Humberto Fontova

U.S. Chamber of Commerce President Thomas Donohue was barely finished calling for the further impoverishment of American workers (i.e. “immigration reform”) when he shows up as a guest of Cuba’s Stalinist regime and gives a speech at the University of Havana calling for a further fleecing of American taxpayers (i.e. ending the so-called Cuba embargo.)

“For years, the US Chamber of Commerce has demanded that our government eliminate the commercial embargo on Cuba. It’s time for a new approach,” proclaimed Donohue this week to an ovation from communist apparatchiks, some who in 1960 stormed into almost 6000 U.S. owned businesses (worth almost $ 2 billion at the time) and stole them all at Soviet gunpoint.

A few American business-owners resisted. One of these was Howard Anderson who owned a filling stations and Jeep dealership (not a casino or brothel, which were relatively rare in pre-Castro Cuba, by the way.) I’ll quote from Anderson v. Republic of Cuba, No. 01-28628 (Miami-Dade Circuit Court, April 13, 2003). "In one final session of torture, Castro's agents drained Howard Anderson's body of blood before sending him to his death at the firing squad."

The Inter-American Law Review classifies Castro’s mass burglary of U.S. property as “the largest uncompensated taking of American property by a foreign government in history.” Rubbing his hands and snickering in triumphant glee, Castro boasted at maximum volume to the entire world that he was freeing Cuba from "Yankee economic slavery!" (Che Guevara's term, actually) and that "he would never repay a penny!"

This is the only promise Fidel Castro has ever kept in his life. Hence the imposition of the Cuba embargo, not that you’d know any of this from the mainstream media, much less from Thomas Donohue.

The burglarized (and often brutalized) American owners filed those property claims against Castro’s regime with the U.S. government. They’re worth $7 billion today--and must be settled before the so called embargo is lifted. This settlement provision for lifting the embargo was codified into U.S. law in 1996 by the Helms-Burton act, which means only Congress can lift the embargo, obviously after a vote. But the votes are not there.

Shouldn’t the President of an outfit like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce be aware of this? Or is Donohue calling for more of Obama’s “executive overreach?”


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.