Coddling Castros Has Made Cuban Regime More Vicious Than Ever
Leadership: Cuba’s dictatorship has cracked down harder than ever on dissidents at a time when high-ranking leaders, political pilgrims and tourists are paying tribute to the regime in droves. Who will stand for freedom?
Hard to think of any time when it’s ever been rosier for the Castro brothers in their 56 years as absolute overlords of Cuba.
In the rubble of their failed communist system, President Obama has extended normal relations — and asked nothing in return. Pope Francis is paying a visit to Cuba this month, complete with a mass to be held under the godlike image of bloodstained revolutionary Che Guevara.
U.S. congressional delegations — at least 20, notes the Capitol Hill Cubans blog — have been paying tribute to the “achievements” of Castro’s revolution and hobnobbing with Cuban officials, mojitos in hand. Tourists from the U.S. are rolling in, too, legal or not, fattening the coffers of the Cuban military that runs the hotels.
Having won such legitimization, it’s passing strange that far from loosening up, the Castro brothers are cracking down on Cubans harder than ever. It’s as if to say the fresh attention to their island is a perk for them alone, and the Cuban people not invited.
Castro’s secret police have arrested 4,264 dissidents for political reasons so far in 2015, according to the unofficial Cuban Commission on Human Rights Reconciliation. That squares with Hablemos Press agency’s 782 arrests counted in August, topping the 506 arrested in July and 617 in May, in the highest numbers of the year.
On Tuesday, Castro’s plainclothes goons arrested and beat up 140 dissidents in Santiago in an unprovoked attack as they walked to a church mass to honor Cuba’s patron saint, Our Lady of Charity.
On Sunday, the same enforcers came down hard on a group of 60 Ladies in White, wives of Cuba’s political prisoners, arresting and beating not just the unarmed women but a visiting Chilean politician, Felipe Kast, as well. Kast showed the courage — unlike the 20 U.S. congress members — to walk with them. When was the last time we saw left-wing visitors to Cuba such as Reps. Karen Bass and Maxine Waters show such solidarity?
“The Ladies in White have spent a long time suffering violent arrests simply for demonstrating peacefully for the respect of human rights in Cuba. In my visit to Cuba, the least I could do was accompany them in their Sunday walk,” Chile’s Kast said.
Continue reading HERE.