US Fugitives Say Cuba Has Reassured Them They Are Safe 3

Cop-Killer Charles Hill

Cop-Killer Charles Hill

By The Associated Press

HAVANA — Two American fugitives who fled to Cuba after they were accused of killing police officers said Friday that Cuban officials have assured them that détente with the United States will not lead to their extradition.

The United States and Cuba held a second round of law-enforcement talks last month dedicated partly to resolving the fate of scores of fugitives after more than a half century with almost no cooperation. The talks are part of a series of U.S.-Cuba negotiations aimed at normalizing relations after the two countries declared an official end to Cold War hostilities on Dec. 17, 2014.

The discussions have raised U.S. law enforcement hopes that fugitives living in Cuba for decades will return to the United States to face trial or serve prison under plea deals.

Charles Hill, a black militant wanted in the 1971 slaying of a New Mexico state policeman, told The Associated Press that Cuban government contacts had recently reassured him he was at no risk of extradition. Nehanda Abiodun, another black militant wanted in a 1981 armored car robbery that left two police offers and a security guard dead, told the AP she had recently received a similar promise.

Cuba is home to dozens of people wanted in the United States on charges ranging from Medicare fraud to killings committed in the name of black and Puerto Rican revolution movements in the 1970s and ’80s. Cuba has asked the United States to return a smaller number of people, including Luis Posada Carriles, the alleged mastermind of a series of terror attacks against Cuba, including the 1976 bombing of a Cuban airliner that killed all 73 people on board.

Cuba’s head of U.S. affairs told the AP shortly after the declaration of détente that Cuba was entitled to grant asylum to U.S. fugitives, a sign that people the country once saw as fellow revolutionary fighters will remain safe. The most prominent is Assata Shakur, who is on the FBI’s list of most-wanted terrorists. She broke out of a prison where she was serving a conviction for murdering a New Jersey state trooper. She was regularly spotted in Havana after fleeing to Cuba but has not been seen here in public in recent years.

Hill said he had contacted his Cuban government handlers about three weeks ago after seeing reports that progress was being made in negotiations that could lead to his extradition.

“My people assured me that no, that’s not going to take place,” Hill said. “I said what’s the status and they said there’s no problem.

“The future is very difficult,” he said. “I don’t know, but I think the Cuban government is going to maintain their position. I feel very tranquil.”

Feature continues here:  Cuba to Remain Terrorist Safe Haven

 

 

 

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Berkeley Students Seek Honors For US Terrorist Harbored By Cuba Reply

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

Assata Shakur, the former Joanne Chesimard, escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba. (Photo: Associated Press)

Berkeley Radicals Want to Honor Cop-Killing Communist

by Matthew Vadum, FrontPage (magazine)

Disgruntled black students at the University of California at Berkeley are demanding a campus building be named after convicted cop-killing terrorist and fugitive from justice, Assata Shakur.

The reason for the demand? In the stated opinion of the school’s Black Student Union, blacks are disrespected on campus. BSU member Cori McGowens told reporters that “trying to excel academically is immensely difficult while coping with the issue of antiblackness on campus.”

“It troubles me that I have already been told countless times that antiblackness is not an issue to discuss within the context of the American political system,” said McGowens, a political science major. “My professors and graduate-student instructors have told me that I shouldn’t bring up the politics of race and the reality of my black experience.”

That politically correct, ultra-leftist UC Berkeley would be infected by “antiblackness” or that teachers there would tell any student of color to shut up about race is nearly impossible to believe. Viewing America through the Marxist lens of race, sex, and class, is all that today’s predominantly leftist academics spend their time doing. Professors can’t stop talking about race or any of the picayune peeves about which the Left constantly obsesses.

But the Black Student Union maintains that somehow black students on that campus are victims of oppression and feel isolated. To remedy these perceived problems the group delivered a set of 10 demands to Chancellor Nick Dirks. One of the demands is to rename Barrows Hall, home to Ethnic Studies, Women’s Studies, and African American Studies, to honor communist murderer Shakur.

Dirks sent out a letter pandering to the students.

“Too many students have told us about being excluded from study groups, ignored during class discussions, verbally harassed at parties and social events, and feeling, in a general sense, vulnerable, isolated, and invisible,” he wrote. “This is something we deplore.”

He added that Berkeley’s black students “feel the least respected of any group on campus” according to a survey taken last year.

According to a San Francisco Chronicle article that actually takes the students’ bratty-sounding complaints seriously…

Feature continues here:  Students Seek Honors For Terrorist

State Department: Havana Provides Safe Haven to US Fugitives 1

By Juan O. Tamayo, jtamayo@ElNuevoHerald.com

Cuba is harboring and supporting U.S. fugitives but may be trying to distance itself from two dozen members of a Basque terrorist group who live on the island, according to the State Department’s annual Country Report on Terrorism released Thursday.

The report for 2012 is totally separate from the department’s list of state sponsors of terrorism, which now includes Cuba, Iran, Syria and Sudan and subjects those nations to a special set of U.S. economic and other sanctions.

Advocates of keeping or removing Cuba from the list awaited the 2012 report with special interest because of media reports earlier this year, flatly denied by the State Department, that Secretary of State John Kerry would take Havana off the list.

The Cuba section of the 2012 report appeared to be similar to the section in 2011, with both noting that Havana authorities are continuing to harbor fugitives wanted in the United States and supporting them with housing, ration books and medical care.

One such fugitive is Joanne Chesimard, on the FBI’s “most wanted terrorist” list since 2005. A Black Panther who was convicted in the 1973 murder of New Jersey State Trooper, she escaped from prison in 1979 and turned up in Havana in 1984. The FBI hiked the reward offered for her capture to $2 million in April.

“There was no indication that the Cuban government provided weapons or paramilitary training to terrorist groups,” the 2012 report said, in wording almost exactly the same as in the 2011 report.

Both reports also noted “suggestions” that Havana has tried to distance itself from members of Spain’s Basque Homeland and Liberty (ETA), classified by Washington as a terrorist group, who live in Cuba by “not providing services, including travel documents, to some of them.”

The 2012 version adds that two dozen ETA members are living in Cuba.

Members of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, also classified as a terror group, received refuge in Cuba in past years, according to the latest version. The 2011 report noted that FARC members had received medical assistance. The FARC and Colombian government are currently holding peace talks in Havana.

Both reports also noted that the U.S. Financial Actions Task Force has identified Cuba as having “strategic … deficiencies” in the fight against terrorism financing and money laundering. The latest report adds that Cuba has now joined a regional body designed for that purpose.

Cuba has been on the separate U.S. list of state sponsors of terrorism since 1982. Havana also is on a separate U.S. government list, with Venezuela and others, of countries that are not “cooperating fully with United States antiterrorism efforts.”

To remove Cuba from the list of state sponsors, the White House is required to notify the U.S. Congress that Cuba has not engaged in terrorism for some time and promised not to do so again.

FONTOVA: The Castro-coddled cop killer 1

The ‘most-wanted terrorist’ mocks U.S. justice from Cuba

By Humberto Fontova in the Washington Times

On May 2, the FBI announced a $1 million reward for “information leading to the apprehension” of Joanne Chesimard, also known as Assata Shakur, who they named a “most-wanted terrorist.” Chesimard is the first woman to make the FBI’s list. The New Jersey State Police then added another $1 million to the reward pot.

Convicted cop-killer (of a New Jersey state trooper) and “domestic terrorist” Chesimard has been living in Cuba since 1984 as a Castro-coddled celebrity of sorts. And it’s not like bounty hunters can operate freely in a Stalinist country. So the $2 million may be symbolic. As in the U.S. Justice Department putting on a game face and saying: “Look, Castro, we’re serious here.”
In the early 1970s, Chesimard belonged to a Black Panther offshoot known as the Black Liberation Army. “This case is just as important today as it was when it happened 40 years ago,” according to a recent press release from Mike Rinaldi, of the New Jersey State Police. “Chesimard was a member of the Black Liberation Army, a radical left-wing terror group that felt justified killing law enforcement officers. … This group conducted assaults on police stations and murdered police officers.”

More than a mere member of these domestic terrorists, Chesimard was described by former FBI Assistant Director John Miller as “the soul of the Black Liberation Army.”

In 1973, while wanted for multiple crimes from bank robbery to murder, Chesimard and two accomplices were pulled over for a taillight violation on the New Jersey Turnpike. As the troopers were routinely questioning them, Chesimard (who was in the passenger seat) and her pals opened up on the lawmen with semi-automatic pistols (no word on whether these were properly registered.)

As Trooper Werner Foerster grappled with the driver, Chesimard shot him twice — then her gun apparently jammed. As Foerster lay on the ground wounded and helpless, Chesimard grabbed the trooper’s own gun and blasted two shots into his head, much in the manner of her Cuban idols Che Guevara and Raul Castro killing hundreds of their own (always defenseless at the time) “counterrevolutionary” enemies.

“This crime was always considered an act of domestic terrorism,” stresses Mr. Rinaldi. She escaped, but was captured in 1977, convicted of murder and sentenced to life plus 33 years. Then in 1979 she escaped from prison — and with some professional help, probably by Cuban or Cuban-trained terrorists. “Two men smuggled into the prison, took guards hostages and broke her out,” explained John Miller to CBS News.

Chesimard’s 1979 escape from prison was well-planned, Mr. Rinaldi explained. “Armed domestic terrorists gained entry into the facility, neutralized the guards, broke her free, and turned her over to a nearby getaway team.” “In 1984, they smuggled her to Mexico. Using a network of Cuban intelligence officers who worked with American radical groups, they got her into Cuba,” adds Mr. Miller. Since then, according to New Jersey State Police Col. Rick Fuentes, Chesimard “flaunts her freedom. … To this day, from her safe haven in Cuba, Chesimard has been given a pulpit (by Castro) to preach and profess, stirring supporters and groups to mobilize against the United States by any means necessary. She has been used by the Castro regime to greet foreign delegations visiting Cuba.” “Joanne Chesimard is a domestic terrorist,” declared FBI agent Aaron T. Ford, during a recent news conference. “She absolutely is a threat to America.”

Along with coddling Chesimard, Castro’s fiefdom provides haven for more than 70 other fugitives from U.S. law, including several on the FBI’s most-wanted listed. Cuba harbors convicted cop-killers Michael Finney and Charlie Hill, along with Victor Gerena, responsible for a $7 million heist of a Wells Fargo truck in Connecticut in 1983, as a member of the Puerto Rican terrorist group, Los Macheteros. All requests by U.S. authorities for these criminals’ extradition have been rebuffed, often cheekily by Fidel Castro himself: “They want to portray her as a terrorist, something that was an injustice, a brutality, an infamous lie!” is how he answered a U.S. request for Chesimard on May 3, 2005.

Humberto Fontova is author of “Fidel: Hollywood’s Favorite Tyrant” (Regnery, 2005).

Is Cuba’s Longtime Status as a Terrorist Safe Haven Becoming a Liability? Reply

Washington Times OP/ED: Assata Shakur, Terrorist — The FBI Accurately Labels a Cop-killer

Not a month has passed since the Patriots’ Day bombings in Boston, and the hand-wringers are already mumbling that the FBI made the wrong call when it designated 65-year-old fugitive Assata Shakur, formerly known as Joanne Chesimard, as a terrorist. If words have meanings, of course she is.

That 40 years have passed since her conviction does not dim or erase the impact of her crimes as a member of a radical group known as the Black Liberation Army, which was formed by disgruntled former Black Panther Party members. The Panthers were not radical enough. The liberation army aimed to “take up arms for the liberation and self-determination of black people in the United States.”

Assata Shakur and two others took up arms in a gunfight on the New Jersey Turnpike in May 1973. Prosecutors said she shot New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster twice in the head, using the officer’s own gun, taken from him when her accomplice tackled him. He left a wife and two children, one of whom, Eric, became a state trooper himself.

After a 1977 murder conviction, armed Black Liberation Army members broke her out of prison. She is thought to have spent four years in “safe houses” in the United States before making her way to Cuba, where Fidel Castro granted her asylum. She has remained in touch with family, friends and supporters, safe so far from extradition and justice.

Eric Foerster decries the life of comfort of his father’s killer. The passage of the years has not healed the wound inflicted on his family. “It is a loss that will stay with us forever,” he tells Fox News.

The killer is unrepentant; she revels in her crimes. In an open letter to Pope John Paul II, who was visiting in Havana in 1998, she confessed her “guilt” for supporting revolution: “I advocate self-determination for my people and for all oppressed inside the United States. I advocate an end to capitalist exploitation, the abolition of racist policies, the eradication of sexism, and the elimination of political repression. If that is a crime, then I am totally guilty.”

That’s hardly the only crime of which she is “totally guilty.” She was a member of an organization that employed violence to advance a political cause, which is precisely what terrorists do. Her cause has died — interest in the Black Liberation Army has since dissolved — but Assata Shakur has yet to pay for her crimes. Putting a little pressure on the Cuban government for her extradition, while not likely to succeed, is nevertheless the right thing to do.

To compromise, Castro’s government wouldn’t have to send her out of Cuba. There’s already a cell waiting at Guantanamo Bay.