Raul Castro, The Altar Boy

Pope Francis greets Raul Castro on his arrival in Cuba. (EFE)

Pope Francis greets Raul Castro on his arrival in Cuba. (EFE)

14ymedio, Generation Y, Yoani Sanchez, Havana, 22 September 2015 – The Cuban leader, Raul Castro, has accompanied Pope Francis at all his Masses during his tour of the island. From the one celebrated in Havana’s Plaza of the Revolution to the words pronounced at the Santiago de Cuba Cathedral. Like one seeking absolution for a long list of sins, the General President has traveled from the capital to the east of the country, following the papal entourage.

Castro appears to be fulfilling, in this way, the notice he gave in Rome last May. He said then, “If the Pope continues speaking like this I will go back to praying and return to the Church, I’m not joking.” The return to the faith appears to include not only him, but a part of his family that has accompanied him, along with the executive branch of the island and officials from the state press.

Despite the sudden mystical fervor, national television carefully avoided showing images of the Cuban president when the faithful were reciting the Mass, making the sign of peace, or repeating some prayer when he was present. The cameras only focused on his arrival and departure from temples and plazas.

Some television newscasters who participated in a special ‘magazine’ feature, broadcast during these three days have faced a particular plight. Several faces well-known for their staunch ideological discourse have had to moderate their vocabulary, and are salting their phrases with psalms, biblical allusions and reverence for religious figures.

The pirouettes performed by these presenters and journalists, to avoid words like “revolution,” “communist” or “comrades,” have also been worthy of the political circus they represent. All that was missing in the studio was a crucifix and a Bible, but they weren’t necessary.

The excessive incense of these days is not appreciated by many. “This goes from the sublime to the ridiculous,” a 63-year-old Communist Party militant who lives in my building told me. “From atheism to religious servility,” he added, referring to the attitude of the Cuban authorities and the broadcast of complete Masses in the national media.

Now, all we need is to hear Raul Castro’s next public speech, to see if he also has replaced the bellicose “Homeland or death!” with the more concise, “Amen!”

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97 thoughts on “Raul Castro, The Altar Boy

  1. When there’s talk about the US embargo against Cuba, it’s a one-sided argument about how unfair it is. What isn’t said is that lifting the embargo can only benefit the Castros while they’re still in power…

  2. Humberto: “El Sexto” was warned not to defame the Revolutionaries on more than one occasion before he was arrested. Defaming the Revolutionaries in Cuban society is similar to Americans that burned the American flag to show opposition to the war in Vietnam. I don’t know if you remember, but, it was ugly. Beating, incarceration, call on Congress to change the law regarding what Freedom of Speech meant. The country was polarized on the issue of flag burning. I think in the case of “El Sexto”, the question is how long should he be in jail for. I think to operate within Cuban law today, I think el Sexto should be made to give a public apology and refrain from engaging in acts of defamation any more with consequences if he freely chooses not to comply.

    “What this story shows is that while Raúl Castro shakes hands with the world in his historic visit to the USA, things have hardly changed in Cuba, where people are still being thrown in jail solely for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression.”

    Danilo was arrested by agents of the political police (Seguridad del Estado) in Havana while travelling in a taxi on 25 December 2014 and has been in prison ever since. He recently began a hunger strike and has been moved to an isolation cell.

    “Danilo is a prisoner of conscience who should have never been put in prison in the first place. He must be released immediately and unconditionally,” said Carolina Jiménez.

  3. AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: Cuba must release graffiti artist jailed for painting Castros’ names on pigs’ back – 29 September 2015

    A Cuban graffiti artist who has been unfairly held in prison for nearly a year after he painted “Raúl” and “Fidel” on the backs of two pigs has been named as a prisoner of conscience, said Amnesty International today as it called for his immediate release.

    Danilo Maldonado Machado, known as ‘El Sexto’, was accused of “disrespecting the leaders of the Revolution” and sent to prison after officers opened the taxi’s boot and found the two pigs. Danilo intended to release them in an art show on Christmas Day.

    “To jail an artist for painting a name on a pig is ludicrous. Cuban authorities are using any cowardly excuse to silence Danilo and send a message to others that any criticism of the government and its officials will not be tolerated,” said Carolina Jiménez, Americas Deputy Director for Research at Amnesty International.

    “What this story shows is that while Raúl Castro shakes hands with the world in his historic visit to the USA, things have hardly changed in Cuba, where people are still being thrown in jail solely for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression.”

    Danilo was arrested by agents of the political police (Seguridad del Estado) in Havana while travelling in a taxi on 25 December 2014 and has been in prison ever since. He recently began a hunger strike and has been moved to an isolation cell.

    “Danilo is a prisoner of conscience who should have never been put in prison in the first place. He must be released immediately and unconditionally,” said Carolina Jiménez.

    https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2015/09/cuba-must-release-graffiti-artist-jailed-for-painting-castros-names-on-pigs-back/

  4. Those Cubans who lived and suffered under the Castroit regime do know and will never forget that while Fidel was the voice, Raul, Che, and others like Ramiro Valdés were the hammer and sickle of the revolution crushing and decapitating fellow Cubans.

    Not only is the Castroit regime evil and violent, it is also inept at governing the incredible resources and ingenuity of the Cuban people. They have managed to completely destroy the sugar industry, mining, and now rely on foreign companies to help keep afloat what is left of tourism and tobacco.

    For more than fifty five years the Castro family has waged a war against its number one enemy, the Cuban people. They have violently denied the people of Cuba their rights and dignity as human beings. Their army of corrupt thugs harass, arrest, and torture anyone remotely perceived as a threat to the Castro mafia family total hold on power.

  5. (cont.) CUBA NEED IFI ( INTERNATIONAL FINANCIAL INVESTMENTS)

    I like to add also that another variable for Cuba’s national security is the private industries sector in the Rich Countries who may be willing to provide credit to the island nation for profit and not because they are answering a higher moral goal of helping Cuba comply with the 17 goals of sustainable development. Corporatism is directly responsible for Corruption in Latin America and transactions with the private sector abroad or inside Cuba needs to be regulated and control to avoid the profit taking for building personal fortunes over international or national goals for sustainable development and the preservation of life.

  6. CUBA’S NEED FOR IFI (INTERNATIONAL FINANCIAL INVESTMENTS)
    Every analyst in the United States, Europe and Cuba agrees that in order to increase the standard of living in Cuba, there must be more International Financial Investments in Cuba. One way to achieve this is for Cuba to join the IMF. Countries like Albania and Vietnam benefited from this partnership because other sources like the World Bank and others gained confidence in the risk of investing in these countries.
    ALBANIA
    Remittances are the largest influx of funds into the Albanian economy, outdistancing foreign direct investments and exports. However, these funds flow substantially outside formal channels and, for the most part, help meet the most pressing needs of Albanian emigrants’ families and relatives. But, in fact, they do not currently play a significant role in furthering economic expansion and financial investment in Albania, partly because Albanian financial institutions lack the customized and remittances-oriented financial products and services that would encourage formal inflows. This survey seeks to shed light on what is currently offered by the Albanian financial system with
    regard to remittances and recommends that all interest groups take a pro-active attitude toward and monitor the remittance market attentively in order to turn this potential into a powerful
    tool for additional business activity and expansion, greater economic growth, and welfare services.

    http://www.researchgate.net/publication/272621669_Remittances_and_Financial_Products_in_Albania_-_Reality_and_the_Future_2007_ELVIN_MEKA_-_Argita_Frasheri_-_Lindita_Bendo

    China is an alternative source of loans that is still more attractive to Cuba than the IMF. If Cuba is considering the IMF as a source of money, Cuba needs to study carefully the price in independence and sovereignty Cuba will pay for economic gains. Analyst and regime change “democratic organizations” outside and inside of Cuba want Cuba to “move to the Right” more in economic liberalization. I don’t think that this is a wise move for Cuba or Latin America. If Cuba wants to stay aligned with the 17 goals of sustainable development the United Nations promulgated, this immediate economic gains created by this new influx of money (which is sorely needed) can end up in the wrong silos of development if the strings attached to these loans are not aligned with sustainable development and are aligned instead with the Rich countries of the World foreign policy objectives which reality clearly has revealed to the World have nothing to do with “Democracy, Liberty, Free Markets and Human Rights”.

  7. Posted by Daniel Sepulveda

    September 21, 2015
    .Last week, I had the pleasure to join a unique bilingual panel as part of Social Media Week Miami — one consisting of a Cuban-born journalist for Univision, a telecommunications analyst, a nonprofit leader trying to connect Cubans to the Internet, a blogger from Cuba, a sociologist and scholar on Cuban Internet use, and I, a U.S. government official — brought together to discuss how Cuba comes online.

    That, in and of itself, is change. It is progress. The event was a forward-looking, informative, and respectful conversation filled with hope. Before President Obama’s change in policy toward Cuba this conversation would have been impossible.

    The Univision reporter, Gloria Ordaz, is Cuban-born and an embodiment of the American dream, having migrated here and risen to a position of public and local prominence as a well-known and highly-respected member of the press. She moderated the conversation in expert fashion, ensuring everyone had a chance to speak and that the dialogue stayed on topic.

    Sean Goforth, a telecommunications analyst with a deep expertise in Cuba’s telecommunications infrastructure, detailed the poor state of connectivity on the island. He explained that for Cuba to make headway toward the connectivity goals set by the Cuban government, it must enable and encourage a massive investment in its communications infrastructure.

    Raul Moas, a nonprofit leader with Roots of Hope, is an advocate for connectivity of disenfranchised communities everywhere. He talked about the importance of connectivity to the average Cubans, whether for personal enrichment or to promote the success of a small business.

    Carlos Alberto Perez, an independent blogger from Cuba, talked about how Cubans are creatively making the most of the access they have. He talked about the complex system for distributing thumb drives on the island; these drives contain information downloaded from the internet as well as news and entertainment. The access to this information is helping ordinary Cubans create a new economy.

    Finally, Ted Henken, a scholar and expert on Cuba talked about the potential paths forward for Cuba, its government, and its people as it relates to access to the Internet. Again, while noting that nothing is certain, he clearly laid out that there is reasonable room for hope.

    A young man in the audience, Alejandro Gonzalez, a Cuban-born graduate of Georgetown University, closed our conversation. He is working out of Miami as an entrepreneur with the goal of helping to make 14ymedio, a media startup in Cuba, a viable enterprise and the news source of record on Cuba–related issues. It is in his interest, our interest, and the island’s interest that he succeeds. The people and institutions that care about the future of the island and the potential for open discourse on it should help him and others like him succeed.

    I grew up in Florida. I fully respect, understand, and sympathize with the concerns and objections that some in our Cuban-American community hold relative to the restrictions on the exercise of fundamental human rights on the island. But as the President has said, and the vast majority of Americans, Cubans, and regional leaders believe, a time for a change in policy was long overdue. My personal experience since his announcement leaves me with the impression that our Cuban counterparts in the government are open to a dialogue. They want their island connected to the rest of the world through modern communications infrastructure; and are willing to engage in an exchange of views on how to ensure that access is achieved in a manner consistent with internationally agreed upon human rights.

    While in Miami, I was asked if I was sure that this dialogue, change in policy, and effort would succeed. I responded that I wasn’t positive, but I was hopeful. We are already seeing real progress, and only through considered discourse and exchange can we examine our differences, identify potential common interests, and look toward the future instead of remaining mired in a stalemated past.

    I am proud and honored to have been a part of the dialogue in Miami and look forward to working with all interested parties toward a Cuba that is fully brought online.

    About the Author: Daniel Sepulveda is the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy in the State Department’s Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs.

    – See more at: http://blogs.state.gov/node/23313#sthash.4H3zAf2f.dpuf

  8. Assistant Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Charles H. Rivkin will travel to Havana, Cuba, to lead a U.S. Government delegation for Civil Aviation Technical Talks between the United States and Cuba which takes place September 28-29.

    Expanding authorized travel with Cuba is a critical focus of the President’s new policy. An interagency U.S. Government delegation will meet with Cuban counterparts to explore the way forward on establishing scheduled air services between the two countries, and discuss aviation safety and security. While U.S. law continues to prohibit travel to Cuba for tourist activities, a stronger civil aviation relationship will facilitate the strong growth in travel between the two countries, following the recent revision of regulations for authorized travel.

  9. DEAR CUBAN FRIENDS

    A word of caution. Do not fall into the “realistic – not realistic” trap. Follow the Party. Fight for the return of the Guantanamo base to Cuba.

    Look back two years. Be honest. How many of us, including myself, started look at the return of the Five Heroes from the “realistic” point of view. “Will they ever walk on Cuban soil?” That was a stupid question of weakness.

    Similar thing happens in our today’s struggle for the return of Guantanamo. Don’t hesitate even for one moment: GUANTANAMO WILL BE CUBAN AGAIN. And I do not mean our children.

    Follow the guidance of the Communist Party of Cuba, the party of victories.

  10. HEY DEAR Mario! WHAT DO YOU THINK OF MY ARTICLE ON THE CUBAN/NORTH KOREA ILLEGAL ARMS SALE DEAL DEAR? HA HA! WAS THAT A HUGE FUACATAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! FOR YOU DEAR??? HA HA HA! WHY IS IT THAT YOU FAIL TO POST LINKS TO YOUR FAMOUS “INFORMATION”???

  11. Raul Castro, the altar boy, is impulsive, dogmatic and sometimes brutal, in 1959, during the surrender of Santiago, the second largest Cuban city; Raul presided over the execution of more than 70 soldiers and officers who were machine-gunned and their corpses thrown into a ditch.
    There is an aspect seldom commented of Raul Castro’s life and the fact is that in all the “judicial” processes of great importance that have taken place in Cuba after the triumph of the insurrection, has played a fundamental role. He has been a kind of special prosecutor, a prosecutor with the capacity to sanction.

  12. GUANTANAMO NOW, GUANTANAMO NOW, GUANTANAMO NOW

    In his first address to the U.N. General Assembly, Cuban President Raul Castro hailed the restoration of diplomatic relations with the United States this year. But he said a “long and complicated process” remains before full normalization is achieved.

    Castro, who was greeted with several rounds of sustained applause, reiterated his demand that the U.S. end its trade embargo against the island. He also called for a full return to Cuban control of the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay.

    Castro will have an opportunity to make his case directly to President Obama on Tuesday, when the two leaders hold a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the U.N. gathering.

    http://www.latimes.com/world/la-fg-united-nations-htmlstory.html

  13. Like Che, Raul was a hard-core Stalinist who enjoyed killing people who publicly disagreed with him.

    The Christian pacifist Oswaldo Paya obviously had to be killed because he asked for democracy and wasn’t scared of Raul’s death threats.

    Does Raul have all the killing out of his system yet?

    Did he confess to the Pope about his urge to kill?

  14. Sandokan,

    All those quotes from Che, the psychotic murderer who admitted he loved killing people, never make it into any of his fan’s books or movies like The Motorcycle Diaries.

    Has anyone ever found evidence he graduated from medical school? Big universities keep student records yet somehow Che Guevara’s are missing.

    The fans of “Doctor Che Guevara” can’t even provide evidence he graduated from a course in First Aid 101 or that he cured anybody of anything.

    We only have evidence of him killing hundreds of innocent people.

    People in Cuba who knew him all agree he was an obnoxious narcissistic clown and liar who liked killing people, and nothing else.

  15. Mario thinks it’s an act of treason to “talk badly” about the Cuban government.

    I’m glad Mario never talks badly about his government.

    If he ever does talk badly about his government, I’m glad Mario won’t be murdered like Oswaldo Paya was murdered, even though Mario supports the murder of pacifists who “talk badly” about the Castro tyranny.

  16. THE DICTATOR Raul Castro WANTS TO TALK ABOUT EQUALITY? WHEN HE, HIS FAMILY AND HIS HENCHMEN CONTROL ALL THE BIG BUSINESSES IN CUBA AND THEY PAY THE CUBAN PEOPLE $20/MONTH? ONLY AN IDIOTIC LEFTIST WHO DOES NOT LIVE IN CUBA WOULD BELIEVE THAT BULL!

    N.Y. TIMES: Raúl Castro of Cuba to Address Warming of Relations With U.S. at U.N. – By AZAM AHMED

    How might Mr. Castro try to appeal to the international forum?

    On the heels of a visit to Cuba by Pope Francis, Mr. Castro might do a little grandstanding and take a few swipes at his neighbor to the north.

    Mr. Castro spoke bluntly when the pope arrived in Cuba, denouncing United States policies and lauding the Cuban state for its commitment to equality. Again, he will have a global audience that does not often tune in when he makes the case for his country’s revolution. If he does shake his finger at the United States, Mr. Castro is unlikely to go overboard for fear of alienating the members of Congress who will be listening.

    On Tuesday, Mr. Castro is scheduled to meet with President Obama on the sidelines of the U.N. meetings. It will be the second time the two leaders have met since the announcement of an agreement that led to the resumption of diplomatic relations between Cuba and the United States.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/29/world/americas/raul-castro-cuba-united-nations-general-assembly.html?_r=0

  17. DEAR Omar Fundora! I DID MY RESEARCH ON THE ITEMS FOUND ON THE NORTH KOREAN SHIP FULL OF ARMS THAT THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA WAS TRYING OT SELL TO THE NORTH KOREANS DEAR! AND GASP! IT HAS A LINK WITH PHOTOS!

    FULL DISCLOSURE: Contents of North Korean Smuggling Ship Revealed – By Hugh Griffiths and Roope Siirtola – 27 August 2013

    While initial media reporting suggested the seizure amounted to a few shipping containers with anti-aircraft missile components, two jet fighters and related engines, in fact a total of 25 shipping containers have now been recovered, together with six military vehicles. These were camouflaged at the bottom of five of the ship’s holds beneath about 200,000 bags of sugar, weighing approximately one hundred pounds each. This amount of sugar together with “two thousand empty polyethylene bags” were the only declared items listed in the cargo manifest signed by North Korean Captain Ri Yong Il.

    A report compiled by various Panamanian authorities and the United Nations Organization on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Container Control Programme (CCP) together with photographs of the seizure make clear that contrary to both the North Korean shipping declaration and Cuban government statements the shipment was without a doubt a violation of United Nations sanctions on North Korea.

    The various rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) and conventional artillery ammunition, many in mint condition, were unused and much of it was in original packing cases. They clearly were not “to be repaired and returned to Cuba.” Rather, these items were intended simply for delivery to North Korea for its own use.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE WITH PHOTOS!

    http://38north.org/2013/08/hgriffiths082713/

  18. Payas and the like have committed an act of treason against the Revolution by accepting money from the enemy and then by talking badly about their country by taking side of the counter-revolution.

    The Revolutionary government has then committed a mistake by letting Paya walk free. The mercenary then died in a car accident and some lunatics refuse to recognize the courts’ (cuban and spanish) verdicts in his case.

  19. Humberto: Please…conduct research before you make comments “off the cuff” comparisons. Cuba was trying to rebuild some old military system. Not engaged in buying new arms. The arms trade is a huge problem. The conflict in the Middle East has lasted so long because of the arms trade. Russia, Europe, China, U.S. and others make tons of money every time there is a war. Wars contribute to the unsustainable system of the World. The Pope, Raul Castro and Obama have been working together for Peace and Justice (one of the goals of the UN) between Cuba and the United States. This is a single transaction between two U.N. nations of the World represented in the United Nations. Cuba and the United States improved relations work are aligned with the agreed upon 17 goals for sustainable development called for by the U.N. Cuba does a better job than the United States in being aligned with these 17 goals. Raul Castro’s speech was right on target, just like the Pope’s speech in the White House and the Congress. President Obama understands that we in the U.S. are not doing enough to get the United States aligned with sustainable development. A lot of people in the United States accuse the President of being “soft” towards Cuba and other areas of the World. The truth is that President Obama knows that the United States foreign policy and Corporatism in the United States is not doing all they can to align the United States with the sustainable goals agreed upon by the United Nations. This is a work in process. Our foreign policy in Mexico for example during the Bush Administration was a violation or divergent from one of the goals which is creating Partnerships between countries. What the Right Wing Republican doctrine created was dependency and tyranny in Mexico for example. You can look into the foreign policy of the U.S. with other countries and you see the same tragedy of Greed driving the diplomacy of the U.S. instead of Peace and Justice as well as the creation of Win-Win Partnerships. The U.S. behavior in the World has not been what they claim they stand for: ” Liberty, Freedom, Democracy, Human Rights”. It has been Might is Right and parasitic extractive economics, intervention and domination. If we don’t change, our leadership position in the World will not be trusted or wanted any more.

  20. Neutral Observer on September 27, 2015 at 11:44 am said:

    “During the coup d’etat it was Raul and Che who were the most bloodthirsty”

    .Quote from “Che Guevara’s Pope”, http://thefederalist.com/2015/09/24/che-guevaras-pope/:

    “Yet not a single word spoken before Congress will annul Francis’ assent to celebrate Mass under a triumphal image of Che Guevara. Hasta la Victoria Siempre.”

    This is great article and at the same time perturbing. There are many discrepancies in Pope Francis words. He did not criticized the Castroit regime, rather he celebrated Mass in the Plaza Cívica with the image of Che Guevara looking down at him.

    Excerpts from “Che Guevara: The Fish Die by the Mouth” (http://www.cubanet.org/htdocs/CNews/y09/enero09/23_O_3.html)

    In “Notas de Viaje” he wrote the following comment that he called “Notas en el Margen”: “…and I know, because I see it printed in the night, that I, the eclectic dissector of doctrines and psychoanalyst of dogmas, howling like possessed, will assault the barricades or trenches, will stain in blood my weapon and, mad of fury, will slit the throats of any defeated who fall into my hands… And I feel my nostrils dilated, savoring the acrid smell of gunpowder and blood, of dead enemy; now I tense my body, ready for the fight, and I prepare my being as a sacred place so that it resurrects with new vibrations and new hopes the bestial howling of the triumphant proletariat.

    Those who attempt to present Che as a philanthropist of firm Christian values, the answer is given to them in this excerpt of the letter he wrote to his mother on July 15, 1956 from a Mexican prison: “I am not Christ nor a philanthropist, I’m quite the opposite of Christ, and philanthropy seems to me something of….(illegible word), I fight for the things I believe in with all the weapons at my disposal, and try to leave the other dead to avoid myself to be nailed to a cross or anything else.”

    Che wrote in his diary: “….to executes a human being is something ugly, but exemplary. From now on nobody here will refer to me again as the tooth-drawer of the guerrilla.” In a letter to his father referring to this execution he writes: “I’d like to confess, papa, at that moment I discovered that I really like killing.”

    Omar an Mario,are the “new man” built by Che. They are “fanatics, liars, assassins and failed men, reaching the total realization of being like Che..”

  21. HEY Omar Fundora! REMEMBER WHEN THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA GOT CAUGHT SELLING ARMS THE THE CRAZY DICTATOR OF NORTH KOREA LAST YEAR, DEAR? I THINK HE SHOULD NOT BE CASTING THE FIRST STONE ABOUT THE ARMS TRADE DEAR!

    BBC NEWS: N Korean ship seized with Cuban weapons returns to Cuba – 15 February 2014

    The ship was seized seven months ago with Soviet-era weapons and fighter jets hidden under sacks of sugar.

    The container ship was stopped near Manzanillo, on the Atlantic side of the canal, on 15 July under suspicion that it was carrying drugs.

    It had disappeared from satellite tracking for a few days as it approached the Cuban capital, Havana, having departed from Russia’s eastern coast three months earlier.

    On searching the vessel, officials found military hardware including two Soviet-era MiG-21 fighter aircraft, air defence systems, missiles and command and control vehicles.

    Cuban authorities said that the ship was carrying 240 tonnes of “obsolete” defensive weapons.

    The North Korean government insisted the ageing weapons were simply being transferred to North Korea to be repaired, before returning them.

    Panamanian officials quoted by Reuters news agency said the arms would probably be sold or given away and the sugar sold to companies interested in turning it into ethanol.
    http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-26210187

  22. VIDEO OF HAVANA IN 1958, WHICH THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA HAS DESTROYED OVER THE PAST 56 YEARS!

  23. WE NEED TO GET THE CUBAN DICTATOR Raul Castro AKA “La China” AND OUR DEAR Omar Fundora A GOOD DICTIONARY!

    “Nonetheless, the economic, trade and financial blockade against Cuba has continued for over half a century,” he said in his speech at the Sustainable Development Summit being held at the United Nations. – Raul Castro

    BLOCKADE is an effort to cut off food, supplies, war material or communications from a particular area by force, either in part or totally. A blockade should not be confused with an embargo or sanctions, which are legal barriers to trade, and is distinct from a siege in that a blockade is usually directed at an entire country or region, rather than a fortress or city. Most blockades historically took place at sea,

    EMBARGO (from the Spanish embargo, meaning hindrance, obstruction, etc. in a general sense, a trading ban in trade terminology and literally “distraint” in juridic parlance) is the partial or complete prohibition of commerce and trade with a particular country or a group of countries.[1] Embargoes are considered strong diplomatic measures imposed in an effort, by the imposing country, to elicit a given national-interest result from the country on which it is imposed. Embargoes are similar to economic sanctions and are generally considered legal barriers to trade, not to be confused with blockades, which are often considered to be acts of war.[2]

    Embargoes can mean limiting or banning export or import, creating quotas for quantity, imposing special tolls, taxes, banning freight or transport vehicles, freezing or seizing freights, assets, bank accounts, limiting the transport of particular technologies or products (high-tech) for example CoCom during the cold-war.[3]

    U.S.-CUBA TRADE AND ECONOMIC COUNCIL, INC.
    ECONOMIC EYE ON CUBA- February 2012 – Report For Calendar Year 2011
    2011-2001 U.S. EXPORT STATISTICS FOR CUBA

    The following is the data for exports from the United States to the Republic of Cuba relating to the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act (TSRA) of 2000, which re-authorized the direct commercial (on a cash basis) export of food products (including branded food products) and agricultural products (commodities) from the United States to the Republic of Cuba, irrespective of purpose. The TSRA does not include healthcare products, which remain authorized by the Cuban Democracy Act (CDA) of 1992.

    The data represents the U.S. Dollar value of product exported from the United States to the Republic of Cuba under the auspice of TSRA. The data does not include transportation charges, bank charges, or other costs associated with exports from the United States to the Republic of Cuba. The government of the Republic of Cuba reports data that, according to the government of the Republic of Cuba, includes transportation charges, bank charges, and other costs. However, the government of the Republic of Cuba has not provided verifiable data. The use of trade data reported by the government of the Republic of Cuba is suspect. The government of the Republic of Cuba has been asked to provide verifiable data, but has not.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE REPORT!

    http://www.cubatrade.org/CubaExportStats.pdf

  24. The Pope in one of his speeches in the U.S. called for an end to the arms trade. According to Raul Castro the World Arms Trade takes $1.7 Trillion dollars annually. Money that could be used to meet the United Nations 17 Goals of sustainable development.
    United Nations 17 Goals for sustainable development:

    Poverty
    Hunger and food security
    Health
    Education
    Gender equality and women’s empowerment
    Water and Sanitation
    Energy
    Economic Growth
    Infrastructure, industrialization
    Inequality
    Cities
    Sustainable consumption and production
    Climate Change
    Oceans
    Biodiversity, forests, desertification
    Peace and justice
    Partnerships

    According to Cuba, since the U.S. embargo was implemented in 1962, it has cost the island a total of $833.7 billion.

    The Cuban president, who was greeted with enthusiastic applause by participants at the summit, slammed the “unacceptable levels of poverty” in many parts of the world, the growing economic gap between north and south, and the increasing “polarization of wealth.”

  25. DEAR Omar Fundora WHAT TYPE OF “open aggression against the Revolutionary Government” DO YOU MEAN DEAR? CAN YOU PROVIDE A LINK? THAT WHEN YOU MEN Revolutionary Government YOU MUST MEAN THE CASTRO OLIGARCHY MAFIA THAT HAS BEEN IN POWER FOR OVER 56 YEARS! AND HOW CAN A REVOLUTION LAST 56+ YEARS?? USUALLY THEY ARE MEAN AS A TRANSITION PERIOD NOT A MONARCHY LIKE THE CASTRO CLAN HAS ESTABLISHED IN CUBA DEAR!

    VIDEO OF ONE OF THE GROUPS THAT HAVE TRAVELED TO NYC TO PROTEST THE DICTATOR Raul Castro’s VISIT TO THE UNITED NATIONS!

    NTN24 NOTICIAS VIDEO: Líderes del exilio cubano en Miami viajan a Nueva York para protestar contra Raúl Castro frente a la ONU – Los representantes del exilio cubano presente en Miami, EE.UU, se movilizarán hacia Nueva York para protestar en contra del discurso que expondrá el líder del régimen cubano, Raúl Castro, ante la plenaria de Naciones Unidas el próximo lunes. Ramón Saúl Sánchez, presidente del movimiento democracia, hace parte del primer grupo de exiliados que partirán en la noche de este sábado hacia Nueva York liderados también por la hija del fallecido disidente cubano, Rosa María Paya.
    http://www.ntn24.com/video/protesta-por-presencia-de-raul-castro-en-la-onu-70430

  26. Neutral Observer: for your information…Paya was not a pacifist; just because he did not use bellicose methods of aggression, what he said, was open aggression against the Revolutionary Government.

  27. During the coup d’etat it was Raul and Che who were the most bloodthirsty.

    Fidel kept them under control and limited immediate executions to the thousands. Raul wanted to kill a lot more, including famous rebels that Fidel had imprisoned.

    Raul got his wish in the 60s when he massacred thousands of peasants in the peasant uprising against the Castros.

    Did Raul do confession for killing Oswaldo Paya, a Christian pacifist, in 2012?

    Did Raul talk to the Pope about his urge to kill?

  28. I don’t understand:

    If Socialism is superior to Capitalism…

    If Socialism leads to a higher standard of living than Capitalism…

    as Emperor Castro declared over 10,000 times in public…

    how could a US embargo possibly hurt the Cuban economy???????

    Especially since it was Castro who seized all US business out of Cuba, without a dollar compensation…..

    And Castro who outlawed the US Dollar in Cuba…..

    And Castro who got hundreds of billions of US Dollars in welfare from the Soviet empire and Venezuela and other countries…..

    And the Cuban economy that has received tens of billions of dollars in welfare from US citizens…

    And Castro who traded unhindered with all the world except the USA….

    And let’s not forget that the US always dropped trade restrictions at the slightest hint from Castro…

    Including agriculture (the US is the biggest food exporter to Cuba), health products, communications….

    And now that Obama has removed every other trade restriction between US business and Cuba, with no interest so far from Castro to do more business with the USA…

    Castro goes on to repeat the same lies at the UN.

    Didn’t the Pope tell Raul that lying is a sin????

    Raul, stop lying and stop your embargo of the USA.

    Stop killing dissidents and put yourself up to the voters, like Pinochet and other dictators did, so we can see how much Cubans like you.

  29. US DEBT TO CUBA: US$ 833 BILLION

    Cuban President Raul Castro made his debut in the United Nations Saturday demanding an end to the U.S. embargo on the island, which he considers “the chief obstacle to the economic development” of his country.

    In his first speech at the U.N., Castro said the renewal of diplomatic ties between Cuba and the United States plus the changes decreed by U.S. President Barack Obama “constitute an important step forward.”

    “Nonetheless, the economic, trade and financial blockade against Cuba has continued for over half a century,” he said in his speech at the Sustainable Development Summit being held at the United Nations.

    According to Castro, the embargo “causes harm and hardship to the Cuban people,” affects other nations and also hurts American companies and citizens.

    As it has done every year for more than 20 years, Cuba is urging the U.N. General Assembly to pass a resolution critical of the embargo, a text that normally obtains majority backing, but which, for the first time, could pass without a U.S. vote against it.

    According to Cuba, since the U.S. embargo was implemented in 1962, it has cost the island a total of $833.7 billion.

    The Cuban president, who was greeted with enthusiastic applause by participants at the summit, slammed the “unacceptable levels of poverty” in many parts of the world, the growing economic gap between north and south, and the increasing “polarization of wealth.”

    http://latino.foxnews.com/latino/politics/2015/09/26/castro-at-united-nations-demands-end-us-embargo/

  30. HEY DEAR Mario! LOOKS LIKE ME! 1. Humberto 2. Neutral Observer 3. that guy from Habana Vieja whose house was confiscated for renting to the prostitutes 4. the customs clerk who jumped the raft in the last minute, because the cops were looking for the $12 000 missing in his office 5. the lady from Cuba Free Forever foundation (she will bring the sandwiches) ARE GOING TO HAVE COMPANY IN NEW YORK FOR THE RAUL CASTRO PROTEST DEAR!

    DIARIO DE CUBA: Activistas se preparan para protestar ante Naciones Unidas durante el discurso de Raúl Castro – 27 Sep 2015

    Grupos de activistas cubanos viajan desde este sábado a Nueva York para realizar una protesta ante Naciones Unidas el lunes, día del discurso de Raúl Castro en la Asamblea General.
    Según un el reporte, los activistas denunciarán las violaciones de derechos humanos en la Isla, los atropellos a la disidencia y la división de la familia cubana, entre otros puntos.
    El primer grupo de activistas partió este sábado desde Miami. Según el exiliado Felipe Rojas, otro grupo viajará el domingo en autobús a Nueva York “para estar presente el lunes a las 11:00 de la mañana frente a las Naciones Unidas”.
    PULSE EN EL ENLACE PARA ARTICULO ENTERO!
    http://www.diariodecuba.com/cuba/1443309556_17161.html

  31. Leopoldo is a brave man indeed, and so are the two great women with him, his wife Lilian, and Corina too.
    There’s more “good” news about the “proceso de miercoles” in Havana: Humberto de la Calle, ex-president of Colombia, leftist and negotiations member, is also a probable presidential candidate in 2018. He can help the FARC to power.
    Too far fetched you say? Aolf Hitler used democracy to gain power in 1933, and in Vzla the Chavistas are using the formally democratic system there to stay in power. The realities of 1933 exist right here in our neighbourhood…

  32. N.Y. TIMES: Even in Jail, I Will Fight for a Free Venezuela – By LEOPOLDO LÓPEZ

    RAMO VERDE PRISON, Venezuela — ON Feb. 12, 2014, the repressive and inept elite that governs Venezuela ordered my arrest on charges of conspiracy, arson, inciting violence, damage to public property and other crimes. Later that week, after two surprise visits from the president of the National Assembly to my family’s home, it was suggested to me that I should seek refuge in a foreign embassy.

    I decided instead to turn myself in on Feb. 18, 2014, and confront the trial the regime had planned. I made this decision fully aware of the risks I was facing and the possible consequences of a politically motivated trial with a compromised judiciary. So when, on Sept. 10, 2015, Judge Susana Barreiros — a mere puppet of those rulers intent on defending their wealth and privilege — sentenced me to more than 13 years in prison, I had no regrets about the decision I had made. I was convicted on the absurd basis that I used “subliminal messages” in my speeches about nonviolence to inspire violence during the February 2014 protests.

    I am now in solitary confinement in a 7-by-10-foot cell that has nothing more than a single bed, a toilet and a small shelf for my few changes of clothes. I am not allowed writing materials, and the only book permitted is the Bible. I don’t even have a light or candle for when it gets dark outside. While this has all been hard for my family, they understand that great causes require great sacrifices.

    I am convinced of the justice of our cause: the liberation of a people from the painful consequences of a system of government that has failed economically, socially and politically. Our economy is the worst-performing in the region: Gross domestic product is forecast to fall by 7 percent in 2015, and we suffer from the highest inflation in the world. This inflation has led to a devastating scarcity of basic staples and has destroyed domestic production, the oil industry included. The desperation these conditions have created, paired with widespread failures of law enforcement, has made ours one of the most violent countries in the world, with nearly 25,000 murders in 2014 alone.

    CLICK LINK FOR ENTIRE ARTICLE!

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/09/25/opinion/even-in-jail-i-will-fight-for-a-free-venezuela.html

  33. Funny to think that the same thugs who destroyed churches and threw rocks at Christians are now putting up posters of Christ and busing in Communists to cheer on the Pope.

    Communists don’t believe in anything, they just obey their powerful master. Like the Nazis and Hitler.

  34. Did Raul do confession with the Pope?

    Did he ask forgiveness for killing Oswaldo Paya and other Christian pacifists?

  35. The progressive’s official line on the Castroit regime is that it is wonderful and the people doesn’t need free speech, a free press, free elections, free trade unions or free political parties because it enjoys a sophisticated form of democracy, which is actually better than the one in the U.S. or any western democratic country. You have to be progressive and clever to recognize the Castroit monarchic tyrannical regime for the triumph of its power over people that it subjugate. If the cap fits were it.

  36. Omar is asking how many would show up for that anti-Raul “demonstration” in New York…

    Let me do the math:
    1. Humberto
    2. Neutral Observer
    3. that guy from Habana Vieja whose house was confiscated for renting to the prostitutes
    4. the customs clerk who jumped the raft in the last minute, because the cops were looking for the $12 000 missing in his office
    5. the lady from Cuba Free Forever foundation (she will bring the sandwiches)

    sorry guys, I can’t make it to 6

  37. The Pope has good intentions, Omar.
    But in this system people are “discarded” for a reason.
    If anyone had a decent job who would go to risk his life in the deserts of Iraq or in the mountains of Afghanistan? “The discarded” do it. Other discarded feed the prison industry.

    If the US would follow Pope’s teaching the arms&war industry would go broke.

  38. THE POPE TELLS THE NATIONS OF THE WORLD THAT WE MUST STOP DISCARDING SO MANY MILLIONS OF PEOPLE. WE MUST CHANGE THE PRESENT SYSTEM.

  39. Raul Castro, head of a country without any pollution control, is speaking about sustainable development at the UN

    The pollution-friendly dictator of Cuba will no doubt criticize the much cleaner democracies for not giving dictators like him enough money.

    What use is the UN, except as headquarters for Mafia Inc?

  40. I didn’t know that Oswaldo Jose Paya, a Catholic pacifist killed by Castro’s secret police in 2012, was a Batista soldier.

    Thanks to Castro’s servants who post on this blog, we learn something new every day

  41. PROTEST AGAINST THE CASTROFASCIST RAUL CASTRO IN NYC
    Monday, Sept. 28 @ 11:30am – 47th Street & 1st Avenue NYC
    A todos los cubanos del área New York-New Jersey – Lunes 28 a las 11:30am – 47 St & 1st Ave

  42. “The People that were executed in La Cabana were traitors and supported or were responsible for acts of violence carried out by Fulgencio Batista’s government” – Omar Fundora

    DEAR Omar Fundora! CAN YOU PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR STATEMENT DEAR JUST LIKE I DO BELOW DEAR! GRACIAS IN ADVANCE!

    Cuba Archive’s Truth and Memory Project documents deaths and disappearances resulting from the Cuban revolution and studies transitional issues related to truth, memory and justice. This project seeks to help Cubans attain their rightful freedoms, foster a culture of respect for life and the rule of law, and honor the memory of those who’ve paid the highest price.

    2014 Documented Deaths and Disappearances
    Update of Findings, 12/31/2014
    Cuba: U.S. citizens killed or disappeared
    Guantánamo: Cuba’s Berlin Wall
    Is Cuba Harvesting Body Parts?
    Cuba’s Blood Exports, 1/1/2014
    Statistics on Cuba’s Blood Exports 1995-2012
    The Human Toll of Raul Castro´s Rule: 7/31/2006-12/15/2013
    The Tugboat Massacre of July 13, 1994
    The Canimar River Massacre of July 6, 1980
    Cuba: Strange accidents and unexplained deaths
    Cuba: Suspicious death of dissident leader, 7/31/2012
    Che Guevara’s Forgotten Victims
    Death by hunger strike of Wilman Villar
    Deaths by hunger strike
    Civilians killed for attempting to flee Cuba
    Foreigners killed by Cuba
    Minors killed by the Cuban regime
    Female victims of the Cuban regime
    Spaniards killed in Cuba
    Adult males killed by the Cuban regime
    Deaths or disappearances in detention
    Deaths Reported in 2007
    Deaths Reported in 2008
    http://cubaarchive.org/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=21&Itemid=95

  43. THE PEOPLE OF CUBA…THE MASSES…. VOTED A RESOUNDING NO TO AMERICAN STYLE DEMOCRACY…TODAY THE CUBAN PEOPLE HAVE NOT CHANGE THEIR VOTE….THEY VOTE WITH THEIR SUPPORT FOR THE REVOLUCIONARY GOVERNMENT AND REJECT THE OFFENSIVE OF SO CALLED AMERICAN STYLE DEMOCRACY MOVEMENTS OUTSIDE AND INSIDE OF CUBA.
    The United States supplied Batista with planes, ships and tanks, but the advantage of using the latest technology such as napalm failed to win them victory against the guerrillas. In March 1958, President Dwight Eisenhower, disillusioned with Batista’s performance, suggested he held elections. This he did, but the people showed their dissatisfaction with his government by refusing to vote. Over 75 per cent of the voters in the capital Havana boycotted the polls. In some areas, such as Santiago, it was as high as 98 per cent.

  44. Why the people in La Cabana were executed by Che Guevara

    In an effort to find out information about the rebels people were pulled in for questioning. Many innocent people were tortured. Suspects, including children, were publicly executed and then left hanging in the streets for several days as a warning to others who were considering joining the revolutionaries. The behaviour of Batista’s forces increased support for the guerrillas. In 1958 forty-five organizations signed an open letter supporting the July 26 Movement. National bodies representing lawyers, architects, dentists, accountants and social workers were amongst those who signed. Castro, who had originally relied on the support of the poor, was now gaining the backing of the influential middle classes.

  45. Humberto: The People that were executed in La Cabana were traitors and supported or were responsible for acts of violence carried out by Fulgencio Batista’s government.

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