Monday, December 05, 2016
So in the week that passed after Castro's death I was once again reminded of my own precarious position on the political spectrum. To my left were those for whom Castro could have done no wrong and to my right were those who saw Castro as the devil incarnate. Unfortunately this broke down largely along racial lines. My own view of Castro is far more complex, so here goes. As a Pan-Africanist of the Garveyite strain Castro was a hero of mine. It is simply impossible to be a conscious black person, against colonialism and it's attendant evils and be completely down on Castro. Unless you are or were pro Apartheid you have to thank Castro for aiding those Africans who fought against that regime. Similarly I cannot fault Cuba and Castro for taking in Assata. I've written on Assata in the past. You can find those writings here: http://garveys-ghost.blogspot.com/2013/05/hands-off-assataagain.html and here: http://garveys-ghost.blogspot.com/2009/04/hands-off-assata.html I'm sure this has already pissed off a few people, particularly those of right leanings. Don't care. Anyone familiar with the actions of government (on all levels) against black people fighting for their civil rights as citizens knows about COINTELPRO. That program specifically targeted "radical" black people and organizations for neutralization. One of the means of doing this was to infiltrate these organizations and sometimes commit criminal acts (or get members to conspire to do so) in order to bring down the organization. I have seen interviews with persons who have done these things. I honestly believe that Assata was, in fact, set up and that Foerster would be alive today had the racist COINTELPRO not been in effect. Of course I disagree with many right leaning people on the subject of Trayvon Martin as well. One of the oft cited proof of the failure of the Castro regime was the poverty on the island. I think such arguments are silly. Cuba's asinine decision to allow the placement of nuclear missiles on it's island aside, the fact that Cuba could not trade with what would be it's largest partner has a lot to do with the "failure" of the regime. Look at it this way. over 60% of the US is involved in trade with Canada. Imagine if the US was unable to trade with Canada? Between Mexico and Canada, we have 80% of the economic activity of various states. Again. If the US could not trade with these countries (just two), the US would be a basket case. Sure it could be said that the economics were a consequence of the decisions of the regime but the fact still stands that we did not and will not see what kind of economic success (if any) a Cuba free to trade with the largest economy could have been. And it's not like the US wouldn't do business with communists. They just prefer their communists to be non-hostile. Now having noted all that, it is a shame that much like the revolutionaries in Africa, after the revolution came the devolution. The resort to violence to maintain power. The control of media to maintain power. Elimination of opposition all underscores how limited the "revolutions" were. If these "people revolutions" were so powerful then wouldn't The People vote out or not vote FOR those who threatened it? If the press is lying don't you have libel laws? Wouldn't other press check them? If your "revolution" requires the silencing of opposition then your revolution is faulty. But if it's power you want then I suppose anything goes. So I was happy when Obama decided to change the US posture to Cuba. I don't think it's the business of the US to tell other countries what form of government they should have. I don't like such "bringing democracy" bullshit in Syria, Egypt or Iraq either. A lot of the reasoning for the human rights abuses (disappearances, etc.) were born out of the meddling by the US, including attempted coups. Removing hostility removes the excuse for these acts. There are a lot of dead people in a lot of countries simply because the US has hostile policies towards the governments in those countries. That said, some of what went on in Cuba was simply the use of "justice" as an excuse for murder. Can't hide from that fact either. Reading some of Che's thoughts makes that very clear. It also shows where the American left is headed...slowly but surely.