Humberto Fontova

A few items to keep in mind regarding the MSM version of the Pope’s visit to Cuba this week:

Viva Christ the King! –Down with Communism!” the defiant yells “made the walls of La Cabana prison tremble,” wrote eyewitness to these firing squad massacres, Armando Valladares, who suffered 22 torture-filled years in Castro’s prisons and was later appointed by Ronald Reagan as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Human Rights Commission.

The La Cabana prison and killing field wasn’t far from where Pope Benedict gave his speech this week in Havana, while hosted by the killers.

After the patriot’s yell came, “FUEGO!” And the volley shattered another young patriot. By mid 1961 the defiant yells started unnerving the trigger-pullers and many shots were going wild. The coup de grace, recalls some eyewitnesses, was often delivered to a man (or boy) fully conscious, with eyes open, but convulsed in agony. In the early days of Castroite rule Che Guevara himself reveled in applying these final shots. Earlier while in Cuba’s mountains, Raul Castro specialized in gleefully blasting the skulls apart, say eye-witnesses now in exile.

Most patriots murdered in La Cabana were buried in unmarked graves not far from where Pope Benedict gave his speech this week in Havana, hosted by Raul Castro and with a huge Che Guevara image as backdrop.

"Executions?" Che Guevara exclaimed while addressing the hallowed halls of the U.N. General Assembly Dec. 9, 1964. "Certainly we execute!" he declared, to the claps and cheers of that august body. "And we will continue executing as long as it is necessary! This is a war to the death against the revolution's enemies!"

Catholic youth groups were among the most militant of the Revolution’s enemies and among the first to mount resistance to Castro and Che Guevara’s Stalinization of Cuba. The Soviets then provided Castro’s economic lifeline. So Cuban Catholics be dammed-- and jailed, and tortured, and massacred by firing squads. Nowadays tourists and remittances from the U.S. (many from U.S.-based Catholics) provide the largest lifeline to Castro’s Stalinist regime, right behind Venezuelan subsidies. So obviously a propaganda make-over was in order. And what better propaganda than a visit and blessing from the Pope himself, complete with a condemnation of the “Yankee embargo?”

You simply cannot top this kind of PR, even from Madison Avenue.

“Down With Communism!” was heard again this week in Havana. A young Cuban Black attending the Pope’s speech stood and yelled it in front of the stage. Then he was beaten and dragged off. As we go to press his fate is unknown. But don’t look for this incident mentioned anywhere in the MSM. These “reporters” get Castro-accredited Cuban visas, after all. And as a reminder to those who came of political age after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Stalinist regimes do not issue journalist visas randomly. These coveted visas come with conditions.

Offer your dog a doggie treat. Ask him to beg and roll over first—and you’ll see the nature of these conditions.

“Pray to your Jesus Christ NOW-why dontcha! Ask him to help you NOW why dontcha!—Har-Har-Har!” Such were the taunts by the Pope’s hosts when Cuban Catholics were rounded up en masse at Soviet bayonet- point and herded into forced-labor camps in the mid ‘60’s. The initials for these camps were UMAP, not GULAG, but the conditions were quite similar.

“I never imagined such sadistic people existed in Cuba,” recalls former President of the UMAP Prisoners Association Emilio Izquierdo. “Those prison camps were full of young people, long-hairs, rock& rollers, etc. But the guards-- while beating and torturing us who were arrested for the crime of being active Catholics -- really loved to constantly taunt us with that famous taunt : “Pray to your Jesus NOW!” while laughing. “I don’t see him helping you!—HA-HA!”

“It’s been almost fifty years and I still can’t shake those taunts from my memory…the Pope’s visit, his photo-ops while shaking hands with the Castro brothers, his speech with Che Guevara as backdrop etc….well, let me put it mildly, it was tremendous disappointment for us.”

Emilio Izquierdo today serves as coordinator for the Miami-based group Cuban-American Friends and Patriots, a Tea-Party affiliate.

“I am not Christ or a philanthropist,” wrote Che Guevara in his diaries. “I am all the contrary of a Christ--In fact, if Christ himself stood in my way, I, like Nietzsche, would not hesitate to squish him like a worm.”

Castro’s KGB and STASI- tutored regime prepared for the Pope’s visit carefully. Any unsightly protests would mar the occasion, especially for a regime long-accustomed to preening in front of the international media mirror. And Snow White’s evil stepmother never knew such a trustworthy “mirror-mirror-on-the-wall” as does the Castro regime with its MSM mirror.

Senator Marco Rubio knew about the sickening shenanigans playing out behind the scenes: “The [Cuban] Catholic Church has negotiated a political space for themselves in exchange for their moral imperative,” he explained as a panelist at the Heritage Foundation a few days before the visit. “Last week the [Cuban] Cardinal [Jaime Ortega] invited Castro thugs to come into his church and remove people.”

Some background: two weeks ago, 13 Cuban dissidents “occupied” a Cuban Catholic Church. But their demands hardly resembled those of the “Occupiers” of Wall Street and Washington DC (as did their treatment).

Instead, Cuban dissidents learned in advance that the Pope would be chumming it up with their Stalinist oppressors (including Fidel himself) while very diplomatically side-stepping any meeting with themselves. This incensed the dissidents and prompted their desperate occupation of Havana’s Our Lady of Charity church.

Three days before the Pope’s visit, Cuban Cardinal Jaime Ortega summoned the regime’s KGB-trained police who kicked and clubbed the dissidents out of the church, whereupon all were held for “questioning.”

Amnesty International confirmed the Castroite wave of terror in preparation for the Pope’s visit. “The detention of more than 150 political opponents is yet another example of how authorities in Cuba completely disregard human rights,” they wrote this week.

Andrea Mitchell, on the other hand, seemed characteristically smitten with Castroism. “The advantages of the Cuban system, the low infant-mortality rate… which is legendary around the world,” she reported from Havana this week, courtesy of her Castro-issued “journalist” visa.


Humberto Fontova

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.