THE USEFUL IDIOTS
Through the years, many famous people, including politicians, sport figures, millionaires and Hollywood luminaries have been going to Cuba and allow themselves to be used by Castro's propaganda machine. Many have done it out of sheer ignorance; some have done it because they are dumb; and some others because they are benefiting economically from their association with this brutal dictator.
It is a great propaganda tool for the Castro regime. Cubans who are enslaved by this brutal dictator are told that they can't expect much international help when all these famous people are going there to make jokes, play games or show their support for the dictator.
Some day, these people will have to hang their head in shame for having used their names and fame to support Castro's genocide against the Cuban people.
Here is what some of the useful idiots have said:
Supermodel Naomi Campbell Fidel Castro was "a source of inspiration to the world. I'm so nervous and flustered because I can't believe I have met him. He said that seeing us in person was very spiritual," said Campbell after meeting with Castro, according to the Toronto Star.
Comedian Chevy Chase, at Earth Day 2000 in Washington D.C., said he believes "socialism works" and explained that "Cuba might prove that."
Kevin Costner after going to Cuba in 2001 to preview his film "13 Days": "It was an experience of a lifetime to sit only a few feet away from him and watch him relive an experience he lived as a very young man."
"He is a genius. We spoke about everything," actor Jack Nichols after meeting with Castro in 1998. Saul Landau, an Emmy award-winning filmmaker: Castro "has brought a greater equality in terms of wealth distribution than I guess any country in the world today."
Film director Steven Spielberg visited Cuba and met with Castro in November of 2002 and dined with the dictator until the early morning hours. Afterward, Spielberg announced that his dinner with Castro "was the eight most important hours of my life." Not the day of his wedding. Not the day that his kids were born. The most important hours of his life was the time that he spent with this criminal. Click here to read more about Spielberg's visit to Havana
Ralph Nader: "Nader also spoke in favor of abandoning a 40-year-old US trade embargo against Cuba, saying the United States should treat Cuba as it treats China. He said the two nations should also launch a dialogue on the meaning of democracy." Click here
Ed Asner on MSNBC being interviewed by Pat Buchanan:
Buchanan: “Mr. Asner, thanks for coming on and Ed, let me ask you about Danny Glover and Harry Belafonte who have co-signed this statement basically supporting Fidel Castro after he put 75 dissidents in prison for up to 28 years and executed the three who tried to sort of hijack a ferry boat and come to Cuba [meant U.S.]. What is it about these, Harry Belafonte, frankly, and Danny Glover that they can attack the American government and defend a guy who would basically put him in prison for doing what they do here in the United States?”
Asner: “Well, they may well be put in prison here for those, for the support they’re giving to Castro, the way things are going in this country. I am opposed to capital punishment by any country, by any persons. I disapprove of Mr. Castro’s executing. I understand that the trial was very fair, that the death penalty is exercised in Cuba and therefore, by Cuban standards, the trial was fair and judicious even though I abhor the death penalty.”
Buchanan: “I want you to name individuals in this country who have made political statements criticizing President Bush who have been put into a penitentiary for five, ten, or twenty-five years like these dissidents who criticized Castro were put into prison. And is this not a real slander on your own country to suggest that it behaves in the same manner as Fidel Castro?”
Asner: “Uh, my country is much more fortunate so it can’t, it doesn’t have to afford the excesses that Fidel Castro has to resort to by constantly being embargoed by the United States.”
Buchanan: “Why does he have to do this? Why does he have to do it?”
Asner blamed the U.S. for driving Castro to communism: “What is the, because when Castro first took over, we all celebrated enormously. Cuba, which was never supposed to be under the hegemony of the United States had finally found its freedom. Within a year, because of pressure by the United States, Fidel demonstrated his independence of the United States. The United States could not tolerate a little country, a little Hispanic country 90 miles off the United States declaring its independence of the United States so immediately embargoes, everything began to take place, forcing him into the sphere of Soviet influence.”
"Behind the scenes with Dan Rather," an article by Humberto Fontova
Dan had seemed a bit cranky lately. "It took her [Katie Couric] 15 years to make the Today' show a hit," Dan told Art Buchwald in a recent interview. "I'm sure it will take her longer than that to beat Charlie Gibson and Brian Williams." Graciousness was never Dan's strong suit (except when addressing mass-murdering dictators).
But now he claims to be delighted with the HDNet deal and seems ready to rumble. "You bet your life I've got a lot of baggage," blustered Dan just after signing the deal. "And make no mistake, I'm proud of it. Yes, I'm biased. I have a very strong bias toward independent journalism, italicized, underlined, put in bold caps! ... If you've seen 'Good Night, and Good Luck,' you know what I'm talking about.
And I should be lucky enough to live to the day that I can walk in the same room with Ed Murrow, but I can't, and nobody before or since him could. But there's the model for things." Unfortunately for Dan Rather, we have an eyewitness to his version of "independent journalism, italicized, underlined" and "in bold caps."
More unfortunate still, the eyewitness account involves some of Dan's behind -the-scenes "baggage" – the very thing "60 Minutes" so delights in exposing in Republicans and other conservatives who earn their investigative ire. A familiar bromide cautions against "people in glass houses throwing stones." Well, if that aphorism ever fit ..."Most of the questions Dan Rather was asking Elian's father during that '60 Minutes' interview were being handed to him by Gregory Craig," says Mr. Pedro Porro, who in April of 2000 served as Rather's in-studio translator during the taping of the famous interview with Juan Miguel Gonzalez.
Gregory Craig, lest anyone forget, flush from his fame getting Bill Clinton off the Lewinsky hook, was then Juan Miguel's attorney – which is to say, of course, Fidel Castro's attorney.
"It was obvious that Craig and Rather were on very friendly terms," says Mr. Porro. "They were joshing and bantering back and forth, as Juan Miguel sat there petrified. Craig was stage-managing the whole thing – almost like a movie director. The taping would stop and he'd walk over to Dan, hand him a little slip of paper, say something into his ear. Then Rather would read straight from the paper.
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