Monday, November 1, 2010

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Le Petit Richelieu Strikes Again

Monday, November 1, 2010
Cuba's Cardinal Jaime Ortega has just issued another press release.

Is it on the 13 political prisoners (of the 52 negotiated for release last July) that refuse to be forcibly banished abroad and, therefore, remain in prison?

Is it on this weekend's arrest of Reina Luisa Tamayo, the mother of deceased political prisoner, Orlando Zapata Tamayo, along with 39 other dissidents (many of whom remain unaccounted for)?


Since current events (above) have been reflective of the Castro regime's relentless repression, the Cardinal immediately announced three other political prisoners who have accepted banishment to Spain -- undoubtedly, we wish them all well.

Touché mon Cardenal - your diversionary tactics are remarkable.

S: Capitol Hill Cubans

Theodore Sorensen obituary

Lawyer who became chief speechwriter and a close political adviser to President John F Kennedy
Theodore C Sorensen 
Sorensen, seen here in July 1960, was devastated by President Kennedy's death, describing it as 'the most deeply traumatic experience of my life'. Photograph: AP
Theodore Sorensen, universally known as Ted, was one of those men whose brilliant career and great talents were partially clouded by anonymity. Even before his boss, John Fitzgerald Kennedy, became president of the US, Sorensen, who has died aged 82, had to handle tricky questions about how much credit he deserved for a book for which Kennedy won a Pulitzer prize. His share in his master's success was even more acutely raised by the question of his precise role in writing Kennedy's resonant inaugural address of January 1961.
The speech is now acclaimed as one of the classics of American political rhetoric, fit to stand with the outpourings of Daniel Webster, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin Roosevelt. Almost every schoolchild of the 1960s was brought up on that speech, with its key invocation, "Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man."
It was characteristic of Sorensen's modesty, and of his wit, and no doubt of his boredom with the subject, that when – many years after Kennedy's assassination in November 1963 – an interviewer asked him what his part had been in the writing of that speech, he replied: "Ask not!"
In 1957 the well-known Washington journalist Drew Pearson, known as a muckraker, pronounced of Kennedy's book, Profiles in Courage, published the previous year: "Jack Kennedy is … the only man in history that I know who won a Pulitzer prize on a book which was ghostwritten for him." Kennedy fiercely denied it, and Sorensen signed an affidavit confirming Kennedy's story that the book was all his own work.
Later Kennedy offered, and Sorensen accepted, a substantial sum as his share in the proceeds of the book. It is generally accepted that Sorensen did in fact contribute very substantial drafts to the writing of Profiles.
The same questions hang over the authorship of Kennedy's inaugural address. It is agreed that several gifted hands, including that of Adlai Stevenson, contributed to it, and that Kennedy dictated it to his secretary, Evelyn Lincoln, on a plane, using a draft written for him by Sorensen. The dispute centres on how much Kennedy used that draft.
In 2005, two rival scholars, after poring over the speech and its antecedents line by line and almost word by word, came to two opposite conclusions. Thurston Clarke proclaimed that new evidence showed that Kennedy was indeed the author. Richard J Tofel, on the other hand, an executive at the Wall Street Journal, found that Kennedy was responsible for no more than 14 of the speech's 51 sentences, and that "if we must identify" one man as the author of the speech, "that man must surely be not John Kennedy but Theodore Sorensen". It seems, though, that the famous "ask not" trope itself had its origin in Kennedy's years at the Choate school, a boarding establishment in Connecticut, whose headteacher liked to urge his pupils to ask "not what Choate does for you, but what you can do for Choate".
Sorensen was born in Lincoln, the capital of Nebraska. The son of a Danish father, who went on to be attorney general of the state, and a Russian-Jewish mother, he was brought up a Unitarian. He was educated at Lincoln high school and at the University of Nebraska, where he graduated first in his class. He later took a law degree at that university's college of law. He was strongly influenced by the radical tradition in the state, embodied by Senator George Norris, and was the organiser of the state's first chapter, or branch, of the liberal group Americans for Democratic Action.
In 1951 he moved to Washington, where he worked for the National Security Agency and briefly for Senator Paul Douglas of Illinois, an economist and staunch liberal, who introduced him to Kennedy when the latter reached the Senate in 1953. So when he became Kennedy's chief speechwriter in 1960, he had already worked very closely for eight years with Kennedy, travelled with him, shared his political aims and ambitions and acquired a deep and instinctive understanding of Kennedy's sometimes idiosyncratic political philosophy.
Sorensen's role went well beyond that of a speechwriter, and of course many other hands contributed to the vast oeuvre of the candidate's, then the president's, speaking. His official title in the White House was special counsel, and that entailed a certain amount of legal work. But he was also an important counsellor on domestic policies and politics, and he was an influential member of the executive committee – Ex-Comm – that Kennedy set up to advise him during the Cuban missile crisis of 1962, the closest the US came to a nuclear war with the Soviet Union. Indeed, in later life Sorensen said that the work of which he was most proud was his contribution to the messages the president sent to the Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, during that crisis.
Of the attempted invasion of Cuba the previous year, Sorensen said: "Jack Kennedy was devastated by the fiasco at the Bay of Pigs. He was not accustomed to failure in politics or in life." He felt personally responsible for the death of the Cuban exiles who had been placed in moral danger by the US. And he was also annoyed with himself for not checking out the experts' story more carefully. He was "angry at the Central Intelligence Agency for having sold him a bill of goods about a plan … they told him would lead to an uprising of the Cuban people – all of which turned out to be nonsense".
Sorensen himself was utterly devastated by Kennedy's death. It was, he said, "the most deeply traumatic experience of my life ... I had never considered a future without him." He sent in a letter of resignation to President Lyndon Johnson the day after the assassination, but was persuaded to stay on. He actually drafted Johnson's stylish early speeches, but at the end of February 1964 he resigned, the first member of the Kennedy administration to do so. Yet he never revealed the open resentment with which some of the Kennedy loyalists greeted Johnson. Instead he sat down and wrote his biography of his hero, Kennedy (1965), which managed to stay just the right side of hero-worship.
In 1968 Sorensen was an important adviser to Senator Robert Kennedy when he ran for president in fiercely contested Democratic primaries against vice-president Hubert Humphrey and Senator Eugene McCarthy. In 1969, however, he was one of a number of veteran Kennedy loyalists who advised the youngest Kennedy brother, Senator Edward Kennedy, after the Chappaquiddick incident, when Sorensen turned his speechwriting talents to help the senator explain how he failed for some hours to give a reason as to how a young woman had drowned in his car after a party.
The episode is said to have told against him in 1977 when the incoming President Jimmy Carter nominated him as director of the CIA, but withdrew the nomination when he learned that the Chappaquiddick involvement might prevent his approval by the Senate; his registration as a conscientious objector with his draft board just after the second world war may also have been a factor.
In 1970, Sorensen ran for the Senate himself, but was defeated in an acrimonious three-cornered New York state primary. By then, although he remained active on the periphery of politics, he had become a partner in the prominent New York law firm Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison. The work was no sinecure. Sorensen developed a practice as an adviser to US corporations attempting to expand their operations overseas as well as to a number of foreign governments, including several of the Central Asian states formed out of the Soviet Union. Among the foreign leaders he advised were President Anwar Sadat of Egypt and Nelson Mandela.
He is said to have helped President Barack Obama with his inaugural speech in 2009. In 2001 Sorensen suffered a stroke, which seriously damaged his eyesight, but he continued to be involved in a number of organisations, including the Council on Foreign Relations and other charitable and public bodies, until a second stroke in October 2010.
He is survived by his third wife, Gillian, a former under-secretary of the UN, their daughter, and three sons from his first marriage. His first two marriages ended in divorce.
• Theodore Chaikin Sorensen, lawyer, political adviser and speechwriter, born 28 May 1928; died 31 October 2010

Cuba to release longest-held political prisoner

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba will free its longest-held political prisoner, jailed since 1985, and send him to Spain as the government continues to ship opponents out of the country.
The Catholic Church said on Monday that Cuba had agreed to release three more prisoners, including Adrian Alvarez, 44, who has been serving a 30-year sentence for stealing rifles while in the Cuban military.
He was allegedly taking the weapons with plans to launch a military action against the government.
The three prisoners were not included among 52 that Cuban officials agreed to let go in a July deal with the church.
So far, 39 of those original 52 have been released, and most of those still behind bars are said to be resisting the government's demand that they go to Spain.
In the meantime, Cuba has agreed to release 11 other prisoners, bringing to 50 the total number freed since July.
The releases have relaxed international pressure on Cuba that followed the February death of jailed dissident Orlando Zapata Tamayo, who died during a hunger strike for improved prison conditions.
Cuban President Raul Castro is said to want to free all political prisoners to end one of Cuba's longstanding problems with the international community.
The Cuban Commission for Human Rights has said there are about 100 political prisoners behind bars.
(Reporting by Rosa Tania Valdes; editing by Jeff Franks and Stacey Joyce)

Read more at the Realcubablog ...

Dr. Darsi Ferrer and three other dissidents arrested during a Consenso Cívico event
Oct. 31 - Dr. Darsi Ferrer told Radio Martí that police officers dressed in Civilian clothes interrupted an event organized by Consenso Cívico and arrested him, and 3 other Black Cuban dissidents, Manuel Cuesta Morúa, Leonardo Calvo Cárdenas and Juan Antonio Madrazo Luna.
They were all released a few hours later.
Representatives of Cuba's civil society and several diplomats  had been invited to the Consenso Cívico event, which was taken place at the house of Aida Valdés Santana.
Dr. Ferrer said that during the meeting they were going to analyze the different UN human rights accords that have been signed by Cuba, but that continue to be ignored by the Castro regime.
Listen to the audio of the conversation between Dr. Ferrer and Radio Martí.
Click here to see the photos of a previous Consenso Cívico event at the same house in Havana.
Radio Martí reports that Reina Luisa Tamayo and a group of followers was attacked by government mobs
Oct. 31 - Reina Luisa Tamayo, mother of Cuban martyr Orlando Zapata Tamayo, told Radio Martí that she and a group of members of the Ladies in White and other dissidents, were attacked on Sunday when they tried to visit the cemetery in Banes where her son is buried.
Reina Luisa told Radio Martí that when they marched to attend Mass at the Iglesia de la Caridad in Banes, they were being followed by mobs organized by Cuba's state security but that they didn't block their access to the church.
However, when they left the church and tried to visit her son's grave, she and a group of about 40 people who were accompanying her were attacked by the mob.
Reina Luisa told Radio Martí, that the pro-Castro mob began throwing rocks at them and several of those accompany her were also beaten. Click here to listen to the audio of the phone call from Reina Luisa Tamayo to Radio Martí Audio
Blogger Yoani Sánchez reported on her Twitter account that Reina Luisa and several other dissidents who tried to march to the cemetery were arrested. It is not known whether they were later released or not.
S: Real Cuba

November 01, 2010

Three prisoners not from the 2003 roundup will be sent to Spain, Catholic Church says

(pic) Three more prisoners not from the 2003 roundup of 75 dissidents will be freed soon and sent to Spain, the Cuban Catholic Church announced Monday.
According to The Associated Press, the Church identified them as Adrián Álvarez Arencibia, Ramón Basulto García and Joel Torres González.
Imprisoned in 1985, Álvarez was serving a 30-year sentence for espionage; Basulto was sentenced in 1994 to 30 years years for piracy (hijacking). Torres does not appear on the lists of Cuban dissidents or political prisoners. His criminal record was not revealed.
S: Cuban Colada

Breaking News Update ...

Indicated Writer matter   
Monday, November 1, 2010 1:29

Reina Luisa Tamayo, mother of deceased political prisoner Orlando Zapata  Tamayo, and
dozens of dissidents have been arrested, strongly beaten and stoned to death
Sunday morning in Banes, Holguín, sources with the internal opposition.
The incident occurred when Tamayo, activists, several Ladies Support and white go to
the cemetery trying to visit Zapata's tomb.
Barbara Ortiz Píriz, Tamayo neighbor and witness to what happened, described as
"terrible" facts, told the opposition Martha Beatriz Roque.
"I attacked without me being involved. I went up like wild beasts  those of the
(brigade) Rapid Response terrorist told me (...) but that is nonsense. Marta
(Díaz Rondón), Reina  and others guys that was terrible, terrible. They fell from the
buses and, as they were falling, were 'killing' was not beating, was 'killing' that life
started, "said Ortiz, Democratic Alliance member of the East.
"The guys at Guantanamo, wiped them out. We doubled the arms and thrown to the floor
as if they were animals, "said reference, inter alia, Rolando Rodríguez Lobaina opponent.
"Reina  heard her screaming from inside the bus," he added.
According to Radio Martí, the detainees were about 39. Ortiz said the State Security
used three buses to move to the opposition.
And "in my life seen so many patrols here," he said.
Shortly before his arrest, Reina Luisa Tamayo had denounced statements Radio Martí 
 that  peaceful opponents, Damas de Blanco and support the accompanied were stoned
and beaten by groups convened by the Security.
There was "throwing stones and punches against the brothers," said Tamayo and
described as "rat killer" members of the State Security  so-called
"Rapid Response Brigades."
Ortiz said a child was hit in the eye.
JOURNAL OF CUBA made several attempts to communicate with activists Tamayo
near, but in some cases mobile phones are off and in others, records show that
numbers-contacted on previous occasions without mishap, are wrong.
From St. Germain, Exilda Arjona, wife of writer and journalist independent
Luis Felipe Rojas, CUBA JOURNAL contributor, said  This was arrested at his home.
According Arjona, the family was under surveillance for several days, this Sunday,
just after 13:00 (local time), a major who was identified Charles and said he was
"ahead of the operation" was presented at the Rojas house arrest.
"He came with such bad shape that use them, rebuked Luis Felipe, me, and my uncle
who is an elderly gentleman," Arjona said.
He added that the most threatened his uncle Charles, owner of the house, with
making a record in the coming days.
Arjona considered that the arrest trying to prevent Rojas serve as a source of activists
and media who seek information on what happens in Banes.

Taken from the JOURNAL OF CUBA
S: Cuba Libre Digital / translate LPPNEWS FrontLine Results
Last updated on Monday, November 1, 2010 1:33