Fidel and our Media

Posted in Uncategorized by @honestcharlie on November 27, 2016


Time Announces the “Decay of Revolution”

We are very sad to see the vast ignorance displayed about Fidel Castro and Cuba, ignorance furthered by right-wing fanatics and our politicians. We can understand Little Marco [Rubio] and Daffy Donald [Trump] joining in on celebrating Fidel’s death, but they certainly must know better about how things happened. If they don’t, we are even in worse condition than we could have imagined.

Wikipedia, surprisingly, gives a fairly honest account of Castro, so we will content ourselves with clarifying a few other points.

First of all, his original interest was baseball. A pitcher, the New York Yankees had the opportunity to sign him, but capitalism seems to be its own worst enemy. He went to Law school instead. Then the trouble started.

For a fairly accurate idea of what things were like under Batiste, however, even popular entertainment here is more accurate that our news media. The “Godfather” movies, especially those scenes in Havana, depict very well the operation of that government and in whose interest it was run as well as its effect on the people. In one scene, we see all the major corporations seated around the table with some major gangsters and also Batiste. They were all very harmonious.

Castro nationalized the major industries so that they could be run in the interest of the people. He offered to pay the corporations their value, but the corporations said that they were worth much more than he offered. He replied that he was offering their appraised value, but they were adamant. He then offered to buy them at their own valuation, but first they would have to pay back taxes on that amount. They would not allow that either. So, he just took them. This did not go over very well with the Eisenhower administration.

There was the “Bay of Pigs” invasion that failed, a CIA operation that surprised JFK so far as we are led to believe. The “Cuban Missile Crisis” was an interesting event. Castro was now justifiable concerned about U.S. intentions to invade and also to assassinate him (over 300 attempts were made with estimates as high as 800) and the Soviet Union, particularly Russia, had always been surrounded by enemies as far back as the 16th century, and we had missiles aimed at them from Turkey and other places. Castro, on the other hand, was concerned with further invasions from the U.S.

Much has been made about the standoff and how valiant the Kennedy brothers were at the time, but what really stopped a nuclear war was the refusal of a singular Soviet submarine to disobey the order to fire on the U.S. ships.

Most of the invasions were during the early days (he only had 1,000 in all) of the Kennedy administration. However, John Foster Dulles who had deposed a democratically elected leader of Iran and installed the right-wing Shah who supplied oil to Israel and in general did our bidding authorized them during the last years of the Eisenhower administration. His brother Allen Dulles who often said that all his actions were “approved at the highest levels of the government,” meaning his brother John, carried out these invasions. When Kennedy saw what a disaster the CIA was, he fired Allen Dulles. Kennedy was assassinated a year later.

Castro was extremely worried that he would be accused of the assassination and was very much aware of the attempts. He did what he could to warn John, despite their differences. Oliver Stone presented the most plausible version of the conspiracy. Obviously, no one of any familiarity with the facts believe the so-called “Warren Report,” which was basically run by, that’s right, the same Allen Dulles whom Kennedy fired.

Much is made of the political prisoners in Cuba. Once Jimmie Carter demanded their release and Fidel maintained that they were all either criminals or insane. Fidel bowed to the pressure and released them to the U.S., and they turned out to be criminals and lunatics.

We can tolerate deliberate distortions, but there is no justification for genuine ignorance. There is much more such as universal health care, aid to other countries, and so on, but this is enough and the Pope’s visit should indicate at least something to our citizens.


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