cj#1088> re: Elian, police states, propaganda, Cuba

2000-05-01

Richard Moore

============================================================================
Date: Fri, 28 Apr 2000 13:35:25 +0000
To: David S
From: "Richard K. Moore" <•••@••.•••>
Subject: How to get a liberal to buy whatever you've got to sell...
Cc: Bill Blum <•••@••.•••>, "Bill Blum's list":;


4/27/2000, David S wrote, "Re: convince me that that
I'm not being hypocritical":

        O.K. I heard enough! (this is also a response to Sam Smith).
    The net result of the much delayed recovery of Elian from his
    kidnappers is likely positive, i.e., the terrorist
    Cuban-American mafia has been exposed with better prospects
    for ending the embargo and normalization of U.S./Cuban
    relations. I heard several moderate Cuban Americans, who
    supported the recovery,  on WPFW point out that the people
    holding Elian stated openly that they may have more than
    cameras in their house. There were plausible prospects of the
    mafia using force to prevent Elian's removal, given the mob
    surrounding the house and the Miami terror regime they have
    created. If there was any abuse of the legal process in the
    recovery or overuse of force (which I don't see happened),
    Clinton and Reno are to blame for not sending Elian back to
    his dad in December. Yes, a child's human rights are
    paramount. That's why this 6 year old is far better with his
    dad and grandparents living in Cuba.


Dear David et al,

I think we all agree that the child should rightfully be
restored to his remaining parent and allowed to return home. 
In fact, he should have been returned directly after being
recovered at sea. But that's not the point Bill raised as an
issue, nor is it the point I was addressing in my response to
Bill.

Permit me to describe the scenario in a slightly generalized
terms, because it is one that comes up all the time...

   Step (1) The regime creates an untenable situation.
        (2) The regime publicises the situation widely.
        (3) A target of blame (bad guy) is clearly articulated.
        (4) Indecisiveness is feigned while public outrage mounts.
        (5) Tension builds as demonization campaign is hightened, with 
            usually a generous dose of disinformation from the media.
        (6) Regime relieves tension by taking decisive action.
        (7) Public accepts action as necessary and blames bad-guy for
            any collateral damage.

This is a formula that the regime uses regularly to accomplish
various kinds of political objectives, often only peripherally
related to the case at hand. The regime gets by with it
because most people allow themselves to be swept up by the
staged drama, because they aren't aware of the regime's hidden
objectives, because they have been conditioned by Hollywood to
applaud any final scene in which the bad guy gets his
comeupance, and because they like to rationalize the justice
of any outcome that pleases them emotionally.

If you're aware of the formula, then you respond to these kind
of scenarios from a slightly different perspective.  When you
see them 'build a fire on main street' (1 & 2), you begin looking 
for clues as to what their objectives might be.  When they start
demonizing (3), then you get part of the picture -- you know who's
being added to the growing global collection of 'pariahs'.  The 
demonization in itself accomplishes a political objective --
it removes public sympathy for the new pariah and enables future
policy options to which the paraih might protest.

    It is _not true that the 'Cuban Mafia' -- a term whose 
usage has increased as part of this scenario -- has dictated
American policy toward Cuba.  That policy has been a tactic to
discourage emulation of Cuba's socialist system elsewhere in
Latin America, and to destabilize Cuban socety.  But it _is
true that Miami's Cuban community threatened to become a focus
of embarrasment as the U.S. continues to move toward
normalization of relations with Cuba.

    In part, the objective of the Elan drama was to accomplish
'damage control' on the Cuba-normalization project.  Now the
hostile votes will be localized to the Cuban exile community
itself, and there won't be much of a sympathy-mulitiplier
effect.  One of the conclusions we can tentatively draw from
the Elan affair is that the regime (for whatever hidden
reasons) is intent on completing the normalization project. 
This may not be good news for Cubans, because the regime never
gives anything away without getting more in return.


When decisive action is taken (6), then more can be learned about
regime objectives.  In the cases of destroying Yugoslavia and
Iraq, those 'decisive actions' were objectives in themselves
-- and they also helped establish the new regime of world
order needed under post-nationalist globalization.  In the
case of Elan, one must look deeper, as the dramatic raid was
not necessary in order to retrieve the boy.  The key here is 
to look at (7) itself - the rationalization process by which
the public accepts the whole package.

    To some extent, the raid can be understood as 'cementing the
evil' of the Cuban exiles, who up until recently were viewed by the
media mostly as frustrated freedom fighters.  If people accept
that the raid was necessary, then they also accept that the
exiles amount to an armed terrorist group, ready to take on
the government.  'The punishment defines the infamy of the
criminal' may not be a saying, but it should be.  It's the
same trick used in Seattle and DC -- "If the police were
violent, the demonstrators must have deserved it" is a
sentiment I've heard expressed by many, in one form or
another, a variant of 'where there's smoke there's fire'.

    In addition, this scenario added yet another brick-in-the-wall
of public acceptance of police-state practices.  When I was
young, one of the standard images of a totalitarian society
(used often in WW-II Nazi films) was the surprise midnight
raid on citizens by secret police in ominous-looking uniforms.
Be glad you live in America, where "it could never happen",
was the subliminal message.  "We've come a long way baby". 
It's time we woke up and smelled the coffee.

respectfully,
rkm

============================================================================

4/29/2000, Gockel, Matthias wrote (regarding the above posting):

    Dear Richard, thanks for your remarkable comments on the Elian
    case.

Glad you found them useful.
    
    To be concrete: what does it mean that the residence where
    Elian was held, was surrounded (defended!?) by a good number
    of well-trained anti-Castro units (some probably with
    long-standing CIA connections). 

It means that the above is what we are supposed to believe.  It may not
be true; if it is true then the responsibility lies with the 
administration which created the whole situation for its own purposes.


    Shouldn't the qualitative
    difference between the protests in Seattle and D.C. and the
    behavior of the Elian relatives should be reflected upon more
    carefully? 

If you choose to limit your attention to the situation _after it had 
developed to a crisis pont -- which is precisely what the propaganda
is designed to encourage -- then such reflection might be useful.


    Another issue is the legal issue. What does it mean that
    Elian's relatives behave as if they were the only ones who can
    claim authority 'to speak for Elian'? What does it mean that
    they try to find an 'independent guide' who can play the role
    of "speaking for Elian', which means nothing else than trying
    to make him a US citizen and claim another victory in the war
    against evil Fidel? Well, I guess the legal issue comes down
    to: what if they really violated the law? Does the fact that
    they were targeted by Federal and police agents automatically
    make them our allies-in-protest? I don't think so.

I never said or implied that the Cuban exiles should be considered
allies-in-protest.  My point is that we would do better to consider
the meaning of the overall scenario, and not be entranced by the
media propaganda distractions.

    
    2) I also think the 'message' is a different one than what you
    propose. I agree that the gov't had other ways of resolving
    the case earlier and I also agree that any reference to
    'bungling' is ludicrous. The fact that it did not find a
    different solution, however, is more indicative of the
    giving-in to particular right-wing interest groups, which has
    been typical for Clinton, than of a further build-up of the
    police state.

You're welcome to your opinion, but you're not offering any reubuttal
to my analysis.  In response, I can only suggest that you read it again.

When I talk to liberals, they always point to right-wing influence as being
the problem.  When I talk to right-wingers, they always say the problem
is too much liberal influence, and they usually mention gays as an 
example.  Thus divide-and-rule tactics continue to keep us divided
amongst ourselves and enables the regime to continue running things.

    
    I also would like to add a related question, which is more
    general. Do you exclude 'mistakes' and 'bungling' IN PRINCIPLE
    when it comes to the running of the empire? 

Certainly not.  However we are talking about the most professionally-run
empire in history, with centuries of refinement behind it -- they don't 
make very many tactical blunders.  We are also talking about a propanda 
mythology that routinely alleges bungling, as a tool of obfuscation.

The biggest mistakes the regime is making, as I see it, are (1) their 
unbounded arrogance, and (2) their over-reliance on shallow propaganda.
Their propaganda has been so spectacularly successful that it encourages
their arrogance -- they are convinced they can get by with anything. But
as the screws of globalization tighten, the propaganda is becoming an
ever-thinner veneer of lies.  

What I try to do is point out that the Emperor has no clothes. Once you 
see it, you will then notice that the evidence is everywhere, and you 
won't need a weatherman to see which way the wind blows.

thanks for your comments,
rkm

============================================================================
Delivered-To: moderator for •••@••.•••
Date: Sun, 30 Apr 2000 23:00:47 -0500
To: •••@••.•••, •••@••.•••
From: Mark Douglas Whitaker <•••@••.•••>
Subject: (fwd) Big Lies about Havana and Detroit

April 22, 2000

Big Lies About Havana And Detroit

By Charles E. Simmons <•••@••.•••>

As the late U.S. Congressman and judge George Crockett Jr.
remarked during the days of U.S. government support for the
apartheid government which kept Nelson Mandela in jail for
27 years, "Americans are the most lied to and misinformed
people in the world when it comes to international affairs."  
The current developments in U.S.-Cuba relations, symbolized
by the crisis in Miami surrounding the status of six year
old Elian Gonzales, is a tragic example of that mis-
information and the results of 40 years of the U.S
government -- in both Democratic and Republican
administrations -- lying to the American people about Cuba
and Fidel Castro.

A brief history of the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
since the revolution in 1959 is crucial but it will also
help the informed reader to know something about the
relationship between the two nations over the past century,
long before Dr. Castro was born in Santiago de Cuba, in
Oriente Province, the island's center of the African slave
trade. It is important to know that the U.S. intervened in
the Cuban war for independence against Spain, in which one
of the leading Cuban freedom fighters was an Afro-Cuban,
Antonio Maceo. The intervention on the side of Cuba turned
out to be a swindle in which Washington ended up switching
roles with Spain to the detriment of the poor masses of the
Cuban population which was kept in a state of colonial
military occupation, prostitution, poverty and racism for
the next 70 years. During that time Cuban resources and
labor was stolen by gangsters from Las Vegas and such
companies as United Fruit and various tobacco interests
until the revolution in 1959 that brought another group of
freedom fighters to power, including the Afro-Cuban Juan
Almeida, Ernesto Che Guevara, and Fidel Castro.

The revolution, led by Cuban youth, expelled the American
and other western corporations, along with the tiny minority
of Cubans who had benefited from the exploitation and
segregation during the Batista government and fled to Miami
and received royal treatment until today. In Cuba the
original members of the Miami counter-revolutionaries are
known as Gusanos or "Worms." The favored treatment for them
has included extensive financial aid, the status of honorary
whites, and the blessings of upward political and economic
mobility while Mexican and Haitian immigrants were being
rounded up like cattle, thrown back in the ocean or across
the border or simply murdered. The special treatment for the
anti-Castro Cubans was not unique for counter
revolutionaries brought to U.S., but rare for third world
refugees, yet these Cubans were clearly expected to carry
out the wishes of the CIA which was to restore the U.S.
presence and domination of the island by military means and
terrorism. Their acts on behalf of the CIA, well documented
in U.S. government hearings, included bombings, poisoning of
crops and waterways, attempted assassinations of Cuban
leaders including Fidel Castro, and the failed invasion
known as the 'Bay of Pigs' in the early 1960s.

The leaders of the present struggle to keep little Elian
Gonzales in the U.S. are either part of or closely
associated with that gang of CIA hirelings. On the other
hand, it must also be pointed out that the group of
anti-Castro Cubans are not the majority of Cubans in exile,
neither in Miami or in other parts of the nation, but are
merely the most vocal and at least until now have had the
blessings of Washington. Nor do they speak for the entire
population of Latinos in the U.S. or the Americas.

It is commonplace in the U.S. media to denounce Cuba for its
poverty in comparison to the wealthy giant to the north. But
the media seldom explain that Cuba is much better off than
most other agricultural nations, nor that Cuba has a higher
literacy rate than the U.S., overall better health and
housing conditions for working and poor people, and is one
of the few nations in the world that has addressed the issue
of racism or to grant political asylum to freedom fighters
such as the Black Panthers, and North Carolina freedom
fighter Robert F. Williams who went into exile in 1960
following FBI charges that he kidnapped members of the KKK.  
Fidel Castro was the only president in the world to send
troops to fight on the side of Angolan and Nelson Mandela's
freedom fighters against the U.S.-backed segregationist
governments. For all of these reasons, Washington remains
angry with Castro but some sectors of the U.S. business
community are ready to change their backward policies, not
for the sake of benefiting Cuba, but to line their own
pockets, and to undo the egalitarian characteristics of the
revolution.

Cuba still has a long way to go on all fronts, has had
economic set-backs following the collapse of their major
trading partners in the former USSR and Eastern Europe, and
Cuban leaders will be the first to admit it. But the
greatest American lie is the omission of the fact that
Washington has -- in violation of international law and
morality -- kept Cuba in a military and economic blockade
for 40 years which is the cause of the shortages in the
economy. Those of us in Detroit should think about the long
corporate blockade against the Coleman Young administration
and the damage suffered to the Detroit economic development
as a result of Young's insistence on satisfying the needs of
the little people. We must ask whether there would have been
better schools, health services, more housing for low and
moderate income families, and better working conditions but
for the corporate blockade against America's inner cities.

Part of the confusion these days about Cuba is that some
Wall Street interests are ready to change U.S. policy, to
drop the hatchet and try to make some money like their
competitors in France, Canada and Japan are doing.  
However, many old line and racist politicians such as
Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina, have not received the
message that the Cold War policies no longer completely
dictate corporate policies. Therefore, China and the former
socialist nations are now fair game in spite of any
political barriers. At the same time, both Republicans and
Democrats fear that the small group of anti-Castro Cubans
now speak for the entire Latino population in the U.S. or at
least in Florida, and that the party that appears first to
reconcile with Castro will lose their vote and perhaps some
politicians.

Residents of America's embattled cities and rural
communities should keep in mind the lies and distortions
told in the local daily media about these embattled
neighborhoods and citizens, confronting total dis-
enfranchisement, intense brutality and land grabbing on all
fronts, and then the issues of Cuba will be easier to
understand.

-30-

Charles E. Simmons
Detroit Community Activist,
Professor of Journalism and Media Law
Eastern Michigan University
•••@••.•••


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============================================================================
Richard K Moore
Wexford, Ireland
Citizens for a Democratic Renaissance 
email: •••@••.••• 
CDR website: http://cyberjournal.org
cyberjournal archive: http://members.xoom.com/centrexnews/
book in progress: http://cyberjournal.org/cdr/gri.html

                A community will evolve only when
                the people control their means of communication.
                        -- Frantz Fanon

                Capitalism is not the same as free
                enterprise - it is a very specialized
                ideology which holds the accumulation
                of wealth as the only economic value,
                and which demands that such economics
                dominate all other societal values.
                        -- rkm

Permission for non-commercial republishing hereby granted - BUT 
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