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  • Foghorn Leghorn
    June 13, 2013 - 14:16

    Lets not kid ourselves here Fidel Castro and Che Guevara weren't exactly running a boy scout troop. Guevara was basically a "missionary for hire" who aligned himself with Fidel Castro and his regime and they successfully overthrew the Batista regime in 1959. This man basically did much of the "dirty" work for Castro. After the revolution he was "rewarded" with control of one of Cuba's infamous prisons. It is alleged that there were hundreds of people who were arbitrarily executed without a trial. The Castro propaganda machine has basically created a folk legend out of Che Guevara. As far as the Cuban people being "free and happy". If you had someone that beat you with a stick, they stopped but now they just stand there with a stick in their hand. Yes anyone would be happy they stopped beating you but are you actually happy to live under these circumstances, I think not!

  • Anne Jerome
    June 13, 2013 - 11:06

    About 10 years ago my husband and I spent 3 weeks in Cuba and stayed in a small hotel. Cuba is by no means as free as Canada! Underpaid teachers were tour guides who had to be very careful about expressing their true feelings;had they had been overheard, they would been tossed in prison! I commend the government for introducing organic farming! However, after the Russians pulled out, and the people were suffering, Castro did not want the world to see skinny Cubans, so all food had to be cooked/smothered in oil to fatten up its citizens. We are hikers and we were noit allowed to leave any city/town without a guide! So no, we would not hold Cuba up as a model in most ways.

  • Dave Thomas Sr.
    June 12, 2013 - 09:14

    I was national coordinator of the 21st Che Guevara Brigade. 17 years ago, when I retired I crated my motorcycle and shipped it to Cuba. I did this to resolve once-and-for-all the conflict in my mind of, on the one hand, the obvious benevolence of the Cuban Revolution and the common held belief of human rights abuses as noted by JT. I lived in Cuba 1 1/2 years and rode 33,000 Km on Cuban roads. I went where I wanted, did what I wanted, interacted with Cubans as I wanted. No one interfered in any way. My conclusion: Cubans are at least as free as we in Canada; They are not fearful of their government; They would talk to me on any subject; They have all kinds of opportunities and support to develop as individuals; They are healthy and articulate. I further concluded Cuba's socialist system is very efficient: Whole industries needed to make a capitalist system function - like advertising, financial industry, tax collection, insurance - are either redundant or much reduced when most property is state owned, most workers work for the state and social programs are your insurance policy. I was there in 1997, hotels were being bombed by American based terrorists organizations, Cuba had just lost over 80% of its foreign trade with the collapse of the former Eastern Block. The Americans then tightened the blockade to hinder shipping and harass international banking. Blockaded Cuba was on life support, short of fuel and spare parts which almost brought agriculture, transportation and industry to its knees. It seemed the whole world thought the revolution's collapse was imminent...except Fidel Castro. When I ask myself: Could Canada survive such a national calamity? When the going gets tough would we cooperate or fight each other? I hope we never have to find out. Cubans cooperated - and are still cooperating 23 years later - sharing what they have so all can survive. Cuba is indeed a ray of hope in a very troubled world!

  • Politically Incorrect
    June 10, 2013 - 08:48

    "Cuban government is guilty of systematic human rights abuses, including torture, arbitrary imprisonment, unfair trials, and extrajudicial execution." Funny. You don't see the irony, JT. Oh, and for the record, Cuba is hardly communist. Stalinst, maybe, but not communist.

  • JT
    June 10, 2013 - 08:19

    "that maybe the grassroots of Communism remain vibrant enough to still teach many things to the modern world, like how to improve the human condition " How very nieve of Ms Lee. The Cuban government is guilty of systematic human rights abuses, including torture, arbitrary imprisonment, unfair trials, and extrajudicial execution. The sooner Communism goes into the dustbin of human existence, the better.