For World’s Democracy Campaigners, Obama’s Cuba Move Means Crackdowns 9

Cuban repressionBy The Investors Business Daily‘s Editorial Board

President Obama claimed his move to normalize relations with Cuba was a means of nudging the military dictatorship toward democracy. He was wrong. The regime is cracking down on dissent harder than ever.

In what ought to be called Crackdown Tuesday a large group of prominent Havana dissidents — activists, civil society advocates and independent journalists — were arrested as they headed for a pro-free speech soapbox “speaker’s corner” event put on by Cuban performance artist Tania Bruguero, whose group is #YoTambienExijo, or “I also demand.”

Among the arrested were prominent blogger writer Yoani Sanchez; her husband Reinaldo Escobar, who edits, an online dissident publication; Eliecer Avila, a prominent democracy activist; and members of the Ladies in White group, mostly wives of political prisoners. Bruguero herself was hauled off by the Cuban secret police and held incommunicado for more than a day until she was released. She said Wednesday they tried to force her to sign a confession, but she refused.

So much for “promoting positive change,” which is what the White House claimed would be the result of its move toward normalization. Fact is, the Castro regime sees normalization of U.S. ties as a green light to step up the barbarism.

It’s not just attacks against high-profile dissidents. The Miami Herald reported earlier this month that the regime rammed and sank a boat of more than 30 refugees fleeing the island, killing one and jailing the men in the group as they were dragged back to shore.

And that underlines the naivete of the Obama administration. “We are separated by 90 miles of water, but are brought together through shared relationships and the desire to promote a democratic, prosperous, and stable Cuba,” the White House website reads.

Brought together through the desire to promote democracy? Not according to his new partner, dictator Raul Castro, who put on his military uniform and warned Cubans not to get any ideas from this move, defiantly warning that the communism that has so failed the country would remain in place.

There’s little doubt he knows what he’s doing.

Commentary continues here:  Obama Outreach Intensifies Repression





  1. Mr. Simmons, your comments here are extremely vague, inaccurate, opportunistic to you goals, self-serving and extraneous from their actual reality, almost bordering on deception by your actions to only present one side of the issue (your side Mr. Simmons) and not the complete spectrum of real life circumstances with regards to the personal complexity and personal enigma that Tania Bruguera represents to be, through her own past and present actions, both to the U.S. national security of the U.S. system of government and likewise to the national security of Cuba and to their system of government.

    However, It cries in the face of what you have produced to be a twisted journalistic platform, seemingly, designed to fit an agenda by those individuals who´d like to sabotaje the U.S´. and Cuba´s recent re-establishment of diplomatic relations. It cannot be more clear, in my opinion.

    Notwithstanding, having said this and for the readers here—so they know who this so called “artist” named Tania Bruguera actually is—following is a declaration that was read by Tania Bruguera on the very complex and troublesome immigration issue, which now facing the United States domestic policy and additionally Tania Bruguera´s own highly radical views and actions, which are designed to create widespread domestic upheaval in the United States and domestic turmoil as Tania Bruguera is one of the original founders of the radical movement “Occupy Wall Street”. Such radical movement gave local police authorities a lot to worry about as Tania Bruguera promoted the overthrow of the United States financial establishment in both its financial structural platform in Wall Street and as in the complex issue of this nation´s immigration policy, which creates much distensión throughout the U.S. populace.

    This woman is, actually, a pre-meditated politican hiding under the guise of being a so called “artist”, yet, underneath latently a civil unrest provocatour, both in the United States and Cuba by her radical actions designed to promote domestic riots, civil unrest, chaos laced with her non-conformist intentions.


    The Migrant Manifesto: presented by Tania Bruguera and Immigrant Movement International

    The United Nations has designated today, December 18th, International Migrants Day. In cities throughout the world, artist Tania Bruguera and those involved with her five-year project Immigrant Movement International (IM International) presented the Migrant Manifesto:


    We have been called many names. Illegals. Aliens. Guest workers. Border crossers. Undesirables. Exiles. Criminals. Non-citizens. Terrorists. Thieves. Foreigners. Invaders. Undocumented.

    Our voices converge on these principles:

    1.) We know that international connectivity is the reality that migrants have helped create, it is the place where we all reside. We understand that the quality of life of a person in a country is contingent on migrants’ work. We identify as part of the engine of change.

    2.) We are all tied to more than one country. The multilaterally shaped phenomenon of migration cannot be solved unilaterally, or else it generates a vulnerable reality for migrants. Implementing universal rights is essential. The right to be included belongs to everyone.

    3.) We have the right to move and the right not to be forced to move. We demand the same privileges as corporations and the international elite, as they have the freedom to travel and to establish themselves wherever they choose. We are all worthy of opportunity and the chance to progress. We all have the right to a better life.

    4.) We believe that the only law deserving of our respect is an unprejudiced law, one that protects everyone, everywhere. No exclusions. No exceptions. We condemn the criminalization of migrant lives.

    5.) We affirm that being a migrant does not mean belonging to a specific social class nor carrying a particular legal status. To be a migrant means to be an explorer; it means movement, this is our shared condition. Solidarity is our wealth.

    6.) We acknowledge that individual people with inalienable rights are the true barometer of civilization. We identify with the victories of the abolition of slavery, the civil rights movement, the advancement of women’s rights, and the rising achievements of the LGBTQ community. It is our urgent responsibility and our historical duty to make the rights of migrants the next triumph in the quest for human dignity. It is inevitable that the poor treatment of migrants today will be our dishonor tomorrow.

    7.) We assert the value of the human experience and the intellectual capacity that migrants bring with them as greatly as any labor they provide. We call for the respect of the cultural, social, technical, and political knowledge that migrants command.

    8.) We are convinced that the functionality of international borders should be re-imagined in the service of humanity.

    9.) We understand the need to revive the concept of the commons, of the earth as a space that everyone has the right to access and enjoy.

    10.) We witness how fear creates boundaries, how boundaries create hate and how hate only serves the oppressors. We understand that migrants and non-migrants are interconnected. When the rights of migrants are denied the rights of citizens are at risk.

    Dignity has no nationality.

    Immigrant Movement International

    After reading the verbatum of the entire text of Tania Bruguera´s MIGRANT MANIFESTO, written and read here in the United States by Tania Bruguera, there cannot be any doubt, whatsoever, this woman is an instigator to the national security of this nation and is what she tried to provoke in Cuba as well, in spite of the fact the Cuban government offered her an appropriate fórum for her to express her views, underneath designed to undermine Cuba´s civil society, regardless if such society is discrepant to the United States civil society by virtue of the different systems of government.

    The re-establshment of diplomatic realtions between the United States and Cuba does not equate to the imposition by any one of the two nations, to the other nation´s form or system of government. Instead, it is a blue print upon which both nations have expressed the desire to once again–after many years–to interact with each other and establish the areas of interaction to set both nations toward a fully re-establshed path of restored diplomatic realtions.

    For Mr. Simmons to refer the Obama administrations as: “naivete of the Obama administration” could not be more inmature and false. You do what this President, Barack Obama, did through his leadership with European Unión leaders as well as through his own doemestic initiatives and see where Russia is today in many aspects of her socio-political status. Ask President Putin how comfortable he is today, in comparison to before Barack Obama´s election into office. The Russsian Rubble is on the ground and so is the Russian economy.

    You didn´t do that Mr. Simmons neither did your Republican friends and político wannabes.

    So bare and grin it, Mr. Simmons, and know this woman named Tanya Bruguera is a professional political agitator and one of the original founders of Occupy Wal Street.

    So come to me how this woman´s rights are violated playing her as a victim, when in reality she is an instigator and a risk to both the United States national security and to Cuba´s national security.

    And finally, while on the subject of national security, here is what the law in this nation—the United States—says of anyone comitting the actions Tanya Brugueras is committing in the United States:

    The United States and Cuba have very similar laws—almost exacting laws—regarding the dilution of any kind or in any way of its form of government by any individual groups who may want to advocate the overthrow of the U.S. government or the Cuban government, although we have very different forms of governments between Cuba and the U.S.

    How can a congressperson not know this and ask for five minutes to talk before the U.S. government body on something that is equal under the law in both countries; Cuba and the United States. Euclid the father of Geometry created a tested axiom: “Two things equal to another third are equal amongst themselves.”

    I suggest this be the plateau starting point to re-understand our different forms of governments between Cuba and the United States, but also to look deeper into how we are similar, in many ways, and perhaps in many ways not, but can cooperate with each other as good neighbor nations in an ever changing more dangerous world (the latter is another subject for later).

    Here´s what the U.S. law strictly dictates and is precisely what Cuba is enforcing in its own laws:

    1.) 18 U.S.C. § 2385: US Code Section 2385: Advocating Overthrow of Government

    a.) Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States or the government of any State, Territory, District or Possession thereof, or the government of any political subdivision therein, by force or violence, or by the assassination of any officer of any such government;

    b.) Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so; or

    c.) Whoever organizes or helps or attempts to organize any society, group, or assembly of persons who teach, advocate, or encourage the overthrow or destruction of any such government by force or violence; or becomes or is a member of, or affiliates with, any such society, group, or assembly of persons, knowing the purposes thereof – Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction. If two or more persons conspire to commit any offense named in this section, each shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both, and shall be ineligible for employment by the United States or any department or agency thereof, for the five years next following his conviction. As used in this section, the terms “organizes” and “organize”, with respect to any society, group, or assembly of persons, include the recruiting of new members, the forming of new units, and the re-grouping or expansion of existing clubs, classes, and other units of such society, group, or assembly of persons.

    2.) 18 U.S.C. § 2384: US Code – Section 2384: Seditious conspiracy

    If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.

    3.) 18 U.S.C. § 2383: US Code – Section 2383: Rebellion or insurrection

    a.) Whoever incites, sets on foot, assists, or engages in any rebellion or insurrection against the authority of the United States or the laws thereof, or gives aid or comfort thereto shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

    Iliana Ros-Lethinen stated:

    These are just a few of the faces of the pro-human rights activists in Cuba, Mr. Speaker. I could not possibly cover the face of every single dissident on the island, but these faces are representative of the horrors of the Cuban regime and the horrors that liberty fighters face there every day; and that is why, Mr. Speaker, it is our moral obligation to stand in solidarity with these pro-democracy activists and to be a voice for 11 million people who are being oppressed and silenced in Cuba.”

    Reply by Jorge Garrido:

    You have read and learned as many Americans have about the Great Depression in the United States. It began in 1929 when, in a period of ten weeks, stocks on the New York Stock Exchange lost 50 percent of their value. As stocks continued to fall during the early 1930s, businesses failed, and unemployment rose dramatically. By 1932, one of every four workers was unemployed. Banks failed and life savings were lost, leaving many Americans destitute. With no job and no savings, thousands of Americans lost their homes. The poor congregated in cardboard shacks in so-called Hoovervilles on the edges of cities across the nation; hundreds of thousands of the unemployed roamed the country on foot and in boxcars in futile search of jobs. Although few starved, hunger and malnutrition affected many.

    In a country with abundant resources, the largest force of skilled labor, and the most productive industry in the world, many found it hard to understand why the depression had occurred and why it could not be resolved. Moreover, it was difficult for many to understand why people should go hungry in a country possessing huge food surpluses. Blaming Wall Street speculators, bankers, and the Hoover administration, the rumblings of discontent grew mightily in the early 1930s. By 1932, hunger marches and small riots were common throughout the nation.

    While, not all citizens in the United States were caught up in the social eruptions and widespread rioting that took place, the U.S. burst into a scenario of constant rioting and civil disturbances. Many were too downtrodden or busy surviving day to day to get involved in public displays of discontent.

    Now compare the great damage the United States economy suffered in the 1920´s, similar to the overall damage caused by the U.S. trade embargo upon the Cuban economy. Also compare the rioting that took place in the United States, as the potential rioting that can take place in Cuba, from the existence of such economic conditions as an objective of such U.S. trade embargo, while thereby restricting the freedom for Cuba to exercise its right as a U.S. neighboring nation.

    It is an affront to the free enterprise system of this nation to not be able to do business more directly with other businesses or with Cuba, in the case in point, which would certainly profit—as the United States presently profits from doing business with China—although we may not have similar interests and policies with Cuba or China—we would certainly economically benefit from the economic activity between our nations. Cuba and the United States are not at war, it is time to end the trade embargo against Cuba and move-on.

    If anyone has any doubts about the capacity to putting history and historical facts into correct and appropriate timely accurate perspective please take a quick look at the visual images of the historical film of such rioting that occurred in the United States during the Great Depression.

    Please follow this link:

  2. The so call aperture is not going to benefit anyone else than the ruling Castro family.The Cuban population is going to be the same hungry population and the repressive regime of the alcoholic dictator Raul Castro will remain in power the same way it has been for 56 years.As long as the Castro family is in power,there is not going to be a policy change in Cuba.The alcoholic dictator Raul Castro is trying to gain time to plan his next move with the intention to continue repressing the Cuban population and to remain in Power and to deceive the Cubans in the Island once again.

  3. I don´t think so. I disgaree. If the system in China and the system in Russia changed, so can the Cuban system of government also transition into change, but it will not be overnight and one cannot factor the past into the present as a measure of value in diplomatic negotiations, because then the present never occurs and mutual and evolved diplomatic values cannot emerge between the nations of the United States and Cuba.

    It is time to stop repeating the old same chants of the past and it is time to focus on a new diplomatic relationship to be nurtured and to be repositioned between the nation of Cuba and the nation of the United States. And that has to start with the United States recognizing the Cuban system of government, as hard as it may be for a sector of Cuban Americans, yet, without interference in the government of Cuba, in the same way as when the U.S. recognized China, back in the 1970´s, when the U.S. established diplomatic relations with China.

    An increased standard of living factor, in Cuba, will help to decrease the sporadic and minimal civil distension experienced in Cuba. There is no doubt about that. And likewise, the end of the trade embargo against Cuba will impact positively an increase in the standard of living in Cuba. Countries with different ideological systems have a right to prosper economically and the factor of a society´s economic prosperity should not be a trade-off to buying into that society to switch in ideology. Only the citizens´ free will can do this, if and when. I am confident that anytime an increased participatory economic acitvity is experienced, such an event will produce the psychological and psychosocial self-steem and social security within any demography to–first–be in a position to desire and thus bring about any transitions desired into any system of government. Cuba is not going to be the exception. Cuba is rapidly transitioning, although many people cannot sense it while others are not there to see it happen, but a radical chnage as some would wish is not only the answer, but it will not happen.

    The United States and Cuba have a lot to benefit from imporved diplomatic relations and I have no doubt Cuba and the United States are perceived as two nations that cannot be ignored on a world level. Iagine the changes that can be brought about tothe world if Cuba and the United States join hands to make the changes the world needs. Therein, lies the promising future ahead. Both the United States and Cuba are influencers in the world scenarios. I´m very proud of that. It´s time to move-on.

    The foundation has been laid, for this to happen, over decades. Anybody disagree with this, prove it, no personal chanting. It is, what it is.

  4. For the Cuban system to change,the alcoholic dictator Raul Castro needs to go.Why?Where is the sense of justice if we let the Castro brothers to get away with the systematic planning and murder of Cubans.18 000 Cubans has been executed since Castro took power in 1959,I think if the Communism is deposed in Cuba,this event will be feasible to bring to trial to all those at fault of Murdering American citizens and Cuban citizens.The only way of a legitimate reconciliation is to bring Castro and all his corrupt Generals to justice as well as the members of the criminal organization MININT that together with Raul Castro is governing Cuba.IT IS TIME TO BRING THE BLOODY CASTRO FAMILY TO JUSTICE AND FINISH THE APPEASEMENT THAT HAS BEEN GOING ON FOR THE LAST 56 YEARS.THE CUBAN GOVERNMENT IS AN IMMORAL AND REPRESSIVE GOVERNMENT AND THANKS TO PEOPLE LIKE YOU GARRIDO!!! THOSE CRIMINALS ARE STILL IN POWER MURDERING CUBANS..GO TELL YOUR BUDDIES IN THE MININT THAT IF THEY WANT TRANSITION IS GOING TO COME WITH JUSTICE.DOWN TO THE ALCOHOLIC DICTATOR RAUL CASTRO HIS BROTHER FIDEL AND ALL THE CORRUPT MEMBERS OF THE CUBAN MININT.


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