"Damned if you do," they say, "and damned if you don’t." President Bush’s Latin American policy is a perfect case in point. Last week he went to the Summit of the Americas in Mar De Plata Argentina to lobby for free trade among free nations.
"Bush go home!" shrieked Latin leftists. "U.S. get out!" they bellowed while burning American flags–in between torching and looting Argentine-owned stores.
"Capitalism is the greatest cause of unemployment and poverty!" raved Hugo Chavez at his own anti- American rally in a nearby soccer stadium. “The great loser today was George W. Bush!" crowed Chavez, who also saluted Cindy Sheehan during his tirade. "The man [Bush] went away wounded. You could see defeat on his face!”
The Venezuelan buffoon wore a Che Guevara emblem as he worked the 40,000 strong crowd at the stadium. Hugo’s backdrop was a banner of Che Guevara six stories high. In front of him were a sea of Che T-shirts and flags. Regarding the Summit of the Americas, Time magazine writes: "Che Guevara was the icon of the streets," which is fitting. In August of 1960, Time magazine, in a cover story, hailed Che Guevara as, "The brains of the Cuban Revolution, " Raul Castro was "the fist" and Fidel "the heart."
But forget that idiocy for a second (Fidel Castro–and Fidel Castro alone–was the brains of the Cuban Revolution.) I say fitting because probably 90% of the people cheering and whooping for Che and Fidel at Cuban rallies in 1959, later fled for their very lives to the U.S. The other 10% tried but failed. The ones who made it make up that tiny percentage of Cuban-Americans today who vote Democratic and lobby against the so-called embargo. And this from a nation that previously had immigration patterns going in the opposite direction. In 1958 more Americans lived in Cuba than Cubans in the U.S.
If I’d been a U.S. official in Argentina last week, I’d been snapping pictures and taking down names. "Oh, Mr. Figueroa," I’d say upon inspecting an Argentine application for a U.S. visa next year as the Argentine economy implodes. "Wasn’t that you we saw burning U.S. flags last year at Mar De Plata? See this picture here? … Sure looks like it. Please step to the back of the line, Senor Figueroa. We’ll be right with you–right about the time hell freezes over!"
"Capitalism is the road to hell! We will bury capitalism!" whooped the Venezuelan Baboon as he worked the anti-American mob into a froth with Che Guevara gazing sternly in the background. "Our mission is socialist because it puts social aspects first. Capitalists put capital first." Easy to say when you’re awash with oil and with today’s oil prices. The rest of Latin America, unfortunately, will have to work for a living.
The Venezuelan Orangutan has even blamed the recent earthquakes in Pakistan, India and Afghanistan, and the mudslides in Mexico and Guatemala on capitalism, they were "nature’s answer to a world global capitalist model that has left the world dangerously off balance," he screeched. "This model is destroying the world. The world is in danger. Never has there been such disasters, hurricanes, droughts, torrential rains. The world is dangerously off balance!"
Exactly one month ago, the Iberian Summit was held in Salamanca, Spain, hosting most of these same Latin American luminaries. They spent 90% of the time bashing the U.S. and concluded the summit with a unanimous declaration blasting the Bush Administration for not engaging in free trade with the Stalinist regime that enslaves Cuba–with the kleptocratic regime that robbed $2 billion from U.S. stockholders (and multiple times that from Cubans) in 1960, crowing about it gleefully and who has not repaid a penny.
Last week attempting to trade freely with all of Latin America was a fiendish, selfish Yankee imperialist plot. Last month, according to this same crowd, not trading freely with one Latin American burglar and mass-murderer was a fiendish and selfish Yankee plot. I wish they’d make up their minds.
But we do trade with Cuba. You’d never know it from Castro’s agents (both on his payroll and off) but the U.S. today is Cuba’s top food supplier and seventh biggest trading partner. Forget what you hear from Fidel and his American echo chamber about an "embargo," much less a "blockade." Instead, actually study the diluted version in force today.
For companies like Archer Daniels Midland and Cargill (top lobbyists against the "embargo") this "embargo" amounts to this: no U.S. Export-Import bank financing of any deal with the current rulers of Cuba. In other words, no U.S. taxpayer bailout for politically connected millionaires entering into boneheaded business deals with Communist deadbeats and thieves.
Currently, ADM is perfectly free to sell Castro whatever it wants. But because of the nefarious machinations and subterfuges of the dreaded "Miami Mafia," their congressional representatives and allies, the U.S. taxpayer will not be left holding the bag if Archer Daniels Midland sells Cuba on credit and Castro sticks it to them as he has to everyone else. Mexico’s Bancomex recently closed its offices in Havana and froze Cuban assets in three different countries in an attempt to recoup its staggering losses from financing trade with Cuba.
Back in the ’50s the U.S. traded with Cuba. According to Castroites (both in Cuba and in academic institutions worldwide), that caused humiliation, abuse and impoverishment. "Economic enslavement" was Che’s term. "Yankee imperialism! Capitalist exploitation! Bloodsucking vampires stealing our resources! Dumping junk on us! … blah … blah … blah." (In fact, these Yankee factories, refineries and showrooms are so vile and corrupting we think we’ll steal them," they decided in July 1960.)
Okay, fine, Ike finally said in late 1960. In that case we’ll close down shop down there. You’re on your own.
"Yankee blockade! Capitalist strangulation! Starving our children! Denying them medicine! Starving us!"… blah … blah … blah."
Turns out leaving them alone ALSO causes humiliation, abuse and impoverishment. We can’t win. Will they please make up their minds? It’s like little kids throwing a tantrum where nothing satisfies them. Yet Leftist politicians and academics take these brats and their infantile tantrums seriously.
We saw it in Argentina last week. We saw it in Spain last month. Yet we sent almost $1 billion in foreign aid to these pack of Latin American jackals last year. Enough is enough, I say.
Sign up to the Human Events newsletter