Florida Today by Marshall Frank
Before making nice with Cuba, our government must take a tougher stance on some major issues. We already made a lopsided deal to one enemy nation who chants “Death to America,” let’s not make another blunder so close to our border.
Few Americans today understand or recall the reasons we severed diplomatic relations with Cuba in 1960. With brutal force, Cuba established dictatorial communism under our noses, and presented America as the great Satan to the Cuban people. Since then, nearly 10 percent of its desperate population has fled Cuba to find refuge in America.
In 1962, Castro and the Soviet Union aimed their nuclear missiles at the United States until President Kennedy imposed the famous blockade, establishing themselves as an enemy.
In 1980, Castro opened the exit doors to their unwanted citizens, including criminals, drug addicts, mentally ill, disabled and political dissidents via the Mariel Boat Lift, which brought an astounding 120,000 refugees into South Florida overnight. Crime tripled, unidentified bodies were everywhere, undocumented criminals hid in shadows, housing, schools and hospitals were overrun.
Today, Hezbollah is an Islamist terror hate group originating from Lebanon, now with tentacles expanding throughout the western world. That includes Cuba. So, why are we pandering to the communist nation, knowing they are aiding and harboring a terrorist organization 90 miles from the shoreline of our country?
According to Judicial Watch, a watchdog organization, and other sources, President Obama lifted the terror-state designation from Cuba in 2015, knowing that Hezbollah had already established a base of operations on the communist island in 2011. That could not have occurred without consent of the Castro regime. This was confirmed when Hillary Clinton’s 2011 communiques were revealed in February of this year citing Israeli intelligence. The email includes, “Hezbollah office has established an operational base in Cuba designed to support terrorist attacks throughout Latin America.”
Besides support for terrorism, there are more reasons not to establish diplomatic relations with Cuba, as articulated by Senator Marco Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants. Rubio recently cited a partial list of needed requirements of Cuba before acquiescing anything to the communist government. That would include:
•Initiate free elections with choices for Cuban people outside of the strict Castro communist mantra.
•Establish free speech. Cuba should stop jailing people indefinitely for speaking out with opposing points of view. (The “Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation” listed 51 prisoners of “conscience,” some jailed over two decades for speaking out against the regime).
•Provide freedom of press, not limited to one state-run information network
•Guarantee that Russia and China will not be allowed listening and jamming stations based in Cuba.
•Cuba must cease being an ally to North Korea
•Cuba must release a convicted cop killer from New Jersey back to the U.S. (JoAnne Chesimard of the Black Liberation Army, who escaped from a New Jersey prison in 1979 and was granted asylum in Cuba)
Being chummy with Cuba may sound like a good idea to some folks, but there’s far more to the story. One look at Wikipedia page “Human Rights in Cuba” provides chilling data which tells much from the behind-the-scenes. Foreign tourists who travel to plush beachfront hotels are unaware about life under Cuban communism on the other side of the propaganda wall.
The Cuban constitution says that control of the press is allowed in keeping with the objectives of socialist society. Reporters Without Borders — an international non-profit watchdog group — ranked Cuba at or near the bottom of Press Freedom Index. The Committee to Protect Journalists group ranked Cuba as one of the ten most censored countries in the world.
The Castro regime has a lot of conceding to do before our taxpayers should be expected to make friends with a nation filled with hatred toward the United States, and who gives sanctuary to those who would destroy us.
Marshall Frank is an author and retired police captain from Miami. His writing is online at marshallfrank.com