Friday, March 31, 2006

Not Good News

Sahrawi children inhumanely treated in Cuba

Via Morroco Times today's hidden away must read:
“Sahrawi children, who are sent to Cuba, followed military training and courses on making explosives,” testified one of the Cuban former officials. Some former Cuban senior officials confessed that children, who were snatched from their parents in Tindouf camps and deported to Cuban “Youth Island”, endured ill-treatment.
Read the whole hair raising and angering story here. WARNING, not for the faint.

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The Great Protest Fiasco

I had not wanted to make this debates about Mexicans but then there is the Aztlan (very disturbing group - anti-American, pro-Fidel and anti-Semite), La Raza (race? when did being of Hispanic/Latino heritage become a race issue? There are white, black, asian, and native Hispanic/Latinos), MeCHa, Reconquista fiasco - political Mexican groups who would want nothing more than to recuperate the southwest for Mexico again. But just when you think the anti-American behavior is dying down, and we might actually get past these incidents to the big issue at hand I run into this, this and this. Maybe they need to be reminded of history.
Illegal Americans settled at the Alamo in search of a better life. What did Mexico do? Sent General Santa Ana to slaughter a group of civilians settlers living peacefully, that fought a battle that was lost before it began. Houston came to make Santa Ana pay for the slaughter of the Alamo. Faced with death, Santa Ana signed a treaty signing over the land.
Want someone to blame, blame Santa Ana. No one stole anything, and they should remember the Alamo when they march requesting Amnesty. Where was the amnesty for the settlers of the Alamo? Even more, let's look at recent histroy, exactly what does Mexico do with illegal aliens? Do they welcome them with open arms? Do they give them Amnesty? Or do they take them to camps and deport them to where they came from?

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Thursday, March 30, 2006

Wake up Senators!

Update: Latino Issues shares my sentiment with a great must-read post on the issue

The Senate needs to wake up and listen to what Americans who elected them want rather than to an illegal majority. Yes we have an immigration problem, yes we need an immigration reform, yes we are living in a post 9/11 world, but why do they fail to see that what we need FIRST and FOREMOST is Border Security. Let me say it again, Border Security. Captain's Quarters agrees.

Why then, is this what the Senate is focusing on?
"Our first obligation is to bring them out of the shadows, make sure we know who they are (also other Latin Americans, Asians, Europeans), why they're here (others want to work and have a better life), make sure we have a name and some kind of identification," Mr. Frist said in an interview with The Associated Press.
Now that we've answered Mr. Frist's questions, can we move to the major issue at hand - Border Security?

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A Wild and Unlikely Scenario

Hugo Chavez has been "arming himself up to his teeth" as we say in Spanish. He has been purchasing rifles, guns, planes, and has started training an almost two million strong civilian army under the pretense of the Yankees are coming!

Then again maybe not. Via Pajamas Media, Pieter Dorsman at Peaktalk offers a different perspective and reverses the argument: Venezuelans wouldn't be defending themselves, they would be the invaders. The target? The Dutch Antilles.

A wild and unlikely scenario? Maybe. But as Pieter notes, so was the Argentinians re-claiming the Falkland islands, which they did, resulting in an armed conflict.

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Technology meets religion, I kid you not.

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Would've been nice....

There was a short lived rumor today that Fidel had died, which of course let to hopeful yet apprehensive feelings as well as to musings of what to do and how will it be the day it actually happens.

Unfortunately, the Bearded Stooge seems to be very much alive and kicking....for now. But Babalú gives you this priceless gem (Hotel Nazi).

Listen to it, and then dare deny there is no apartheid in Cuba.

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Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Fariñas Ends Hunger Strike

Via EFE News:

Meanwhile, Guillermo Fariñas, a psychologist and director of the independent Cubanacan Press agency, is in serious but stable condition after on Wednesday ending a 56-day hunger strike he began to demand free access to the Internet.

The dissident "has had no complications, but he is very weak, with headaches and polyneuropathies in his legs and hands," his mother Alicia Hernandez told EFE on Wednesday.
This in no way demeans his effort, or destroys his cause. Fariñas is still a hero in my view, and a Patriot.

The whole story here.

(H/T Uncommon Sense)
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Disturbing Image

Update 3: Who are these people?, I have no words, The Mexican Flag in Florida
This people need to be STOPPED now, before they unleash anti-immigrant resentment on all of us.
Update 2: Border crossing explosion, Illegal is right, what's wrong?
Babalu, Michelle Malkin, and a must read at Real Clear Politics.

"We are Americans too" I don't think so.

This disturbing image comes from yet another student walkout protest in Whittier, CA, where its obvious where the student's loyalties lie. This is just plain disrespectful and ungrateful behavior, even if its just from a group of students.

The fact that no protestor is raising their voice against this, is actually more telling than the picture. As Michelle Malkin so aptly put it: Welcome to the Reconquista - which also displays anti-American sentiment.

Do the students understand what they are doing? Are they aware of the message they are sending to the rest of the nation with such acts? Mind you, the problem here is not the upside down American flag - the bigger problem is the Mexican flag flying on top of the American flag.

I've never been a fan of La Raza, I've always been a fan of integrating into society. Showing off flags of other countries belongs in an honoring heritage parade, not in protests where you are shouting that you want to be an American; where you are demanding rights when you have broken the law.

This is something taken out of a book of the Aztlan movement, and will not bode well with Americans nor with other naturalized immigrants - who went the legal route and who while maintaining their identity integrated into society.

More photos here.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Welcome Marathon Pundit Readers

Welcome Marathon Pundit readers! Wall Street Cafe, aka La Ventanita, blogs about the current situation in Cuba, but also about the socio-political situation here in USA, tackling topics of national interest such as immigration.

I hope you not only enjoy the content but comment as well!

Cuban Stories

I love it when searching for the news I run into personal stories of Cuban exiles - their flight from Cuba, their struggle and ultimately their success. Last week it was Olga Dazzo, the female CEO from an insurance company, who shares the emotions of Carlos Eire. Today it is a Northwest Airlines pilot from Michigan. Meet Pedro Haber:
Pedro Haber hasn't been back to his native Cuba for more than 35 years, since his family escaped Fidel Castro's regime when he was 2 years old.

That outlook came from his father, Haber said, who went to night school after leaving Cuba because the degree he got there was not recognized in other countries. Haber will follow in his father's footsteps again, in a sense, as he starts weekend classes at Thomas M. Cooley Law School. He said he's seeking a law degree because of the uncertainty in the airline industry.
Please do read the whole story, it is a pick me up that we don't often get in the media. Enjoy!

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HR4437 Debate - Day 2

Update 2: Dean's World has an argument against the "illegals do jobs Americans don't want" from the Black Man perspective, but it perfectly applies to all Americans.

In addition some common sense from John Cornyn in response to the bill from the Senate panel:
"It will encourage further disrespect for our laws and will undercut our efforts to shore up homeland security. Adding border security measures to the McCain-Kennedy bill is not enough," Cornyn said. "Any proposal that allows every single illegal alien to remain in the U.S., pay a fine and obtain permanent residence status is not acceptable; it will simply encourage additional persons to evade our laws."

"we have to do so without granting them amnesty."
Update: Public Figures has a great post analyzing the good and the bad of the Senate Judiciary Committee Bill

Go to Day 1 for some good links, read House Rules before commenting, Purpose

Last night the Senate Judiciary Committee voted 12-6 in favor of passing on to the Senate floor the following ammendments:

(1) a new "temporary" agricultural worker program (as proposed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein [D-CA])
(2) another "guestworker" visa program "capped" at 400,000 per year (as proposed by Sen. Ted Kennedy [D-MA])
(3) an amnesty for illegal aliens who have worked in the United States for six years and who wait another five before applying for adjustment of status to lawful permanent residence, provided the illegal alien pays $2,000 in fines, has a background check done, and demonstrates a working knowledge of English (as proposed by Sen. Lindsey Graham [R-SC]).
(4) an amendment by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) to de-criminalize illegal presence
(5) another by Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS) to open up more visas for alien nurses as long as related shortages exist.
Amendments to curb the overall impact of these visa and citizenship giveaways offered by Sens. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) were defeated.

This "illegals do jobs Americans don't want" argument is not only old but flawed; it is a matter of pay. Illegals have driven down the wage, and Americans want fair pay. Michelle Malkin puts it in perspective.

Guestworker programs, I hope, would drive wages back up, and more Americans would be taking these jobs - pay would now be competitive instead of measly. Preference should be given to Americans, and only when they don't want the jobs, "guestworkers" hired.

I really don't know what to make about the 1.5 Million temporary agricultural workers - I'd have to say the apply the same argument as for the guestworkers. Even Cesar Chavez was against illegal immigration because it drew the wages of farmworkers down. Yes, that's right. Cesar Chavez.

No matter how the Senate votes, all workers - whether temporary or guestworkers - should be submitted to background checks, demonstrate a working knowledge of English and pay taxes.

Now to the Amnesty. - this is a BIG mistake, especially since I don't see a strong plan to secure the borders and no clarification of when the six years starts. This can produce a mass influx of people.

Both borders (and entry ports) need to be secured NOW, with military personnel (Reserves, National Guard, etc.). This has to be treated tactically as an invasion of unarmed people. With a show of might, and trained personnel with the right equipment many would be deterred from attempting the crossover.

Amnesty is unfair to all those who came here legally, and applied legally. In addition we are rewarding people for breaking the law, that's a bad message. If I don't pay my taxes, will I get an amnesty too? After all, I needed the extra money to survive. It's the same premise with a different application.

If an amnesty plan is approved, aside from the requirements mentioned above, people applying for the amnesty should be required the following:

(1) Pay back taxes, at least for the six years you were working
(2) If they received any welfare benefits and did not pay taxes, then these benefits should be paid back too (after considering the payment of the backtaxes of course)
(3) Stand in line; legal applicants should always be given priority, especially those who already have paperwork in.
(4) Take and pass a GED test by an accredited institution.
(5) Pass a written and oral English exam (minimum level 12th grade English)
(6) Be given some sort of USA test - where unpatriotic aliens can be filtered out, denied the residency, and sent back to their countries.
(7) Required military service in any of the branches, including National Guard, Reserves, ROTC etc. - you want to be an American, prove it.

What do you think? I'd love to hear comments, both pros and cons, on the issue.

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Monday, March 27, 2006

Babalú Blog goes to Canada

Update: Want to listen to Val? Just go here and follow the instructions!

As a result of today's Guillermo Fariñas blogburst I'm sure, our very own Valentín Prieto from Babalú Blog, will be interviewed on Canadian radio this evening.

At 7:30pm EST, Val will be on The World Tonight with Rob Breakenridge to discuss human rights in Cuba, through Canadian Radio Station CHQR 770 am. There is a live button on the site so I think we can listen in!

Here is the link to the webpage: The World Tonight

Debating HR 4437 - Day 1

Update 3: Apparently, it includes Amnesty. I really hope points #1 and #2 below are paid attention to, and that this is ammended when discussed at the floor. I think the numbers are too high and the amnesty is a terrible mistake. This is not the solution. Just like we were here 20 years ago, will be here again in 20 years. They better secure those borders by tomorrow - there will be a MAJOR influx this week with the word Amnesty out there.

Update 2: The Senate Judiciary Committe has approved the following for deliberation in the Senate floor: Up to 400,000 foreigners per year for unskilled/low skilled labor for up to 6 years, and up to 1.5 million undocumented workers for agricultural jobs, for up to 5 years. Both, if so desired, can apply for residency when their time expires. Read more here.

If approved, I ask for two things: 1) that these jobs will have competitive market wages Americans are given preference to take them. I'm not clear on what unskilled/low skilled jobs are. 2) that these workers ARE NOT given preference on their resident application process, over all those who already requested residency through legal means.

Update: Glenn Reynolds hits the nail on the head, while Michelle Malkin has some anti-American photos. Latino Pundit has some neutral photos.

This past weekend the nation was witness to massive demonstrations against HR4437 which seeks to make illegal aliens felons by making the illegal status a felony. The issue has divided political parties, has divided a nation, and has even divided the immigrant community.

My parents were legal immigrants from Cuba, my father was a legal immigrant in Cuba from Spain, and my spouse is a legal immigrant from Chile. I lived for three years in Maryland, two years in Texas, and eight years in Miami so I have met and befriended legals and illegal aliens alike, from all nationalities.

Today we will focus on making being illegal a criminal offense - on the actual illegal alien. As I understand the current law, entering the country illegally is a criminal offense, but staying illegally isn't. HR4437 changes that, and makes the illegal alien status a felony.

PROs: It certainly would deter illegal entry, if they are aware that now even policemen can deport them; it should deter employees from hiring them as they now would be employing felons.

Cons: By turning the illegals into felons, their chances of ever becoming legal or participating in any guest-worker program essentially null.

Me: I think being here illegally should be made into a criminal offense, however I don't think this should prevent illegals from then participating in the legal process - whatever it may be.

Pro-illegal alien supporters rally in favor of Amesty - a pardon - as a solution. I disagree. In 1986 amnesty was granted and it solved nothing.

Amnesty is unfair to those who are following this country's laws and have been waiting for as long as 10 to 15 years to become legal residents. Now all of a sudden people who came in as recent as two years ago, would jump ahead of the line bypassing all the ones who have been battling the system legally. - playing by the rules.
In addition, amnesty is rewarding illegal behavior, and would only bring more people in searching for the amnesty. If the immigration system can barely handle the load now, how can people think it will be able to process 12 million people?

If you haven't read the rules, read them before commenting. Also read the original post.

Link comparing some of the immigration bills:
Numbers USA

Links, both in favor and against HR4437, and immigration facts:
Legal Analysis against HR4437, Justice for Immigrants,
Center for Immigration Studies, Marc Cooper
Americans for Legal Immigration, Minute Men
Federation for American Immigration Reform,
Republican National Hispanic Assembly

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The Value of Freedom

57 days... barely alive, in critcal condition and in grave danger

I cry for Guillermo Fariñas; I fear the day I will hear he has lost his fight because it will mean he is no longer with us. I don't know this man, yet I cry for him. His eyes scream kindness, his body show his struggle and his words his determination. Guillermo Fariñas wants to be free. Correction, Coco as his family and friends call him, is free - at least his mind and his soul are. In his own words in a letter to Fidel Castro he states:
"Even though I live within a dictatorship, I consider myself a free man"
Who is this man? Mr. Fariñas is a Cuban psychologist and director of the Independent Press Bureau Cubanacán Press. Cubanacán, as an independent press, reports the news that the government doesn't; reports the crimes that the Cuban regime denies and hides from the rest of the world. It was after reporting one such crime, how the government attacks and opresses dissidents, that Mr. Fariñas had his and his agency's (his staff) Internet access cut off.

Unless you are a government member, as a regular Cuban you have to go to an Internet café to access the Internet. At an exorbitant price, half of a month's wages, you can purchase an hour on the net. However, your surfing abilities are curtailed as the regime blocks all sites it does not want its people to see - just like China blocks opposition blogs and commentaries. Cubanacán Staff used the Internet to send out their reports, their stories to foreign press bureaus for publication, in an effort to report the truth about Cuba and their situation.

Guilermo Fariñas is now on his 57th day of hunger strike, willing to die and be a martyr for his cause. Still it is one of the most unreported and not covered news stories around. The silence is deafening.

This man is a compassionate, pacific gentleman, protesting in a civil and pacific way and asking for something that we take for granted - Internet. Will you help save Fariñas?

What would you do without the Internet? What would you do without Freedom?

Please search this blog for Guillermo Fariñas so you can learn more about this man, his cause and his hunger strike.

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Sunday, March 26, 2006

HR4437 Posting - House Rules

Please read before commenting on the coming HR4437 posts this week:

1. The subjects of this discussion are illegal aliens NOT Mexicans. Recent numbers show that more Central Americans (than Mexicans) are coming through, so this is NOT a debate about Mexicans.

2. Although the overwhelming majority of illegal aliens are Hispanic/Latino, this is NOT a debate about Hispanics/Latino - there are illegal immigrants of other nationalities as well so we will not discriminate.

3. Please stick to the subjects with good, well developed, logical arguments - do not go on tangents, or other topics that are "smokescreens" in order to distract attention to some other topic.

4. Since this is a very emotional topic, there will be NO insulting, NO offending, NO disrespecting ANYONE here - that includes Republicans, Democrats, the President, Hispanic/Latinos, American citizens, or any other group, nationality or ethnicity - just because others do it doesn't mean it is childish, immature, and leads discussion nowhere fast.

5. I will express my views only and ONLY in my posts. I will not debate or argue comments until the following post - meaning I will not engage ANYONE individually, I will just moderate the discussion.

6. Bear in mind comments WILL BE MODERATED for content that violates any of the rules. If you comment with your email, I will notify you and ask you to revise. If you comment anonymously, I will edit your comment and publish the edited version.

7. Please send all links to me as well, as they will aid in the posting process.

8. Suggestion for other rules of polite and civil discussion are accepted.
This are the rules of the house. Let's argue and debate in a civil manner so we can lead to a productive conclusion.

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Saturday, March 25, 2006

HR 4437 - Illegal Immigration

This coming week I'll be posting daily on HR4437 - the bill which among other things makes the illegal alien status a criminal offense - as US lawmakers debate the resolution.

In all fairness, I will post both sides of the debate. My opinion on it of course will be one-sided. Each post will open with a section of HR4437 that refers to illegal aliens in the US.

I would ask all of you to please email me any links, news stories, blog entries etc. that you find or encounter related to this issue. I will do my own search as well, but I want to cover as much ground as possible in order to incite civil and polite debate on the issue.

Looking forward to a great and interesting week!

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Waiting For Snow in Havana

"I came from a loving, stable Catholic family with good values. The next thing I knew, Castro had people parading through the streets, asking for those who didn't believe in the revolution to be executed. My whole world was turned upside down. In fact, I remember exactly where I was when my mother told me that Castro had taken over and I had exactly the same emotions Eire describes in his book."

Read Olga Dazzo's story, a Peter Paner who is now the first female CEO of a health insurance company in Michigan; and who has not been able to read Carlos Eire's book:

Olga Dazzo, president and CEO of Physicians Health Plan of Mid-Michigan since 1996, confesses there's a memoir she's been unable to read. "I can't get past the beginning," she says. "I told the author when I met him in Miami that it's just too painful."

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Friday, March 24, 2006

Energy Involution

Some months back The Bearded Stooge started a so called "energy revolution" which in order to save money and energy he placed in the market new cookers, and apparently new stove burners. Well, I guess he neglected to tell Cubans that these new appliances would save costs and energy because they wouldn't work.

Via Cuba Net, people now call the burners "deodorants", because so many Cubans are walking with them under their armpits on the way to get them repaired. But of course, now the lines at the repair shop are ridicously long - as in everywhere else.

The article states that the Cubans have started to be convinced that the appliances are nothing more than another political ploy that far from solving problems, it creates new ones - and that without taking into account the amount of money these poor Cubans must invest, first in purchasing the new appliances and second in their repair. In the words of one Cuban:
"Son pacotilla barata que el estado nos vende caro a nosotros, pero que no sirven para nada y gastan muchísima corriente".
Meaning they are cheap non-working energy draining appliances sold to them at high prices. The burners sell for 100 pesos, and the cookers for 145. Isn't the average Cuban monthly salary 12 pesos? You do the math.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The Bearded Stooge Caught in a Lie - Busted!

Update: Read my cross-post at Babalú

Via The Miami Herald:
In a speech Tuesday, Castro boasted that the Bush administration's initial attempts to bar his country from participating in the tournament had backfired, and that Cuba's take from the tournament would go to ``Katrina's martyrs.''
Not so say MLB officials who responded to The Bearded Stooge's rant with the following:
Major League Baseball Thursday denied a claim by Cuban leader Fidel Castro that his government will donate proceeds from the World Baseball Classic to U.S. victims of Hurricane Katrina.

''Based on the agreement, Cuba doesn't have a cut of the proceeds from the tournament, and there is nothing for Cuba to donate,'' he added.
You see according to the agreement the WBC organizers signed with the Treasury department, Cuba receives nothing, nada, zilch. Profits, if any, would be divided among the other countries. So there is nothing for Cuba to donate in its name, as it receives no money directly or indirectly.

I say, if any profits, because, well, no one at all might receive any money, as there may not be any money to distribute:

In fact, there's a chance none of the countries will get paid. Initial estimates put the cost of staging the 17-day, 39- game tournament at $50 million. Gene Orza of the major league players union, said the event could wind up losing money. The participating teams, Cuba included, had their expenses paid for.
But of course, we all know that Cuba is about propaganda, about making themselves look like the good guys and USA like the bad guys, making the Cuban regime look like the good benevolent victim. Well the gig is up. They went as far as telling reporters in the US to include the money donation in their stories.

Before the Havana team left San Diego, site of the championship game, Cuban spokesman Pedro Cabrera told reporters that the team would be donating tournament proceeds to Hurricane Katrina victims and asked reporters to include that in their stories. Cuban manager Higinio Velez made a similar claim before the tournament began.
Now, where are all those who hailed The Bearded Stooge's goodwill? Know that it was all a lie, a blatant lie, a manipulation, a propaganda tool. You were all duped, used by the Cuban government's propaganda machine. YUP. Lied to, taken advantage of. How do you feel now?

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The Doctors Office

A funny thing happened today, as I sat in the doctor's office. He asked me where my accent was from. I answered my template answer:

"I was born Puerto Rico, my parents are Cuban."

I always clarify, because saying I'm Puerto Rican is not entirely true, and I am very proud of my Cuban heritage.

Immediately, the inevitable happened. A comment. The doctor then said that we (the USA) should normalize relations with Cuba and what where my thoughts or my parents thoughts about that. He of course mentioned the infamous and notorious Miami Cubans, as being against normalizing relations with the Bearded Stooge.

I felt my blood boil and my pressure rise. Calm down, I told myself. No rabid foaming mouth impression will solve this, you need to do this cool as a cucumber. This was it. My big moment. My moment to educate someone as best I could in the 2 minutes I would have available.
"The problem doctor, is that no one can forgive the assassinations of their families, the killings, the persecution and the separation. These are political exiles, refugees."

"I had no idea things had been that bad" he replied. I know I thought, that's why we exist.

"For example" I pressed on, wearing out my welcome"people don't have access to the Internet, and the few that do have sites blocked."

"I never thought he was as bad as some of the others"

"Yes, and for him it's been easier because it's an island"
And that is as far as I got folks. By that last comment he was already writing my prescription, and his body language alerted me he was uncomfortable.

But I got through. Little by little, one person at a time.

The Offensive Easter Bunny

Offensive? The Easter Bunny? Yes! From Stop the ACLU:

ST. PAUL, Minn. - The Easter Bunny has been sent packing at St. Paul City Hall.A toy rabbit, pastel-colored eggs and a sign with the words "Happy Easter" were removed from the lobby of the City Council offices, because of concerns they might offend non-Christians. How is the Easter Bunny a Christian symbol? The Easter Bunny is a secular celebration that has no relation with Christianity except for the fact that it is celebrated on Easter Sunday

A council secretary had put up the decorations. They were not bought with city money. St. Paul's human rights director, Tyrone Terrill, asked that the decorations be removed, saying they could be offensive to non-Christians. Again, how is this offensive to non-Christians? The way I see it Christians should be the ones offended by the commercial hijacking of one of their most important religious holidays.

But City Council member Dave Thune says removing the decorations went too far, and he wonders why they can't celebrate spring with "bunnies and fake grass."
Bunnies, fake grass, baskets, colored eggs...Christian symbols? Give me a break, these people have simply gone too far.

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Stop whining Bearded Stooge

At recent ceremony for the Cuban baseball team in Cuba, the Bearded Stooge said the following (my translation) in the reference to the United States:
"It's like if they didn't exist, we don't need them culturally nor economocally at all, we are dignified people with great resistance and used to keep going forward"
Why then must he keep whining about the "embargo", if he doesn't need the USA?

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Vladimiro Roca Under Siege

Dissident Vladimiro Roca, president of the Social Democrat Party of Cuba, is under siege inside his house "courtesy" of a major repudiation act currently being conducted.

Roca had planned a meeting at "his" home (b/c there is no such thing as private property in Cuba) with other dissident members of the "Todos Unidos" coalition. Around a dozen dissidents has planned to meet at noon today. "Todos Unidos" coalition meets periodically to evaluate the situation of political prisoners and their families in Cuba and denounce the Human Rights violations.

Currently his home is surrounded by about a hundred people participating in this repudiation act, blocking the entrance to the house and not allowing anyone to come in or exit the property.

You can read the story in Spanish here.

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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sad Pats

It is a sad day for New Englan Patriots fans (like us), very very sad.

Our clutch kicker Adam Vinatieri, has on free agency, signed with the Indiana Colts. You really can't blame the Colts, Vanderjagt has a better field goal percentage, but is not as good in clutch situations as Vinatieri.

Now the question remains, who will be the kicker for the Pats?

Cuban Refugees Flee

The twenty-eight Cuban asylum seekers who went missing Sunday night may have fled these Islands because they were afraid of being sent back to Cuba. Twenty-seven Cubans, who had been housed at Breakers Civic Centre, failed to comply with their scheduled 9:00 pm return on Sunday 19 March, according to a Government release.

The rest of the story here.

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Bombs in Bolvia

UPDATE: Off Topic has a great analysis of the situation including the creation of what appear to be CDR's, Comités de Barrio, Bolivarian Circles, or however you want to call them - in order to defend Bolivia's democracy.

Marathon Pundit has an even greater post on this American who calls himself Lestat.

The blame game has started.

An unfortunate incident, twin bombings in Bolivian hotels, has become yet another thing to blame on the US. Why? Well because one of the bombers is an American citizen, or claims to be an American citizen - depends on whether you read Bloomberg or CNN.

What amazes me is that even though the second bomber was Uruguayan, Uruguay is not getting blamed for the bombings. Following the logic of Morales' quote below, shouldn't Uruguay be blamed too?

"The United States claims to fight terrorism, yet Americans come to put bombs in our hotels,'' Bolivian President Evo Morales said at a ceremony in the eastern city of Santa Cruz, in comments broadcast by La Paz-based Radio Panamericana. ``This is an attack on Bolivian democracy.''
And I have to ask, since when do the actions of one citizen reflect the opinion of an entire country?

By Stooge Morales' logic then all Bolivians are "narcos" since there are Bolivian druglords, and as such we should continue erradicating the coca plantations. Oh but wait, he is against that, because the Natives are not dealers - so he says. You have to love it when government contradicts itself. But as Stooge Morales said on his interview with Jorge Ramos "I demand much respect." Respect is not demanded, it is earned.

I suggest that Stooge Morales gets some diplomacy lessons, before he starts generalizing and accusing in mass, which is exactly what he criticizes the US of doing. Then again, maybe Bolivia and USA are not that different after all in their policies.

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Aznar, Aznar...Where art thou Aznar?

If you believe this, then you migh as well believe Cuba is a free and democratic country.

This can only mean two things, either they are preparing a regroup and attack such as the last time they declared a "cease-fire" or encouraged by the resolution giving higher autonomy to the Cataluña region, they will attempt the same.

Which part of you do not negotiate with terrorists is Spain's current government not understanding?

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No defections.....This Time

According to Kehoskie, wait for 2009.

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Lies and apathy

"There are no homeless in Cuba; in Cuba everyone has free healthcare, free education and free housing. There is no discrimination, we are all equal, we are all brothers and sisters."

Kumbayá. Bullshit. Tell it to this guy.

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Islamists challenge the USA Constitution

Via Israpundit, comes this article that is sure to raise some eyebrows and pop out some eyeballs as well. The article is a brilliant analysis of Islamists requests and US Constitutional law.

While this article is long it is a must read if you are at all the littlest worried about the increasing Muslim presence in the US and their apparent inability to assimilate into secular life - they want to build enclaves where Sharia law applies. Preposterous you say? Well they already exist, somewhat, in Baltimore and Kansas.

I want to see where the ACLU stands on this. Just weeks ago they were all over Domino's Pizza owner because he wanted to develop a strictly Catholic neighborhood around the new Ave Maria University in South Florida. The ACLU uproar was that condoms and other birth control would not be sold in the pharmacies and that this was unconstitutional.

Will they think the same for establishments not selling alcohol? For women having to don a hijab to cross through the towns? What about when the first convert is sentenced to death? Or the women beaten?

People are up in arms about HR4437 and illegal immigrants. No disrespect but, people should be paying more attention to this. Being tolerant of others does not mean allowing them to import their laws and their countries.

Freedom of religion means you can practice your religion free of persecution; you can even live in communities where there is a preponderance of your religion. But imposing your religious laws to a community, even if private property, should be unconstitutional.

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Tuesday, March 21, 2006

19 Dry Feet

Landed on Sand Key. Channel 10 reports.

Barely Alive

Guillermo Fariñas has become my hero, my friend, my brother. I don't know this man, have never met or spoken to him, but I feel he is part of my family; of my close circle of friends.

"Coco" as he is affectionately called by his family and friends, is now in his 50th day of his hunger strike. Fifty-days without solid food or water. A hunger strike that he undertook to demand from the Bearded Stooge his right to freely access the internet so he can continue his work as independent journalist and director of Cubanacán Press (Independent Cuban Press).

Little disseminated fact is that "Coco" was coming of a previous hunger strike that had left him temporarily paraplegic. He was also 19 days into recuperation from Hernia Surgery. Yet this man, decided to again fight this evil regime. David against Goliath. Will David win again this time?

Cuba Net reports that "Coco's" health is rapidly deteriorating. Just last weekend his fever was up 39 degrees Celsius, 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit. He was also diagnosed with Urinary Tract Infection, loss of feeling on his extremities (but he still has some muscle control), and cephalalgia, along with suffering convulsions and loss of consciousness.

As you can see, "Coco's" health is of serious concern yet no one seems to be giving this story any importance. I thank Pajamas Media, all the Cuban Bloggers, Reuters, CNN and some newspapers for carrying this story. But even with such news powerhouses as Reuters and CNN ask anyone in the street about "Coco" and his cause, and with a blank stare in their face they will answer "Coco who?".

Sad Very Sad.

Below a list of related posts/links to this story.

Previous Posts:
The Silence is Deafening
Thank You Chicago Tribune
Guillermo Fariñas in Grave Danger
Guillermo Fariñas - My Personal Cause
Save Fariñas!
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom - Update on Fariñas
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom - Update
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom Continues
Fariñas Still on Hunger Strike
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom

Related Links:
Uncommon Sense - Cuba
Guillermo Fariñas in Critical Condition
Hunger strike continues
Guillermo Fariñas Update
Guillermo Fariñas Update 2
Are you ready for this?

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Monday, March 20, 2006

On Bush, Moonbats and the Hate-America bandwagon

I love this country, my country, the United States of America. My parents came here fleeing a totalitarian regime and seeking freedom. FREEDOM - what this great nation of ours stand for. All through my life - while being innoculated against communism, the Bearded Stooge and their kind - my parents taught me how to love the USA, and what it stands for; how to always be grateful that they were given the opportunity to be FREE, and to always be proud to be an American. They also showed me something that seems to be lacking these days LOVE OF COUNTRY.

I just came from reading this post which also includes pictures (and the captions are worth the nausea and revolt the pictures will incite). Watching Americans support and defend our enemies, antagonize and demoralize our troops? I thought Vietnam was lesson learned...I guess I was wrong.

I have to say I am speechless. But then again Marathon Pundit today brings us this equally barfing news - The Sheehan Movie starring Moonbat extraordinaire Susan Sarandon (doesn't she get blown up in Team America???). It's a sad day.

It used to be that protesting, within the given right of all Americans, was about debate, about arguing, about opposing a position with a debatable point; where people like Hanoi Jane were seen as anti-American by the majority, and in turn were protested against.

Today it seems, protesting is about insults and being anti-American; protesting to day has turned American bashing into a fashionable attitude, a profitable enterprise, into something cool. I won't even touch how low Bush bashing has gone, but this picture should give you an idea (hint, look for the title of The Future Cesar Chavez).

Of course, we cannot leave out - even though he is not American - the ranting and raving Stooge Chavez, who manages to disrespect every and any leader who contradicts his policy. This weekend it was again the turn of President Bush who got called "murderer, genocidal, drunkard, coward, and dumb". He has to keep Venezuelans entertained lest they realize his giving away all their resources while the country spirals down and crumbles like the bridge to La Guaira did over the weekend.

What ever happened to diplomacy? How can the international community support such a behavior, which denotes NO CLASS, NO EDUCATION and NO RESPECT. And he wants ours?

But then again, even people in the USA don't respect the president, as the picture post above denotes, and the pictures at Zombietime will show. Which brings me back to my parents. No matter how much you dislike the president, no matter what you think of him, he is the President of this nation and we must show him respect, so other nations will respect us as well. After all, we can elect a president every 4 years, and no matter how bad a president is, he won't be in power for more than 8.

Wake up America! Wake up Americans! Stand up and defend our great nation!

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I just simply cannot take one more article glorifying Cuba; the press is on the loving Fidel bandwagon. They are wasting the greatest opportunity to get the truth out; instead it's all nostlagic, quaint, and lovvy dubby. Ugh! I think I'm going to throw up.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Motorcycle Diaries II

From American Thinker's John Mendez, comes the proposal for the screenplay of the sequel to The Motorcycle Diaries (or How I made Che a hero even though he was a murderer).

You absolutely, positively, must read it. This is the best debunking of Che, his movie and Robert Redford I've seen in a very long time - brilliantly written, with facts, and with the right dose of sarcasm and black humor.

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Why Chile Really Matters

Newsweek International has a must read on Chile, and how it is a model to be followed by other Latin American countries - ie. Venezuela and Cuba come to mind.

Jorge Castañeda does a superb job in placing Chile on the map as evidence that free markets, together with social programs, can advance economies while still making sure that poverty and inequalities are reduced. They are not mutually exclusive as some insist and would like others to believe.

He openly attacks the fact that Chile is being ignored as a model to follow, while Latin America glorifies Chavez and his Bolivarian Revolution. A glimpse (my emphasis):
So why does no one else really care? Why is such a success story not moving the hearts and minds of millions of Latin Americans? In Mexico City's National University, the oldest and largest in Latin America, Bolivarian Committees are springing up in support of Venezuela's Hugo Chávez; at last November's Summit of the Americas in Mar del Plata, Argentina, former soccer idol Diego Maradona rallied thousands of cheering Chavistas to denounce American imperialism, neoliberalism, free trade and what not. Yet there are no Chile Study groups at the universities; there are no Ricardo Lagos T shirts; there are no Chile groupies. Any comparison between Chile and Venezuela over the past seven years (since Chávez took office), or between Chile and Cuba since 1989, is a no-brainer: from any conceivable point of view, Chile comes out miles ahead. But somehow the Chilean model has limited appeal, though the size and weight of the three nations are quite similar.
I guess being anti-American and swallowing communist propaganda hook, line and sinker is more exciting and important than actually finding a roadmap that works. Chile is there, just waiting to be discovered.

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Saturday, March 18, 2006

The Silent War at Home

A chilling editorial of the "silent" war we are facing on American soil; the war no one talks about and the one that can hurt us the most: The (coming) Islamization of America.

If you believe the left, the ACLU and the tolerance of multiculturalism being spawned is a danger to our culture, values and national security then you must read this piece.

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Welcome Pajamas Media!

I'd like to extend a welcome to all Pajamas Media bloggers, and thank PJM in Barcelona for its solidarity with our cause.

The Silence is Deafening

UPDATE: I just heard that this video note aired yesterday on CNN. As hard as this is to say, Thank You CNN for covering this.

Yes, I'm talking about Guillermo Fariñas. I'm sad and outraged at the same time, that no one chooses to carry his story to hear his plight.

Buried deep in the website of Commies News Network, by star reporter Lucia Newman is this video note she did on Guillermo Fariñas called Dying for the Internet.

I urge everyone to watch this video and send it to as many people as you can. While he does not appear, it is the only "video note" we have of this situation.

(H/T Ya No Más!)

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Black Spring - 3 Year Anniversary

UPDATE: Yahoo has The Ladies in White

It was a day like today, three years ago that 75 independent journalists and dissidents in Cuba were swept up, given the typical summary trial and imprisoned - deprived of their freedom, their rights, their families, their health, and in some cases even their lives. Some of them have been "paroled" and continue to be harrassed and attacked by the government. Others are still in prison. The international community has failed once again.

Even though today it is a beautiful sunny-not-a-cloud-in-the-sky day, in our hearts today is a Black Anniversary day indeed. Uncommon Sense has more.

I scoured some of the media and found this and this. As usual, (surprise surprise) there was not much to be found. I recommend reading both articles since they are not too long.

14 Visas Coming Up

Amidst so much tragedy - Guillermo Fariñas is dying and no one cares - at least a bit of good news. Of the 7-Mile - Bridge-15, fourteen of them will be granted visas to come to the US. Fourteen of them will be FREE. The fifteenth was denied a visa because he has a criminal record.

From El Nuevo Herald read the article here.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Shameful and Shameless

Just when you think the Cuban government cannot steep any lower alás! they do.

I just received a communiqué from Dr. Darsi Ferrer, Monday night, Cuban authorities broke into their home while they where away, and stole the majority of their possessions. Not being able to steal their old Frigidaire, the Cuban authorities broke it instead.

Aside from personal possessions, the officials also stole medications and medical equipment that Dr. Ferrer uses as he tenders his services to the poor in Cuba. They also stole their appliances and some of their clothing. This is about the eighth time that Cuban officials break into Dr. Ferrer's home as a way to intimidate him. He was once even threatened with a knife.

As you all know, Dr. Ferrer and his wife, take care of the poor in Cuba tendering to them medically and with clothes. They also take care of those infected with the HIV virus. The people they look after live in subhuman conditions. If you want to learn more about their work, visit The Real Cuba and scroll to the bottom of the page.

USA vs Mexico - More than Baseball

Was it just me? Was I watching the wrong game? Or did everybody see and hear the same thing?

Last night as I watched the WBC game of USA vs Mexico I was flabbergasted. Not by the facts that USA lost, I expected that, but by something else. Even though team USA was playing as a visitor, they were playing HOME in ANAHEIM, CA which last time I checked the map, is in the USA.

However, they were playing in the most hostile environment I've ever seen a USA team play. The stadium, it seems, was packed with Mexicans (legal or illegal, does not make a difference), who were not only cheering Mexico, but were also booing team USA.

It was quite an experience watching a USA player out at first, and have the whole stadium applaud and cheer; or listening to the stadium boo as the catcher and pitcher meet on the mound to ice the batter.

How can it be that team USA gets to play at home and still be in a hostile environment? Aside from that, who are these people, ungrateful and disrespectful, who attend this game and aside from cheering their "home" team (which is understandable), purposely antagonize the opposing team who just so happens to be the country they are currently residing? The latter is a separate post.

But then again, what can you expect from a team that was deliriously happy about eliminating its opponent, even though they had nothing to gain by it.

Whether team USA played well or not is besides the point here.

The fact that a USA team can get booed and opposed playing at home, is in my view, worrisome.

I'd advice WBC organizers next time to choose a venue with a larger percentage of American public so at least the team can be cheered on. So the players can feel the "home" advantage, and can hear the stands roaring in their support.

Thank You Chicago Tribune

The Chicago Tribune today has an article covering the increase of attacks on Cuban dissidents in Cuba. The article is a must read for me, as so few come out in the MSM and even less in English. Well balanced, with interviews with various dissidents, it contends the acts are increasing so the Bearded Stooge can maintain the revolución eve after his death. I definitely recommend all of you to read it.

It also mentions the hunger strikes of two dissidents, including Guillermo Fariñas who is in grave danger.

Hardly noticed is Santa Clara dissident Guillermo Farinas, a hunger striker who is in the hospital where he is being fed intravenously. He is demanding Cuba lift strict controls on Internet access for island residents.

"Spiritually, I feel stronger than the government," Farinas, 43, said from his hospital bed two weeks ago. "We have to avoid a civil war. The way to fight the government is peacefully."

Farinas' health has deteriorated in recent days, with opposition activists saying he is now in grave danger.
For these three small paragraphs I thank the Chicago Tribune and Gary Marx. Please read the article, and sign the Guillermo Fariñas petition.

I challenge and urge all of you not to be an accomplice to his death, sign the petition and speak out!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Guillermo Fariñas in grave danger

The next few hours are critical for the survival of Guillermo Fariñas who yesterday was reported to be in critical condition.

Currently in the ICU unit of the ''Arnaldo Milián Castro'' hospital in Santa Clara he is under constant medical observation; he is exhibiting seizures and loss of feeling in his legs. Yet he is not giving up his hunger strike saying:

"With this hunger strike I debunk the lies and accusations of those who oppress us in our own land, calling us 'mercenaries' at the service of a foreign nation. We are determined to give even our lives for our ideals" (Read his letter in Spanish)
To refresh your memory, this 41-year old Cuban psychologist and director of the independent press agency Cubanacán Press in Cuba, is on a hunger strike to gain Internet access so he can continue performing his profession as an Independent Journalist. The government denied him access after he granted a phone interview to The Miami Herald denouncing attacks on dissidents.

This weekend his case will be presented at the bi-annual meeting of the Interamerican Press Society, which holds their session this weekend at Quito, Ecuador.

Fariñas hunger strike goes beyond his own need to freely access Internet for his work, it is seeded in the fact that the Cuban population cannot freely access the internet even if they pay in convertible currency. You see, freely accessing the Internet in Cuba is another privilege destined for tourists or foreigners, scientific institutions, educational centers and of course the government...but not for the locals; not for the average Cuban residing in Cuba.

On top of that, as in China, the government censures and limits what Cubans can access through the Internet, disguising their censorship - blocking websites with opinions that differ from the official policy of the Cuban regime - as their right to defend national sovereignty. Excuse me? Gee, then I guess that most of the countries in this world do not defend their national sovereignty.

Do Cuba and China know something that we don't? Yes they do. They know that you can keep a population under control with oppression and lack of information; if you become their only source of information they can never know your lies, your oppression, your heinous nature.

Yet, this man, Guillermo Fariñas, who has been starving himself for 45 days, has not listened to his colleagues and other leaders of the opposition that have called on him to stop this hunger strike; this protest which he is willing to take to "the ultimate consequences" - meaning he is willing to die for his cause. Are you?

Where are the Human Rights activists denouncing the fact that the Cuban government will allow this man to die? Where are all the hypocrites that denounce the alleged human rights violations in Gitmo, that go to Cuba to protest in front of Gitmo, hypocrites such as Reveren Jesse Jackson and Danny Glover? Where is the MSM coverage on this? Only Reuters has picked up the story, together with few local newspapers.

Where is the Army of Davids on this, the right to access the Internet? We, the bloggers in the US, are currently fighting for the right to be able to say what we want on the Internet while this man is dying for his inalienable right to freely access the Internet - yet most of us look the other way. In these past 45 days only Pajamas Media (who picked up my first post on this story), and a handful of mostly Cuban blogger have reported on this story.

Why? Why the silence?

Read the whole story in El Nuevo Herald, in Spanish. Please let's all pray for this man's life.

Previous Posts:
Guillermo Fariñas - My Personal Cause
Save Fariñas!
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom - Update on Fariñas
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom - Update
Hunger Strike for Internet Freedom Continues
Fariñas Still on Hunger Strike
unger Strike for Internet Freedom

Related Links:
Hunger strike continues
Guillermo Fariñas Update
Guillermo Fariñas Update 2
Are you ready for this?

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Racial Equality in Cuba? Ha!

Bbbut, all are equal! Bbbut blacks have the same rights! Bbbbut there is no racism!

Those my friends are the arguments of many defenders of the Bearded Stooge regime in Cuba, along of course with the free healthcare and free education.

Well, if revolutionaries are so damn just, so centered on equality, so void of racism and prejudice can someone explain this comment from the Miami leader of the Revolutionary group, Antonio Maceo Brigade? This is his criticism of the Independent Libraries group and their leader, Ramón Colas, who happens to be black (my emphasis):

"This organization, whose only visible member includes a little Negro who travels a lot, whose style and mannerisms remind me of maids in Cuba before 1959, always dressed in their white uniforms -- seems to ignore, just like his masters, that in Cuba, for example, during the last 15 years, they celebrate annually a national book fair."
No racism there! Yeah right! si mi abuelita tuviera ruedas seria bicicleta.....

Read the entire post at Miami's Cuban Connection

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Journalists persecuted by Stooge Chavez

Via EFE News (my emphasis):

Journalists decry alleged political persecution by Chavez gov't
Caracas, Mar 15 (EFE).- Three Venezuelan journalists prosecuted on varying charges said Wednesday that they had been the victims of political persecution "against freedom of the press" by the government of President Hugo Chavez.

Journalists Ibeyise Pacheco, Napoleon Bravo and Marianella Salazar participated in a so-called "act of solidarity with imprisoned and persecuted journalists" held just prior to Pacheco's appearing in a Caracas court. Pacheco, who since last year has been on parole while completing her 9-month sentence for defamation, was ordered by the judiciary to appear in court so that her status could be reviewed after she was implicated in other similar cases, a circumstance that caused her to lose the privilege of remaining out of jail.

The Chavez government "is cowardly, immoral and fraudulent ...(and) there's nothing it fears more than journalists," said the columnist for Caracas daily El Nacional before entering the courtroom accompanied by a group of her colleagues and opposition leaders.

"The imprisonment of any journalist is (the imprisonment) of the entire public and of the democracy," said Pacheco, who was found guilty of publishing stories on 16 occasions saying that Col. Angel Bellorin had attacked a lieutenant at the capital's main military base.

Pacheco had avoided going to prison on Feb. 10, when the colonel accepted her public apology and "pardoned" other offenses she had allegedly committed in another case. The journalist also had written that Bellorin had altered his university qualifications and military experience to get a promotion, assertions that she later retracted.

Pacheco currently is facing a third trial - now under way - for giving false testimony, specifically for writing that Vice President Jose Vicente Rangel and other government ministers participated in an alleged meeting to plan action against opposition leaders.

Journalists Salazar and Bravo, who were prosecuted for alleged defamation for asserting, respectively, that Rangel charged commissions to firms with government contracts and that the Supreme Court had become a brothel, also said they were victims of political persecution.

Bravo and Salazar said that "the one who deserves to be tried is Vice President Rangel," and Bravo added that "the only (friend that Chavez) still has is ... the president of Cuba, Fidel Castro, because the rest in this country (have left him)."

Cuban Dentists in US Soil

The two Cuban dentists who were being held in the Bahamas, were finally freed and have arrived in the US were they met with their families.

David Gonzalez-Mejias and Marialys Darias-Mesa arrived in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday afternoon, reuniting with spouses and children who had been anxiously awaiting their release. The two dentists had been held in the Bahamas for 10 months after leaving Cuba illegaly. Both had been granted US visas to immigrate, but Cuba refused to grant them the exit permit, which resulted in their US visas expiring.

The situation drew the ire of congressional representatives and senators - Connie Mack, Lincoln Mario Díaz-Balart, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and U.S. Sens. Mel Martinez and Bill Nelson - Cuban-American activists and critical editorials from the Wall Street Journal and The Miami Herald.

As Babalú said, the Bahamas did good, they did the humanitarian thing to do.

Read the story in The Miami Herald here.

Related Posts: The Bahamas: Scared of fidel castro, Calypso Confinement, Bahamas does good, Hopes for the Cuban dentists held in Bahamas, The Bahamas and Cubans