Two stories regarding the editorials of The New York Times about Cuba


Omar Pérez Salomón

A CubaNews translation. Edited by Walter Lippmann.

The fact that The New York Times, one of the most influential
dailies in the United States and the world, has published in one
month six editorials against the economic, commercial and
financial blockade that Washington imposed on Havana more than 50
years ago is a sign that the Cuba issue has given rise to
differing opinions within U.S. political circles.

However, the search for ways to tighten the net around the
largest island in the West Indies is what has prevailed so far in
the executive, the legislative and the judicial branches. Two
examples confirm this.

The first refers to legal claims for over a billion dollars
belonging to Cuba. These have been frozen by our northern
neighbor following U.S. court rulings against the Cuban
government in the last few years in its ceaseless pursuit of new
sources to collect money.

This is why Cuban assets derived from telephone communications
with the United States, blocked in U.S. banks since 1966, have
been totally plundered as a result of the
“compensation” ordered by the courts. One of the
most notorious was Miami Federal Judge Alexander King’s
finding that the Cuban state and its Air Force had to pay $187.6
million dollars to the families of the pilots of the
counter-revolutionary “Brothers to the Rescue”
group whose planes were shot down when they violated Cuban
airspace on February 24, 1996.

On November 12, 1998, Judge King filed a motion before a New York
Federal Court seeking to order seizure of the blocked Cuban funds
and to start proceedings against AT&T and the Chase Manhattan
Bank. This was based on the Victims of Trafficking and Violence
Protection Act, approved on October 12, 2000, and thanks to which
the plaintiffs received around $97.6 million dollars.

The second example is the war declared by the multinational
Bacardi corporation against the French-Cuban Pernod-Ricard-Havana
Rum corporation over ownership of the Havana Club trade mark.
That ended in May 2012, when the U.S. Supreme Court prevented the
Cuban company Cubaexport from defending its right to renew
registration of the Havana Club brand with the U.S. Patent and
Trademark Office.

No enterprise has devoted so much in terms of money and resources
to finance actions against the Cuban Revolution as Bacardi, whose
managers have been involved in countless terrorist, subversive
and judicial maneuvers against Cuba. Back in the 1960s, Pepin
Bosch, the then head of Bacardi, organized the bombing of
Cuba’s oil refineries. As it happened, his plan, as well
as a picture of the B-26 bomber he had intended to use, were
exposed in The New York Times and never materialized.

Bacardi’s stockholders have stood out because of their
contributions to both Democratic and Republican Congress members
and anti-Cuban laws such as the Torricelli and Helms-Burton acts.
In the words of the Colombian journalist Hernando Calvo Ospina in
his book Ron Bacardi: la Guerra Oculta [Bacardi: The Hidden War],
“As one of the company’s top executives has
admitted, Bacardi is a Bermuda-based company without a
nationality. And yet, it used its economic power and contacts in
the highest political circles to virtually draft a U.S. law
tailored to its own needs. Not only does this piece of
legislation –known as the Helms-Burton Act–
threaten Cuba’s sovereignty and the survival of its
people, it also adds to the madness into which
capitalism’s commercial system is dangerously creeping in
its longing for bringing down every barrier to its.”

In violation of trade-related international standards, these same
actors promoted the approval of Section 211, as another step
toward the enforcement of the Helms-Burton Act included in the
4,000-plus-page 1999 budget bill. The first stages of Section 211
have it that no U.S. court can recognize any rights over foreign
trademarks or patents related to assets of an American citizen
confiscated without indemnity by the Cuban revolutionary
Jurisdiction over this
cause was thus denied to the judges.

As we can see, the fact that Pernod-Ricard executives attending
the recently-held Havana International Fair said they were ready
to market Havana Club rum in the United States and that several
American telecommunications companies such as AT&T and Verizon
are interested in re-establishing direct telephone links with
Cuba is not good enough. The whole thing is about penetrating the
anti-Cuban structure through which Washington’s Cuba
policy is dictated.

Hernando Calvo Ospina:
Ron Bacardí: la guerra oculta, Casa Editora Abril, 2000. P.

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2 Responses to “Two stories regarding the editorials of The New York Times about Cuba”

  1. lakoladita Says:

    Reblogged this on la koladita.

  2. tudoparaminhacuba Says:

    Reblogged this on Tudo Para Minha Cuba.

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