Wednesday, March 30, 2011

LPP NEWS First Draft...

Raul's Smirk Says It All

Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Below is a very telling picture of Cuban dictator Raul Castro, as he sees off U.S. President Jimmy Carter at the airport in Havana.

Castro is obviously very satisfied with Carter's visit.

Meanwhile, as of last night, two of the pro-democracy activists who tried to hold a protest outside the Capitol building, Eriberto Liranza Romero and Boris Rodriguez Jimenez, remain unaccounted for.

Thus, there are two more political prisoners in Cuba today than when Carter arrived on Monday.

Great job, Mr. President.

Kustom Krates

Statement from U.S.-Cuba Democracy PAC

Statement from the US-Cuba Democracy PAC on President Carter's Call for the Release of the "Cuban Five":
In a press conference today from Havana, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter missed an opportunity to call for the freedom of the Cuban people from the brutal Castro dictatorship. Instead, he chose to criticize U.S. policy and call for the release of five Cuban agents ("the Cuban Five") convicted by U.S. federal juries of espionage and, in one case, conspiracy to commit murder.

In doing so, President Carter has tragically implied an equivalency between the "Cuban Five" and the case of American development worker Alan Gross, who was unjustly imprisoned by the Castro regime for helping Cuba's Jewish community connect to the Internet -- a fundamental human right enshrined under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

President Carter's unfortunate remarks are a huge disservice to efforts for Mr. Gross's release and to the cause of human rights internationally.

New York Congressman Denounces Carter

U.S. Rep. Grimm (a former FBI Special Agent) Denounces President Carter's Cuba Trip to Visit Castro

Carter should stand-up for America and try to free captive U.S. citizen, instead of getting friendly with dictator
U.S. Congressman Michael Grimm (R-NY) released the following statement on former President Jimmy Carter's 3-day visit to Cuba:

"President Carter's trip to Cuba should have been an opportunity to denounce the atrocities carried out over almost of half a century of a dictatorship rule. Instead of trying to create a bond with Castro, Carter should be taking a stand for America and the spread of freedom and democracy to one of our most oppressed neighbors. He can start by calling for the release of U.S. government contractor Alan Gross, who is being held captive by Castro's oppressive regime, and speak out against the reprehensible acts that have gone on for far too long.

It's disheartening that Cuba has become a symbol of everything that is anti-America. What was once a beautiful country full of life and aspiration has become a deteriorated nation, isolated from its neighbors. The limits to freedom that were imposed by Fidel Castro over a half a century ago, are now carried on in full force by his brother. I stand with all Cuban-Americans, in denouncing the Castro legacy of dictatorship that continues to suppress the freedoms, health, and livelihood of the Cuban people." 
S: Capitol Hill Cubans

Jimmy Carter Starts 3-day Visit to Cuba ...

Carter visits Cuba to improve bilateral ties CCTV News ...

Former US President Jimmy Carter is in Cuba for a three-day visit.

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Libya and the latest news about the Libyan Vs. president Muammar Gaddafi ...

Adml Samuel Locklear, who has joint responsibility for enforcing the no-fly zone, said that, according to US intelligence, Gaddafi had launched attacks on the rebel-held western city of Misurata, where four children were reportedly killed by shelling yesterday.

Libyan woman alleges rape by government troops ...

A Libyan woman has told journalists in Tripoli how she was allegedly raped by government troops.

Libya foreign minister 'defects'

Libya's Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa speaking at a press conference 
Britain says Moussa Koussa is quitting Colonel Gaddafi's regime
Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa is in Britain and "no longer willing" to work for Colonel Muammar Gaddafi's regime, the Foreign Office says.
He flew in from Tunisia on a non-commercial flight and was questioned for several hours by British officials.
The Foreign Office in London called on other members of the Libyan government to abandon Colonel Gaddafi.
His apparent defection comes as rebels in Libya are retreating from former strongholds along the eastern coast.
The rebels have now lost the key oil port of Ras Lanuf and the nearby town of Bin Jawad, and are also in full retreat from Brega.
In the west, the rebel-held town of Misrata is still reportedly coming under attack from pro-Gaddafi troops, reports say.
'Own free will' A British Foreign Office spokesperson said: "We can confirm that Moussa Koussa arrived at Farnborough Airport on 30 March from Tunisia. He travelled here under his own free will.
"He has told us that he is resigning his post. We are discussing this with him and we will release further detail in due course.
"Moussa Koussa is one of the most senior figures in Gaddafi's government and his role was to represent the regime internationally - something that he is no longer willing to do.
"We encourage those around Gaddafi to abandon him and embrace a better future for Libya that allows political transition and real reform that meets the aspirations of the Libyan people."
UK intelligence officials who hope that his deep knowledge of the Libyan regime will help bring about its early end, says the BBC's diplomatic correspondent Humphrey Hawksley.
Mr Koussa arrived in London on what is believed to a British military plane, our correspondent adds.
A senior US administration official, speaking to AFP News agency on condition of anonymity, said: "This is a very significant defection and an indication that people around Gaddafi think the writing's on the wall."
Earlier, British Foreign Secretary William Hague announced that five Libyan diplomats were being expelled from the country.
He told MPs that the five, who include the military attache, "could pose a threat" to Britain's security.
About-turn The BBC's Ben Brown in the eastern coastal town of Ajdabiya says the rebels simply cannot compete with the discipline and firepower of Col Gaddafi's forces.
BBC's Ben Brown on consequences of arming rebels
He says the current situation is a dramatic about-turn for the rebels who, over the weekend, had seized a string of towns along the coast and seemed to be making good progress with the help of coalition air strikes.
Most reports suggested the rebels had fled back to Ajdabiya, and some witnesses said civilians had begun to flee further east towards the rebel-held city of Benghazi.
Maj Gen Suleiman Mahmoud, the second-in-command for the rebels, told the BBC that rebels forces needed time, patience and help to organise themselves.
"Our problem we need help - communication, radios, we need weapons," he said, adding that the rebels had a strategy but fighters did not always obey orders.
He also said allied liaison officers were working with the rebels to organise raids.
Human Rights Watch has accused Col Gaddafi's forces of laying both anti-personnel and anti-vehicle mines during the current conflict after a discovery of what it said were dozens of mines on the eastern outskirts of Ajdabiya.
Covert action France and the US say they are sending envoys to Benghazi to meet the interim administration.
And an international conference on Libya in London has agreed to set up a contact group involving Arab governments to co-ordinate help for a post-Gaddafi Libya.
The US and Britain have suggested the UN resolution authorising international action in Libya could also permit the supply of weapons.
This message was reinforced by British Prime Minister David Cameron in Parliament on Wednesday.
"UN [Security Council Resolution] 1973 allows all necessary measures to protect civilians and civilian-populated areas, and our view is this would not necessarily rule out the provision of assistance to those protecting civilians in certain circumstances," he said. "We do not rule it out, but we have not taken the decision to do so."
Meanwhile, US media reports say President Barack Obama has authorised covert support for the Libyan rebels. The CIA and White House have both declined to comment on the reports.
Several thousand people have been killed and thousands wounded since the uprising against Col Gaddafi's rule began more than six weeks ago.
Updated map showing Gaddafi forces advance for 30 March
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