Elliott Abrams

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Abrams gives his take on U.S. foreign policy, with special focus on the Middle East and democracy and human rights issues.

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Another Phony Election in Cuba

by Elliott Abrams
February 4, 2013


Democracy may be spreading in large parts of the world and with it genuine, contested elections–but not in Cuba.

Cubans “voted” again yesterday for the Cuban “National Assembly,” if one uses such terms very loosely. The Washington Post quotes Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez saying “It is a different electoral system. Personally I find it is more democratic than (others) I know.” This is offensive nonsense, because Cuba remains a one-party state where zero electoral competition is allowed. “Renouncing the principle of a single party would be equal to legalizing one or more imperialist parties,” Reuters reports Raul Castro saying last year.

So the system in Cuba is summed up by Reuters this way: “Reuters talked with more than half a dozen voters on Sunday before they entered the polls in Havana. None of them knew the candidates on the national slate from their districts.” And why should they, given that there is no competition and that the Communist Party, not the National Assembly, runs the country. As one voter said to Reuters, “I vote because I feel I have to, and it doesn’t really matter because the deputies have no power anyway.” Reuters also notes that this young woman “declined to give her name,” and no one has to wonder why.

Cuba remains a police state and one of the few communist dictatorships still in existence, and its fraudulent elections are an insult to the Cuban people. One can only hope that Cuba’s “different” system does not survive the Castros– Fidel, now 86, and Raul, now 81.

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  • Posted by MacontheRock

    Lack of Free elections in Cuba is well documented. The Varela Project that sought to use the very constitution to gather signatures and give the Assembly more reedom was exercised with devastating consequences. The petition advocates were gathered up and imprisoned and Oswaldo Paya’ it chief architect was eventually murdered after a dubious single automobile car accident. Knowing this Washington Post still seeks to quote its foreign minister Rodriguez without discreditiing his statement? What is not particularily exposed is the liberals in US Congress particularily the Black Caucus, who still supporting the Regime in Cuba by visiting the opressors and not the oppressed. Those dissidents who mostly black Cubans who represent the majority in the prisons. Dr. King would shame them all if alive today. Then mass liberal media bias is left only to be exposed by you as the lone wolf at CFR. It is very sad display of dupicity of the Washington Post and Reuters who have extensive foreign correspondent internationally to not get the story in context. This type of reporting is not only distortion but downright influence peddling as if the Castros brothers have another Ana Belen Montes at the newspaper in exchange for more access inside Cuba.I believe North Korea treats the media the same way. Imagine how many Europeans and Far Easterners who travel to Cuba actually blame the revolution’s failures on the US Embargo, when Cuba can trade with the rest of the world and has never paid its revenue share to foreign investors . C’mom man. really? Can you visualize Cuba Post -Castros becoming China’s Taiwan. I certainly can: Canton Cuba 21 Century here we come.

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