From reader John North, of St. Patrick’s, Grenada, in response to criticism of President Bush’s recent speech on Cuba.
From Caribbean Net News:
Today’s version of your publication contained two opinion pieces by Antonio Rodriguez and by your regular contributor Anthony L Hall. They both decry George W. Bush’s recent speech on Cuba. In that speech he rightly calls castro’s Cuba a gulag and anticipates the day when Cuba is free and ruled by free people. It amazes me that anyone can criticize such truthful sentiments.
Both contributors lambasted Bush for what they refer to as his “pointless’ and “hypocritical” policies respectively. As a former supporter of the Grenada revolution, this gives me shivers up and down my spine. This concerns me especially since several Caribbean leaders also support castro and seem to emulate his policies. What on earth are they emulating?
However, in the same edition of your publication, was a story not based on fantasy but on reality. The stark reality of life inside castro’s Cuba today. “Cuban immigrant gives freedom a ‘thumbs up’ on USVI.” It is the story of Ryan Lopez a Cuban pharmacist who braved the dangerous seas and elements to rise like a Christ figure or a Neptune out of the waves to freedom in the US Virgin Islands. His opinion is very different from your two pundits. In his mind, “There is no future in Cuba”. Look at what the Cuban people are willing to do to escape.
Therefore, Bush is correct to continue long standing US policy towards Cuba. If castro cannot make his revolution work without the “evil capitalist”, then what does that say for his political and economic philosophy which he has perpetrated on the Cuban people. The US economic sanctions only expose the bankruptcy of castro’s hypocrisy. He stubborn refuses to acknowledge that he has failed. And that he has reigned desolation and terror on the Cuban people. His actions alone and not those of Bush are responsible for the lack of freedom of speech, lack of free elections, lack of the right to assemble, an extensive police state, restrictions on modern technological developments such as the internet, hunger through gulag food rations, crumbling schools, shortage of qualified teachers and imprisonment of those who oppose castro.
Thus, those pundits and leaders seem to be the hypocritical and irrelevant ones in an age when the world is leading towards more freedoms for the common man. They conveniently gloss over castro’s activities and results and instead focus on the United States policy towards castro. However, the people of the Caribbean are not stupid as they all seem to think. They may go to Cuba to get an education if they think they can get one. But once there, they see the deplorable decay of castro’s Cuba. Caribbean folks, after several centuries of slavery, more than many other peoples, have no desire to live under the type of repression that castro peddles. So if our leaders (and pundits) harbor any such ambitions, they should think twice. The future of the Caribbean is freedom not serfdom.
Furthermore, those students of history will remember when Ronald Reagan gave a speech in which he roundly criticized the Soviet Union and stated that the “evil empire” was in its last throes of it s existence many laughed. He was called delusional. He was universally called upon to change his policies to that corrupt union. Yet only a few short years later, that unholy union fell and the rest is history.
The American policy has allowed humanitarian aid and contacts and food shipments to Cuba. That is sufficient for now as long as an arrogant despot rules that island.