ELIAN VS. CLINTON’S INJUSTICE DEPARTMENT
by Agustín Blázquez with the collaboration of Jaums Sutton
As the end approaches for the Clinton Administration, what infinitesimal atoms of morality are left are dissipating rapidly. The bad faith of this administration in relation to the fate of an innocent 6-year-old child has reached a degree of shame that is making the U.S. appear as part of a despicable inquisition tribunal ready to send a helpless victim to the fires of hell.
It is difficult to find strong enough words to condemn the administration’s behavior within the realm of decency without resorting to obscenities. But we must not descend to their level.
If Clinton and his detestable henchmen - apparently in negotiations under the table with Castro – succeed in committing this injustice, they will also succeed in writing one of the most shameful pages in the history of this nation.
Clinton’s unconditional server, his appointed Attorney General, Janet Reno (remember Wako?) has done the utmost to prevent the Florida courts from hearing the case of Elián González. Obviously, Reno and her Justice Department as well as Doris Meissner, the Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Department (INS) have worked overtime in what appears to be a denial of the due process of law of a 6 year old child. What could be more aberrant than that? Is that what the U.S. has become under this corrupt administration?
Larry Daley, of Corvallis, Oregon, commented, "The reasons for this attitude are not clear; however one can now rationally speculate that Havana has more of an influence on the White House than is appropriate." An anonymous source in Washington, D.C. said, "Reno and the INS are unbelievable. I think his relatives, like Martin Luther King, will have to go to jail. I advocate NON-VIOLENT DISOBEDIENCE. No riots or - threats of riots in Miami. Think Gandhi. Make Reno like those Southern sheriffs with dogs and water hoses. Cubans need sympathy from the general public."
It is a travesty that Elián González (whose mother died to give him the freedom and opportunities he would lack in Castro’s hell hole), is being cold heartily and mercilessly forced to a life of totalitarian despair by the president of the country which represents liberty and democracy.
Clinton wants to send Elián to his father under the direct control of Castro and his cronies. A father acting under duress and prevented from doing what any father in the free world would have done: take the first flight to the U.S. accompanied by his current wife, daughter and parents to hug and love the son who went through a terrible ordeal.
What is highly objectionable is that the Clinton Administration is planning to give Elián on a silver platter to Castro who will raise him in a country that encourages hatred and intolerance to freedom, democracy, religion and individuality.
It is known that Elián’s father has stated in the past his desire to escape Cuba "even in a bathtub." It is known that he knew that Elián and his mother had escaped Cuba. He called his relatives in Miami and said that his son "was on his way," and asked them to take care of him. According to an affidavit, the telephone records show those calls were made before Elián was found. After he was rescued, he called again asking them to "take care of him," not to request his return to Cuba. Why does he now say that Elián should be returned to Cuba? The overwhelming interference in this private family affair of the almighty tyrant of Cuba.
To a shocked American audience, Elián’s father said on ABC’s "Nightline" on January 13, "Perhaps I might be a little bit crazy because I feel like braking the necks of all those [Miami] SOBs. Sometimes what I would like to do is go down there with a rifle to get rid of I don’t know how many people." Is this the father that the Clinton Administration wants Elián returned to? As to the use of force to take his son from the U.S. he said that he "would be more than willing." What kind of father would risk the life of his 6-year-old this way? Is he speaking from his heart or following orders?
Now we see where all the threats and violent comments come from. On March 26 in a five-hour speech to university students in Havana, Castro listed some suggestions supposedly received from across the island calling for an "armed assault" by Cuban military inside the U.S. to rescue Elián." (Never mind that his mother brought him to this country.) And "If the United States doesn’t respond to reason, we have to get Elián back by force. If they want war, let’s have a war." An anonymous source in Washington, D.C. commented, "Shouldn't someone make a stink over Castro's threat to send armed men to kidnap the boy?"
But an anonymous source in Miami said, "Castro doesn’t have to send somebody to kidnap the boy. Miami is filled with his collaborators and paid employees at his service. If he did not do it the day of the interview with the ‘heroic grandmothers,’ it was because of the tight surveillance, but now it may as well happen. But it may not be necessary, since Clinton made a pact with Castro quite some time ago. They are made for each other."
Castro went on in the speech saying that people are calling for a blockade of the U.S. Interests Section in Havana, cutting off the water and electricity and taking it over "letting nobody enter or leave." Some sort of copycat Iranian-style hostage situation. Or "another Mariel". While hiding behind the idea that none of these suggestions came from him, the threat to Clinton was loud and clear.
So the Clinton Administration cowardly reacts to Castro’s blackmail techniques, continuing to harass Elián with the threat of his deportation by force to a country where his and his family’s human rights will be institutionally violated. A Jewish boy escaping the Nazis would not be send back. Why should a Cuban boy escaping Communists be treated differently?
Cuban exiles in the U.S., as well as abroad – because of their first-hand experience living inside Castro’s Cuba – are overwhelmingly united about what is best for Elián. But the situation Cuban exiles have being confronting inside the U.S. under the Clinton Administration resembles more and more the shameful discrimination that blacks suffered before they exploded in the civil unrest of the sixties.
Being maligned and derided by the current administration and generally by the U.S. media for wanting freedom, democracy and human rights for Cuba is highly insensitive and offensive. Cubans in the U.S. have proven to be hard working and prosperous law-abiding citizens, but enough is enough and everything has a limit.
According to Diane Sawyer, who was the first American journalist to interview Elián (seen on ABC’s "Good Morning America" on March 27 and 28), asked him if he wishes to return to Cuba. He said, "no." When she asked if he wants to be with his father, he said "yes," but he wants to be with him in Miami. Castro, who does not want the truth to be known, called Sawyer’s interview "monstrous and sickening."
In what it appears to be censorship on ABC’s part, it is puzzling why they decided not to show on TV his actual answers and reactions and settled instead on Sawyer’s description of the answers. I hope that out of respect for the freedom of expression of a child in a grave danger of being the victim of a major injustice, his own words will be allowed on prime time. And if Castro and the Clinton Administration do not like it, so be it. America has the right to know before it is too late and a black page in our history is written.
Mr. Blázquez is the Producer/Director of the documentaries
COVERING CUBA & CUBA: THE PEARL OF THE ANTILLES