“Let’s overlook President Obama’s failures during his first term,” advised Raul Castro’s daughter Mariela to Congresspersons Barbara Lee, Lynn Woolsey and Sam Farr recently in Havana. “We must support him for a second term so that he can have a better opportunity to accomplish better things.”
While being feted by a Stalinist regime that shoots and imprisons labor leaders, outlaws strikes and burns Orwell’s “Animal Farm” as “seditious,” the three smitten U.S. legislators were acting as honored plenipotentiaries of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
While delighting in the company of a regime that jailed and tortured the longest suffering black political prisoners in modern history, that to this day jails and tortures Cuban blacks for the crime of quoting Martin Luther King, Jr., and whose co-founder (Che Guevara) declared, “The Negro is indolent and spends his money on frivolities and drink, whereas the European is forward-looking, organized and intelligent,” – while swooning in this august company, California Rep. Barbara Lee also acted as plenipotentiary of the Congressional Black Caucus.
This Congressional delegation’s respectful visit to the Stalinist regime that jailed political prisoners at a higher rate than Stalin’s, murdered them at a higher rate than pre-war Hitler’s and bans elections under penalty of torture chambers and firing squads, was sponsored by the California-based Center for Democracy in the Americas.
Mariela Castro, 49, serves as head of the Cuban National Center for Sex Education, which is dedicated “to enlightening people against traditional sexual prejudices,” and is run by the only regime in the modern history of the Western hemisphere to herd gays into forced labor camps for the crime of being gay, and to herd HIV sufferers into isolation camps until they died.
Prior to last week’s visit, Rep. Barbara Lee was in Cuba in April 2009 with a Congressional Black Caucus delegation that returned enraptured. Not since Ann Margaret’s reaction to Conrad Birdie’s kiss had anything been recorded to match these U.S. legislators’ reaction to meeting the Castro brothers.
“He looked directly into my eyes!” gasped Rep. Laura Richardson (D-CA), “and then he asked: how can we help President Obama? Fidel Castro really wants President Obama to succeed.”
“It was quite a moment to behold!” hyperventilated Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA). “Fidel Castro was very engaging and very energetic.”
“He’s one of the most amazing human beings I’ve ever met!” gushed Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO)
“I’m convinced Raul Castro wants a normal relationship with the United States,” said Rep. Barbara Lee after finally catching her breath following her 2009 visit. She assures us that her Stalinist Cuban hosts “do want dialogue. They do want talks. They do want normal relations.”
Fine, and so did South African Prime Minister P.W. Botha in 1986. So I will now quote Rep. Lee’s very own Congressional Black Caucus regarding “normal relations” between the U.S. and segregationist South Africa.
“The U.S. has held ideals of freedom for more than 200 years and we should not tolerate their abrogation by any other country!” thundered CBC founder and long-time Castro friend and champion Charles Rangel in 1986.
“In any business dealings with [South Africa] we become tainted by association. We urge a policy of comprehensive sanctions. Of total disinvestment, a complete ban on imports and exports,” implored CBC co-founders Ron Dellums. “In other words, I urge adoption of a policy that demonstrates our total abhorrence of apartheid!”
But, given the Congressional Black Caucus’ constant swooning over Castroite Cuba, no abhorrence of Stalinism (total or even partial) seems to figure in their program.
Granted, major differences abound between Stalinist Cuba and the late segregationist South Africa. The segregationists, for instance, jailed at most 5000 political prisoners (the Castroites 300,000). The segregationists also never tortured and murdered U.S. citizens, never stole $2 billion from U.S. stockholders at Soviet gunpoint, never trained and financed some of the world’s most murderous terrorist groups and never craved to nuke us.
According to Anti-apartheid activists, a grand total of 3000 political prisoners passed through South Africa’s Robben Island prison in roughly 30 years under the apartheid regime. Usually about 1000 were held. These were out of a South African population of 40 million. In its day, the regime responsible for these incarcerations weathered a relentless campaign of vituperation from every political, press and academic pulpit on the face of the earth until economic sanctions by practically every nation on the face of the earth battered, crippled and finally finished it.
According to the Human Rights group, Freedom House, a grand total of 500,000 political prisoners have passed through Stalinist Cuba’s various prisons and forced labor camps. At one time in 1961, 300,000 Cubans were jailed for political offenses. This is out of a Cuban population in 1960 of 6.4 million. Among these were the longest suffering political prisoners in modern history including the black Mr. Eusebio Penalver, who suffered longer in Castro’s prisons than Nelson Mandela suffered in South Africa’s.
A calculator will easily reveal the grotesque disparity between Castroite repression compared to apartheid repression. The regime the Congressional Black Caucus shills for and the world eagerly lavishes with trade and tourism while millions attempt to flee it (Cuba’s) was roughly 20 times as repressive as the one the CBC condemned and the world self-righteously blacklisted and sanctioned while blacks from neighboring nations attempted to enter it (South Africa’s).
Interestingly, according to UNICEF statistics, infant-mortality rates for South African blacks were lower, and life-expectancy rates higher, during the apartheid regime than afterwards. So we will look for any mention of apartheid in the world’s media, academic and political circles to include: “True, South African blacks could not vote – but the segregationist regime certainly achieved great gains in health-care for the poor!”