Tuesday, May 20, 2003

Cuaderno Latinoamericano - "Dissident Accuses Cuba of Manipulating Fear of U.S. Invasion" -- No question: the repression is reprehensible and we need to speak out against it and on behalf of freedom. But ... It seems to me that this "manipulation" by Castro (and the accusation by PayĆ”) wouldn't play if the fear weren't real. I mean, imagine Canada "manipulating fear of U.S. invasion." We'd take this as a joke, no? (Think Alan Alda and Canadian Bacon.) Not so when it comes to Cuba. My question: Why not? Answer: Because the fear IS real. And it's not just Castro propaganda that makes it so. There is a long history of less-than-friendly U.S. treatment of Cuba - even pre-Castro - which gives the fear some grounding and traction in Cuban consciousness, even among dissidents.

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