Ana Menendez, the odious Herald columnist characterized by her equine features and her self-hating commentary, has penned a column in which she once again misses the point.
The announcement, a boring political footnote anywhere else, was greeted here with the hysteria, glee and indignation that is the mark of manufactured scandal…
Charles Rangel, the Democrat from New York, has traveled to Cuba as Fidel’s guest and repeatedly called for an end to the embargo. Not surprisingly, he’s earned the hatred of many conservative exiles.
No Ms. Menendez, that’s not the only reason many exiles of all stripes loathe the man. They hate him for the same reason they hate you, namely a failure to understand who the bad guys are and who the good guys are.
Rangel had to admit that at last one of his visits to his friend castro was partially paid by the Cuban government. Charles Rangel is not your run of the mill naive anti-embargo activist. Additionally, his words and his actions show disdain for the exile community.
In 2007 Rangel wrote a column for Cigar Aficionado in which he stated:
I was so revolted by the behavior of my fellow Americans in Miami that I wrote a letter to President Castro expressing my sympathy and offering an apology for my countrymen’s heartless celebration.
He was referring to the spontaneous celebrations of Cuban-Americans of all ages when it appeared that castro might actually be dead.
As Val Prieto said to me the other day: “Who gave Charles Rangel the right to apologize for me?”
Yale University Professor Carlos Eire, said about one of Ms. Menendez’ media colleagues from the New York times who pitched him on the idea of an op-ed column in which he would criticize the celebrations of his fellow Cuban-Americans, “The ignorance and insensitivity revealed in that pitch was so staggering and appalling-so much in the same league as the Holocaust deniers or the clueless socialites in William Hamilton’s cartoons- that it caught me off guard.
I don’t see what’s so hard for Rangel and the folks at the Times to understand. fidel castro has brought misery and death to Cuba in inconceivable measures. I don’t have to apologize to anyone for being happy that he might suffer a little bit in his death.
More from Rangel:
The sad fact is that much of the harsh feelings harbored by some people in Miami are like ancient feuds between families. They hold on tight to the anger, even if the reasons are forgotten. I once met a young man who said he admired my work in Congress, except for my position on lifting the embargo against Cuba. When I asked why, he told me that he had been told by his grandparents since childhood that Castro had stolen all of their property. I asked, What property? He said he didn’t know.
This argument that exiles are motivated by greed and revenge for losing property (which they claim was ill-gotten to begin with) has been leveled against us since the beginning of the regime. Well Mr. Rangel, I can assure you that I have no property to claim and no other objective than to see my parent’s country rid of the totalitarian dictatorship that has plagued it for half a century in no small measure because of enablers like you. I have nothing personal to gain from the liberation of political prisoners like Dr. Oscar Elias Biscet. Mr. Rangel you were one of only 22 house members that voted against a resolution in support of dissidents on the island. Even Jeff Flake voted for it.
So Ms. Menendez don’t lecture me on why it’s important to understand who is backing whom in this election. Forces are lining up against the incumbent and there is a commonality among them. Menendez, Aruca, Lesnik, Rangel, et al. They are all people that hate the exile community and are openly embracing Garcia, not because he’s a fidelista (he’s not) but because the change these people seek is not in Cuban policies that make Cuba a failed police state but instead a change to American policy that doesn’t recognize the legitimacy of a government that killed scores of our countrymen and imprisoned scores more.