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Archives by Tag 'Cuba'
The Innocence of Gerardo
RICARDO ALARCON de QUESADA
The meeting in London of the Commission of Inquiry on the case of the Cuban Five examined in depth the specific situation of Gerardo Hernández Nordelo and the infamous charge (Count 3 “conspiracy to commit murder”) lodged only against him. It forms the basis o...
American Health Care: a Cuban Fix
MATEO PIMENTEL
Despite the fact that the US altogether spends arguably more on public health than any other economic force in the West, next to nothing about its healthcare system is democratic. Like most everything else, this industry, or market sector, only exists to serve profit moti...
Havana, Where Everyone Can Dance
ANDRE VLTCHEK
Havana, Cuba It is crowded and loud. La Froridita, a famous old bar in Havana Vieja (Old Havana), is packed to the roof. Patrons consist mostly of foreigners and some overseas Cubans. They are loud, trying to shout over the upbeat son ...
Fidel at 87
NELSON P. VALDES
On August 13th, Fidel Castro became 87 years old. He has been out of power since he got very ill in 2006 and retired in 2008. Seven years have gone by. We were told by the world mass media that Raúl Castro did not have the wherewithal to rule. And yet, there has been no ...
Saul Landau, Friend of the Cuban Revolution
RICARDO ALARCÓN
Havana. Saul Landau deserves this recognition and much more. He has given our people a sincere, unlimited, authentic friendship all his life. In his early youth he embraced revolutionary ideas and never abandoned them. He always upheld these ideas far from...
Cuban Transit: From Fidel to Raul
NORMAN POLLACK
In the New York Times (July 24) Victoria Burnett reported on an address that Raul Castro delivered to the  Cuban National Assembly the preceding day (“Harsh Self-Assessment as Cuba Looks Within”) which had serious criticisms to make of the lack of civility in ...
Is Cuban Baseball a Threat to Our National Security?
MANUEL R. GÓMEZ
Well, the title is a bit of hyperbole, but what is true is that, according to reliable reports in the Dominican press (Nathanael Pérez Neró, Diario Libre, Santo Domingo), the vice-president of operati...
Fidel Castro and the Power of Faith
RICARDO ALARCÓN
  On March 10, 1952, former dictator Fulgencio Batista seized power in Cuba again. This happened eighty days before the elections in which he would have received the least votes. With one blow, he overthrew the president, abolished the constitution, dis...
Cuba’s Economic Performance in 2012
JOSÉ LUIS RODRIGUEZ
Havana. Recently, the National Office of Statistics and Information (ONEI) published a digital version of the Economic and Social Outlook for 2012,  a document it publishes regularly as a preview of the Statistical Yearbook of Cuba (AEC).  [1] The...
The Unrelenting Economic War on Cuba
DANIEL KOVALIK
If it weren’t bad enough that the U.S. has imposed an illegal embargo against Cuba for over 50 years, it has also tried to prevent those interested in learning about this embargo (more accurately termed ablockade because the U.S. aggressively enforces it against...
Cuba’s Other Revolution
CARMELO RUIZ-MARRERO
“During the Special Period’s most difficult years, countless and creative solutions were found by our campesinos and agricultural science researchers. There was one objective and one priority: to recover our agricultural systems and produce what’s necessary to f...
Cuba Policy: Fruitless, Mean and Cruel
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDÉS
In their 54-year-old effort to bring down Cuba’s revolutionary government and restore obedience in our Caribbean neighbor, U.S. officials have compiled a spectacular record of failure, overshadowed only by the determination to persist in their pursuit of wrongheaded...
Confronting Polemics With Alfredo Guevara
LOUIS PROYECT
This week Alfredo Guevara, the father of revolutionary Cuba’s film industry, died of a heart attack at the age of 87. The N.Y. Times obituary was refreshingly honest about the role he played: A committed Fidelista, Mr. Guevara nevertheless insisted th...
A Cuban Spring?
ROGER BURBACH
This is a fruitful period of experimentation and debate in Cuba. It is now almost seven years since Raúl Castro replaced his brother Fidel, first as interim president in 2006 and then as president in 2008. Under Raúl, the country is taking steps to transform the econo...
The Bay of Pigs and Chronic Hubris
MANUEL R. GÓMEZ
April 17-19 marks the 52nd anniversary of the US-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion by Cuban exiles, our proxies to try to overthrow the Cuban Revolution.  My guess is that few Americans today remember what the invasion was, much less surmise why I can argue that the hubris ...
Report From Havana
CHRIS GILBERT and CIRA PASCUAL
Havana. If there has ever been any question that the FARC-EP (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia) is essentially a political organization – one that took up arms guided by a political vision and will abandon them when that political strategy leads th...
The Zurbano Controversy
NELSON P. VALDES
The Sunday New York Times (NYT) publication of the opinion piece entitled “For Blacks in Cuba, the Revolution Hasn’t Begun” by Roberto Zurbano has turned into a debate on whether a segment of the Cuban population has done well or not after 1959. The auth...
Return Guantánamo to the Cuban People
Dr. CESAR CHELALA
To restore good relations with Latin America and the Caribbean, damaged by several years of neglect, is one of many difficult tasks now facing the Obama administration. A measure that could have far-reaching consequences and notably improve the U.S.’ battered image in t...
Cuba’s Princess of the Internet
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDES
Liberal and conservative Americans alike have celebrated Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez. She’s become the new “resistance to Cuban communism” heroine, a world-renowned troublemaker inside communist Cuba. Yoani also acquired semi-princess status in western Europe...
The Curious Case of Yoani Sanchez
BENJAMIN WILLIS and MARIA ISABEL ALFONSO
Yoani Sanchez’ long-awaited arrival to the United States has been heralded as a victory for the opposition in Cuba and an example of how citizen journalists, armed with social media, can bring about democratic change in authoritarian societies. However, a closer loo...
Caribbean and Latin American Integration
CARMELO RUIZ-MARRERO
Port-au-Prince, Haiti. It was late afternoon when our flight from Miami arrived at the Toussaint L’Overture airport in Port Au Prince. Someday the fine folks at American Airlines will have to explain why it makes sense to fly from Puerto Rico to Hait...
The Bias of Human Rights Watch
GARRY LEECH
Sydney, Nova Scotia. Over the past thirty years, Human Rights Watch has become one of the most recognized non-governmental organizations in the world due to its global promotion of human rights. But despite its claims to be an advocate of international hum...
The Monroe Doctrine Turned on Its Head?
MANUEL R. GÓMEZ
Last Monday, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean Countries (CELAC) met for its second summit in Santiago, Chile, one year after its founding meeting in Caracas, Venezuela in 2011.  The Summit is the culmination of roughly a decade of efforts to create a viable ...
The Economics of the Cuban Embargo
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDES
The time has come and almost gone for Washington to repair its broken relations with Cuba. For 53 years the White House has maintained a punishing embargo on trade with Cuba. Its proponents, with the goal of removing Cuba’s revolutionary government, still plead: ...
Celia Sanchez and the Cuban Revolution
SAUL LANDAU
It’s about time,”I commented when I heard that Nancy Stout had written a biography of Celia Sanchez...
The Dangers and Degradations of Daily Prison Life
DANNY GLOVER and SAUL LANDAU
We wait with a Latina woman and two of her kids until the prison guard at the entrance desk calls our number. We pass through the X-ray machine and get our wrists stamped. Then we sit and stare at a religious display in the show case – church-state separation?— where ...
The Cubans are Coming!
JEAN-GUY ALLARD
Now they don’t even bother to hide their worry: the same politicians who slandered Cuba for decades, saying Cubans “can’t travel,” and even going so far as to draft laws meant to push disaffected Cubans to hurl themselves into the sea, are now rushing to figure ou...
Chavez’s Enemies See Opportunities in Cancer
MIKE WHITNEY
“When Chavez became president of Venezuela, the country was limping….. He gave everything he had in him – his sweat, soul, strength, energy, intelligence and love – to change Venezuela with dignity, growth, sovereignty, and nation-building....
All I Want for Christmas
BENJAMIN WILLIS
Dear Santa, I just wanted to shoot you off this quick note to ask you for a gift this Christmas before tomorrow in case something catastrophic happens. I know that this year has been especially challenging for your crew as far as figuring out who’s been naugh...
Obama’s Vilification of Latin America
MARK WEISBROT
President Obama went too far in throwing gratuitous insults at President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela on Friday ...
The Politics of Cuban-Americans
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDES
Several of our friends expressed shock when they learned that President Obama had won some 48% of south Florida’s Cuban-American vote. One asked: how can you explain that a reputedly reactionary community would yield such a high percentage vote for a Democrat? Th...
Obama, Cuba and United States
BENJAMIN WILLIS
Although most progressives would agree that last Tuesday’s elections did little to resolve the overwhelming list of challenges that faces our nation there is a glimmer of hope that the United States is inevitably moving towards a policy of engagement and normalizati...
Cuban Missile Crisis: Lessons for Iran?
SAUL LANDAU
Fifty years ago millions of people around the world expressed their fear – well merited — that nuclear war would erupt between the US and USSR over Soviet missiles placed in Cuba. Many Americans have the idea that a crazy Fidel Castro wanted to launch them at US t...
Cuba to Drop Exit Visa Requirements
CHRIS LEWIS
When I read last week that the Cuban government is scrapping its notorious permiso de salida—the official sanction required to exit the island—I immediately thought back to a warm May evening about two years ago. As a college student in Havana, I caught a Cub...
Poetry and Latin American Revolution
ANDRE VLTCHEK
The world is once again in turmoil. Several Arab nations are clearly in a state of mayhem, rebelling against decades of injustice. But their struggle is not always based on ideology, and it is not well defined. The West is taking full advantage of the confusion, pushi...
JFK’s Lunatic Priorities During the Cuban Missile Crisis
JOSEPH RICHARDSON
London. Reading the transcripts of Kennedy’s meetings with his advisers is an object lesson in the pernicious effects of secrecy on government policy. No doubt Kennedy, in taping these meetings, intended them as a day by day record from which he would la...
Fidel, Alive and Kicking
STEPHEN LENDMAN
Responding in longer form to erroneous reports of his death, Mark Twain was quoted saying, “Reports of my death were greatly exaggerated.” The same holds for Fidel Castro. Earlier reports pronounced him dead or dying. Each one was false. Given their sou...
The Civil Society Ploy
SAUL LANDAU and NELSON P. VALDES
Can the United States export democracy to another country, the way it exports Coca Cola? Apparently the government,particularly, USAID, and the mass media – think so. But, some tricky issues emerge because we – the USA – the ‘city on the hill”...
Half a Century Beyond the Cuban Missile Crisis
WINSLOW MYERS
Albert Einstein, the full measure of whose prophetic stature still has not been taken, wrote in a telegram to President Roosevelt in 1946: “The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking, and we thus drift toward unparalleled catastrop...
14 Years of Injustice
SAUL LANDAU
Five Cubans fighting terrorism in south Florida have served 14 years of prison, more than enough time for the US public to learn from its media about the horrific injustice done by the US government to these Cuban men. But the media has barely touched the grotesque frame ...
Miracle in Miami
RICARDO ALARCÓN de QUESADA
Havana. On May 25, 2001, when the trial of Gerardo Hernandez in Miami was nearing its end, the prosecution filed an Emergency Petition for Writ of Prohibition with the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta. The first surprise was the speed – no more t...
The Fabricated Case Against Gerardo Hernández
RICARDO ALARCÓN de QUESADA
Charge No 3, added in May 1999, against Gerardo Hernández Nordelo, almost eight months after his incarceration is based on a false –more than false, absurd’- premise: the made-up existence of a Cuban Government plan to attack US planes in international airspace. This...
A Fabricated Murder
RICARDO ALARCÓN de QUESADA
On February 24, 1996, a lamentable event took place in front of the Malecón in Havana. Two small planes belonging to a terrorist group in Miami were shot down by anti-aircraft defenses when they violated Cuban national territory. Dozens of similar violations had taken pl...
The Media and the Cuban Five
RICARDO ALARCÓN de QUESADA
The great irony in the case of the Cuban Five seems to be its relationship with the media. In Miami, the case had out-of-proportion coverage, and the “journalists” and local media were instrumental in the creation of an environment of irrational hatred that wou...
The Cuban Five and the Garbus Memo
RICARDO ALARCÓN de QUESADA
Havana. The US Government seriously violated the Constitution and the Law to guarantee the unfair sentences of the Five Cuban patriots who will soon arrive at 14 years of arbitrary and illegal punishment. This was not an isolated event, but rather a system...
Democrats and U.S. Labor Delusional About Latin America
ALBERTO C. RUIZ
The Democrats just put out their platform on Latin America, and it demonstrates only the loosest connection to reality.   Thus, while praising the “vibrant democracies in countries from Mexico to Brazil and Costa Rica to Chile,” as well as “historic peaceful trans...
Obama Halts American Trips to Cuba
KEN SMITH
Until recently, Americans could travel to Cuba as part of academic, religious or research groups. But according to travel writers for USA Today and other major newspapers, government approval for such trips has come to a halt. This is despite a program authorize...
A Move to Free the Cuban Five
DANNY GLOVER and SAUL LANDAU
People stop in Victorville California 85 miles northeast of Los Angeles because they have to see someone at one of its several prisons (federal, state, county and city) or have prison-related business, or because they’re hot and tired coming back from Las Vegas to Los A...
Romney Does Florida
ALAN FARAGO
Mitt Romney ventured into Miami this week and at a campaign stop at Palacios de los Jugos, only a day after introducing his running mate Congressman Paul Ryan. Romney, without Ryan, did not mention “Cuba”, once. It was a check-the-box visit to a key con...
Promoting Authoritariansim
KEVIN CARSON
We hear a lot these days about Islam’s misogyny and cultural authoritarianism.. A good example is that idiot lawyer fighting construction of a mosque in Chattanooga, enthralling public hearings with juicy quotes he’s mined from the Quran. Apparently he&...