What if?

What if instead of “Bush Takes Parting Swipe at Communist Cuba,” this headline read “Departing President Affirms Support for a Free Cuba.” Then, what if the first paragraph read not
President George W. Bush took a parting swipe at communist Cuba on Tuesday, saying it was a cruel dictatorship that had responded to U.S. appeals for democratic reform with more repression of its people.
but
President George W. Bush reaffirmed his support for a free Cuba on Tuesday. Referring to a long history of human rights abuses in the island nation, he described the present regime as a cruel dictatorship that has responded to U.S. appeals for democratic reform with more repression of its people.
Later on,
Obama, a Democrat, has pledged to soften restrictions on family travel and remittances but said he would keep the embargo as leverage to influence changes in the one-party state.
He has said he would be ready to pursue diplomacy with Cuba’s leaders if conditions were right, something Bush has resisted doing.

could become
He has said he would be ready to pursue diplomacy with Cuba’s leaders if conditions were right, a position maintained by a number or U.S. administrations and repulsed by the regime in Havana.
What a difference a few words can make in this Reuters article by Matt Spetalnick, edited by Eric Beech.
(Corrections and additions in boldface mine.)

4 thoughts on “What if?”

  1. Kudos to the staff writers at Babalublog for their continual insightful deconstruction of the mainstream media’s Cuba arguments [read “Cuba arguments” as Cuba propaganda].
    It is so simple to destroy their arguments, because their arguments are repetitive, contradictory and based on falsehoods, yet we [and I use the word “we” in a collective manner meaning all of us–el exilio completo] have allowed them for years to perpetrate their lies, because we are not institution builders and never founded a think tank or newspaper to act as a counterbalance: as such we did not have a platform.
    That’s why I’ll say it again, the blogs and especially Babalu is our only voice–our unofficial think tank. Our platform.
    I’m proud of you folks. Keep up the good work! Years from now, all of these entries in Babalu will hopefully serve as a balance for scholars studying Cuba who too often rely on the mainstream media for their source of information. After all, many people are starting to recognize the value of blogs as alternative forms of valuable information. Blogs are slowly gaining respect and people are beginning to cite blogs in their works, especially as we begin seeing the demise of major newspapers [because they are out-of-touch and elitist].

  2. I repeat what I said elsewhere.
    National Review should also receive some kudos for placing an article by Otto Reich in the recent issue (1/26). It is a two page piece of retrospective for the 50th that tells it like it was and is.
    The magazine should be rewarded by Cubans. Go out and buy this issue to thank NR. If you have the money, go out and subscribe to the magazine.
    I don’t have to mention to all babalu readers that Jay Nordlinger of NR and NR online is also a consistent truth teller about Cuba.

  3. Honey,
    You are absolutely right! I didn’t know about this National Review article by Reich. I will definitely go out and buy it! This is one of the faults that we Cubans have: we don’t support our few supporters. Something that I admire about American Jews is that they recognize the support of their friends. Why? Because they are institution builders. Case in point, in NYC about a year ago, a group of anti-semites attacked some Jews on the subway. A Muslim of all people was the only guy in the subway who came to the defense of the Jews. With his help, they were able to fend off their attackers. The local chapter of the Anti-Defamation League INSTANTLY recognized this heroic man and awarded him a prize. Now turn to the Cubans, when Julian Schnabel went ouf of his way to produce “Before Night Falls” arguably the most anti-Castro feature film ever made by a non-Cuban–a movie that bucked the system and alienated him from his Hollywood buddies [he had to finance the movie himself and had trouble getting a distributor], not one Cuban organization recognized Schnabel’s accomplishments, gave him a reward or gave a dinner in his favor.

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