Media Fact Check: Cuba Found to Have Targeted U.S. Tourists and Canadians More Frequently Than Alleged CIA Spies Reply

Cuba apologist Peter Kornbluh, who rarely misses an opportunity to blame the United States for events in Latin America, has struck again! In last week’s issue of the progressive weekly, The Nation, Kornbluh published “What the US Government Is Not Telling You About Those ‘Sonic Attacks’ in Cuba.” His scintillating subtitle makes the incredulous statement: “The key victims were CIA agents. Not a single tourist was affected….”  We are fortunate Kornbluh wrote that, since his complete disregard for the facts saves us from wasting any further time on this inaccurate and poorly-researched diatribe.

For example, the Miami Herald reported on 1-29-18 that 19 American tourists reported symptoms similar to those suffered by diplomats after they returned from Cuba. However, Kornbluh dismisses these reports because he apparently sees their complaints as inadequately investigated. Additionally, it does not appear he attempted to contact those tourists to get their first-hand accounts. Similarly, Kornbluh appears blissfully ignorant of the Associated Press report of 10-19-17 entitled “U.S. tourist, FBI agent may have been victims of Cuba sonic attacks.

Meanwhile, the Canadian media has recounted that 10 of the 20 Canadian diplomatic households in Havana reported at least one household member with unusual symptoms. A National Post article on 1-4-18 found that children were among those targeted. Shortly thereafter, Global News announced on 1-10-18 that eight Canadian diplomats had fallen ill. It’s information came from a Royal Canadian Mounted Police investigation.

So, in reality, at least 19 American tourists and members of 10 Canadian diplomatic families fell victim to Havana’s unexplained sonic attacks. In contrast, 24 American diplomats and family members became sick from the same occurrences. So perhaps Kornbluh’s headline should have read:  “Cuba Targets U.S. Tourists and Canadians More Frequently Than Alleged CIA Spies.”

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American Heroes Channel to Premiere Documentary CASTRO: THE WORLD’S MOST WATCHED MAN, 10/22 1

ahcby TV News Desk

Notorious across the globe as one of the most controversial political figures in history, Cuban ruler Fidel Castro has lived an intriguing life under THE WATCH of millions. From a young revolutionary who overthrew a corrupt dictator using a small guerilla army to being the target for assassination allegedly 600 times, the longevity of Castro’s rule and iconic nature has been nothing short of remarkable.

CASTRO: THE WORLD’S MOST WATCHED MAN, a one-hour documentary looking at the life of Fidel Castro through the eyes of the spies who have observed him for over a half-century, premieres on AHC on Thursday, October 22 at 10/9c.

Revisiting more than 50 years of history and revealing the inner forces that have shaped his leadership, CASTRO: THE WORLD’S MOST WATCHED MAN uncovers a unique perspective on Castro’s life as a notorious figure. Throughout the special, viewers are offered unprecedented access to declassified documents, intense recreations and exclusive interviews with spies, KGB agents, CIA analysts, and Cuban exiles who have tracked Castro’s movements over the years, sharing intimate details, captivating anecdotes, and psychological insight to better understand the man behind the legend.

The global programming initiative between AMERICAN HEROES CHANNEL (AHC) and Discovery Networks Latin America/U.S. Hispanic (DLA/USH) will also air on Discovery Networks International’s factual channels in more than 220 countries and territories this fall.

Interviewees include:

· Chris Simmons: Senior Counterintelligence Specialist at the Defence Intelligence Agency. He was a principal figure in most US Counterintelligence successes against Cuba from 1996-2004.

· Brian Latell: Former intelligence officer who began tracking Castro in 1964 for the CIA and the National Intelligence Council

· Peter Kornbluh: Director of the Cuba Documentation Project at the National Security Archive, an organization that monitors the work of US secret services.

· Domingo Amuchstegui: Former head of the Cuban Embassy in Guatemala.

· Nicolai Leonov: Former Senior KGB officer who knew both Fidel and Raul Castro from the earliest days of the Revolution.

· Felix Rodriguez: Former CIA officer involved in the Bay of Pigs invasion and the capture of Che Guevara. Rodriguez was born in Cuba.

Feature continues here: AHC Premiere

Discovery Announces New Fidel Castro Documentary THROUGH THE EYES OF THE SPIES 1

DiscoveryNotorious across the globe as one of the most controversial political figures in history, Cuban ruler Fidel Castro has lived an intriguing life under THE WATCH of millions. From a young revolutionary who overthrew a corrupt dictator using a small guerilla army to being the target for assassination allegedly 600 times, the longevity of Castro’s rule and iconic nature has been nothing short of remarkable. Today, Discovery Networks Latin America/U.S. Hispanic (DLA/USH) and AMERICAN HEROES CHANNEL (AHC) announced a global programming initiative to present CASTRO: THE WORLD’S MOST WATCHED MAN (wt) a one-hour documentary looking at the life of Fidel Castro through the eyes of the spies who have observed him for over a half-century. It will premiere on AHC in 4Q 2015 and on Discovery Networks International’s factual channels in more than 220 countries and territories this fall.

“The timely news of Cuba and the U.S. restoring relations, along with Castro’s deteriorating health conditions, opens up a momentous opportunity for us to document this iconic and unfolding story,” said Kevin Bennett, EVP and general manager of American Heroes Channel. “AHC is dedicated to telling the stories of not just heroes but all of history’s most legendary characters, and we are thrilled to partner with Discovery Latin America for a unique, international perspective on one of the world’s MOST INFAMOUS leaders.”

“Without a doubt, Fidel Castro is a controversial figure who has had an impact on generations of Cubans in and outside the island, as well as many people across Latin America,” noted Enrique R. Martinez, President and Managing Director, Discovery Networks Latin America/U.S. Hispanic and Canada. “This original production will deliver a unique perspective into the character of this polemic leader that is bound to spark robust discussions regarding his legacy and place in history.”

Revisiting more than 50 years of history and revealing the inner forces that have shaped his leadership, CASTRO: THE WORLD’S MOST WATCHED MAN uncovers a unique perspective on Castro’s life as a notorious figure. Throughout the special, viewers are offered unprecedented access to declassified documents, intense recreations and exclusive interviews with spies, KGB agents, CIA analysts, and Cuban exiles who have tracked Castro’s movements over the years, sharing intimate details, captivating anecdotes, and psychological insight to better understand the man behind the legend.

Interviewees include:

· Chris Simmons: Senior Counter Intelligence Specialist at the Defence Intelligence Agency. He was a principal figure in most US Counterintelligence successes against Cuba from 1996-2004.

· Brian Latell: Former intelligence officer who began tracking Castro in 1964 for the CIA and the National Intelligence Council

· Peter Kornbluh: Director of the Cuba Documentation Project at the National Security Archive, an organization that monitors the work of US secret services.

· Domingo Amuchástegui: Former head of the Cuban Embassy in Guatemala.

Feature continues here: Through The Eyes Of Spies

 

 

Raúl Castro propuso a Obama un ‘canal de comunicación secreto’ 2

El famoso apretón de manos entre Barack Obama y Raúl Castro durante los funerales de Nelson Mandela en el FNB Stadium de Soweto, Sudáfrica, el 10 de diciembre del 2013.Uncredited/Associated Press

El famoso apretón de manos entre Barack Obama y Raúl Castro durante los funerales de Nelson Mandela en el FNB Stadium de Soweto, Sudáfrica, el 10 de diciembre del 2013.Uncredited/Associated Press

By Nora Gámez Torres, ngameztorres@elnuevoherald.com

La administración del presidente Barack Obama utilizó al embajador español Miguel Ángel Moratinos en el 2009 para hacer llegar un mensaje a Raúl Castro y pedir una acción que reciprocara su decisión de eliminar, tras llegar a la Casa Blanca, las restricciones a los viajes de los cubanoamericanos.

En el libro Back Channel to Cuba, The Hidden History of Negotiations between Washington and Havana, Peter Kornbluh y William LeoGrande reproducen el mensaje enviado a Castro: “Diga a la autoridades cubanas que entendemos que las cosas no pueden cambiar de la noche a la mañana, pero que a lo largo del camino, cuando miremos atrás, deberá quedar claro que este fue el momento en que las cosas comenzaron a cambiar”.

Raúl Castro envió de vuelta una propuesta de abrir un “canal de comunicación secreto”, pero la Casa Blanca replicó que cualquier conversación debía entablarse a través de los “canales establecidos”.

Los autores del libro, que recoge la historia de las negociaciones secretas entre Cuba y Estados Unidos en los últimos 55 años, señalan que aunque Obama ha reconocido que una política hostil es fútil, no ha tenido más voluntad que sus predecesores en romper este impasse. Las razones quizá están en las “lecciones” que los autores resumen casi al final del texto: “Estados Unidos se ha contentado con vivir en un ‘antagonismo perpetuo’ hacia Cuba porque los costos han sido relativamente bajos, y cambiar la política supone riesgos políticos domésticos que los sucesivos presidentes han juzgado como muy grandes”.

Pero Kornbluh aseguró a el Nuevo Herald que las “lecciones” tienen que ver con lo que ha sucedido en los últimos 55 años, y no con el contexto actual.

“La política doméstica sí es un gran impedimento desde el fin de la Guerra Fría pero hay cosas que están cambiando en términos de la opinión pública en Miami y Florida”, en parte como resultado de la propia política de Obama de permitir viajar más libremente a los cubanoamericanos a Cuba, señaló.

Otro factor mencionado por el autor es que Obama es un presidente demócrata en su segundo mandato, por lo que no está tan preocupado por las repercusiones de un cambio de política.

“Florida claramente no está siendo considerada por Hillary Clinton como un estado con un voto decisivo y ella ha hecho pública su posición de que el embargo es una mala idea para la política exterior estadounidense. Estados Unidos tiene también imperativos regionales para cambiar su política. Mira por ejemplo lo que ha pasado con la Cumbre de las Américas, en la que es Estados Unidos el que está aislado y no Cuba”, agregó.

Read more here: Back Channel