Three times last week CNBC aired an hour-long special titled “Escape from Havana. “ “Between 1960 and 1962, more than 14,000 Cuban children were secretly flown to the United States to escape Fidel Castro, “reads the catchy CNBC teaser. “Today, many of the Pedro Pans have thrived in America… Each has walked a long road and fought to overcome profound obstacles on their way to the American dream. In our documentary, you’ll meet a big-city mayor, an accomplished author, a singer, an activist, a professor, and a business leader. They were all part of a secret and improbable plan to escape a dictator’s rule and fly to freedom.”
CNBC seemed to promise love, war, danger, intrigue, heartbreak, and a heart-warming Horatio Alger finale. And indeed, accurately told, the story of thousands of Cuban parents desperate to save their children by spiriting them to the traditional land of the free as Soviet proxies Fidel Castro and Che Guevara tightened their grip around Cuba’s throat would provide all of the dramatic elements above –and in spades.
Humberto Fontova holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and is the author of four books including his latest, The Longest Romance; The Mainstream Media and Fidel Castro. For more information and for video clips of his Television and college speaking appearances please visit www.hfontova.com.