APRIL 08, 2009
In their mission to lift sanctions on a notorious human rights violator that appears on the State Department’s terrorist-sponsoring nations, prominent members of the U.S. Congressional Black Caucus praised Cuban Dictator Fidel Castro during a censored tour of the island prison.
Led by California Democrat Barbara Lee, the chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, a group of seven federal lawmakers schmoozed the Castro brothers—the ailing Fidel and his sidekick Raul—as they toured portions of Cuba that had been carefully selected by the communist regime.
Enamored with the ailing dictator, a smitten Representative Lee said it was “quite a moment to behold.” Her colleague, Illinois Democrat Bobby Rush, said it was “almost like listening to an old friend.” The lawmaker even told Castro, the world’s most oppressive and murderous living dictator, that “in my household…he is known as the ultimate survivor.”
Press releases and media reports of the love fest conveniently omit the ugly truth in Cuba. For instance there are more than 300 prisoners of conscience (listed by Amnesty International) and hundreds of peaceful dissidents constantly hounded by the totalitarian regime.
One of the island’s best known political prisoners is a black doctor named Oscar Elias Biscet, who is serving more than two decades in a deplorable prison simply because he stood up for human rights by following the peaceful resistance of Martin Luther King Jr.
The country of about 11 million people has a majority black population yet it is ruled by an overwhelmingly white government that openly discriminates against black and mixed-race Cubans. The regime has publicly announced that it does not believe in civil rights.
In 2003, when three black young men tried to hijack a Havana ferry to the U.S., Castro executed them by firing squad even though no one got hurt in the incident. The idea was to send a message to the island’s black majority so, hours after a swift and secret trial, the men were murdered for what the Cuban government called "very grave acts of terrorism."
None of these atrocious acts have been mentioned in the many press conferences and mainstream media reports of the black legislators’ historic trip to the communist nation. What has received huge publicity is how Castro looked into Democrat Laura Richardson’s eyes and offered to help President Barack Obama turn the page on American foreign policy towards Cuba.
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