News item: PANAMA CITY (AP) —“Turning the page on a half-century of hostility, President Barack Obama signaled Thursday he will soon remove Cuba from the U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism, boosting hopes for improved ties as he prepared for a historic encounter with Cuban President Raul Castro.” Characteristically, the AP neglected to say precisely whose hopes were boosted. Presumably not those of the rioting protesters outside the halls of the hemispheric conference in Panama City.
“…don’t you agree?”
And in what may be our favorite Barack Obama quote since his discovery of the “transcontinental railway,” the First Marxist explained, “We don’t want to be imprisoned by the past.” Said on behalf of an administration that rarely seems even to be informed by the past, this epigrammatic dismissal of common sense made the perfect segue into still more international Dadaism. We refer to the announcement that the State Department has finished its review of Cuba’s inclusion on the list of states supporting terrorism, and guess what: State is recommending removing Cuba from the list. As Linda Blair once remarked while in the throes of demonic possession, “mirabile dictu, don’t you agree?”
Our sorriest president.
And even as President Obama groveled, oozed camaraderie and assured his lapdog media stateside that he was “escaping…the constraints of the past,” Raul Castro was ratcheting up his demands, insisting that America pay reparations for its cold war policies and immediately turn Guantanamo Bay over to the communists. It all started back in 2014 when Barack Obama was evidently, bethinking himself of more foreign leaders to whom he could apologize and decided to dial up Raul Castro.
“I apologized for taking such a long time,” Obama said. He proceeded to assign the blame for so prolonged a schism between Cuba and the United states to American intransigence. Castro appeared to concur, and responded with a thirty-minute stream of blistering reprimands to which America’s First Marxist listened with what we can only assume was comradely empathy, following the cessation of which Obama informed the media, “I think there’s a real opportunity here, and we are going to continue to make – move–forward on it. Our hope is to be in a position where we can open an embassy there, that we can start having more regular contacts and consultations around a whole host of issues, some of which we have interests in common.” (Obviously the presidential teleprompter was having a down day.)
“And all that that implies…”
Isn’t anyone, besides us, concerned about making kissy face with the Castro regime? Perhaps not. We are, of course, prepared to take the minority view. We have a Woofette among our numbers who as recently as 2008 blogged to the effect that communism remained this nation’s number one problem internationally and domestically, for which she was practically laughed off the web. Even her conservative allies in the blogosphere took pains to gently assure her that communism as a force to be reckoned with was as long gone as Nehru jackets and mood rings. This utter dismissal of the “Red Menace” as a factor of any significance in American domestic or international affairs seems all the more astonishing given Barack Hussein Obama’s subsequent inauguration as the country’s first blatantly Marxist chief executive—and, as that laughably paranoiac cartoon G-man in The Iron Giant liked to say, “all that that implies!”
The fall of the Soviet Union is, of course, largely responsible for the notion that communism no longer threatens the United States or her interests, abetted by the decades-long liberal initiative to persuade us that communism was never a particularly threatening phenomenon, all impressions to the contrary being the result of “McCarthyism,” that particularly venomous brand of psychosis, to hear the professors tell it, that whipped large segments of the American public into unprecedented paroxysms of paranoia. So effectively is this solecism promulgated by academe and the establishment media that nowadays few of us feel comfortable saying “cold war” without adjectivizing the term into a compound modifier of “paranoia.”
One of the best!
In 1998 our certainty that “cold-war paranoia” was an artifact of our irrational past was buttressed by a report from the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) assuring us that: “Cuba no longer poses a military threat to the United States.” And the information was signed off on by the DIA’s most senior and trusted specialist on the Cuban situation—a 16-year veteran at the agency named Ana Belen Montes. In fact, when the FBI took Montez into custody in 2001, she was a senior analyst with a DIA rank equivalent to bird colonel. Throughout her entire career in American intelligence, beginning in 1984 with her recruitment by the communists and her subsequent training in Czechoslovakia as a communist spy, Montez was working directly for Fidel Castro.
In fact, associates remarked that she had long evinced an open admiration for Fidel, which aroused little suspicion because,apparently, it didn’t strike anyone at DIA as unusual. The fact that a background check revealed that Montez falsified her masters degree (ostensibly but not actually from Johns Hopkins) also bothered no one of significance. And since DIA did not administer pre-employment polygraphs in 1985, Montez was hired and promoted swiftly through the ranks, and invariably lauded by her superiors as “one of the best Cuba analysts anywhere in government.” They just got the part about whose government wrong. Oops.
And if the preternaturally sluggish reaction to Montez’s glaring pro-communism strikes you as perplexing, gentle readers, consider the case of Carlos and Elsa Alvarez, two hard working professors at Florida International University, both arrested for espionage and charged as Cuban spies. Both pled guilty, and both are now serving prison terms, which might inspire more confidence in the American counterintelligence effort were it not for the fact that the Alverezes were identified as communist agents during a congressional hearing in 1982, whereas they were arrested in 2006.
Indeed, within mere months of our above-mentioned Woofette’s disparagement for suggesting that communism remained an issue of concern for Americans, the United States enthusiastically voted to install a government consisting of known communists, self-professing communists, admirers of communism and a president whose every influence during his formative years, apart from Islam, had been communist, and whose church had for 20 years preached liberation theology to him, a radical form of theological revisionism that is, in fact, communist. And why not, if communism is merely the preposterous preoccupation of a few doddering Birchers and McCarthyites?
As we’ve noted on previous occasions, the greatest coup that communism achieved in the United States was inculcating upon Americans the accepted wisdom that only nutjobs and rascals worry about communism. In this respect, the first rule of communist infiltration is that nobody talks about communist infiltration. To recycle a favorite scrap of pertinent wisdom from the cult film The Usual Suspects, “the greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist!” (Yes, we know, Baudelaire said it first, but he never made a movie.)
By 2010 the most efficient and advanced healthcare system in the history of the planet had been slated for slow death by socialization under the control of the redistributionist IRS. The world’s largest economy had been sabotaged with the enthusiastic support of congress, the Middle East had been divested of any semblance of pro-Americanism or even neutrality, save for Jordan and Israel, and Israel treated with such disdain that its leadership despairs today of ever again relying on American support in times of crisis.
The fully suborned news media sufficed and continue to suffice as a propaganda arm of the new socialism with no less obsequiousness and considerably more alacrity than had they been subjected to the jackboot. And this transformation of American journalists into disseminators of Anti-American disinformation occurred without a shot being fired. It was entirely voluntary.
Mao-ee Christmas, and Amilcar Cabral!
At Obama’s first presidential Christmas, the White House tree featured ornaments displaying the benignant smile of Mao Tse Tung, even as the president’s hand-picked aide Anita Dunn praised the butcher of 50,000,000 Chinese as one of her two favorite political philosophers. Obama’s czar Van Jones (who remains openly communist) agreed that “We find inspiration in the revolutionary strategies developed by Third World revolutionaries like Mao Tse Tung and Amilcar Cabral.” Whom did he mean by “we?” A complete roster would be prohibitively time-consuming and digressive even by our “liberal” standards, , but certainly top Obama advisors David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett entered the West Wing with pro-communist backgrounds. Mark Lloyd took over the FCC gushing praise for Hugo Chavez’s communist revolution in Venezuela and denouncing the 1st amendment as “a distraction from the critical examination of other communications policies.” “Critical examination,” by the way, is phraseology straight out of Marx, e.g., his “critical examination” of Hegel, his “critical examination of the economic foundations of bourgeois society,” and so on. Interested readers may locate a thorough account of the subversive nature of Obama’s starting lineup by clicking here, but we shall resist the urge to indulge ourselves in elaboration, in order to devote our full attention to the communist threat about which we currently intend to rant, namely “thaht imprishoned island of Cuber,” as JFK memorably called it.
Following Obama’s re-election 2012, Erwin Marquit, member in good standing of the CPUSA and chief of its International Department rose to address the14th International Meeting of Communist and Workers Parties, telling his comrades: “The Communist Party USA not only welcomes the reelection of President Barack Obama, but actively engaged in the electoral campaign for his reelection and for the election of many Democratic Party congressional candidates. We regarded the 2012 election as the most important in the United States since 1932, an election held in the midst of the Great Depression.”
We of WOOF find ourselves in ironical but complete agreement with Comrade Marquit. The 2012 election was indeed the most important election since 1932. Of course, in WOOF’s more enlightened view, both elections were disasters!
How it happened, or, the part you can skip if you already know this stuff:
Sensitive devotees of outreach that we are, your humble authors know full well that generations have been reared without the slightest awareness of why Cuba should be in the doghouse of American foreign policy. For that matter, generations have been marched through the ranks of secondary, post-secondary, and University-level education without having the slightest awareness of who fought in the Civil War or whom we won our independence from, so knowing anything about Cuba would be asking a lot. In the late ‘60s, college radicals commonly made pilgrimages to that imprisoned island, helping Fidel harvest his cane crop. The idea, of course, was not that spoiled American college kids could harvest cane worth a damn, but rather that their radical bonafides were thereby solidified. Since those days, we have been given the general impression that Cuba is a tropical workers’ paradise blessed with charismatic leadership, and the world’s best healthcare system (an idiotism deriving mainly from Michael Moore’s preposterous but widely-attended movie, Sicko). It is also generally assumed that for reasons having something to do with (let’s say it together) ‘cold war paranoia,’ the U.S. is unbecomingly nasty to Cuba, and solely responsible for holding the island back economically, as though the most masochistically self-strangulated economy in the Western hemisphere would somehow surge ahead of Hong Kong and Indonesia if los Yanquis just bought its sugar.
When things were (almost as) rotten
Before the communist takeover of Cuba, the island was run by a crooked, tin-horned dictator named Fulgencio Batista y Zaldívar—but everyone just called him Batista. Among his many escapades, Batista ran for president of Cuba in 1952, but the election went poorly for him, so rather than come up with a concession speech, he led a military coup and took over by force of arms, promoting himself to colonel in the process, which reminds us: why do almost all military dictators become colonels rather than generals? Is it a Zen thing? Suffice it that Batista was a rum bloke, hammering out alliances with the wealthy gentry, plantation owners and the American Mafia on the backs of the island’s poor. Nobody, therefore, liked him, except the plantation owners, land holders, and the American Mafia—and the U.S. government, which supported him because he was not communist–our chief criteria for approval during the cold war—(liberals may wish to add “paranoia” here, so please consider it implicit).
Castro’s rebellion against so loathsome a despot as Batista was understandably alluring to America’s leftist intelligentsia and assorted media stars given its veneer of egalitarianism. When Batista’s forces were decisively routed at the Battle of Santa Clara on New Year’s Day, 1959, proving inadequate even to the task of repulsing forces led by the tactically obtuse, psychopathically disorganized Che Guevara, the American Left waxed ecstatic…as though Robin of Loxley had finally cleaned King John’s clock.
Uh-oh. Robin Hood’s a Commie!
Perceiving Castro as a megalomaniacal communist was not terribly challenging beyond the fog-encumbered sanctuaries of liberal journalism. Being present as events unfolded helped a sizable numbers of Cubans spot the tyrant beneath the fatigues—and many of them mounted counterrevolutionary efforts. A strong counterinsurgency took refuge in Cuba’s mountainous regions and staged spirited attacks on Castro’s forces and sources of supply. This led to Fidel declaring “War against the bandits” which lasted a good six years. Sadly, CIA involvement and financing of the “bandits” proved sporadic. thus Castro was able to contain the uprisings while reserving a free hand by which to implement the widespread imprisonment of dissenters who were shot or subjected to Red Chinese-style brainwashing combined with forced labor. Next came the systematic harassment of critical newspaper editors. By January of 1960, articles critical of the regime were required to end with corrective “clarifications” generously supplied by the printers union, which was entirely Castro-ite.
Stalinist show trials were staged for former officials and favorites of the Batista government. The first of these took place in Havana in a sports stadium with 17,000 Cubans in attendance. Even so, justice didn’t always prevail, at least in Castro’s view. When citizens accused of bombing a village were acquitted by the court, Castro ordered a retrial and made certain the same defendants were convicted and given life at hard labor. When Castro executed an American (former Castro sympathizer William Alexander Morgan–sorry, Alexander!) even some of his fellow travelers in America complained about the iniquitous juridical process, but Fidel maintained that his forensic vision was of a purer variety, explaining that “Revolutionary justice is not based on legal precepts, but on moral conviction.” Who knew?
Moral conviction also compelled Castro to do the usual amount of Communist nationalizing. When they failed to show sufficient interest in surrendering their management decisions and manufacturing policies to Castro’s staff of bearded economic planners, American oil companies saw their refineries expropriated in the name of the revolution. Sugar mills and banks were nationalized next, following which, in October of 1960, the Cuban National Institute for Agrarian Reform seized control of 383 privately-run businesses and over 160 company operations in Cuba including Coca Cola and Sears. This, as is invariably the case in such matters, effectively ensured that no profitable business ventures remained in Cuba. Is it any wonder that liberals love this man? Moreover, the American government was sufficiently annoyed to ban the importation of Cuban sugar, cutting sharply into Fidel’s exports until enough Russian, African, Spanish and Latin American sweet tooths could be cultivated to partially offset the damage. Coca Cola was rebottled by the Castro regime, albeit with certain unhelpful adjustments to its formula, and when the supply of caramel coloring ran out, Coke in Havana became see-through, making Castro Cola the de facto forerunner of Crystal Pepsi, although, come to think of it, nobody liked that stuff either.
If you’re going to take Vienna….
Students (and survivors) of history will recall that as Castro’s communist totalitarianism allied itself outspokenly with Soviet totalitarianism, the Kennedy administration gave the green light to a half-hearted insurgency that fizzled at the Bay of Pigs when JFK pulled the air cover, denied the rebel forces naval support despite desperate pleas from American destroyer captains off the beach, and left “Brigade 2506” (the good guys) to exhaust their ammo and surrender beneath skies controlled entirely by Castro’s aircraft. The last forlorn message from the commander of the CIA-trained battalion was “I am going into the swamps, I have nothing left with which to fight.” Kennedy’s inopportune volte-face (perhaps best understood as symptomatic of a poorly supervised biphetamine regimen) created the impression of a weak American presidency and led directly to Nikita Khrushchev’s decision to place nuclear missiles in Cuba (with Castro’s enthusiastic approval) in October of 1962. This is the sort of thing that happens when American leaders forget the sagacity of Napoleon’s old dictum: “If you’re going to take Vienna–take Vienna!”
As his admirers in media repeatedly reminded us, until his radiance waned and they found new and lesser objects for their affections, President Kennedy comported himself courageously during the ensuing Cuban Missile Crisis, and while America came out the loser if the crisis is viewed as a zero-sum game (because we sacrificed our missiles in Turkey while Russia lost nothing but missiles it had not fully established in Cuba anyway), Russia looked very much the loser on the world stage, and Khrushchev, who clearly lost his nerve that time around, was ultimately deposed by the Red oligarchy in Moscow.
Terror’s Poster Child
It is precisely here that Fidel began to export terror in the name of revolution, often under the command of every American college student’s favorite folk hero, Che Guevara. Initially, Che functioned as Fidel’s post-revolutionary executioner, noteworthy for his alacritous organization of the bloodbaths inside the prisons at La Cabaña and Santa Clara, as well as myriad additional firing squads wherever convenient. Forthrightly admitting that he found killing people enjoyable, Che seemed happy in his work and devoted himself with equal enthusiasm to constructing and populating Cuba’s slave labor camps before the “Peter Principle” overtook him and he found himself president of the Cuban National Bank, which is one of several reasons the words “Cuban” and “economy” are rarely used in conjunction. Che also did a stint as Cuba’s chief atomic armaments strategist, lamenting in the wake of the missile crisis that “If the nuclear missiles had remained, we would have used them against the very heart of America, including New York City…” which would have proved difficult because the Russian missiles wouldn’t reach New York City, but Che was never a detail guy. This became all the more obvious in 1965 as he attempted to spread revolution throughout the Congo.
(In and) Out of Africa
Convinced that Africa was ripe for communist conversion, Che sallied forth with twelve comrades under orders from Fidel to ignite the flames of Marxist revolution on the continent. He began by instructing the local Congolese Simba fighters in Marxist ideology as well as his own rather simplistic theories of guerilla warfare, but got nowhere. The few guerilla actions Che managed to mount were summarily defeated by CIA-led opposition forces so that after seven months of humiliation and frustration the folk hero hobbled out of the jungle stricken with dysentery and asthma. Only six of his twelve original stalwarts survived. Returning to Havana, Che blamed his failures on the incompetence of the Congolese combined with what he denounced as their racially inherent dimwittedness and lethargy—Che having it in common with Marx that his racism, though rarely highlighted, remained significant throughout his life. Given lessons learned, Che apprised Castro of his revised conclusion that Africa was not poised for Marxist revolution after all. Bolivia, however, was a different story.
Hands up, don’t shoot!
Convinced that communism’s future now awaited his arrival in Bolivia, Che flew commercial to La Paz and set up camp in the southeasterly Ñancahuazú valley. His efforts to foment a guerilla insurgency in the vicinity went almost immediately sour. The radios Havana supplied didn’t work, in spite of which he divided his forces and became unable to locate his second element in the jungle. The dialect his team had trained to speak turned out to be unknown in the area, and Guevara’s own authoritarian intransigence proved no better a recruiting asset in Latin America than it had in Africa. The local dissidents wouldn’t join him, the local inhabitants regularly informed the Bolivian government of his movements, and even the Bolivian Communist Party snubbed his advances. Worse, the Bolivian government asked American CIA and Special Forces teams for help. Green Beret-led units quickly outmaneuvered, wounded, and captured the guerilla warfare genius, who surrendered shouting, “Don’t shoot, I am Che Guevara and I am worth more to you alive than dead!”
“Hasta luego, Caiman!”
The Americans on the scene emphatically agreed with Guevara’s assessment, and begged the Boliivian leadership for permission to ship him elsewhere for a spirited interrogation, but nothing would satisfy Bolivian President Rene Barrientos except that Che be shot on the spot, and he was ultimately gunned down, and none too tidily, by a Bolivian sergeant with an M-1 Garand. Furious, his Special Forces captors and their CIA field liaison realized that an intelligence windfall had been cast aside, and a legend created: the legend of silk-screen Che– that enduring cultural icon symbolic of hip, cool, radical rebellion—otherwise identifiable as the mass murdering homophobic racist totalitarian chocolate soldier on your kids’ tee shirts.
Operation “Coals to Newcastle?”
Today, according to recently declassified FBI reports, Cuba’s intelligence services are aggressively recruiting American academics and university professors as spies and agents of influence. WOOF will forgivereaders a cruel chuckle at this point, since it hardly merits remarking that almost all American academics and university professors are already serving as defacto agents of communist influence without the slightest effort by Havana being necessary—but this very truism suggests a ready-to-hand cadre of sympathizers who, much like the afore-mention Ana Montes, are likely to jump at the opportunity to be trained, organized, and instructed by the Cuban secret service. After all, how cool is that? And according to the FBI report, (viewable here) Cuba’s spies have also “perfected the work of… aggressively targeting U.S. universities under the assumption that a percentage of students will eventually move on to positions within the U.S. government that can provide access to information of use to [Cuban intelligence],” adding, to no one’s surprise, we assume, that mature academicians who are already “allied with communist or leftist ideology may assist the [Cuban intelligence service] because of [their] personal beliefs.” So, how cool is that?
The FBI goes on to report that the Cuban effort to spread disinformation and create avenues of influence in the United States “is supported by all of the counterintelligence resources the government of Cuba can marshal on the island,” so surely President Obama has picked the perfect time to wipe Cuba’s name from the list of terroristic nations—after all, when the domestic reaction to these FBI revelations can best be described as supine, nobody is really being terrorized, right? (Yawn.)
Spies among us!
Cuban operatives have burrowed into our cultural and political infrastructures, knowing full well that anyone who publicly objects or even presumes to notice will be immediately branded a “McCarthyite” and dutifully excoriated by the usual assortment of media apparatchiks. Cuban intelligence services are also notorious brokerage firms, selling or bartering secrets to any and all nations looking for ways and means to inflict pain on the United States or befuddle its interests. Montes, for instance, was apprehended days before she was to be made privy to the Pentagon’s battle plans for our troops in the middle east—information Castro would have gleefully transmitted to Al Qaida and other ne’er-do-wells in the region.
The average American has never heard of the Wasp Network. Quite possibly the majority of our readers have not heard of it, nor ever been exhorted personally to “free the Cuban Five!” This is perfectly understandable, so much of the media’s attention being focused on Scott Walker’s failure to attend university, the riveting sexual peccadillos of Dennis Hastert, global warming–which at any second may eradicate humankind, the shocking revelation by Bruce Jenner that he is a Republican (a disclosure from which Diane Sawyer is yet to fully recover), and the cosmic significance attached by nearly every media opinionist to the flaccidity of Tom Brady’s balls. Not to worry, however, because America’s intellectual elites, e.g., the student bodies of U. Cal, Berkeley, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, DePaul University, Pomona University, and about a bajillion other institutions of higher learning are keenly aware of the Wasp Network and the importance of freeing the Cuban Five.
More good news: These bright young students and their courageous professors are joined in their ardor for social justice by such illustrious organizations as the US Women & Cuba Collaboration & National Committee to Free the Cuban Five-Seattle, (is there an acronym for that?), the Chicago Committee to Free the Cuban 5, the National Lawyers Guild (say, wasn’t Fred Fisher a member of that group?) the Wisconsin Committee to Normalize Relations with Cuba, the All-African People’s Revolutionary Party, the Party for Socialism and Liberation, the People Power Movement, and of course, the Communist Party USA, as the Beaver.
See, what actually happened was, in 1998 thirteen Cuban spies were apprehended by the FBI and charged with committing acts of espionage including spying on U.S. military installations throughout the southeast. All but five of these individuals proved eager to roll over on the Castro regime and turn state’s evidence. All were known to be part of a Cuban spy ring code-named the Wasp Network. The bad news is that 32 members of the spy ring remain at large, and 5 of the captured spies proved uncooperative and are still doing time—thus the sociopolitical custodians of what Tom Wolfe calls “radical chic” dubbed these more obdurate Reds the “Cuban Five.” In fact, freeing the Cuban Five makes about as much sense as freeing Charlie Manson, which is, of course, why every leftist at every liberal university from here to Vancouver wants it accomplished. It is also why President Obama will undoubtedly effectuate their release before his term ends, (perhaps before this article ends!) either by pardoning them outright or arranging a trade.
Foreign Policy Advisor and former Brigade Commander Lt. Colonel Richard Simmons recently wrote that Cuba encourages the release of these 5 imprisoned infiltrators for one reason only—to keep the 5 prisoners keenly aware that Castro’s eye is on them; and this not to inspire élan so much as to send the message: “…do not betray the regime!” This makes sense, of course, but with all due respect to Colonel Simmons, there is another and much grander reason. A country so numb to geopolitical or historical realities that it giggled in delight and flocked to local franchises when Taco Bell recast its mascot Chihuahua as Che Guevara (complete with revolutionary beret and communist insignia), is a country so bamboozled by “radical chic” that Castro’s most effective recruiting tool remains the sophomoric appeal of his revolutionary panache and its conflation with the spirit of ‘60s radicalism from which the post-Vietnam Left has never disentangled itself. Thus, demanding freedom for the “Cuban 5” bestirs radical nostalgia for the Chicago Seven, the Hollywood Ten, the fictive Secaucus Seven and sundry additional numerically-designated groups of radical nincumpoops whom the Left prefers to dissemble as political prisoners railroaded by the reactionary ruling classes of fascist Amerika —even though most of these martyred victims now hold– or have retired in relative opulence from–tenured professorships.
Although President Barack Obama is rumored to be leaving office in 2016 (at which point WOOF has promised to apologize for its previously-voiced qualms in this regard) it has undoubtedly occurred to sagacious readers (and we assume that’s all of you) that a country so bereft of its bearings as to re-elect Barack Obama in 2012 might well be sufficiently addlepated to elect Hillary Clinton to clean up Obama’s mess. Supporters of a free Cuba will be disappointed—though probably not particularly shocked—to learn that Hillary is the architect of most of Obama’s fair-play-for-Cuba policy.
Thus, when Obama announced his full-fledged effort to rescue Cuba from the brutalities of American foreign policy and sweetened the pill by highlighting the release (from Castro’s dungeons) of Alan Gross, an American contractor accused by Havana of being a CIA spy, Hillary bustled to the foreground to shrilly demand her place in the limelight, bellowing “As Secretary of State, I pushed for his release, stayed in touch with Alan’s wife Judy and their daughters, and called for a new direction in Cuba!”
Yes, gentle readers, when it comes to Fidel’s tropical purgatory, the Clintons are entirely sincere—they’ve got the raptures. For once, Mrs. Clinton’s not playing a game of convenience or of rank opportunism; she is quite genuinely gung ho. If you doubt us, go to a discount book display and grab a cut-rate copy of Hillary’s literary lead balloon, Hard Choices in which she discusses her eagerness to mend fences with Castro, chirruping, “we offered to begin talks with the Cuban government about restoring direct mail service and cooperation on immigration processes. In the run-up to this summit in Honduras, the Cubans accepted.” [WOOF pauses here to subdue the impulse to interject “oh goody!”]
In truth, last month’s “historic” handshake with–and apology to–Red totalitarianism, reversing decades of U.S. vigilance against “thaht imprishoned island,” is largely the handiwork of Hillary Clinton who, while Secretary of State, took time away from reducing the Middle East to chaos, crowing over the mutilation of the hapless Qadhafi (viewable here), abandoning her ambassadorial personnel in Benghazi to be slaughtered, imprisoning an amateur film maker for making a really bad movie, and lying to congress about it all, long enough to push hard and repeatedly for normalized relations with Cuba. Indeed, the blueprint for embracing the communist dungeon masters of Havana was so much a Hillary initiative that her aides are lately showing signs of panic that “Her Magnificence” (to coin Tina Brown’s priceless flummery) may not receive ample credit for the regime’s abject capitulation to tyranny. WOOF, however, ever mindful to give credit where it is due, has striven here to assure Mrs. Clinton of her proper deserts.
WOOF rehashes that whole Elian thing, again—and again.
Bitter clingers with long memories will recall that the Clintons’ devotion to Castro’s brand of socialist totalitarianism revealed itself in all its cravenness during Bill’s second term when an intrepid band of freedom-seeking Cubans launched themselves aboard a makeshift raft and set out across the treacherous Straits of Florida for American shores. As is so often the case with such desperate endeavors, waves and weather overwhelmed the tiny vessel, claiming the lives of eleven on board. Among the lost was Elizabeth Gonzales, mother of 5-year-old Elian Gonzales. She perished because she transferred her life-preserver to her small son. It bears repeating that another survivor, Nivaldo Fernández Ferran, testified that “Elizabeth protected her son to the end,” which cannot, sadly, be said of the Clintons. The small boy, Fernandez, and one other survivor floated in the turbulent ocean until two fishermen spotted them and plucked them from the brine. The INS placed González with maternal relatives in Miami, who fully expected to raise him in the United States. Thus a tragic tale might have ended in reasonable happiness, except that Fidel Castro got into the act, having sensed an opportunity to make the decadent Yanquis jump through hoops at his behest.
Initially, nobody had a problem with little Elian living with his adoring relatives in Miami. The U.S. State Department wisely recused itself from adjudicating custody, leaving the matter to the Florida courts. A Circuit Court granted emergency custody of the boy t0 Lazaro Gonzalez, his uncle in Miami, and apart from the saga of Elian’s survival at sea and his mother’s tragic drowning, the case was not widely deemed newsworthy.
That changed dramatically, however, when Fidel Castro took an interest. Seizing upon the now-6-year-old boy’s escape as an opportunity to demagogue the Yanquis, Castro took to the airwaves bellowing that Elian’s return from Miami was required at once, declaring, “Little Elian will get back his country, his family, his school, his schoolmates, and his school desk!” Castro next convened Elian’s school mates in a theatrical celebration of Elian’s sixth birthday in absentia, and assured the assembled tykes that “Elian is a boy hero!” even as thousands of communist school children and their parents were herded into the streets of Havana to protest Elian’s alleged captivity in America.
Suddenly, Elian was front page news, because Castro wanted him back, and at that point—and only at that point—it became an urgent priority for the Clinton administration to return Elian to the loving arms of Cuba’s communist dictator. No greater testimony could be adduced to the awe in which the Clintons held the bearded maniac off our coast then the swiftness with which they clicked their heels and made certain that Castro’s wishes became American policy.
Despite a circuit court ruling that Elian should remain stateside, Janet Reno, alert to the urgency of Fidel’s demands, persuaded a Florida family court judge to revoke Elian’s uncle’s custody and dispatched a force of federal agents in helmets, goggles and flak vests who swarmed into the modest Miami home of Elian’s peaceful relatives in the wee hours of April 22, seizing the terrified child at the point of an MP-5 submachine gun and rushing him, as he screamed in terror, into a waiting vehicle. In keeping with a secret deal worked out between Bill Clinton and Castro, Elian was removed to a tightly secured facility where he could be treated with drugs and “reconditioned” before being returned to Cuba in the custody of his biological father. Most Americans, sappily ignorant of the horrors of Castro’s police state, or that Elian’s father was probably demanding the boy’s repatriation under life-threatening duress–shrugged and agreed with the Liberal Establishment Media that all things considered it was great that the boy be “allowed” to return to his daddy. So TIME and Newsweek got to celebrate an ostensibly happy ending, and WOOF is making a big deal of this (once again) because a) we never tire of ranting about it, and b) because it shows the level of sniveling obsequiousness with which the Clinton’s willingly served as handmaidens to Castro’s whims. Can anyone seriously doubt that President Hillary will not prove equally reverential in any future dealings with the Castros?
What the FARC?
Make no mistake, Obama (although he came upon his radicalism in different venues and epochs and is therefore less proclived than Hillary to Pavlovian salivation at the mention of Castro’s name), is every bit as eager to normalize relations with the Castro Brothers. He is clearly unaffected by the stark evidence that Cuba is even now bolstering its commitment to perform widespread espionage against the United States and asserts that Cuba’s removal from the list of terrorist states should have nothing to do with “whether they engage in repressive or authoritarian activities in their own country.” Whether? Rather, President Obama insists that Havana no longer exports terror to other regions of the globe, an argument that necessarily pretermits all evidence to the contrary, including such glaring incidents as the recent seizure by Panamanian authorities of a North Korean cargo ship, bound for the communist port of Wonsan, stuffed to the gunnels with Cuban arms and ammunition. Hilariously, the president praises what he refers to as Cuba’s current efforts to promote stability in the western hemisphere, unblushingly citing its recent willingness to take part in negotiations with Colombia’s left-wing FARC guerrillas as evidence of reform. This is simply jocund. One might as well site Putin’s willingness to take possession of Syria’s chemical weapon supplies as proof of saintliness. Cuba has insinuated itself into the FARC talks to keep its comrades at FARC in the game, while establishing a reputation for diplomacy—a win/win for the Castro brothers, and for FARC, too, making it, in fact, a win/win…win.
Indeed. since the Cubans began “negotiating” with FARC to the outspoken satisfaction of President Obama and many other liberals, FARC has developed close ties to Hezbollah in the Middle East, and begun to serve as a nexus for operational guidance, intelligence, and armaments reaching terrorist organizations throughout Latin America. With a bit of additional sweet talk from Fidel’s peace negotiators, FARC proved willing to establish relations with Nicaragua’s President Daniel Ortega, Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa, and President Salvador Sanchez Ceren of El Salvador, all of whom seem anxious to support FARC’s peace initiative with funds and armaments.
The Russians are coming! (Back!)
To make matters even more interesting, Russia has returned to its old haunts, reactivating its long-inert electronic spying center in Cuba. The Lourdes base, shuttered 13 years ago, is now up and running once again, staffed by over one-thousand technical and operational workers, all Russian except for those that are Cuban representatives of the Dirección de Inteligencia, (Cuba’s own KGB-trained intelligence agency). Bear in mind that the original trade ban against Cuba, initiated by President Kennedy in 1962, emphasized the necessity for the embargo until such time as Cuba might demonstrate respect for human rights and liberty. The Castro government has never complied with any portion of the Kennedy mandate, nor has it promised to do so now. Both Raul and Fidel continue to express uninterrupted antagonism toward the United States and outspoken support for oppressive communist dictatorships from Laos to Venezuela, and, most emphatically, at home.
“There wasn’t anyone else!”
Allow us to pause exactly here long enough to iterate that WOOF, qua WOOF, has no official position on the Kennedy assassination other than: we are certain it happened and we are against it. Beyond these certainties, opinions differ in the WOOF cave, with some of us admitting a sentimental bias in favor of Lyndon Johnson’s culpability as described by E. Howard Hunt in his bizarre, near-death confession. (WOOF is not making this up. Click here for the video) The rest of us tend to see Oswald as the probable shooter, while at least one of us suspects Bill O’Reilly. That being said, a powerful case has been made for decades (with very little coverage by American media) for a Cuban connection.
In Germany, a TV documentary by award-winning filmmaker Wilfried Huismann aired recently, the gravamen of which was—is there a good way to say this?—that Fidel Castro killed President Kennedy. According to the evidence presented in the documentary, Russia’s KGB controlled Oswald, but recommended him to the Cubans as the man to assassinate the American President. Havana wanted JFK dead in retaliation for a series of failed attempts to kill Castro, actually organized by the president’s brother, then-attorney general Robert F. Kennedy. Former White House aide Joseph Califano, who assisted in the anti-Castro plotting, is quoted by historian Philip Shenon as saying that “Robert Kennedy experienced this unbelievable grief after his brother’s death because he believed it was linked to his—Bobby’s—efforts to kill Castro.” Liberal historian and longtime friend of the Kennedy family, Arthur Schlesinger Jr., admits that RFK voiced his beliefs in confidence that the president’s murder might well have been orchestrated by the Cubans.
In Huismann’s documentary, a number of aging but obviously sentient alumni of Castro’s intelligence service insist that Cuban agents contracted Lee Harvey Oswald to shoot Kennedy. And why pick a manifest loser like Oswald for such a task? “There wasn’t anyone else,” declares Oscar Marino, a former Cuban intelligence operative now disenchanted with communism and Castro. “You take what you can get …and Oswald volunteered to kill Kennedy.”
Lions and tigers and right-wing uprisings, oh my!
General Alexander Haig is familiar to many as the Secretary of State who, when President Ronald Reagan was shot on March 30, 1981, took center stage at the White House and declared, “I’m in charge here!” The leftist media were not then as openly and unashamedly antagonistic to any principle or politician less liberal than, say, Phil Donahue, but they were learning fast. Thus, Haig’s exigent and well-timed statement was taken out of context and ridiculed by the nattering elites until every American school child was persuaded that Secretary of State Haig was a big dope who didn’t comprehend the Constitutional chain of succession. Heck, he probably thought potato had an “e” in it!
In fact, Haig made the ill-fated statement in the immediate wake of an on-camera performance by a frazzled Larry Speakes, whose voice quavered and whose responses to questions from the press were so vague and equivocal that the distinct impression was given that that the nation was rudderless and that chaos reigned in the West Wing. Alert to the fact that Speakes’s shaky performance was being viewed by the Soviets, and that Speakes’s inability to articulate who was at the helm during Reagan’s incapacitation might well prove irresistibly provocative to Kremlin factions with itchy trigger fingers, Haig seized the moment to create the contrary impression in order to disembolden potential aggressors. For this action (or, in other words, for arguably discouraging a Russian first strike against the continental United States) he was repaid by the press with illimitable ridicule.
So what’s with our Al Haig reprise? Well, it offers us an opportunity to wax prolix, as is our deviant nature, but more significantly it serves to remind readers of Haig’s significance to several administrations. We wish to reinforce this remembrance because Haig, who served as President Johnson’s military attaché during the Vietnam era and an adviser to Robert Kennedy before that, is on record declaring that “Bobby Kennedy is personally responsible for at least 8 assassination attempts on Fidel Castro. Kennedy wanted to get rid of Castro, but Castro got him first.” Haig appears in Huismann’s documentary wherein he testifies that LBJ “was convinced Castro killed Kennedy, and he took it to his grave.” Why on earth, you may ask, would LBJ keep such an insight secret? Haig tells Huismann in the film that he reviewed memos from Johnson in 1963 outlining Johnson’s fear that allowing the Castro connection to become public would be catastrophic. Why? According to Alexander Haig, Johnson told him “We cannot allow the American people to believe that Castro … killed Kennedy,” because “there would be a right-wing uprising in America which would keep the Democratic Party out of power for two generations.” Well, one man’s catastrophe….
“I screwed up…”
Speaking of which, Lyndon Johnson was undoubtedly happier about being president than he was angry about Kennedy’s murder, since he craved executive power and detested the Kennedys in their entirety. FBI Agent Laurence Keenan, now 81, claims that he was personally assigned by J. Edgar Hoover to Mexico City in the aftermath of JFK’s death to investigate the Cuban connection, but after three days in Mexico, Keenan got new orders. “I was a messenger,” he says in the film – newly instructed to assure Cuba via the Mexican government’s liaisons that Johnson would not push the investigation into Castro’s guilt. “It was clear I was being used. I felt ashamed,” Keenan tells Huismann. “We missed a historical chance.” Elsewhere Keenan has reported that just when all signs were pointing to Castro as the mastermind behind Dallas, he obeyed orders to drop the issue and to forget what he’d learned. “I had the chance to solve the case of our President’s murder,” Keenan said, “and I screwed up. I’m still ashamed of that to this day.”
We know that Oswald left the Soviet Union in 1962 and returned to the USA—an extraordinary feat in and of itself, notwithstanding he was permitted to bring his attractive Russian wife. It is now generally acknowledged that in July of 1962 the KGB sent a telegram to Ramiro Valdés, chief of the Cuban secret services informing him of Oswald’s return to the USA and identifying Oswald as a sympathizer.
Cuban exile Dr. Carlos Bringuier knew and even debated Oswald prior to the Kennedy assassination. He also testified before the Warren Commission, and is the author of Crime Without Punishment: How Castro Assassinated President Kennedy and Got Away with It. Bringuier has presented persuasive evidence that Cuban intelligence contacted Oswald in November of 1962 and assigned him a case officer, Major Rolando Cubela Secades. It is established fact (though not widely reported) that in April of 1963 Oswald attempted and failed to assassinate General Edwin Walker in Dallas Texas. According to Bringuier, this was “his first test as a ‘sleeper’ for the communists.” That Oswald traveled to Mexico City shortly before assassinating JFK and received final instructions to kill the American president along with money and additional guidance is a theme that surfaced in the 1970s in a courageously heterodox volume entitled Legend: The Secret World of Lee Harvey Oswald by Edward Jay Epstein, a Cornell trained scholar whose Ph.D. is from Harvard and who fingered Fidel Castro as the brains behind the Kennedy shooting when everyone else was chasing Texas Oil fat cats, David Ferrie and duplicate Oswalds with slightly different chins—remember that version?
In summation, as we conceded at the outset of this portion of our screed, WOOF cannot pretend to ravel the Gordian knot of assassination hypotheses…nor can we say with surety how much insight is obtainable on these matters by American Presidents, whether Obama or his predecessors. What we can say with conviction is that sufficient evidence implicates Castro in the matter that any rush to embrace him, his dorky brother, or any other representative of Cuban communism is, to put it charitably, premature.
WOOF knows that Cuban espionage is even now spreading across North America with unprecedented rapaciousness. While our president apologizes for our sins, the Castros are directing bold operations aimed at the destruction of our Republic. Writing in the moderate U.S. News & World Report, senior policy adviser Daniel J, Gallington opines that we should “prepare ourselves for an onslaught of hundreds, perhaps thousands of Cuban spies” taking advantage of Obama’s open boarder policy, and Gallington adds “they are very, very good at it, probably the best in our hemisphere, including us, who look like amateurs compared to them, especially when it comes to the long-term penetration of high-value intelligence targets and getting critical information therefrom.”
It strikes us, in closing, that a final argument for Cuban involvement in the death of John Kennedy is that General Fabian Escalante, Cuba’s longtime state security honcho, denies it. But as if Escalante’s denial weren’t, in and of itself, sufficient to incline us toward suspecting Castro’s complicity, consider the tone of his demurral and its syntax, tailored perfectly to the age of Obama and his milquetoast media: “There are smart people who doubt the Americans really landed on the moon,” Escalante smiles, eyes a-twinkle, “So what is true, and what’s a lie?”