Summit Daily letters: Readers reject Morgan Liddick’s appraisal of Castro
December 4, 2016
Readers reject Liddick's appraisal of Castro
Re: Morgan Liddick's Nov. 29 column, "Castro and the bloody failure of Communism"
Mr. Liddick, did you paste together your column from a pile of State Dept. memos that has passed your desk during your tenure as a U.S. embassy bureaucrat? Your column reeks of Cold War propaganda.
To start, your figure of "ten (sic) of thousands of Cubans his (Castro's) government murdered" seems like an exaggerated Trumpian fact, i.e., a lie. Cite your source, please — and no bogus websites like you are prone to cite in the past!
You flatter Batista by calling him "president" when a coup in 1952 and a mock election in 1954 — with only him as the legal candidate — brought him that title. Is that standard policy for the U.S. State Dept. to defer to their right-wing puppet dictators as "president"?
Too much trash to address in your column without exceeding my 300 words . . .
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Therefore, for an in-depth coverage of the "show trials" I recommend Jon Lee Anderson's book, "Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life." Guevara was in charge of those trials and executions (about 450) of Batista's henchmen who murdered about 20,000 Cubans from 1952 to 1959. Do the math, and you will realize that probably many escaped and are walking the streets of Miami right now.
Also, you are too flippant to say "the 'US Embargo' on Cuba didn't cause this economic misery." Salim Lamrani in his book, "The Economic War Against Cuba," says that "more than half a century after their imposition U.S. economic sanctions have cost Cuba more than $751 billion." Then there's the violation of about a dozen international laws — but for you, I know, some laws are more important than others. More to the point, you probably missed this April 1960 State Dept. memo entitled "The Decline and Fall of Castro" from Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs, Lester Mallory, where he concedes that the "majority of Cubans support Castro" and that there "is no effective political opposition"; so Mallory concluded that the "only foreseeable means of alienating internal support is through disenchantment and disaffection based on economic dissatisfaction and hardship."
Nevertheless, the most despicable of all U.S. tactics against Cuba was the murderous terrorist war which according to Keith Bolener's book, "Voices from the Other Side," has resulted in more than 3,000 deaths and 2,000 injuries. Also, see the documentary by Saul Landau, "Will the Real Terrorist Please Stand Up."
Finally, for a more truthful portrait of Fidel Castro, I highly recommend the documentary, "Fidel: The Untold Story" by Estela Bravo (available on YouTube) and the book, "Fidel Castro: My Life," by Ignacio Ramonet, based on over 100 hours of interviews.
We need to ask ourselves what we in the U.S. can do to support the Cuban people in their transition period. Tightening the screws, keeping the embargo in place, and spreading harsh misinformation don't come to mind as recommended options. And it might just be possible that if the Cuban government doesn't feel threatened by Big Brother trying to bring it down, it would be willing to allow more freedom of expression. This is the approach we apparently believe in with our dealings in China, Vietnam and Saudi Arabia. We should also look inward at ourselves in the U.S. as we deal with our own strange transition period. What are our real values? What other human rights would we export to Cuba? Do we recommend our form of democracy, our two-party system, our method of electing national leaders? How about our education and health care systems, our foreign policy and immigration policy?
Is it, as Mr. Liddick suggests, anti-American to question our treatment of Cuba and our hegemony in the world?
I genuinely feel sad for this man's one-sided, poorly written, spewed misinformation. Just the title tells me he misses the point that capitalism is one of the main reasons why our planet's resources are tapped ("This Changes Everything, Capitalism vs. the Climate," book and documentary by Naomi Klein).
Also notably absent was any mention of the Bay of Pigs Invasion, a plan created by the Eisenhower administration and inherited and ultimately launched by the Kennedy administration. Any historian today or person with common sense can connect the dots between a U.S.-sponsored invasion of Cuba and Cuba's effort to thwart any future U.S. invasion with nuclear weapons (short and long range).
He and I live on different planets, mine being love and compassion and his being fear and hatred. A truly diminished sense of being.
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