The Castro Revolution's “achievements” have been much in the mainstream news lately. This reporting brings to mind a famous observation by Winston Churchill:
"The Bolsheviks have discovered that truth does not matter so long as there is reiteration. They have no difficulty whatever in countering a fact by a lie which, if repeated often enough and loudly enough, becomes accepted by the people." (Winston Churchill, Brighton, October 4, 1947)
You will search these MSM stories in utter vain for any mention of mass-murder and jailings or torture—on the part of the Castros that is. Yet mass-repression started on day one of the Castroite triumph and kicked into highest gear in the mid 60's, precisely at the apex of the Castro/Che popularity with western politicians, celebrities and “intellectuals.”
During the 60's and early 70's Castro firing squads were piling up thousands of corpses a year--it was at that very time that Western college kids like Christopher Hitchens, Bernadine Dohrn and the Venceremos Brigadistas made a fetish of flocking to Castroland to help with sugar cane harvests and to worship at the altar of the Maximum Leader (among other activities in the case of Dohrn). In similar fashion, Stalin and Mao got the loudest cheers precisely at the height of their butchery of millions.
The identical pattern characterized adulation for the Soviet Union and Red China by Western dingbats (and/or scoundrels.) The Soviet Union was never as popular with leftist “intellectuals” as during Stalin's blood-drenched reign. China was the leftists' showcase Shangri-La precisely during Mao's mass butcheries of the Cultural Revolution.
Cuba's population in 1960 was 6.2 million. According to the human rights group Freedom House, 500,000 Cubans (young and old, male and female) have passed through Castro's prison and forced-labor camps. At one time, during 1961-62, 300,000 Cubans were jailed for political offenses islandwide. This puts Castro and Che's political incarceration rate right up there with Stalin's. According to the scholars and researchers at the Cuba Archive, the Castro regime’s total death toll—from torture, prison beatings, firing squads, machine gunning of escapees, drownings, etc.—approaches 100,000.
But as Stalin wryly noted: “The death of one man is a tragedy, the death of millions is a statistic.” Not that all of Castro and Che's murder victims were “men,” but let's delve into these statistics:
“In one week during 1964 we counted 400 firing squad blasts from our cells," recalled former Cuban political prisoner and freedom-fighter Roberto Martin Perez to this writer. On April 7, 1967, The Organization of American States Human Rights Commission issued a detailed report on an overlooked facet of “President” Castro's much-lauded health-care:
"On May 27 1966, from six in the morning to nightfall political prisoners were executed continuously by firing squad in Havana's La Cabana prison. One hundred and sixty-six men were executed that day and each had 5 pints of blood extracted prior to being shot. Extracting this amount of blood often produces cerebral anemia and unconsciousness so that many had to be carried to the execution wall on stretchers. The corpses were then transported by truck to a mass grave in a cemetery outside the city of Marianao. On that day, the truck required seven trips to deliver all the corpses. On 13th street in Havana's Vedado district, Soviet medical personnel have established a blood bank where this blood is transported and stored. This blood is sold at fifty U.S. dollars per pint to the Republic of North Vietnam."
Carlos Machado was 15 years old in 1963 when the bullets from the firing squad shattered his body. His twin brother and father collapsed beside Carlos from the same volley. All had resisted Castro's theft of their humble family farm.
On Christmas eve 1961, Juana Diaz spat in the face of the executioners who were binding and gagging her. They'd found her guilty of feeding and hiding "bandits." These "bandits" were Cubans who took up arms to fight Castro and Che's theft of their family farms. Farm collectivization was no more voluntary in Cuba than in the Ukraine. And Cuba's kulaks had guns—at first anyway. Then the Kennedy-Khrushchev pact left them helpless against Soviet tanks and flame-throwers. When the blast from that firing squad demolished her face and torso, Juana Diaz was six months pregnant.
But, again, you will search the 50th Anniversary MSM stories in utter vain for the slightest mention of any of the above unpleasantness.
And exactly what did the Communist bloodbath accomplish?
In brief: the Castro brothers and Che converted a nation with a higher per capita income than half of Europe, the lowest inflation rate in the Western hemisphere, a larger middle class than Switzerland and a huge influx of immigrants into one that repels Haitians, who live a scant 60 miles away across the Windward passage and immigrated in droves to Cuba during the unspeakable pre-Castro era. In the 1950's, when Cubans were perfectly free to emigrate with all their property and U.S. visas were issued to them for the asking, fewer Cubans lived in the U.S. than Americans lived in Cuba.
A report from the Geneva-based International Labor Organization documented the following in 1957: "One feature of the Cuban social structure is a large middle class," it starts. "Cuban workers are more unionized (proportional to the population) than U.S. workers. The average wage for an 8 hour day in Cuba in 1957 is higher than for workers in Belgium, Denmark, France and Germany. Cuban labor receives 66.6 per cent of gross national income. In the U.S. the figure is 70 per cent, in Switzerland 64 per cent. 44 per cent of Cubans are covered by Social legislation, a higher percentage than in the U.S."
"Okay, so Cubans can't vote,” counter liberals. “But they have free and exquisite healthcare. No one can deny this achievement by Castro's regime.”
In 1958 Cuban had the 13th lowest infant-mortality rate in the world (lower than in Germany, France, Japan, Israel among many other first world nations.) Today it sits at 40th and finds most of the nations behind Cuba in 1958 ahead of it – this rate qualifies as an "achievement" in the lexicon of news agencies that have earned a Havana bureau.
This current infant-mortality rate, by the way, is also kept artificially low by an abortion rate of 0.71, the Hemisphere's (and hovering among the world's top five for the past two decades) highest, which "terminates" any pregnancy that even hints at trouble. Cuba's suicide rate is also currently the Hemisphere's highest, triple its rate during the unspeakable Batista era.
And regarding that U.S. “bullying” of Castro: Castro had sent armed guerrillas to attempt the violent overthrow of four sovereign Latin American countries, stole $2 billion from American businessmen at Czech machine-gun point, invited in thousands of Soviet military and police agents, kidnapped 50 U.S. citizens from Guantanamo Bay, and jailed and executed several Americans before we lifted a finger against him. In fact, during this period, the State Dept. made over 10 back channel diplomatic attempts to ascertain the cause of Castro's tantrums. Argentine President Arturo Frondizi was the conduit for many of these and recounts their utter futility in his memoirs. At long last the U.S. started contingency planning for what came to be known as the Bay of Pigs invasion, and imposed the so-called embargo,
Now let's look at how the MSM treated Augusto Pinochet, head of a regime accused of 3000 deaths (including collateral damage) when it thwarted Castroism in Chile. Many of these dead, by the way, keep climbing out of their graves much like the dancers in Michael Jackson's Thriller.
From the Washington Post 12/10/06 : “Gen. Augusto Pinochet, 91, the former Chilean dictator whose government murdered and tortured thousands during his repressive 17-year rule, died yesterday."
From the New York Times 12/11/06: “Augusto Pinochet, Dictator Who Ruled by Terror in Chile, Dies at 91 Gen. Augusto Pinochet Ugarte, the brutal dictator who repressed and reshaped Chile for nearly two decades and became a notorious symbol of human rights abuse and corruption, died yesterday at the Military Hospital of Santiago."
These consist of the very first sentences of these MSM stories on Pinochet. And many people actually claim that the MSM is not biased.