Their man in Havana: Lying, incompetent Reuters reporter

Gary MacLennan g.maclennan at
Sat Aug 12 21:31:27 MDT 2000

Thank you for this Jose.  There was  a doco on Cuba played on Oz TV
recently that I simply could not watch. It was full of the shit that
Cawthorne is peddling. It seems that Cuba is like the pea beneath the seven
mattresses; tiny but the Princess still cannot get to sleep because of it.



At 10:56  12/08/00 -0400, you wrote:
>I've said it before and I'll say it again: the imperialist news media
>lies. They lie for good reasons, they lie for bad reasons, sometimes
>it seems they lie just to keep in practice, having no apparent reason
>to do so.
>Such is perhaps to be the case of Andrew Cawthorne, the hack that
>Reuters has in Havana, who yesterday sent out a dispatch about Fidel's
>birthday (which is tomorrow, Sunday).
>"In line with the veil he likes to keep over his personal life, Cuba's
>'Maximum Leader' again was expected to avoid the spotlight on Sunday's
>anniversary of his Aug. 13, 1926, birth in the small hamlet of Biran
>in an eastern province," Cawthorne writes.
>Cawthorne doesn't tell us who is doing all this "expecting." The truth
>probably is something like his editors asked him for what we old-time
>hacks call a "thumb sucker" --a "news analysis" to the readers-- and
>Cawthorne produced one probably in an hour or so without even si much
>as consulting a single source on the phone.
>Now it is true that Fidel avoids politicizing or publicizing his
>personal life. But he has a previously scheduled, long announced, and
>quite anticipated public appearance on Sunday, for it marks the
>graduation of a couple of thousand MORE Cuban doctors, a thousand or
>so each for the two the imperialists managed to buy for themselves in
>When the Czech regime and the European Mafia tried, at the behest of
>the U.S., to crucify Cuba in Geneva over supposed human rights
>violations, many African countries stuck with Cuba, despite their
>tremendous vulnerability to imperialist pressure, precisely because of
>the job being done by selfless Cuban doctors all over the continent.
>And as Fidel pointed out in his speech on April 22, the day Elián was
>rescued, and days after the clash in Geneva, Cuba may be financially
>poor but rich in spirit, in morale, in revolutionary internationalism,
>and all the imperialist countries together couldn't field the number
>of volunteers Cuba does to go work in the most remote corners of the
>third world to bring health care to the wretched of the earth.
>That is what gives the graduation of another contingent of Cuban
>doctors such tremendous political significance. They are the
>front-line troops in the worldwide battle for socialist ideas Cuba is
>waging against the imperialists. Cuba's doctors abroad are under
>strict orders not to meddle in other countries affairs, not to
>propagandize, not to put out pamphlets, not to sell revolutionary
>newspapers at the factory gates. Their watchword comes from José
>Martí: The best way to say something is to do it.
>This internationalist offensive of Cuban medicine against illness and
>disease and the social system that breeds them will, I have no doubt,
>be the central theme of tomorrow's event. Each new doctor is a damning
>accusation against countries, federations and alliances with ten times
>Cuba's population and 100 times Cuba's resources that don't do one-one
>thousandths as much as Cuba is doing, and yet have the unmitigated
>gall, the chutzpah to get up at the United Nations and accuse Cuba of
>ignoring human rights while the children of Africa, Asia and Latin
>America die by the millions.
>I don't know if Cawthorne is just "tyring to block the sun with one
>finger" (as we say in Spanish) or if he really pays so little
>attention to the society that surrounds him that he was totally
>unaware of the event.
>Either way, there's a lesson to be learned about the probity, and just
>basic journalistic competence,
>of the Andrew Cawthornes of this world.
>ANALYSIS-Rejuvenated by Elian, Cuba's Castro to turn 74
>By Andrew Cawthorne
>HAVANA, Aug 11 (Reuters) - Cuban President Fidel Castro, an icon of
>communism and one of the world's most recognisable figures, turns 74
>over the weekend, his four-decade rule reinvigorated by the recent
>custody fight over Elian Gonzalez.
>In line with the veil he likes to keep over his personal life, Cuba's
>"Maximum Leader'' again was expected to avoid the spotlight on
>Sunday's anniversary of his Aug. 13, 1926, birth in the small hamlet
>of Biran in an eastern province.
>Supporters and members of Castro's ruling Communist Party, however,
>were sure to mark the date with low-key celebrations, congratulatory
>messages and tributes in state-run media. A group of doctors jumped
>the gun earlier in the week, wishing Castro happy birthday during an
>emotional meeting with him on their return from a medical aid mission
>to Africa.

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