Alan Gross: Castro's prisoner
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    by JOEL B. POLLAK 18 Dec 2014

    President Barack Obama unveiled a new U.S. policy toward Cuba on
    Wednesday as part of a deal that brought American Alan Gross home in
    exchange for three convicted Cuban spies. As he has done so often in the
    past, Obama tried to channel the perspective of America’s enemies and
    critics, as if his job were to act as a neutral mediator instead of
    defending U.S. interests and values. In the course of his address, Obama
    told American ten major lies, both of omission and commission.

    Here they are, in order of appearance:

    1. No mention of the Cuban missile crisis. “I was born in 1961 just over
    two years after Fidel Castro took power in Cuba….Over the next several
    decades, the relationship between our countries played out against the
    backdrop of the Cold War and America’s steadfast opposition to
    communism.” Cuba’s role in helping the Soviet Union project a direct
    threat to the U.S. mainland is carefully elided (though Obama, as he has
    done before, refers to his own birth as a kind of watershed.)

    2. Suggesting that the president can establish a U.S. embassy on his
    own. “Going forward, the United States will reestablish an embassy in
    Havana and high ranking officials will visit Cuba.” An embassy needs to
    be funded by Congress, and needs an ambassador to be approved by the
    Senate. None of that is going to happen–nor should it, especially after
    the disastrous experiment in re-establishing an embassy in Syria, which
    Obama did in 2009, to no good effect whatsoever.

    3. No mention of Cuba’s role in repressing democracy abroad. “Cuba has
    sent hundreds of healthcare workers to Africa to fight Ebola.” Yes, and
    Cuba has also sent experts in repression to Venezuela, Bolivia and
    Ecuador. Cuban agents also allegedly beat and raped Venezuelan
    protestors earlier this year. For decades, Cuba assisted guerrilla
    armies abroad, fomenting bloody revolution in some countries and
    propping up communist regimes elsewhere. It continues to do so.

    4. Suggesting that Cuba does not support terrorism. “At a time when we
    are focused on threats from al Qaeda to ISIL, a nation that meets our
    conditions and renounces the use of terrorism should not face this
    sanction.” Yet Cuba was caught, only last year, smuggling “missile
    equipment” to North Korea, the dictatorship that targeted America with a
    cyber-terror attack on the day Obama announced the new Cuba policy. Cuba
    continues to offer other kinds of support to terrorists.

    5. False claim that the U.S. is to blame for lack of information in
    Cuba. “I believe in the free flow of information. Unfortunately, our
    sanctions on Cuba have denied Cubans access to technology that has
    empowered individuals around the globe.” This is perhaps the most
    offensive lie of all, since Gross was detained for trying to help Cubans
    access technology. The reason Cubans lack news and communication is
    because the regime censors them brutally, not because of the U.S. embargo.

    6. False promise to consult Congress on Cuba, when his administration
    broke that promise. “As these changes unfold, I look forward to engaging
    Congress in an honest and serious debate about lifting the embargo.” And
    yet when Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) asked White House official Tony Blinken
    whether the administration planned any major Cuba policy changes,
    Blinken (now Deputy Secretary of State) lied and said any change would
    come in consultation with Congress.

    7. False claim that Cuba agreed to release political prisoners as part
    of a deal with the U.S. “In addition to the return of Alan Gross and the
    release of our intelligence agent, we welcome Cuba’s decision to release
    a substantial number of prisoners whose cases were directly raised with
    the Cuban government by my team.” As the Washington Post noted, these
    political prisoners were already set to be released as the result of
    negotiations four years ago with the Vatican and Spain.

    8. False commitment to principle of changing policies that do not work.
    “I do not believe we can keep doing the same thing for over five decades
    and expect a different result.” If that were really what Obama believed,
    we would not see the administration pursuing policies whose failure is
    already evident as a matter of historical record: high taxes, economic
    redistribution, socialized medicine, union-dominated schools,
    restrictive labor and environmental regulations, and so on.

    9. Conflating the collapse of the Castro regime with the collapse of
    Cuba. “Moreover, it does not serve America’s interests or the Cuban
    people to try to push Cuba towards collapse.” A false “binary choice.”
    By failing to differentiate between the regime and the country, Obama
    signaled his intention to allow the Castros and their heirs to entrench
    their power–abandoning the cause of freedom and reform, just as he did
    with the mullahs in Iran during the 2009 uprising.

    10. Falsely identifying the U.S. as a colonial power. “Others have seen
    us as a form of colonizer intent on controlling your future..…Let us
    leave behind the legacy of both colonization and communism, the tyranny
    of drug cartels, dictators and sham election.” America actually
    liberated Cuba from Spanish colonialism, and though the U.S. influenced
    the island heavily for decades afterward, Obama’s attempted moral
    equivalence between “colonization” and communist tyranny is a false one.

    Obama borrowed a quote from the Cuban literary giant José Martí:
    “liberty is the right of every man to be honest.” Yet as my colleague
    Frances Martel has pointed out, Obama shortened that quote, leaving out
    the phrase ” and to think and to speak without hypocrisy.” Obama’s
    speech was both dishonest and hypocritical. It was an ominous
    introduction to a new policy that might have deserved a chance, were it
    not based on such evident disregard for American interests and Cuban

    For more on the dishonesty of Obama’s speech, see Martel’s “Line by
    Line: Every Empty Promise in Obama’s Cuba Speech.”

    Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak edits Breitbart California and is
    the author of the new ebook, Wacko Birds: The Fall (and Rise) of the Tea
    Party, available for Amazon Kindle.

    Follow Joel on Twitter: @joelpollak

    Source: Top 10 Lies in Obama’s Cuba Speech – Breitbart –