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> State Department denies visa to a Cuban scientist, "Detrimental to the interests of the US"
English Horn
post Nov 12 2005, 01:42 PM
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A Cuban scientist who led the team which developed a breakthrough vaccine that prevents pneumonia and meningitis in small children was awarded a prize by Museum of Innovation in CA.
However, according to MSNBC:

QUOTE
Vicente Verez-Bencomo was to accept the award recognizing his team's technological achievement during a Wednesday ceremony at the Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, Calif. He had also been invited to address a gathering of the Society for Glycobiology in Boston on Friday. 
 
Verez-Bencomo said the State Department denied him a visa because the visit would be "detrimental to the interests of the United States."

Verez-Bencomo led a team that developed a vaccine for Haemophilus influenza type B, also known as Hib, a bacteria that causes meningitis and pneumonia. The diseases kill up to 700,000 children worldwide each year.
<snip>
Before the development of a similar vaccine more than a decade ago, Hib was the biggest cause of meningitis among infants in the United States. That earlier vaccine has all but stamped out the disease in the western world, but mass immunizations are too expensive for many poor countries.

The synthetic vaccine created by Verez-Bencomo's team can be produced at a relatively low cost because antigens don't have to be grown in a bacterial culture, making it an attractive alternative for poorer nations.

So far more than 1 million doses have been administered to Cubans. Science Magazine last month said the vaccine "may someday save millions of lives."


That decision left me dumbfound. However, doing a bit of search on the internet, I found that this is generally the policy:

US Denied Visa to Cuban Singer-songwriter Carlos Varela
US blocks Cuban Grammy nominees

What are they thinking? After all, it's not unheard of that people from communist regimes win prestigious awards and then travel to the West to receive it. What is State Dept's logic? The only thing I can think of is that it is somehow "detrimental for the interests of the United States" when american people know that a communist regime can produce outstanding musicians, cutting-edge technology, and world-class scientists.

Questions for debate:


Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department?
How an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions?

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moif
post Nov 12 2005, 02:27 PM
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Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department?

I have to say it seems quite churlish to me.


How an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award
ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions?


I suppose it is a matter of not recognising any merit from a nation run by a dictator. Perhaps the US government does not wish to allow any light to shine upon Cuba in the hopes that it will wither and fade in the shade of the USA?

I suspect however, that the biggest motivation here is base revenge. Cuba has consistently defied the USA for a long time, and often made the USA look very foolish as well. It has caused a lot of embarressment and upset amongst certain portions of the US establishment, not least in the military and the memory of this, no doubt festers in the heart of the US establishment.

I don't doubt there are those in the USA who are eagerly awaiting the death of Fidel Castro so they can once more exert US economic influence on Cuba and for whom, every example of Cuba's success, which translates to Castro's success is yet another slap in the face.
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Nov 12 2005, 03:26 PM
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Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department? I'm ambivalent on this...I'll explain on the next question.

How an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions?

The policy of the Cuban government is prohibitive for people who wish to leave even after being granted U.S. visas to migrate to the United States. OUr government hands over the visas, their government won't turn them over to the recipients until the recipients obtain a $400 medical test (I thought medical care was free in a Communist country?), a $50 passport fee and a $150 exit fee. This is a country where people make an average of 10 dollars a month. There is no way for them to afford it, but the government does this to generate funds from the relatives living in the US who will pay the fee. Anyone unable to obtain that money has only one option....stay in Cuba or flee illegally and dangerously, often dying on makeshift rafts trying to cross over.

Now, while Cuba holds the above policy of not permitting citizens to leave, should we accept their entertainers and scientists to present them with gifts? I'm not sure. Probably not. I know that if my neighbor refused to ever send over her son to play (my son's best friend), but was willing to send only her daughter over if we had cake, I'd probably refuse that visit.

This post has been edited by Mrs. Pigpen: Nov 12 2005, 03:35 PM
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La Herring Rouge
post Nov 12 2005, 04:25 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Nov 12 2005, 11:26 AM)
Now, while Cuba holds the above policy of not permitting citizens to leave, should we accept their entertainers and scientists to present them with gifts? I'm not sure. Probably not. I know that if my neighbor refused to ever send over her son to play (my son's best friend), but was willing to send only her daughter over if we had cake, I'd probably refuse that visit.
*



I like this analogy. Let me twist it to my own purpose. devil.gif

OK..OK..so I'd just like to add one caveat. Should we "refuse the visit"?
I think it depends upon your intentions toward your neighbor. If you wish to create a better relationship with your neighbor (in hopes that, one day you visit eachother's homes freely) then you take in those they choose to send when they do.

If you would rather cut all ties to your neighbor and hope they just move one day then it is best that you accept none of them as guests.

This thread is necessarily a question of U.S. foreign policy. What is our official position on Cuba? What should it be? And are we acting in good faith toward that initiative?
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English Horn
post Nov 12 2005, 04:30 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Nov 12 2005, 10:26 AM)
The policy of the Cuban government is prohibitive for people who wish to leave even after being granted U.S. visas to migrate to the United States. OUr government hands over the visas, their government won't turn them over to the recipients until the recipients obtain a $400 medical test (I thought medical care was free in a Communist country?), a $50 passport fee and a $150 exit fee. This is a country where people make an average of 10 dollars a month. There is no way for them to afford it, but the government does this to generate funds from the relatives living in the US who will pay the fee. Anyone unable to obtain that money has only one option....stay in Cuba or flee illegally and dangerously, often dying on makeshift rafts trying to cross over.

Now, while Cuba holds the above policy of not permitting citizens to leave, should we accept their entertainers and scientists to present them with gifts? I'm not sure. Probably not. I know that if my neighbor refused to ever send over her son to play (my son's best friend), but was willing to send only her daughter over if we had cake, I'd probably refuse that visit.


Judging from my own "iron curtain" experience, people always find the money when it comes to visiting the "West". Soviet Union had some ridiculous fees in addition to some serious hoops people had to jump through when it comes to going abroad, but people did it nonetheless. Don't forget, this is not a Western society, corruption is rampant, probably a $20 bill under the table would give a prospective tourist the certificate that the medical test was successfully passed... at least that's how that would work back in USSR. But that doesn't even matter - this particular scientist obviously was granted a permission to leave.
In your own example, why would you punish the little girl for the sins of her mother?

P.S. After re-reading your post I realized that you're talking not about visiting United States, but about "migrating" to United States. In that case, your example is incorrect, and the correct version would look like that:
Your neighbor doesn't allow her son to move-in with you permanently, but she does allow her daughter to go to your house when you have cake. Hmmm.... hmmm.gif

This post has been edited by English Horn: Nov 12 2005, 04:37 PM
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Nov 12 2005, 05:35 PM
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QUOTE(English Horn @ Nov 12 2005, 08:30 AM)
P.S. After re-reading your post I realized that you're talking not about visiting United States, but about "migrating" to United States. In that case, your example is incorrect, and the correct version would look like that:
Your neighbor doesn't allow her son to move-in with you permanently, but she does allow her daughter to go to your house when you have cake. Hmmm....  hmmm.gif
*



Well, we are speaking of exit visas, and the Cubans could just visit. But those Cubans don't typically visit the US and then go back home. For what it's worth, from my perspective I wouldn't be "punishing the daughter" by refusal. Obviously permitting her to come over for cake wouldn't be fair to the boy, would it? huh.gif All in how you look at things I suppose. To be clear, many have died trying to make that journey over here. This is a bit worse than a boy wanting a visit.

This post has been edited by Mrs. Pigpen: Nov 12 2005, 05:58 PM
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KivrotHaTaavah
post Nov 22 2005, 01:31 AM
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EH:

I approve, and wholeheartedly. Cuba routinely denies exit permits to persons employed in the health care professions, as well as to young men who have not yet completed their mandatory military service. Word on the street is that from October 2003 to March 2005, Cuba denied exit permits to a little over 1,700 persons [and those are the people we know about, i.e., the ones who complained to our government]. And for those lucky enough to get such an exit permit, forget about taking the kids with you when you go [that much the better to ensure that you come back and otherwise not say anything to bring the so-called Cuban Revolution into disrespect]. So, fine, the man did something good and got an award, but, to borrow from JFK, we've never had to build a wall to keep our people in....And to take just one example, Hilda Molina, a neurologist who had founded the Centro Internacional de Restauracion Neurologico [or, the International Center for Neurological Restoration] was denied an exit permit to visit her son, his wife, and their children in Argentina [son is also a doctor who moved to Argentina for good when his studies in Japan had ended]. Seems that the basis for the denial of the exist permit was that her brain was the property of the Cuban government.

And speaking of punishing little girls for the sins of their mother[s], that IS standard operating procedure in Cuba. Do you follow baseball? No matter, ever hear of Jose Contreras? His wife and his children [two daughters] had to leave Cuba illegally two years after he defected to the US.

And then there's Rafael Leon Rodriguez, our man from the Proyecto Democratico Cubano [or, the Cuban Democratic Project], who has been denied an exit permit even though he obtained a US visa in 2000. And with him is Edgardo Llompart, another political dissident, who was sent into exile with his wife and son, but whose daughter has to wait ten (10) years before she is free to leave Cuba.

Let me leave the last word, or almost the last word, to our man Rafael, who so aptly reported to Human Rights Watch:

"The threat of denying permission to travel is a weapon of deterrence used to intimidate, repress, and control various types of activities."

And since two can play that game....don't send us those you want to send us, send us all those who want to come....and we'll decide just how long they get to stay...

Sorry, one more. Elian. Only a fool thinks that we sent the boy back to his father, i.e., his biological father, since we did nothing of the sort. True, we sent him back to his father, but under the totalitarian dictatorship that is Cuba, Elian's father is the State, or more personally, Presidente Fidel Castro. In that regard, please see:

http://www.newsmax.com/archives/articles/2.../6/155130.shtml

Oh, and to verify the rest of the above, please see:

http://hrw.org/reports/2005/cuba1005/2.htm

And it is indeed all of the above, that answers the question of how can travel to accept the award be detrimental to the interests of the US [and to borrow from the commies' own vernacular, to all other freedom-loving people as well]. And such answer otherwise provides the requested "logic" of the State Department as well.
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Ted
post Nov 23 2005, 07:17 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Nov 12 2005, 11:26 AM)
Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department? I'm ambivalent on this...I'll explain on the next question.

How an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions?

The policy of the Cuban government is prohibitive for people who wish to leave even after being granted U.S. visas to migrate to the United States. OUr government hands over the visas, their government won't turn them over to the recipients until the recipients obtain a $400 medical test (I thought medical care was free in a Communist country?), a $50 passport fee and a $150 exit fee. This is a country where people make an average of 10 dollars a month. There is no way for them to afford it, but the government does this to generate funds from the relatives living in the US who will pay the fee. Anyone unable to obtain that money has only one option....stay in Cuba or flee illegally and dangerously, often dying on makeshift rafts trying to cross over.

Now, while Cuba holds the above policy of not permitting citizens to leave, should we accept their entertainers and scientists to present them with gifts? I'm not sure. Probably not. I know that if my neighbor refused to ever send over her son to play (my son's best friend), but was willing to send only her daughter over if we had cake, I'd probably refuse that visit.
*




I agree . Cuba is one of the most restrictive Communist dictatorships in the world. Since Castro has come to power god knows how many have been murdered, starved, and/or jailed for decent.

And let’s remember that the medical “advances” made by Cuba were funded heavily (until recently) by the Soviet Union.

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moif
post Nov 23 2005, 08:01 PM
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Yeah yeah, Cuba is a bad place, run by a dictator... so what? This thread questions the decisions of the US state department... not the legitimacy of Fidel Castro's government.

QUOTE
And let’s remember that the medical “advances” made by Cuba were funded heavily (until recently) by the Soviet Union.
Perhaps I should remind you Ted that the Soviet Union collapsed 14 years ago... and that many Cubans have been educated in Cuba and in Europe as well.

None of which makes any difference to the questions posed either. It does not matter what Cuba does to people or how it treats the families of baseball players. Two wrongs do not make a right as my Mother so often told me. The actions of the Cuban government should have no bearing on how the US government treats individual people.

If this man deserves his accolades then he should be allowed to receive them. He should not be punished for the crimes committed by Fidel Castro.

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English Horn
post Nov 23 2005, 08:44 PM
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QUOTE(KivrotHaTaavah @ Nov 21 2005, 08:31 PM)

Sorry, one more.  Elian.  Only a fool thinks that we sent the boy back to his father, i.e., his biological father, since we did nothing of the sort.  True, we sent him back to his father, but under the totalitarian dictatorship that is Cuba, Elian's father is the State, or more personally, Presidente Fidel Castro. 

Children don't have "communist" or "socialist" or "capitalist" childhood. Children are apolitical regardless of the ruling regime. Despite spending first 20 years of my life in the "Evil Empire" itself I have to say that I had a very cloudless and happy childhood (why is it such a surprise to some of my conservative friends, I have no idea. They probably think that children in USSR spent their days in GULAGs.) Ask any other ad.gif member who was born and raised in Soviet Union whether they would rather have their childhood with parents in Soviet Union or with distant relatives in prosperous but foreign country.
Elian is (and will be) doing just fine. Last I heard, education system in Cuba is first-rate. He'll get a good education and then he will be able to decide for himself what to do with his life. People in totalitarian countries have that choice, too.

But, as moif pointed out, this has very little to do with the questions in hand. As bad as Castro's regime may or may not be, what does it have to do with individual achievements of a Cuban citizen? Do we need to give out awards based on our approval or disapproval of a political regime in the individual's country of origin? Solzhenitsyn, Sakharov, Tamm, Cherenkov, Landau, Kapitsa, etc. would never get their Nobel prizes in Literature, Physics, etc. just because they happened to work in the Soviet Union... wacko.gif

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Ted
post Nov 23 2005, 09:23 PM
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QUOTE(moif @ Nov 23 2005, 04:01 PM)
Yeah yeah, Cuba is a bad place, run by a dictator... so what? This thread questions the decisions of the US state department... not the legitimacy of Fidel Castro's government.

QUOTE
And let’s remember that the medical “advances” made by Cuba were funded heavily (until recently) by the Soviet Union.
Perhaps I should remind you Ted that the Soviet Union collapsed 14 years ago... and that many Cubans have been educated in Cuba and in Europe as well.

None of which makes any difference to the questions posed either. It does not matter what Cuba does to people or how it treats the families of baseball players. Two wrongs do not make a right as my Mother so often told me. The actions of the Cuban government should have no bearing on how the US government treats individual people.

If this man deserves his accolades then he should be allowed to receive them. He should not be punished for the crimes committed by Fidel Castro.
*




I agree with the State Departments policy of not allowing ANY Cuban rights to enter the US while the murdering dictator Castro is in power. A policy is just that. To try and make a judgment for each case would be a waste.

And even though the SU has been dead for 14 years the fact remains that the schools and the medical system in Cuba was funded by the SU and a “showplace” for Communist achievement. No doubt this scientist took advantage of that funding during his career.





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moif
post Nov 23 2005, 09:30 PM
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Ted.

Can you explain why individuals are to be held responsible for the crimes committed by their governments?

Are you willing to be held responsible for all the USA does?
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Mrs. Pigpen
post Nov 23 2005, 09:42 PM
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QUOTE(moif @ Nov 23 2005, 01:30 PM)
Ted.

Can you explain why individuals are to be held responsible for the crimes committed by their governments?

Are you willing to be held responsible for all the USA does?
*



I still have no idea what this means. How is it punishing an individual to not give him an award and permit him entry, when his fellow citizens are denied access? Would Denmark have honored a German scientist (regardless of how wonderful his accomplishments) during the time when Jewish citizens were denied visitation rights into Denmark?
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English Horn
post Nov 23 2005, 10:03 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Nov 23 2005, 04:42 PM)
I still have no idea what this means. How is it punishing an individual to not give him an award and permit him entry, when his fellow citizens are denied access? Would Denmark have honored a German scientist (regardless of how wonderful his accomplishments) during the time when Jewish citizens were denied visitation rights into Denmark?
*




Of course they would. And would be right to do so. A scientific award should go to a most qualified person. How is it fair to give an award to a person who is less qualified but happened to work in a democratic society?
As for your reference to Germany, here's the list of German Nobel Prize laureates during 1930s (this is in Chemistry):

1944
Otto Hahn (Germany, 1879-03-08 - 1968-07-28)
Discovery of the nuclear fission of atoms
1939
Adolf F. J. Butenandt (Germany, 1903-03-24 - 1995-01-18)
Studies on sexual hormones
1938
Richard Kuhn (Germany, 1900-12-03 - 1967-07-31)
Studies on carotenoids and vitamins
1931
Friedrich Bergius (Germany, 1884-10-11 - 1949-03-30)
Carl Bosch (Germany, 1874-08-27 - 1940-04-26)
Development of chemical high-pressure processes

Also let's not forget Victor Hess from Austria who got a Nobel Prize in Physics in 1936; and Hans Spemann from Germany who got 1935 Prize in Medicine for his discoveries in the area of embryonic development. This is just a quick Google search; I am sure list goes on and on. Plus, I already mentioned a dozen or so Russian Nobel Prize laureates who received their award despite the fact that most Soviet citizens couldn't leave the country.

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moif
post Nov 23 2005, 11:47 PM
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QUOTE(Mrs. Pigpen @ Nov 23 2005, 10:42 PM)
QUOTE(moif @ Nov 23 2005, 01:30 PM)
Ted.

Can you explain why individuals are to be held responsible for the crimes committed by their governments?

Are you willing to be held responsible for all the USA does?
*



I still have no idea what this means. How is it punishing an individual to not give him an award and permit him entry, when his fellow citizens are denied access? Would Denmark have honored a German scientist (regardless of how wonderful his accomplishments) during the time when Jewish citizens were denied visitation rights into Denmark?
*



Is this a jest? blink.gif

You're actually comparing contemporary USA to nazi occupied Denmark?

I know things are bad in the states these days, but I thought it was considered a faux pas to compare GW Bush with Hitler.

If you refuse to allow a person to collect an award, that has been given, because you disagree with the politics of the country they come from, then you are holding that person responsible for those politics.

How can any one not see this?

And, as English Horn rightly points out, there is a historical precedence for rewarding individuals on the merits of their own work, regardless of the crimes carried out by their countries.



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NiteGuy
post Nov 24 2005, 01:39 AM
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Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department?

I disapprove. Science is apolitical. It doesn't know about Capitalism vs Communism, Left vs Right, or any of the other crap that goes on in politics.

Science simply is. And when someone finds a way to advance science that saves lives, they should be rewarded for their efforts, regardless of the politics of the country they were born in.

How can an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions?

It can't be detrimental. And there is no logic in the State Department decision. In fact, the United States, has for decades been schizophrenic about how we deal with various countries.

For instance, with regard to the former Soviet Union, and currently with China, we advocate a position that, however few of their citizens are permitted to leave and visit the US, we will allow them to come here. We believe that what they take back with them in terms of how things really are here, as opposed to the propaganda, can only be a good thing.

The same thing with trade. We allow, and even encourage trade, in the hopes that this will moderate the communist stance against the West, and bring them, eventually into the fold of democratic, capitalistic nations. We have even resumed more or less normal diplomatic and trade relations with Viet Nam.

So why the difference with Cuba? Who knows, for sure. Like I said, we're rather schizophrenic on this. The big Cuban, anti-Castro contingent here in the States is certainly part of it. But I do know that we are taking this stand rather in vain.

We are the only major country that doesn't trade with Cuba, doesn't allow it's citizens to travel there, or allow their citizens to travel here (unless they are defecting, of course). It seems to me that the only ones we are really hurting in all of this, are our own people, and those of Cuba who might be able to throw off the yoke of communism that much faster, if real diplomacy and trade were to take place. How could that possibly be a bad thing?

QUOTE(KivrotHaTaavah)
Let me leave the last word, or almost the last word, to our man Rafael, who so aptly reported to Human Rights Watch:

"The threat of denying permission to travel is a weapon of deterrence used to intimidate, repress, and control various types of activities."

And what would you then call actually denying permission to travel to a particular country? What would you call a country that fines it citizens, and in some cases jails them, for defying that ban?

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KivrotHaTaavah
post Nov 25 2005, 11:51 PM
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EH:

I will have to disagree. Maybe your experience was one of blissful ignorance of the horrors of Marxism-Leninism-Stalinism, but maybe that was because your mom and dad, or some other family member, didn't do anything to make the regime a tad bit angry. I say that because I know, to a certainty, that if they had made the regime a tad bit angry, your experience as a child would have been wholly different. Just as it is with all those Cuban children who, according to Human Rights Watch and its sources, have to listen to teacher tell them that it isn't defected daddy who is your father, but Fidel. And truth otherwise be told, by definition, in a totalitarian state, the state owns the total human, every man, woman, and yes, child.

You also said:

Ask any other member who was born and raised in Soviet Union whether they would rather have their childhood with parents in Soviet Union or with distant relatives in prosperous but foreign country.

No need. I've already seen the videotape and I've already spoken with any number of Vietnamese and Khmer who put their kids on the proverbial last plane out while they stayed behind. And they've told me that as painful as it was, that they'd do the exact same thing again, if need be. But more of my response to your request in a bit, so hang in there....

I would otherwise suggest that you speak with Mrs. Cohen [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/629498.stm]:

"My children are simply hostages of the Cuban authorities," she says.
"I have no doubt about that now. Their father thought differently - against what the government stipulated. As they cannot get him, they are holding me and his family instead."
***
The rallies shown every day on television demand the return of Elian Gonzalez. The propaganda talks about the importance of fathers and denounces the political manipulation in Miami.

Lazara sympathises - but cannot help thinking of her own family.

"And my children. What are they being used for?" she asks."

And here is how the Cuban state, as parens patriae, treats its children:

"Her younger sister, Yanely, had her marks reduced last month for not attending a send-back-Elian rally."

Oh, sorry, let me interrupt. For those speaking this inane nonsense about science being nothing but science, please speak with the Cuban authorities about Yanely's school marks. Thanks.

Now, for the second installment on my response to your request re persons to speak with, and thanks for hanging in there:

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2000/03/...lian/index.html

So please do not speak such nonsense about having a good life, and then being able to decide for himself what he wishes his life to be. Those things don't exist in a totalitarian state, left, right, or otherwise.

And the part from Salon that validates or verifies what I said above and which otherwise stands in rather stark contrast/opposition to what you claim to have been your experience/desire:

"Nor is Elián the only Cuban child who, in the years since Castro gained power, has wound up in the U.S. without his parents. In 1960-1962, more than 14,000 children were sent out of Cuba to the United States, on their own; their parents resorted to this desperate step after the Castro regime started closing down Catholic schools and shipping children off to study in the Soviet Union. As Cuban-born journalist Yvonne Conde documents in her 1999 book "Operation Pedro Pan," 70 percent of the children who left in this exodus were separated from their parents for at least a year; a few were never reunited.

When Conde surveyed former Pedro Pan children, many described painful feelings of grief and loss. Nevertheless, 85 percent were glad that their parents had gotten them out of Cuba."

14,000...at their parents' request. And since people are indeed alike all over, so too with the Vietnamese and Khmer that I have spoken with and otherwise referenced above.

And for cruel irony, the author of the Salon piece was, like you, a resident of the evil empire. So I've answered your request.

Now, compare Ms. Young's parroting the correct tune to Yanely's getting her marks lowered. As I said, people are alike all over.

And, lastly, compare my "rant" re "parenthood" on that other thread concerning a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision with my remarks here. You will find no more faithful and friendly advocate of parents than me. And not because I have all that much respect for parents [not saying that I do or do not], but simply and only because it's not my child and who am I to arrogate to myself the power to decide what's best. So I too am in that respect as equally conflicted as Ms. Young, and I too come to the same end as she...and, yes, as the man said in the movie, it's all one big shite sandwhich, and we're all going to have to take a bite....but then again, I suppose the Spaniards among us are right, where there is love, there is pain...

Edited to add:

http://www.pearlfilms.com/CubanPsychiatry.html
http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=2925

Yeah, no milk after age 6 and compulsory education ends at 11 [so more than a few can go to work in the field while they hear Castro proclaim, rather loudly, that there is no child labor in Cuba].

Edited again to add:

La Herring Rouge: crossover to the, is America fascist thread? That last link I just added proves who the modern day American fascists are.

This post has been edited by KivrotHaTaavah: Nov 26 2005, 03:07 AM
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nebraska29
post Nov 28 2005, 10:50 AM
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Questions for debate:

QUOTE
 
Do you approve or disapprove of actions of the State Department? 
How an award ceremony for a medical research scientist (or Grammy Award ceremony) can be detrimental to the interests of the United States? What logic could have been used by the State Department in reaching those decisions? 

*



The logic used could have been that they were carrying out to the "t" the embargo on Cuba and reinforcing their position on Cuba by making an example out of this guy. I do not approve of the state department's action at all, in banning these people, do we not appear to act like Castro would? How do action like this make us look in Cuba? Sometimes what you don't allow is more of a detriment to your interests, especially when it contradicts the values of freedom and expression that you supposedly stand for as a beacon unto the world. whistling.gif

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Ted
post Dec 2 2005, 08:15 PM
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Can you explain why individuals are to be held responsible for the crimes committed by their governments?



Well let’s face it – the Cuban government exists because its citizens allow it to do so. And if any members of this unjust society benefits by this it is the “scientific elite” of which this man is a part. No doubt he gets enough to eat while others starve and lives in nice housing while others live in squalor.

So I say again – Keep him out!

This post has been edited by Ted: Dec 2 2005, 08:16 PM
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English Horn
post Dec 2 2005, 09:53 PM
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QUOTE(Ted @ Dec 2 2005, 03:15 PM)
Well let’s face it – the Cuban government exists because its citizens allow it to do so.  And if any members of this unjust society benefits by this it is the “scientific elite” of which this man is a part.  No doubt he gets enough to eat while others starve and lives in nice housing while others live in squalor. 

So I say again – Keep him out!
*



Let's keep some perspective here - if a member of a "scientific elite" saves thousands of children worldwide by his work, doesn't he deserve some recognition?
After all, Oscar Schindler was treated as hero in Israel despite being a member of a Nazi Party. Sometimes we need to look past people's associations...
By the way, there's nothing wrong with members of "scientific elite" of any country to live better than the rest of citizenry - that applies to all countries, democratic or not.
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