When the word came out that Cuban President Fidel Castro was hospitalized
and he had turned over the responsibilities of the government to his brother,
Raul, the Bush administration began salivating. Within minutes of the announcement,
the vultures in Washington began planning for a new "democratic" Cuba.
There are already plans in motion for Cuba, but some now have been accelerated
while others have been modified because of the unforeseen illness of Fidel Castro.
Let’s look at what the Bush administration is stating. According to Al-Jazeera
News of August 3, 2006, Bush stated:
We have repeatedly said that the Cuban people deserve to live in freedom
… We will support you in your efforts to build a transitional government
in Cuba committed to democracy, and we will take not of those, in the current
Cuban regime, who obstruct your desire for a free Cuba.
The inference in Bush’s statements is that Cuba is no longer under the
rule of its revolutionary government. And, be wary of the portion of his statement
that the administration is looking at people in the current regime who may not
want to change the Cuban system. This smacks of a replay of de-Ba’athification.
The U.S. arrogance is quite incredible. It is now calling the situation in
Cuba a transition. And, its methods of undermining the Cuban government are
identical to those used in toppling the Ba’ath regime in Iraq.
Many naïve Iraqis believed Bush when he said that the U.S. would liberate
Iraq, not occupy it. Even though they may not have been anti-Saddam, they were
weary from the 12-year embargo. They thought if the U.S. came to Iraq, it would
get rid of Saddam and a few colleagues and then leave, allowing the current
political system to remain in place. They were wrong. Entire segments of the
population found they were out of jobs and had no future. The quislings allowed
the U.S. to re-write Iraq’s constitution and sell off state industries
for next to nothing to private firms.
The plans for Cuba are identical. Last week, the administration said the first
things to go in Cuba would be the education system and the health care system.
These are the strongest accomplishments of Cuba in the past decades, yet few
Americans are aware of them.
Why is the U.S. being so pushy at this time? Evidently, there has been a policy
change toward Cuba since Bush took office. According to a New York Times article
of August 4, 2006, titled "Cuba Perks Up as Venezuelan Foils Embargo:"
Wayne Smith, a former American diplomat in Havana, said that in recent years
the Bush administration has shifted policy from openly working to undermine
Fidel’s government to trying to ensure that he is not replaced by is
brother Raul or another Communist figure.
Now we see the urgency on the part of the U.S.
But, the transition the U.S. is anticipating may never come. Cuba has a solid
government with many competent people in various positions. It is doubtful they
will roll over and allow the U.S. and the Miami Cuban exiles to come into their
country and remake it in the mold of the U.S.
Anticipated agitation has not erupted. Everything in Cuba is running as smoothly
as the day before Fidel announced his operation. According to Rogello Polanco,
editor of the Cuban newspaper Juventud Rebeide, in an address on Cuban television
on August 3, 2006:
The people know they have a resource, a weapon, a place to defend the revolution
if necessary … Once again, they (U.S.) shouldn’t make a mistake,
not to fantasize … thinking their desires are reality. They should not
mess up and commit the greatest error of all time.
The administration is believing its own propaganda: propaganda that has been
popular in the U.S. for decades in which the U.S. states that all the people
under certain dictators are desperate and will quickly turn on them once "freed"
by U.S. military actions.
This mentality led to the overthrow of Saddam Hussein, yet U.S. military personnel,
after more than three years, are being shot at by supporters of Saddam. For
some reason, the U.S. believes that all Cubans hate Fidel Castro. This propaganda
is a standard part of the American psyche.
Unlike Iraq, Cuba has allies that will come to its assistance. Iraq was isolated
by the U.S. from the rest of the world, but Cuba’s influence in Latin
America is rising and the presidents of two countries (Chavez of Venezuela and
Morales of Bolivia) have many reciprocal programs.
In addition, the rise in oil prices brought on by Bush’s Iraq fiasco,
have allowed Venezuela to boost Cuba’s economy. Today, Cuba is experiencing
economic growth and the public is happy with conditions.
Wayne Smith, from the aforementioned New York Times article, stated:
Getting in the way (of U.S. aspirations for Cuba) is Chavez and Venezuela,
giving assistance to Cuba — and not only giving assistance, but forming
an alliance with Cuba. It just drives the Bush people crazy.
In addition to Chavez tweaking the U.S. on Cuba, he has made statements that
are clear and concise about U.S. hegemony and imperialism. According to Al-Jazeera
News of August 4, 2006,
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he has withdrawn his country’s
ambassador to Israel to show his "indignation" over the military
offensive in Lebanon.
"We have ordered the withdrawal of our ambassador in Israel," Chavez
said Thursday in a televised speech, calling Israeli attacks in Lebanon "genocide."
"It really causes indignation to see how the state of Israel continues
bombing, killing with gringo planes, with all the power they have, with the
support of the United States — so many innocents, children, women,"
Chavez said after a military parade in the northwestern state of Falcon.
For once, a national leader had the guts to do something about Israel’s
horrendous actions. While the Arab world sits silent over the massacres in Lebanon,
a leader from another hemisphere yanked his ambassador to Israel.
Don’t forget also that Fidel Castro was waiting on the sidelines willing
to commit Cuban commandos to free Chavez in 2002 when he was kidnapped and taken
away from his office. The perpetrators of this foiled coup attempt were backed
by the U.S. Castro had spoken to Chavez and given him advice not to resign and
offered military help if needed.
Now, the shoe may be on the other foot and Fidel Castro’s Cuba may need
military assistance. Venezuela will provide what it can.
Evo Morales of Bolivia, in the short time he has been president, has nationalized
the country’s raw materials and now is working on land reform. He considers
Fidel Castro his mentor.
Chavez and Morales will not sit idly by as the U.S. storms into Cuba and attempts
to change its government and culture. This is not Iraq. Nobody will come to
the aid of the U.S., such as Britain or Poland, but other nations will step
forward to help Cuba.
The U.S. vultures are flying in regard to Cuba. However, there is no
carcass for them to tear apart.
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