CubaNews notes from Havana, May 14, 2003

Walter Lippmann walterlx at
Wed May 14 07:31:16 MDT 2003

CubaNews notes from Havana, May 14, 2003
by Walter Lippmann, Moderator

Though I wrote yesterday that the volume of news
had gone down and working conditions here make
them more challenging, the news itself continues
to increase as US hostility toward Cuba goes up
as we approach May 20th.

The May 20th date is significant in Cuban history
as it was the date when, in 1902, the United States
finally agreed to remove its occupation forces after
imposing the Platt Amendment on the constitution
governing the island at the time. While Cubans do
note that historic date, and you can find an arch
in the central park of Cienfuegos marking it, for
example, it's not a date which patriotic Cubans
celebrate. May 20th represents the successful
efforts of the United States and its collaborators
here on the island to subordinate the island to its
northern neighbor. In Los Angeles, from where
I am based, there are two rightist Cuban exile
newspapers. One of these is "20 de Mayo"...

Thus, when the Bush administration uses the
May 20th date to announce new policies against
Cuba, they are making a profound statement on
how they project US-Cuban relations for the
future: a return to Cuban subservience to the
demands, plans and interests of the US.

We've received a good commentary from the
Miami Herald pointing out the bipartisan way
in which Democratic and Republican presidents
have both used the May 20th holiday to prove
their credentials as opponents of the Cuban
Revolution going back to the 1960s.

Cuban television reported the terror bombing in
Saudi Arabia which was attributed to Al-Queda
and showed dramatic footage of it as well.

Last night's national television news cast at 8 PM
didn't report the expulsion of fourteen diplomats
from the Cuban Interests Section and the Cuban
UN mission announced exultantly by Washington.

However, the Cuban Foreign Ministry, MINREX,
did issue a statement which we've received in
Spanish. The English will be available shortly.


The deepening crisis in US-Cuba relations, or
what little remains of what little there was, will
only grow worse in the times ahead. For those
of you on CubaNews, or on my shorter list,
please keep in mind that if the volume of mail
is too much, you can get it in a daily digest
format where the mail is compressed into one
or two larger messages per day.

CubaNews wants you to keep reading and
following the story, but you should receive it
in the format most useful to you. Thanks.


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