Friday, August 3, 2007

The Real Brazil Shows Its True Colors


During the 1950s sociologists and other peddlers of futurism held up Brazil as the hope of the world. They popularized the myth that Brazilians had conquered racism through amalgamation and that their burnished bronze color was destined to become the universal hue of humanity. To go with its "Brave New World" image a Stalinist architect named Oscar Niemeyer designed a new capital for Brazil, called Brasilia, which was the apogee of modernism and its ripest fruit: it was a lot of things, including the inspiration for the "Jetsons," but mostly it was uninhabitable. The future, then, was uninhabitable, yet the capital and seat of government was moved to this concrete jungle in the midst of a real jungle. If Washington, D.C. had forever remained an infested swamp crowned with colonnades then I think the history of the U.S. would have been very different. Concrete walls do a prison make and Brazil's officialdom has lived in a prison of their own making for 50 years, still trying to exemplify "modernism" in a post-modernist age which only admires its headonism.

If Brazil is the future of humanity, then humanity is doomed. Yes, Brazilians may be "amalgamated" to a large extent, but that has only increased the distinctions between them. Their bronze is parsed into a hundred different shades, which itself is meaningless because only white (or near white) counts. It is a society of empty fascades and emptier stomachs, which by virtue of the size of its territory and its infinite natural wealth, unmatched by any country on earth, should be an inexhaustable horn of plenty for all its inhabitants.

Can it surprise anyone that such a country, run by such men, can be capable of disgracing itself before the world by denying political asylum to those whom they have hosted in their country under the banner of friendship and Pan-American solidarity? Oh, yes, they are quite capable; no people hold human life so cheap.

Brazil is the land of libertinism, which is the cheapest "circus" that rulers can offer their people. Liberty is, of course, another thing. Liberty expands man's horizons; libertinism narrows them. Liberty holds human life dear; libertinism holds nothing dear but the pursuit of pleasure. Libertinism caters to man's animal nature; liberty to everything that distinguishes him from the animals. Liberty is the triumph of the human spirit; libertinism its death. If libertinism (also known animalism) is the future, then Brazil holds the key to it.

It is no surprise, then, that such a country, built upon such a foundation, should turn deaf ears to the pleas of enslaved men, or even connive to return them to slavery, in violation of every principle of international law and — useless even to mention this — of what used to be called sportsmanship.

Boxers Guillermo Rigondeaux (25) and Erislandy Lara (24), both black Cubans, must have believed that a mulatto nation as Brazil would embrace them as brothers. But the reality is otherwise; any white country would have been afraid to deport them to Cuba for fear of appearing racist. Brazil, which does not labor under the white man's burden of guilt though it is ruled by white men, would as lief feed them to the crocodiles as return them to Castro.

The "future" never looked so bad.



[Pictured at the top is Brazil's "Pantheon to Liberty" and below its National Cathedral, both in Brasilia, its aging"futuristic" capital].

38 comments:

Charlie Bravo said...

Precisely, Manuel, Brazil is responding to the call of kasstro with reflections of the 19th century, when the bandeirantes chased fugitive slaves to resell them to the plantation owners. This sounds eerily familiar now....

Fantomas said...

they will parade the boxers in front of the national tv in cuba....they will be drugged and blackmailed

will say were kidnaped by the german mafiosos, that they did not want to defect, that they love fidel and the revolution...

i doubt very much they will fight again outside of cuba


another castro circus to unite all cubans

a kinder and gentler fantomas pasando por mi vieja casa de locos

Vana said...

Interesting insight Manuel, very enjoyable read, those two boxers will be sent back to be shamed, shunned, and maybe arrive to an acto de repudio, it is so sad to me, every time I read about one of us being sent back, you would think they would at least give shelter to profesional players, but of course we all know, they are in cahoots with the castros

Fantomas said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

There is a Cuban handball player who defected and asked for asylum, and his case is being reviewed. He is out and about training with a team that pffered him a contract while his case is being reviewed. The boxers in question had their passports revoked according the the embassy, but Cuba could not provide this info to the federal police here when they asked them to be picked up. The Cuban govt then sent copies of the visas, which were only good through the end of the Pan Am games, which made their stay in Brazil "illegal". The police claims that the boxers said they want to go back. Anyones guess what happened, but the police here are falling back on the case of the handball player. The press here in Brasil is reporting this almost every newscast with another update, keeps asking why the handball player can stay but they go back. There are some issues to resolve now, Brasil says they won't pay for the flight back, the Cubans have to pay for it. they also want Cuba to "reissue" their passports if in fact they were revoked. The question remains, why the handball player asked for asylum and is being allowed to stay, while the boxers are going back.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

We know the boxers are black.

What color is the handball player?

There must have been dozens if not a hundred or more attempted defections in Brazil which Castro and the Brazilian police thwarted and kept under wraps. There is no other explanation for the premature departure of the Cuban team from the Pan-American Games even before the closing ceremonies, indeed, even before some players had been awarded their medals.

Are there really so many Cuban refugees in Brazil that its government has to disgrace itself before the world to exclude two applicants for asylum?

If there are any anti-Castro Cubans in Brazil like yourself, why haven't they offered to help these men? Why haven't they even protested? I should not like to think that it is because they have adopted the mores of the Brazilians and turned their backs on their countrymen.

Or, is it rather a case of: Go along to get along?

Well, I see that you had no comments on my post about Brazil, which pretty much says it all — for both of us.

Fantomas said...

manny do your homeworkk..the handball player is also black

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

fantomas:

Black in Brazil is not the same as black here. The Cuban boxers may be considered black there and the handball player not based on their actual pigmentation rather than their ancestry.

This subject, fantomas, like most subjects, is beyond your scope.

Why don't you lend a hand to Val in his campaign to eradicate the "Che" sandwich? Maybe you can eat them all (if Val, Henry & George don't get there first).

Fantomas said...

This subject, fantomas, like most subjects, is beyond your scope.

lol

you meant your microscope brain

joep said...

This is not commonly known, but when Cuban athletes (who are by default members of the Cuban national team for their particular sport) travel abroad, there is very interesting stuff in play.

Firstly, all the athletes are investigated by political police once their names are submitted by their federation's president through INDER to whatever the security office is that handles this stuff. Only those athletes deemed least likely to defect are allowed to travel, but...is anyone not likely to consider defection at some point when finally outside of Cuba and in a free country?

However, the athletes receive a special passport issued to them through INDER that is somehow not valid in the same way as a normal non-athlete, private citizen's passport would be. This is to discourage defection by basically saddling the athlete with a travel document of limited, short validity that would not serve very well for private, individual travel in the time after defection.

Finally, the Cuban athlete NEVER has control of their passport beyond the moments when they enter or exit a country. This is again to control them and discourage defection - when your coach or the state security agent attached to your delegation is in possession of your passport, it is very difficult to defect - how will you get out the country you defect in if you have no papers?...

daniel said...

Manuel

First off, as has been pointed out, Rafael Dacosta is black. Thanks for playing the race card though. Your prize is this: you know NOTHING about race classification in Brazil. Don't care to go into how wrong you are there so lets move on to your reply.

Please provide ONE SHRED of evidence to back up your claim that

"There must have been dozens if not a hundred or more attempted defections in Brazil which Castro and the Brazilian police thwarted and kept under wraps."

Much like you asked for a picture of a Cuban burning the American flag, PROVE this. I CHALLENGE you to show ONE DOCUMENTED CASE where a Cuban SPECIFICALLY asked for asylum and "the police thwarted him and kept it under wraps" as you claim. See, where I live, and the surrounding reigon, there are about 50 or so Cubans (including wife/ husband, kids) and EVERYONE says when they asked for asylum the police/ government was helpful. If you would like to speak to each and everyone of these individuals, you pay for the flight and you can stay at my place, how is that? The difference between the handball player and the boxers is the handball player has asked for asylum. For whatever reason, the boxers have not.

You mention the early exit of the Cuban delegation. The Brazilian press picked up on this, and as much said it was because the Cuban officials feared a mass defection.

You said "Are there really so many Cuban refugees in Brazil that its government has to disgrace itself before the world to exclude two applicants for asylum?" WRONG They HAVE NOT asked for asylum, again, get this sticky point through your head THEY HAVE NOT ASKED FOR ASYLUM. They granted it to Dacosta because he asked for it. They granted it to the Cubans I know here because THEY ASKED FOR IT.

You accuse me and other anti Castro Cubans of not offering to help. WTF do you know about what I have and have not done? I apologize for not advising you of my actions earlier, but I did in fact call an officer with the Fed Police in Rio, and I am told, these guys just have not asked for asylum. They HAVE NOT been visited (prior to the initial interviews) by ANY Cuban officials. They have been interviewed one on one and as a pair. Neither one has asked for asylum. They (the boxers) met with a lawyer for the Germans and thats it. They are NOT under arrest are are in a Rio hotel. They can come and go as they please, accompanied by a fed. police because they are here "illegally" due to a technicality, the Cuban govt. revoked their passports, and even if they were still valid, the visas they were issued expired at the end of the Pan Am games.

As shitty as this situation is, they just have not asked for asylum. Why would they grant it to Dacosta and not the boxers? For whatever reason it seems that they have not asked for it. For whatever reason, they have changed their minds. I am not defending or condemning, but the fact remains, Dacosta asked for it, and asylum was given, albeit temporarily, his case is being reviewed and in the meantime he is free, out and about, training with a new team that is looking to sign him. That would lead me to believe that if the boxers asked for it, they would be granted it as well.

I have no idea what this is about--Well, I see that you had no comments on my post about Brazil, which pretty much says it all — for both of us.

daniel said...

BTW, when I said I spoke with an officer in Rio, I am not talking about some PR or Secretary, this is someone I know personally, who works there, not a "pro Revolution, Pro Castro" person, but someone who actually visited Cuba and knows the reality of life there, and is a personal friend. Like I said, this individual says the boxers have simply not said the magic word, 'asylum'.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

I see you have become quite a patriotic Brazilian. That is good and well. I can hardly blame you for championing your adopted country with the same vehemence as most "American-Cubans" excuse every wrong committed by the U.S. against the Cuban people.

It is difficult to argue with you because you cannot tell the difference between a speculative statement and assertion of fact.

Read again:

"There must have been dozens if not a hundred or more attempted defections in Brazil which Castro and the Brazilian police thwarted and kept under wraps."

If Castro officials and the Brazilian police had "thwarted and kept under wraps" information about other attempted defections — which is the only logical explanation for the speedy departure of the Cuban delegation — how would I (or you) be able to "document" a fact which is concealed? Remember, Castro official retain all "documents" (i.e. passports) and the Brazilians, which allowed the DGI carte blanche on Brazilian soil to guard, intimidate and harrass the Cuban athletes, can hardy be expected to object to being used by the Castro regime.

I am glad that you attempted to inquire personally about the Cuban boxers' plight. I, of course, was not referring to the individual efforts of any one man. What I wanted to know was if there is an organization of Cuban anti-Castro exiles in Brazil — and there must be — which could take up the athletes cause, provide them with housing, food and legal support until this situation is sorted out? Why must Germans do this? Thank God that they are willing to, by why aren't the resident Cubans in Brazil?

I am sure that if these athletes were allowed to talk to their own exiled countrymen, they would be more forthcoming than with the Brazilian police, which they rightly see as aligned with Castro.

Why do you accept at face value the Brazilian police's assertions that the Cuban boxers have not asked for asylum? It seems to me that you are being far too credulous at the cost of these men's lives.

As for "playing the race card," if you've lived in Brazil all this time and never noticed that racism there is more rabid and pervasive than even in the United States, if less so than in Castro's Cuba, then it is you who doesn't know anything about your adopted country.

daniel said...

Manuel
You poumpas ass. You know what your problem is? You try to talk about a wide variety of subjects to sound smart, intellectual, and well rounded, but you run into a brick wall when you are discussing an issue with someone who actually knows what they are talking about. I won't deny you are well read and informed on a lot of things, but not everything.
First, regardless of what another poumpas ass, Lenord Pitts writes in his column, on the issue of "race in Brazil", the fact is discrimination here is much more on a "social" level than on a race level. A "rich" black is considered the same as a "rich" white, a poor black is considered the same as a "poor" indian or white. I happen to live in an anomaly of a place in Brazil that actually has a lower, middle, and upper class. Mostly you will find simply a lower and upper. I can tell you from MY PERSONAL experience, and from my friends here, it is more on the class level than on a racial level.

I took you task on your claim of how many Cubans have been thwarted by Brazilian officials cause I think you are full of shit. I will simply go back to "No Cuban has burned an American flag". When you accuse or imply something has occurred, you have the burden of proof to show something has actually happened.
The reason I accept the police's assertions that asylum was not requested is because it was granted in the case of Dacosta, the BLACK handball player you incorrectly assumed was white while attempting to play the race card, was allowed to stay. Why would they allow one and not the others? Perhaps because for whatever reason they did not ask for it. By the way I think there were a total of 5 desertions, including the boxers. 3 have stayed or allowed to leave Brazil for a 3rd country. It is just not correct to say they have been denied asylum, because simply put, they have not asked for it. Like i said, from my experience here, the Cubans I know who have been given asylum here, they say that the Police and the government were very helpful to them. I would be the first one to complain if they had asked and then been denied asylum, and will do so if Dacosta's application is denied and returned to Cuba.

You are now implying the Federal Police and the Brazilian government was complicit with Cuba in the departure of the delegation:

If Castro officials and the Brazilian police had "thwarted and kept under wraps" information about other attempted defections — which is the only logical explanation for the speedy departure of the Cuban delegation —

What/ How did you arrive at that conclusion? I mean, did I misunderstand you, or are you saying "more Cubans tried to defect" and to "prevent this" the Brazilain government and the Federal police "cooperated" with Cuba to get everyone out of Brazil and back to Cuba?
The departure had to do with one thing and one thing only, Cuba feared mass defections and ordered everyone home. Brazil had no say in the matter if the players stayed or went home. Did you actually expect someone to question each and every member before they left? It was a decision of the Cuban delegation and their superiors on the island.

Couple more odds and ends: The Germans sent the lawyer because they were the ones who offered them contracts to fight abroad. There is now, I am told, a Cuban lawyer (not from the island, but exiled) who also spoke with them.

Manuel, as hard as this is for you, me or anyone else to believe, maybe they just want to go back. maybe they fear for their families, I don't know. But if they do not request asylum, what is Brazil to do? Hold them here? The reason the word "deportation" is used is because of Cuba, not Brasil, that has revoked their passports and only issued visas for the duration of the tournament and thus made their status "illegal". It's that old Castro standard where everybody gets the blame but Castro. And you keep falling for it.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

I don't need "to sound smart, intellectual and well-rounded." I am. One who is doesn't need to pretend that he is.

Cuba's "fear of mass desertions" must have been grounded on something more substantial than mere speculation, because desertions are rather expected than not when Cuban athletes travel abroad. Surely this "fear" was greater in this case than in previous ones, because never before had Cuba taken its team home before the closing ceremonies, and, indeed, before all the medals has been awarded to its athletes.

What could this "something" have been that made them more apprehensive in this case than in similar cases? Obviously, the DGI learned that mass desertions were being planned or were already in the first stages and the Cuban and Brazilian authorities intervened: the same Brazilians that allowed the DGI to function with impunity in their territory. No objection to that, eh?

You accuse me of being naive and then proceed the make the most stupid statement that anyone in their right mind (that excludes fantomas) has ever made here: "maybe they just want to go back."

Really? You mean they escaped from the DGI's custody and by their actions pronounced themselves enemies of the Cuban state as a "joke" while all the while desiring to return to Communist Cuba? Oh yes, that sounds entirely plausible. Besides, following your train of logic, the Cuban boxers were obviously running away from the boxing promoters who were offending their sense of national honor by tempting them with millions of euros. Before the prospect of being rich and famous outside their country they decided to run back into Castro's cage, which they will never be allowed to leave again. Truly my small mind, even summoning all its powers of pomposity, cannot understand your exalted logic.

No doubt in Brazil, as in all other countries, money trumps race. I am sure that Pele is not discriminated against in Brazil. But how many Peles are there? The poor and wretched of Brazil are predominantly black. How can this be in a society that claims to be "egalitarian?" It can't.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

From Reuters:

[The Cuban boxers] expressed their will to return to Cuba," a police source told Reuters. "They will be deported; we are waiting for their documents and air tickets from the consulate."

Travel documents of Cuban athletes are usually kept by the leaders of the country's delegation.

Ailing Cuban leader Fidel Castro has accused the two boxers of defecting, saying they betrayed Cuba for dollars.

[Brazilian] Police Chief Felicio Laterca said Friday that the two were in a Rio hotel and police were watching them to prevent them "being seduced again" by foreign sports agents. One agent had sought to send them to Germany on professional contracts.


So Chief of Police Felicio Laterca admits that the Brazilians are indeed acting as Castro's henchmen, and, in effect, "protecting" the would-be defectors from "being seduced again" by the lure of freedom.

How long have you lived in Brazil, Daniel? I never lived in Brazil but seem to know more about how things work there than you do.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

Il Globo of Rio de Janeiro is now reporting that federal prosecutors have opened an investigation into whether the Cuban boxers were kidnapped by German and Cuban boxing promoters, who supposedly subdued them with narcotics and held them against their will while trying to convince them to defect and sign a contract with them.

Well, Daniel, the plot thickens. Now it appears that the Prosecutor's Office has joined the Federal Police in placating Castro by hatching-up this fantastic conspiracy theory.

But, far be it for me to question the integrity of the Brazilian Prosecutor's Office or the Federal Police, or suggest that in this case they are acting as agents of the Castro regime, which, of course, they would not dare to do unless they were under direct orders from the executive branch.

joep said...

Also left unanswered is the question of whether or not these boxers have family members in Cuba who were threatened - either explicitly or implicitly - by Cuban state security.

This is also a common tactic used by the Castro regime to prevent defections, and to compel athletes and other high-visibility Cubans to think twice before taking their chance at freedom. You exercise your basic human rights by escaping tyranny, and as payback the Castro regime takes away the house that they "gave" you for winning a pan am medal, in which your sick mom is living, and ensures that she doesn't have a libreta and your remittances don't arrive. Believe it.

Charlie Bravo said...

I recommend to everybody to read what Joe Papp is saying. Joe knows the monster first hand and he is battling the monster rather successfully, making us very proud of him.

daniel said...

Manuel

I know you think you know everything, but there is no Il Globo in Rio. There is a paper called "O Globo" which may be what you are referring to. In all this Manuel, my point of contention is your insistence to say that Castro is issuing orders in Brazil. That is what I am arguing against. This like the old guard in Miami that used to blame everything from traffic accidents to vanishing avocados on Castro agents. Again, please link Castro or any DGI agents to the actions of the Federal Police in Brazil. I want you to make the link. Next you will tell me Google has placated Castro by making comments difficult to leave on your blog. (I know you have nothing to do with it but man is it frustrating!!!)
BTW, I left this in a previous reply but it never appeared (it wasn't deleted, I think it never went through)
About a year and a half, maybe a little longer, Brazil denied entry visas to several DGI agents doing a pre sweep for a planned Castro visit. The Cuban Embassy in Brasilia has a revolving door because employees there are consistently being expelled. I am sure you will say these are individuals who planned to flee, but Brazil seems to think they were more than "simple" embassy employees and Cuba thought enough to protest the expulsions. This could have been all part of a ploy to fool people, you never know.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

Well, let me say this: I have never studied Portuguese or lived in any Portuguese-speaking country, and yet I translate it with the same facility as Spanish. In fact, I once translated a Brazilian article on Castro's operations that you mentioned on Babalú, which merited your high praise.

I'm not going to argue any more with you about this matter because I see it is useless. If the Police Chief's confession that he is seeing to it that the Cuban boxers are not "seduced" into defecting again, and if the Federal Prosecutor's ridiculous investigation into their "kidnapping" and "drugging" does not convince you that the Brazilian government is acting in bad faith and as Castro's proxy in this matter, then nothing I can say will sway you from your unconditional support for that government.

You chose your adopted homeland over your persecuted brethren. So be it.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Joe:

I am sure that the Castro regime is holding the boxers' families hostage and that they will suffer greatly if they do not return to Cuba. Nevertheless, they should not return. They will be of absolutely no help to their families if they do return. They are finished in Cuba. There is no future for them there (not that there was ever much of one).

Their best bet is to take the million euros that the German boxing promoters are offering. With that they will be able to improve the lot of their families in Cuba and eventually negotiate their release. Money is their only weapon against the regime because it alone can atone for their "sins." They would be fools if they fail to avail themselves of it.

Unfortunately, it now appears they are being held hostage by Brazilian authorities and will inevitably be deported to Cuba.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

Manuel
Simply out, you and I see the same incident in a different way. I do not believe, at this time, as you do, that the fed. police or the government were complicit with Castro and Cuba in returning the boxers, because two other athletes asked for, and received assistance, in seeking asylum here. Why would they allow the first two, but not the others? The answer is the biggest problem I have "with my brethren". The blame game. It is the fault of the media, the fault of "dialogistas", the fault of Lesnik and Aruca. It is the fault of the left wing Hollywood crowd, it is Kennedy and the CIA and the US presidents inaction. The ones to blame are Castro and his regime which manipulated the boxers. What was Brazil to do? Hold the boxers and order Cuba to release their families? Sorry. This is a problem (not just this particular case, but the Cuba question in general) for Cubans to resolve. No one else will do it for us. This reply will take the topic off to a whole another tangent so I will leave it there. But you can't blame Brazil for this. The fault and blame lies squarely with Castro.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

And the other countries that refused to give visas to Germany's Jews knowing full well what fate awaited them bear no moral responsibility for the Holocaust. Only Hitler does.

In the future I will read your comments on Cuba as those of a somewhat sympathetic Brazilian.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

Manuel
You have not admitted that Brazil has admitted those who have asked for visas. Like I said early on, where I live, and the surrounding areas has about 50 or so Cubans who asked, and received, asylum. I have no idea how many there are in other areas, but from what the other Cubans tell me, there are a good number of them. Why have these people been allowed to stay if the government is "in cahoots" with Fidel? You have not admitted that the handball players were allowed to stay. You are focusing on the case of the boxers, that gets weirder by the day with the facts that come out. Like I said, you are blaming Brazil, when the blame lies with Castro. I am not lending "unconditional support". I am asking you, to ask yourself, and consider the facts, why has Cuba allowed those who asked for asylum to stay, while these boxers have asked to return? I have known, and have heard, of those who arrive to the US, only to return back, for whatever reasons. You are saying the govt. here is acting on behalf of Castro, which I believe is false. My belief is based on the fact that those who have asked, have recieved.

Furthermore, you have no idea how many "one on ones" I have had with politicians here, who use Che in their political advertising. You have no idea how many conversations I have had with those who think Fidel and the Cuban Revolution are a good thing. Get off your high horse before someone knocks you off of it.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

I should like to meet the man who "can knock [me] off my [my] high horse." It certainly isn't you.

As I said, you are a good and loyal Brazilian and I thank you for your interest in Cuba as far as it goes.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

Kettle, meet Pot. Pot, Kettle. Since you mention the Jews and Hitler, Cuba turned away the St. Louis, and used the same thug like tactics you protest from the Coast Guard to keep anyone from "jumping ship" to the shore. You do remember this incident don't you, being the Cuban historian that you are? In the end, they allowed a handful, I have always heard a different number, mid twenties to 30 something, maybe you know the exact number, but it was nothing compared to how many were on board. So tell me, is Cuba complicit in their fate?

Email said...

Daniel,

Have you seen any documents stating why 20 to 30 people were allowed to stay in Cuba and the other 900 were sent back to Germany?

Many of those turned away had families in Cuba.

Regards,
El Caimán

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

It was FDR who turned away the refugees on the St. Louis, not Cuba. 1940 was an election year in the U.S. and Roosevelt knew that most of the refugees wanted to use Cuba as a conduit to the U.S. This was not a weapon that he was willing to give the Republicans at a time when anti-semitism and xenophobia were rampant in this country: the heyday of Father Coughlin, the German-American Bund and the isolationist movement led by Charles Lindbergh.

Cuba, of course, was in no position to contravene the orders of the United States.

The St. Louis also requested to be allowed to discharge its passengers at a U.S. port and was refused.

Both before and after the St. Louis, however, Cuba granted asylum to thousands of Jewish refugees as well as to over 300,000 Spaniards fleeing from fascism and communism during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939).

Cuba received more refugees from Europe during the 1930s than did the U.S. or any other Latin American country, though its population at the time was only .03 that of the United States.

Would you like to insult our country in any other regard, Daniel?

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

I didn't insult anyone. Man you got really thin skin.

You are focusing on two boxers, disregarding other Cubans who have asked and received asylum in Cuba. I am focusing on the St. Louis, never mind the others that escaped Hitler and Franco through Cuba. You are saying it was FDR and not Cuba that turned away the St. Louis from Cuban shores? I'm sorry. I must have missed that day in class. I did not know that in 1939, Cuba was led by FDR. You learn something new every day.

So now you are "justifying" what Cuba, or according to you, FDR, as leader of Cuba, did to the St. Louis? It wasn't Cuba's fault? Man I would admit is wrong to turn that ship away. Like the scene in Godfather II, when Pantangelli is upset that Michael is doing business with Roth "You give your loyalty to a Jew before your own blood", even I admit that as a Cuban it is embarrassing to have done that, and today complain when Cubans are turned away seeking shelter.
Wow. I never knew you were an anti-semite. Sieg Heil.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

It is exactly as I suspected: you derive your knowledge of Cuban history from The Godfather II. Well, you are not alone. Every idiot who claims to be an "expert" on Cuba in the media does and it is the closest approach that most Americans have ever made to "Cuban history."

Well, Daniel, I am very sad to have to tell you this: In the Western Hemisphere then, as in the world today, the United States was the regional hagemon. It was the U.S., not Cuba, that determined the fate of the St. Louis. Cuba did what it could do, and more than any other country in the region did, for the victims of fascism and communism, including the Jews. If that is not good enough for you, then maybe you should move to the biggest and most underpopulated country in Latin America [hey, you did!) and ask the Brazilians what they did for the Jews. The whole world knows what Brazil did for the fleeing Nazis (sheltered and protected them for 60 years), but what did it do for the Jews?

Daniel, really, you don't have to convince us that you are a good Brazilian who puts Brazil first and Cuba last. We get it.

Another reference to me as a "Nazi" and you are going in The Madhouse with fantomas.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

Man your logic is screwed up. I use a quote From the Godfather, and from that you infer that I got my Cuban history from it? How did you connect those dots?
Anyways, since you want to deflect what Cuba did with the St. Louis, come on its time to step up and admit, Cuba did not give asylum to the passengers, and even used searchlights and patrol boats to keep them from jumping ship, same thug tactics you decry from the US Coast Guard, you still have not said anything about the athletes Brazil did allow to stay.
I am waiting for you to answer, if Brazil bent over backwards to help Castro, why has it allowed Lazaro Lamelas Rodriguez and Rafael Dacosta Capote to stay? By the way, you know how/ why Dacosta Capote decided to defect? He was advised to do so by Michel Oquendo, ANOTHER Cuban handball player who defected about two years back and was given asylum in, of all place, Brazil. Today he is the goalkeeper for a team in the state of Sao Paulo (a city called Caetano do Sul). Dacosta would have been offered a contract for the same team, but the handball fed has a rule, you will probably say it was done to separate Cuban defectors, that each team is only allowed two foreigners. When Dacosta fled, he went to see/ stay with Oquendo. When he arrived there, other Brazilian players, who share a place with Oquendo, gave him clothes and basic stuff he needed, cause Dacosta showed up with just the clothes on his back. Then again, you will say they gave him those items just to get rid of him. In the meantime Dacosta has caught on and is training with a team, awaiting his status to be cleared up.
I can tell you were the gym coach Ramierez is, really haven't heard anything, but I know he isn't in Cuba, and, like the St. Louis case, even if you can't save everyone, at least save the ones you can.

BTW, what is the Mad House (I mean, I can imagine, but what is it exactly? Is it like exile from the board?) and how did Fantomas end up there?

And man what is it with the comments here? I've lost replies a couple times already with this signing in and word verification. I know you gotta do it to keep out the "maximize your penis" and "hot luscious sexy babes" spam, but man this is frustrating Are you SURE they haven't singled out your blog?

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

First, some basics about commenting on blogs generally: Always copy all your comments before submitting them. Then, if they are somehow lost, you can always paste and re-submit them.

As regards this blog in particular, The Madhouse is an RCAB institution where insane comments (and, figuratively, their authors) are housed. Unlike the Babalunians, I have never deleted a single comment but I do reserve the right to isolate and contain the contagium. You will find The Madhouse in the Archives of this blog. Voluntary admittals are always permissible.

I do not doubt that there are good Brazilians who detest what their government did to these athletes and endeavored to help them escape Cuba and Brazil. You, unfortunately, appear to be at odds with them, because you will not condemn the government's role in repatriating the Cubans and appeasing Castro.

Perhaps the reason that the other Cuban athletes were not deported is because they were less known and more circumspect than the boxers, who were the stars of the Cuban team, Olympic gold medal winners and world champions. After all, Castro didn't call the other defectors "traitors," just the boxers.

The Cuban boxers were Castros's "prized mandingos" and the only ones he wanted back on the plantation. The descendents of the bandeirantes were only too happy to oblige him.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

Ready yet to denounce Lula's government? I guess you must be weighing what personal consequences such a denunciation might have for you in Brazil.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

Manuel
I have never been a fan of Lula. His cabinet/ advisrrs are full of people who were exiled in Cuba during the dictatorship. The fact remains that many in the government have consistently decried Lula for his refusal to denounce human rights abuses in Cuba. The senate and congress here have been complaining about Chavez Especially the press censorship. They have been butting heads with Morales from the start. You made it out to be a case of no one complaining. Here you have the lawmakers doing what you asked, many in the Brazilian government protesting the decision. Again, from the start, I stated I am not defending what happened with the boxers, but defending the fact that Brazil has in fact helped Cubans in the past. You refused to recognize that.:

BRASILIA (AFP) - Brazilian opposition lawmakers were outraged Monday by the government's decision to deport two Cuban boxers who failed to show up at the Pan American Games last month and may have been seeking asylum."Brazil broke its best democratic tradition with that summary deportation," said Brazilian Social Democracy leader Arthur Virgilio, who called on the foreign and defense ministers to explain themselves to Congress.

Double Olympic and world bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux, 25, and world welterweight champion Erislandy Lara, 24, were arrested Friday at the behest of the Cuban authorities, who had accused them of trying to defect.

A police chief later told reporters that the two Cubans had been put on a Cuban flight late Saturday and that they "were happy to return."

Neither athlete had spoken with the media and there was no independent confirmation that they left Brazil of their own free will.

Cuban President Fidel Castro said Sunday in an article in a government-run newspaper that the two boxers had tried to defect and called them "traitors," but vowed no retribution.

The two athlets arrived in Havana on Sunday and were temporarily staying at a government-run facility, said Cuban media, adding that it was the first time Cuba had accepted the return of professional athletes who had defected.

Opposition Democrat Party lawmakers in Brasilia issued a statement calling the deportation order an "outrage" and accusing the administration of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of having put Brazil's intellingence agency at Cuba's service.

"After years of defending human rights on the streets of our country, President Lula suddenly disappoints us by allowing his government's police machinery to turn (the two boxers) over to the country they fled from and to which they showed they didn't want to return," said the statement.

"I'd like to have seen both those athletes give a totally unfettered interview with the Brazilian media. I'm surprised they made no statement," said human rights advocate Eduardo Suplicy, a leader of Lula's Workers' Party.

"I believe this matter needs urgent clarification," he said, adding that he had called on deputy Foreign Minister Samuel Pinheiro to speak to Congress about the case.

Cuban athletes frequently go missing from international sporting events.

A few days before the two boxers' disappearance on July 23, Cuban handball player Rafael Da Costa fled the PanAm Games housing complex and surfaced in Sao Paulo, with the intention of joining a team there.

Cuban gymnastics coach Lazaro Lamelas Ramirez also disappeared from the games last month and has not yet surfaced.

The Pan American games were held in Rio de Janeiro July 13-29.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

I think you should read your own article again and ponder deeply yourself on what Lula's opposition has said and ask yourself why you were not as forthright in your denunciation (if there ever was one) of Brazilian government's actions.

It seems to me that the opposition is saying word for word what I said here. You, on the other, have even contended that that boxers may really have wanted to go home, which is the position of the Lula government.

It appears that the Brazilian opposition knows the nature of Communism better than you do.

Daniel @ Garanhuns Blog said...

What /i said was

Manuel, as hard as this is for you, me or anyone else to believe, maybe they just want to go back. maybe they fear for their families, I don't know. But if they do not request asylum, what is Brazil to do?

The question I based my argument on was the uncertainty of what was or was not said.

Manuel, you gotta ease up man. It ain't healthy to be wound up so tight. I got nothing against you personally, but dude, RELAX. You're gonna have a patatu if you don't watch yourself, nobody wants that.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Daniel:

You are very wrong: a great many people want that and I refuse to give them the satisfaction.