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Sunday, September 21, 2008

THOUGHTS ABOUT MY COUNTRY -- WITH CUBA IN MIND

THOUGHTS ABOUT MY COUNTRY -- WITH CUBA IN MIND

Sometimes I love my Country; other times I am so disappointed. Here is no doubt that in the USA most individuals who have the desire to improve themselves and are willing to work hard, they can achieve great heights. In most foreign countries this is not the case. I have a cousin in Italy who has worked as an electrician for over 12 years. He cannot open his own business in Prato, a city just north of Florence. He is unable to get a permit because his boss, an older man entrenched in the town can block his ability to get that permit. He feels frustrated as he should. In the US anyone is free to open his own business and is free to succeed or fail.

Most of my readers know that now I am a resident of Panama. I love especially the weather and the people of Panama. But one is not free even here to open a new business without certain restrictions, one main one being that you cannot just hire anyone. You must hire mainly Panamanians. In some respects I can also understand why this is required. In Panama there is no welfare and the government want to have Panamanians work and not have non Panamanians compete in this workforce. Nevertheless, it is a restriction not experienced in the US where the only requirement is that a worker must be a legal US resident or have work permit.

What disturbs me about my native country is the politics. We tout ourselves as being generous Nation which we are. Every time there is a natural disaster we are at the forefront with money and supplies to help the particular ravaged country. What prompts this blog today is the damage the hurricanes have recently and are about to do to Cuba. When several years ago there was the devastating tsunami in Southeast Asia, we were so quick to come to the aid of the peoples affected. We recently rushed aid to the peoples of Georgia suffering under the Russian invasion. We contribute big time to help African people affected with Aids. We aid almost every country around the world even Iran when they suffered from earthquakes.

But why do we not extend similar aid to Cuba? The poor unfortunate Cubans are people too. We do not extend aid to them because we have had a heart-on about Castro and we must placate the large Spanish (ex-Cuban patriots) living especially in Florida. It is all political and a tug-of-war between both Democrats and Republican vying for their votes. Meanwhile the Cuban people suffer. Some times we act like empty suits.

We trade with almost every other totalitarian country in the world – I am thinking here of China – but we must continue with our embargo of Little Cuba.

I contend to this day that we were the cause of alienating Fidel Castro. Soon after Castro overthrew Fulgencio Batista, the previous dictator of Cuba, but a dictator friendly to us, Castro came to New York City to address the United Nations. I was a young man at the time and remember it well. Castro wanted so much to meet with our President who was Eisenhower at the time. But, Eisenhower refused to meet with him because Castro overthrew our friend, Batista. When I observed this, I predicted that there would be trouble with Cuba. Our Anglo-Saxon white State department knew nothing about the Latino temperament. I am Italian and in a way consider myself a Latino, perhaps not of Spanish South American but rather of Italian heritage. Did the State department not know what would happen if you insulted a Latino? If they had only asked me, I would have told them that the person insulted would soon make friends with our greatest enemy. I know that Castro had leanings towards Russia and he had as one of his friend the despicable cut throat Ernesto Guevara. But I truly believe that, if we invited Castro to our home, broke bread with him and perhaps drink a toast with some of that great Cuban Rum, we would have had a friend for life. Castro is no dummy. He is an educated man who was unable himself to understand and adjust to the American white Anglo-Saxon mentality.

Eisenhower was a great General but he was not bright in the ways of understanding Latinos. Within the past year, the National Archives released a hand-written letter which a young Castro sent to Roosevelt wherein he told Roosevelt that since he had more money would he not send to him 10 dollars which he could use. Castro was very polite and the letter indicated his admiration for the American President. We do not know whether Roosevelt ever sent the money but it is not really relevant to the issue. What is relevant was the implied admiration coming through in the letter. We have indications that the young Castro looked up to the United States.

I have shared my thought on this matter with many people over the years. My fellow Republicans – a loyal Republican I have been for many years, but recently, disenchanted with both Republicans and Democrats I became a Libertarian – would take issue with me and some Democrats would tell me I might have a point.

If we treated Castro better the entire Cuba/United States war could have been averted. Poor unfortunate Castro has himself gotten bitter over the years, but I truly believe he has acted like a jilted lover with such acrimony to the lover who rejected him. Even today, Raul Castro who has indicated a desire to improve relationship with the US is being rejected by the US. Our heart-on has not subsided!


Someday we will grow up. I hope it comes before we grow too old.

nicola michael (c. Tauraso, M.D.)
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
Web site: www.drtauraso.com
Blog site: http://www.drtauraso.com/blog/index.htm
Email: drtauraso@drtauraso.com

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