In These Times, a well-known liberal journal, runs an article in its February issue attacking Cuba in a tone akin to the Trump government. It refers to the “repression of the Western Hemisphere’s most undemocratic government,” which they allege to be Cuba. Not Bolsanaro’s Brazil, Chile with its police who blind protesters, Colombia’s death squad supporting government, Honduras’ coup regime, Haiti’s hated rulers, nor the US with its murderous police, but Cuba.
The In These Times article covers, in Voice of America style, the November San Isidro protest in Havana. There, Denis Solis was arrested for refusing to appear for a subpoena and for threatening a police officer. The police did not handcuff him, beat him, tase him, pepper spray him, nor hold a knee on his neck. Solis previously received several fines for disturbing the peace and two official warnings for harassing tourists. He accepted the sentence and did not appeal.
Solis, who declares his love for Donald Trump, admitted to receiving money from a person associated with attacks carried out in Cuba. A group of about twenty, the San Isidro Movement (MSI), soon organized a short “hunger strike” to protest his arrest.
Michael Kozak, undersecretary of the US State Department made statements of support for the San Isidro Movement. Timothy Zuñiga-Brown, Chargé d’affaires for the US Embassy in Cuba visited the group on three occasions and transported some in his car. They received calls of approval from Secretary of State Pompeo. Luis Almagro, secretary-general of the discredited OAS, also chimed in to support the action.Meanwhile, the US State Department on November 24 quickly announced a new $1 million fund for anti-Cuban government projects that justify allegations of human rights violations in Cuba.
The InTheseTimes article makes no mention of these US government ties or funding to MSI.
Tracey Eaton of Cubamoneyproject.com wrote, “An extensive network of groups financed by the US government sends cash to Cuba to thousands of ‘democracy activists,’ journalists and dissidents every year.” The US has spent between $20-$45 million dollars every year since 1996 to fund Cuban groups with the goal of instituting “regime change” in Cuba.US Agency for International Development (USAID) and National Endowment for Democracy (NED) have funded at least 54 Cuba “regime change” projects since 2017, with USAID spending $39 million and NED $11 million. Much of this money goes to US government created media platforms to spread disinformation about Cuban affairs. Hundreds of internet publications have appeared in Florida since 2017 with “Cuba” as part of their on-line names.
Unlike its progressive coverage of movements in the US, InTheseTimes has maintained a rightwing view on Cuba. Yet, Cuba is heralded around the world for its work in other countries fighting COVID-19. The Henry Reeve International Medical Brigade, working in 53 countries providing this medical care, is proposed for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.
The US government has taken a number of measures to worsen the blockade on Cuba, and also adding the baseless declaration that Cuba is a sponsor of international terrorism.However , In These Times does not cover the cruelty of the US blockade, the exemplary work of Cuban doctors, nor mention the recent documentary The War on Cuba . We urge all defenders of the sovereignty of Cuba and other Latin American countries to write to protest to InTheseTimes at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 773-772-0100.