Sep 10, 2009

U.S. Citizen Denied Entry into the United States

Perhaps you'd be stunned if a U.S. citizen were denied entry into the United States. Even if you were one of those whose heart bleeds for the Cuban tyranny, right?

The real news is no news. Another Cuban citizen is denied entry into his place of birth.

Blanca Gonzalez, the mother of Cuban political prisoner Normando Hernandez received a letter from the Castro regime informing her that they would not grant her a visa to visit her homeland of Cuba or her son in prison. Yes, these criminals require Cubans visas to enter their country. Mr. Hernández is approximately 41 and has been in prison since 2003. She has not been able to see him 7 years.

In their letter, the Cuban Interests Section in Washington informed her that to know the reasons for their (absolutely unconstitutional and inhumane) decision she could send a relative living in Cuba to visit the Immigration office there (as if she were an immigrant and not a native).

Why the secrecy? Or is it just that Cuba's tyrant is ashamed to put his reasons in writing? If that's the case, that is, if he has begun to feel guilt and shame, then perhaps he's changing spiritually.

The video (below) of her reaction is in Spanish.

In another video shot at Miami International Airport here the second speaker (another blonde woman) identifies herself as the daughter of one of the regime's Lieutenant Colonels. Should assume she is pro-Castro? Whatever the case may be the Cuban Lieutenant Colonel's daughter apparently lives in Miami and unlike the political prisoner's mother travels to Cuba (and the U.S.) without any problems.

Cubans need to unite and bring the Castros to justice. However, infiltrators and the experience of 2 consecutive dictators (Batista, Castro) make it very difficult for Cubans to trust each other or to unite under a leader that might succesfully lead the opposition in this pre electoral phase. They are afraid of leaders, afraid they can´t control them. The military is to blame for this. Brute force has won because they sided with tyranny in 1952 and 1959 and has continued to do so to this day.

Maybe we should hold a simulation trial in Havana or on the Internet. Any volunteers to serve on Comandante Castro's (and his brother's) defense team?

Updated September 14 - Argentina

Sep 8, 2009

UPDATED: Google, Cuba Journal and the Politics of Hate

Previous title: Google, Cuba Journal and Hatred Towards Cuban Exiles

Google claims the following as its policy on free speech and "hateful material":
"Blogger strongly believes in freedom of speech. We believe that having a variety of perspectives is an important part of what makes blogs such an exciting and diverse medium. With that said, there are certain types of content that are not allowed on Blogger. While Blogger values and safeguards political and social commentary, material that promotes hatred toward groups based on race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status, or sexual orientation/gender identity is not allowed on Blogger."
Yet this is how Cuba Journal referred to Cuban exiles in its September 8, 2009 post (5:48 PM):
"These idiots have been living in the United States for fifty years, and have yet to learn to respect printed opinions which do not agree with their narrow mindedness."
This is utterly disrespectful of Cuban exiles and encourages others to hate and despise them.

Would this language be acceptable in Google Blogger if it were referring to any other ethnic group? Would it be it fine by Google's standards for a blogger to refer to Jews, Blacks, Mexicans or some other ethnic minority as "idiots" or by any other derogatory term?

How about 'gusanos' (worms),'monkeys', 'scum'? These are all terms employed by Cuba Journal to refer to Cuban exiles in its posts. Indeed, Cuba Journal is nothing less than an importer of Castro's politcs of hate into the United States and the Internet. There's hardly any difference between its speech and that of the Cuban tyranny exhorting followers to persecute those who dissent while publicly and loudly calling them 'worms'. Persecuted they then are and with the full brutal force of the regime backing the persecutors.

Given its public policy on hate speech how can Castro's and Cuba Journal's politics of hate possibly be acceptable to Google?

Or is it only acceptable to Google when it's directed at Cuban exiles? Or by someone such as Cuba Journal who represents himself as one?

Google must surely know that hate speech is protected by the U.S. constitution's first ammendment in most cases. Perhaps that's why it doesn't mind violating its own policies.

Now that most communication has been internationalized through the Internet Castro and others who specialize in war through hate speech must be delighted. Repress at home and build hate momentum towards exiles abroad. Google blog search and Google blogger will take care of the rest with the help of Cuba Journal and Castro's network of U.S. supporters.

When I last checked (September 11) Google ranks Cuba Journal as the 4th most relevant blog if one types the keyword 'Cuba'.

Furthermore, Cuba Journal's foregoing hate blurb, camouflaged as a post on free speech is easily accecible on Google's blog search engine while mine, "Van Jones, Free Speech and Cuban Exiles", was blocked until September 10.

Updated September 11, 2009 from Argentina.

Van Jones, Free Speech and Cuban Exiles

Google, the Mainstream News Media, Blogs and Cuba : What I thought was not so crazy after all

Sep 6, 2009

Van Jones, Free Speech and Cuban Exiles


I remember my encounter with Van Jones in Berkeley for I was there in 1999 when hundreds or perhaps more than a thousand took to the streets to protest Pacifica Radio's alleged censorship of KPFA, its local affiliate. Those who had missed Berkeley's renowned free speech movement in 1964 now had a chance to defend a right enshrined in the U.S. constitution.

Yet this was Berkeley and thus someone could both defend and deny the right to free speech without any jaws dropping. In other words, many in Berkeley were more than willing to patriotically turn the town upside down to defend their constitutional right to free speech while supporting Fidel Castro's 'free speech only for those who think like me' regime and turning Berkeley into a sister city of Palma Soriano, Santiago de Cuba. Their utterly shameless hypocrisy was hard to believe and so I decided to test it by lending my support to their "free speech" cause.

When a community strategy meeting was called and all activist organizations were invited I decided to attend. The 75-100 representatives of activist organizations were seated in a semi-circle while Mr. Van Jones and Ms. Andrea Buffa stood at the head. They began the meeting by reminding everyone about the importance of avoiding divisiveness since that would certainly be the enemy's tactic against the reborn fledgling movement. A united front with a common strategy was to be the way to win this war for, hmmm, Free Speech.

Van Jones then asked each of the seated participants to introduce himself or herself. I was among the first ten and when my turn arrived I announced that I was a Cuban exile and could therefore identify completely with the right they were claiming. I then offered my services, that is, to help nationalize their cause by seeking support among fellow exiles in Florida. I assured them that Cuban exiles would overwhelmingly support their claim to freedom of expression.

Without any hesitation whatsoever, Van Jones icily replied: "Progressives only" and proceeded to the next participant.

I analyzed his response for less than a minute and walked out.

Given this interaction, I'm not surprised by the revelations that have surfaced in the past few weeks or his politically inevitable resignation (for Obama's sake). But how could Obama ever have elected him as a czar?

Had I been Fidel's Castro emissary, or the tyrant himself, I suppose Van Jones would have welcomed me. Indeed, STORM or (Standing Together to Organize a Revolutionary Movement), a group to which he belonged, travelled to Cuba in 1999. There are no reports of Van Jones or any of his STORM associates organizing free speech protests during that visit; or of their meeting with dissident Cuban human rights advocates or visiting political prisoners. Need I ask why not? They and some congressmen only seemed to be concerned about 'their right' to travel to Cuba, not about human rights for Cubans or anyone else.

How much time did President Obama spend with Van Jones or reading his reports, if any? Surely he must have had influence or he would not have been recruited to be part of Obama's team of czars.

What was Van Jones' input, if any, on Obama's Cuba and Honduras policies? How do we know this for sure?