathy whatsoever for the soon to be former el commandate II of the former Castro dynasty.
I mention Marcos because Castro, Inc. owes a lot of money and assets back to the people of Cuba in the form of Swiss bank accounts, etc. etc. Isn’t it sad that the former colonies of Spain seem to have a habit of allowing lying, murdering and greedy men to take control?
Mini-me in Caracas will also have a hissy fit. Perhaps he will offer little brother asylum before he gets the swift justice from the people that they have been denied for so many years.
My emotions and heart tell me to never end the embargo. My logic and head tells me to do it to our advantage at the precise moment when little brother is most vulnerable, when he is forced to finally admit that el maximo is “actually, really, completely and absolutely dead.”
Little brother will be overwhelmed and Cuba will be freed. I deeply believe the madness can be terminated quickly. If el commandante II hesitates, I think a swift, quick hit from a Delta or Seal team with a bullet to the head would do the trick.

24 thoughts on “Buenos Dias…grrmmphh (UPDATED)”

  1. First, Helms-Burton would have to be ammended. As long as any of the two Castro crooks are at the helm, the embargo can’t be lifted.
    There must be freedom for all political prisoners, and multi-party elections supervised by the international community, (let’s hope Jimma stays home).
    I can’t think of any politician in the US that would be against that. But it’s up to us. To pressure the US government. The Cuba-American community and our allies are key in this.
    Remember “If it is to be, it is up to me”.

  2. -“…what do you all think would occur, if, at the exact moment that the news of fidel castro’s death is announced, the US government lifts the embargo and all restrictions vis a vis Cuba?”

    What would occur?

    – an invasion upon the shores of Cuba by Cuban-Americans in hundreds of boats, which would not be able to be contained by the Cuban coast guard.

    – this would provided ‘critical-timing’ impact in a ‘fluid-environment’ relative to the population at-large in Cuba.

    – the hidden potential being the ‘air of hope and liberty’ that this invasion could ignite – which could prove to be ‘momentume-building’ and spread through the whole of Cuba – erasing the ‘fear’ content and overwhelming the cockroach brigades supporting the tyranny.

    IT’S WORTH THE GAMBLE! – Let’s get behind this policy RIGHT NOW!!!!

  3. Sorry, I ment to type “amended”, I shouldn’t try to spell before having my cafecito.
    Also sorry I missed the show last night but I’m going to listen today and hope I don’t get indigestion, or a puking attack. Although I could stand to lose a few pounds.

  4. One correction to my previous post…. I only ‘meant’ to refer to the TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS. As to the ‘fake embargo’ currently in-place, I would leave that alone for the time-being to see what effect the complete removal of travel restrictions has on events.

  5. Val,
    I think that it would be the same as if we did it 20 years ago. If we lifted every sanction and everything 20 years ago, it would have destabalized Cuba. The reasons for why I don’t support lifting the embargo will still be true though, if fidel dies.
    Why then would I have kept up the fight? I don’t care how powerful fidel was, everybody rushing overthere at once would have destabalized that government during the last 20 years. The issues for not supporting the lifting of the embargo, such as apropriation of American properties, such as political prisoners, such as the freedom of speech, such as human rights, they’d still be there. Not to mention access to the world bank, American credit, and legitamacy of that government.

  6. It would be genius. The Americans are already clamoriing to go, add in the Cuban Americans and our own mini Berlin airlift, and how can the machinery of repression contain it all? Perhaps now is the time to have it lifted. It would also make us look less intransigent.
    Question becomes, how do we phrase it? The Pol’s are never going to go for the “Once Castro’s Dead”
    Act,” and as Henry rightly points out, this would have to be legislated beforehand. We would need to phrase it as something like the future of Cuba act. Let better minds prevail on that.
    Further with the election coming on, the timing is auspicious. The Pol’s are looking for Cuban American votes and the embargo and trade restrictions are growing increasingly unpopular. All we need to do is start contacting our pol’s. Do I detect a BUCL campaign in the air?
    At worst, the Cubans will be subjected to the American sense of entitlement and the cattle ranchers will take a financial bloodbath when they start extending credit. The very worst, Raul nipping it in the bud, would show him up to his people, because no matter how they restrict access to info, the people will find out. A special fund could also be set up to pay back companies that lost property by setting up a slight surcharge on all transactions.
    Genius, Val. Let’s see if it could be done. We have a lot of talent out there.

  7. ruth,
    Im not sure its the way to go, mind you, I just tossed that up for debate and consideration. there are real problems with lifting the embargo, most of which Lori mentioned in her comment.
    And, it is quite a gamble. I dont know if it behooves us to go “all in” at this stage in the game.

  8. Fortunately it could not be done so quickly as the current law requires release of all political prisoners, etc before it can be lifted. When fidel finally dies, rather than granting raul any freebies, the US should lead the world in the repudiation of a castro unelected dynasty trampling the rights of all Cubans to be free.

  9. Aargh, lost my comment and have to dash out. Okay, okay, so I got carried away with the moment. But picture it: an American invasion of a different stripe with Cubans, American and Exile, at the fore.
    The basic problem is that I fear we are losing the battle to continue the embargo and the travel restrictions. This way, we get it lifted on our terms.

  10. Did anyone say “EMBARGO”?

    EMBARGO “to officially stop trading with another country”– Cambridge Dictionary online

    I wonder how much of the following was “purchased” by the “Cuban people”? In “pesos”???

    59,228,000 Meat, poultry, etc.
    50,487,000 Corn
    47,199,000 Wheat
    40,999,000 Rice
    39,145,000 Soybeans
    28,382,000 Animal feeds, n.e.c.
    21,297,000 Oilseeds, food oils
    19,547,000 Vegetables
    12,568,000 Dairy products and eggs
    5,043,000 Agric. farming-unmanufactured
    3,695,000 Logs and lumber
    3,649,000 Wood supplies, manufactured
    2,469,000 Chemicals-fertilizers
    2,397,000 Newsprint
    2,107,000 Pharmaceutical preparations
    1,411,000 Other foods
    1,277,000 Fruits, frozen juices
    1,140,000 Chemicals-inorganic
    986,000 Agric. industry-unmanufactured
    891,000 Miscellaneous domestic exports and special transactions
    753,000 Medicinal equipment
    441,000 Chemicals-other
    394,000 Cotton, raw
    308,000 Other industrial supplies
    274,000 Shingles, molding, wallboard
    246,000 Finished textile supplies
    214,000 Measuring, testing, control instruments
    162,000 Automotive tires and tubes
    145,000 Books, printed matter
    144,000 Nuts
    128,000 Writing and art supplies
    88,000 Other household goods
    87,000 Photo, service industry machinery
    77,000 Plastic materials
    56,000 Computer accessories
    54,000 Toiletries and cosmetics
    50,000 Apparel, household goods – textile
    39,000 Bakery products
    35,000 Electric apparatus
    18,000 Furniture, household goods, etc.
    17,000 Agriculture-manufactured, other
    17,000 Mineral supplies-manufactured
    15,000 Telecommunications equipment
    14,000 Nontextile floor tiles
    13,000 Toys/games/sporting goods
    12,000 Apparel,household goods-nontextile
    10,000 Finished metal shapes
    10,000 Sports apparel and gear
    8,000 Cotton fiber cloth
    7,000 Iron and steel mill products
    7,000 Laboratory testing instruments
    7,000 Pleasure boats and motors
    6,000 Industrial rubber products
    3,000 Fish and shellfish
    Source: U.S. Foreign Trade Statistics

  11. Val, I’d like to be more sympathetic about your experience on last night’s show, but you know, if you play with caca, well, you get the idea. And no, I did not listen in, and I’m glad of it.

  12. Val, in case anyone’s asking, it didn’t take took long to track down and learn WHY in the world would all this stuff wind up in Cuba….

    59,228,000 Meat, poultry, etc…. For Elite’s survival
    50,487,000 Corn……………… For Elite’s survival
    47,199,000 Wheat…………….. For Elite’s survival
    40,999,000 Rice……………… For Elite’s survival
    39,145,000 Soybeans………….. For Elite’s survival
    28,382,000 Animal feeds, n.e.c… For Elite’s survival
    21,297,000 Oilseeds, food oils… For Elite’s survival
    19,547,000 Vegetables………… For Elite’s survival
    12,568,000 Dairy products and eggs For Elite’s survival
    5,043,000 Agric. farming-unmanuf. For Elite’s survival
    3,695,000 Logs and lumber …… To reinforce the ‘concentration camps’
    3,649,000 Wood supplies, manufac. To reinforce the ‘concentration camps’
    2,469,000 Chemicals-fertilizers.. To clean the military’s holding’s
    2,397,000 Newsprint………….. To provide material for GRANMA’s circulation
    2,107,000 Pharmaceutical prepara. To support the Elite’s Hospitals
    1,411,000 Other foods………… For Elite’s survival
    1,277,000 Fruits, frozen juices.. To support the Military’s Tourista Hotels
    1,140,000 Chemicals-inorganic…. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    986,000 Agric. industry-unmanuf.For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    891,000 Miscellaneous domestic
    exports and special transac…. For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    753,000 Medicinal equipment…. For the Castro Brothers
    441,000 Chemicals-other…….. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    394,000 Cotton, raw………… For Dalia Soto del Valle’s morning facials
    308,000 Other industrial supplies.. For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    274,000 Shingles, molding, wall … For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    246,000 Finished textile supplies.. For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    214,000 Measuring, testing,
    control instruments………. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    162,000 Automotive tires and tubes. For Elite to sell in black market to potential balseros
    145,000 Books, printed matter…… For Elite’s pleasure reading
    144,000 Nuts………………….. For Elite’s pleasure
    128,000 Writing and art supplies… For School Propaganda campaigns
    88,000 Other household goods…… For Dalia Soto del Valle’s home
    87,000 Photo, service
    industry machinery……….. For Seguridad de Estado’s surveilance
    77,000 Plastic materials………. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    56,000 Computer accessories……. For Ramiro Valdez’s surveilance room
    54,000 Toiletries and cosmetics… For Dalia Soto del Valle’s bathroom
    50,000 Apparel, household goods… For Dalia Soto del Valle’s kitchen
    39,000 Bakery products ……….. Cake for the masses
    35,000 Electric apparatus……… For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    18,000 Furniture, household
    goods, etc………………. For Dalia Soto del Valle’s home
    17,000 Agriculture-manufactured,.. For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    17,000 Mineral supplies-manufact.. For Elite’s ‘black market’ enterprises
    15,000 Telecommunications equipm.. For Ramiro Valdez’s surveilance room
    14,000 Nontextile floor tiles….. For Seguridad de Estado offices
    13,000 Toys/games/sporting goods.. For Alejandro Castro’s bedroom
    12,000 Apparel,household
    goods-nontextile………… For Alejandro Castro’s bedroom
    10,000 Finished metal shapes…. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    10,000 Sports apparel and gear.. For Alejandro Castro’s garage
    8,000 Cotton fiber cloth……. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    7,000 Iron and steel mill prod. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    7,000 Laboratory testing instru. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    7,000 Pleasure boats and motors. For Alejandro Castro’s bedroom
    6,000 Industrial rubber products. For Seguridad de Estado’s torture techniques
    3,000 Fish and shellfish……… For Elite’s pleasure

  13. yikes! $374 million with the embargo, imagine the numbers without it.
    I’ve wondered about Val’s question too, now that biology is taking its course & the expectations are high. I’m no expert or historian of any sort, however, I’ve observed what happened in the former USSR and its satellites when they crashed and burned. Generally, some did well and some did worse. Russia has slowly returned to its totalitarian days, with the help of a former KGB kingpin; the people had no institutions or foundations to hold them through the transition from the commie state, and are quickly headed back to square one.
    My fear is that the status will remain quo if the top echelon that is now entrenched in Cuba is allowed to remain, embargo or not. Does anybody believe these people will relinquish power without a fight? Look at the chitcoms (Chinese commies); they like the capitalist economy as long as they manage it themselves, and while some improvements do trickle down, the control is such that the people there aren’t really free, not even with advanced technology.
    While the US and other countries are looking at the $$$$ signs during the kasstro death watch, it should sober us to remember that many dictatorships are able to provide a decent standard of living —- but a gold cage is still a cage.

  14. Units and source please
    take care and be well
    P.s. I think Raul will end up like Mussolini… hanging upside down,,,

  15. Ziva, fyi….the “7,000” (Pleasure Boats) is a “DOLLAR AMOUNT” – you can see the “TOTAL” at the bottom of the original listing (347 $MILLION)

  16. Ziva, don’t worry, tomorrow’s Friday. By the way, $7000 (for all of 2006) doesn’t get you a whole hell of a lot in terms of ‘pleasure boat’. It either went to ‘Alejandro’ or one of the Elites who wanted to get out there real fast with one of these…

  17. I think we have already established the fact that the “embargo” is internal to Cuba. I loved that list and where everything goes. Val, I agree that we should not do anything right away. It’s the perfect time to put MORE pressure on the Cuban government. They are releasing political prisoners in a trickle, to tease us into thinking there will be some basic changes in the system. I don’t think there will be. So now is the time to hang tough. Also, the last things Cubans want is a bunch of Cuban-Americans coming over there and telling them what to do. I have heard this from people on the island who are ANTI-Castro. Nor would a military invasion help. The “liberation” forces inside Cuba are disorganized and scattered. The rest of the folks just want peace and more food on the table. Negotiations might be in order, but only if they release ALL of the political prisoners, plus other concessions to US. This is no time to drop the ball.

  18. I’m still wondering how we can have an embargo with Cuba and still it is ranked 25th out of all the countries in the world to whom we export goods. Hmmmmm…

  19. I want to correct my error. It was Jewbana who pointed out that Helms-Burton would have to be amended. I was thinking of another legal discussion. My apologies.

Comments are closed.