Cuba

The Yanquis, the Rappers, and the Communist Regime

How 'help' can cripple a movement

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How not to overthrow a dictatorship, if you give a damn about the people you're supposedly helping:

Pathfinder Press

In early 2009, a U.S. government contractor sent a Serbian music promoter to Cuba with these covert marching orders: Recruit one of Havana's most notorious rappers to spark a youth movement against the government.

In communist Cuba, it was a project that could have landed Rajko Bozic in jail. So when he made his pitch to team up with hip hop artist Aldo Rodriguez, Bozic left out the part about his true intentions—or that he was working for the U.S. Agency for International Development….

Documents show USAID repeatedly put innocent Cubans and its own operatives in jeopardy despite warning signs. Authorities detained or interrogated musicians or USAID operatives at least six times, often confiscating their computers and thumb drives, which in some cases contained material linking them to USAID.

Instead of sparking a democratic revolution, it compromised an authentic source of protest that had produced some of the hardest-hitting grassroots criticism since Fidel Castro took power in 1959, an AP investigation found.

That's from the Associated Press's latest story about Washington's efforts to spark a people-power revolt in Cuba. Like the AP's previous reports on the subject, it's an object lesson in how outside "help" can cripple rather than strengthen a dissident cause.

For more on Washington's poorly conceived activities in Cuba, go here. For more on rebellious Cuban music, go here. And just to show that these issues are not new, here's an 11-year-old AP dispatch about USAID's activities on the island, in which "some veteran activists say the money only gives Fidel Castro's government ammunition to persecute dissidents, such as the 75 sentenced in recent days for allegedly conspiring with the United States."

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  1. Can’t they try sending Kanye?

    1. Finally a government initiative I can get behind. Can they send his wife too?

  2. It’s not hard!

    Communism doesn’t work! Just step aside and let it collapse!!!!!

    I swear if someone detonated a small neutron bomb in Washington DC that killed off all the CIA/Foreign Service Officers/State Department Whiz Kids, the U.S would see an immediate benefit of an increase in it’s international standing.

    They remind me of something my CPO used to say in the Navy, “those assholes could fuck up getting a blow job in a whore-house”.

    1. LOL my Senior Chief would say “they’re like a monkey trying to fuck a football”.

    2. If they really want socialism, they should let the US take over.

    3. It’s not hard!

      Communism doesn’t work! Just step aside and let it collapse!!!!!

      Strategy seems to be working great in N Korea.

      Also, why then did the USSR collapse through the 80s and 90s when confronted by a belligerent President? Per blowback theory, shouldn’t it have gotten more belligerent and even stronger?

      Perhaps an economic collapse is insufficient to cause a political or military collapse.

  3. So a federal bureaucracy doesn’t know how to spark a people-power youth movement? Let me put on my meticulously maintained pre-1959 shocked face.

    1. Well, the exploding cigar attempt didn’t work, so they had to go with Plan B.

  4. The US Government, when it absolutely, positively needs to be Fucked Up.

  5. “We salute those noble warriors for freedom, and will honor their sacrifices in our own furtive manner.”

  6. The Castro regime’s greatest ally was the Soviet Union. But their second greatest is the US and its bungling, hamfisted efforts to undermine them. One of the most crucial things an authoritarian regime needs to maintain power is an external enemy to blame all of its shortcomings and justify all of its brutality. The US plays the part perfectly.

    1. USAIS: U.S. Agency for Increasing Dictatorships

      1. I went to a public school.

  7. The U.S. government doesn’t care about its own citizens, and will manure a field with their corpses for trivial reasons. So I’m not surprised that they would risk the lives of other countries’ citizens.

  8. Blue jeans and rock ‘n’ roll.

    We waste all this effort on isolating Cuba, but if we’d open up travel, the people would there would see the economic value the visitors to the island have, and things would change on their own.

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