What? You missed that news item? Well, you probably read about it, but under a different headline last weekend. You probably read about a “Historic!” — even an “Epochal!” — Rolling Stones concert in Havana Friday night. The hyperventilating “reporters” probably followed up by mentioning “historic changes!” and “reforms!” in Cuba, as proven by the very concert.
In fact, the only “historic changes!” in Cuba — as recognized by the tiny number of people who actually study this issue — involve the source of the cash-flow into the Castro-Family-Crime-Syndicate (euphemized as “Cuba” by the media and U.S. State Dept).
When that cash flowed from the Soviet Union rock music was a potentially disruptive foreign influence that elicited no tolerance from the Stalinist authorities. In fact, these authorities felt obliged to round up and jail Cuban rock fans en-masse. Last week –– for the first time in history — this fascinating datum was widely reported by the mainstream media.
Prior to last week, this tragic disconnect was not something Cuba’s Stalinist authorities were very keen to publicize. After all, it exposed Che T-shirt wearers as useful idiots. For some reason, all the “reporters” who (after thorough vetting by Castro’s secret police) were granted “journalist” visas by the Castro regime were likewise unenthusiastic – and for several decades — about exposing this fascinating datum.
But things have changed. “Why and how,” you ask? Well…
Take a millennial Bernie Sanders supporter who lives in his divorced mother’s basement room. Say this mother finally tired of his sloth and stupidity, cut off his allowance and booted him from her basement. So he moved in with his father, who provided the new room, board and allowance.
Chances are that the Bernie Sanders supporter would suddenly find a way to extol the virtues of his father and forget all the horrible things he said about him while eagerly agreeing with his mother when he encountered her while raiding the refrigerator or asking for her car keys. Don’t you think? Alas, the son’s sloth and stupidity would probably remain unchanged.
Well, think of the Castro regime as that Bernie Sanders supporter. Back in the early 1990’s his mother (Russia) finally tired of the arrangement and booted him into the street, so to speak.
So now Cuba lives with his father (tourism), while retaining essentially all of his disgusting habits. Living with this new provider requires that Cuba slightly change his “tune” – and slightly modify his behavior — but really nothing major, nothing of substance. “What’s a little lip-service,” the Sanders supporter snickers, “in exchange for room, board and my uninterrupted Wi-Fi?”
In brief, the Castro regime briefly “hooked-up” with the Rolling Stones for the simple expedient of filling its coffers with millions more in tourist money. In the meantime, Castro’s subjects – while allowed to boogie a bit — essentially remain the impoverished and oppressed subjects of a totalitarian regime.
Indeed, repression against Cubans has actually cranked-up steadily in direct proportion to the Stalinist regime’s enrichment via tourism, especially owing to president Obama’s policies that have recently swamped Cuba with over half a million visitors last year from the U.S. and contributed an estimated $5.6 billion in remittances and travel expenditures to the Castro regime’s coffers. As a direct result, desperate Cubans are risking their lives to flee Cuba at a rate unseen in decades.
Almost exactly a year ago, your humble servant went on John Stossel’s show to debate two libertarians (with half my brain tied behind my back) who giddily supported Obama’s Cuba “opening.” They giddily predicted wonderful things for Cubans. I predicted this very outcome.
This very Easter weekend, for instance, while the mainstream media dutifully promoted the Rolling Stones concert (i.e. Castro-regime/ Rolling Stones business partnership) Cuban dissidents suffered a wave of arrests and beatings. Needless to add, this repression was dutifully ignored by the mainstream media.
But don’t take all this stuff from me. After all, I don’t live in Cuba. Take it from 25 year-old Cuban dissident Rosa Maria Paya, whose father was murdered by the Stalinist regime’s KGB-trained secret police three years ago: “They [the Rolling Stones] should be aware that their performance is being used by a totalitarian regime as a symbol of an opening that isn’t really taking place.”
You see, amigos: Cuba’s entire economic infrastructure is owned almost lock stock and barrel — not only by the Stalinist regime’s military and secret police sectors (the only people in Cuba with guns, in case you’d forgotten) — but more specifically by the Castro family itself. In a presentation a few years ago at a hearing by the House Foreign Affairs Committee debating travel to Cuba by U.S. citizens, Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Simmons, a recently retired Defense Intelligence Agency Cuba specialist, explained the issue in detail. He showed how through a corporation named GAESA, Raul Castro’s military owns virtually every corporation involved in Cuba’s tourism industry, among the Stalinist regime’s top money-makers lately.
And as GAESA’s chief executive officer we find none other than Raul Castro’s very son in law Maj. Luis Alberto Rodriguez Lopez-Callejas.
So when it comes to news from Cuba, amigos — please keep your eye on the ball: income and power for the Castro family crime syndicate. Submit everything you read and hear from the media about Cuba to that test: will it further enrich and empower the Castro-Family-Crime -Syndicate, while keeping the bulk of the Cuban people poor, stupid, powerless and distracted? Do this and everything in Cuba will make perfect sense.