Tuesday, September 4, 2007

By Their Scars You Will Know Them: The Ordeal of Elenita and Her Brother


In alluding to the little Cuban girl whose birth father wants to return her to Cuba as a trophy for Castro, I never forgot to identify her as the abused little Cuban girl. It is something that other conspicuously avoided doing as if it were disrespectful to the mother, the father or even the child to acknowledge that it is her abuse at her mother's hands, ignored by the indifferent and later complicit father, which was the crux of the custody case. I also said that her brother's testimony was indispensable in settling it, and was frankly shocked when the Department of Children and Families reluctantly agreed to put him on the stand as if that were even a choice. Besides the one who inflicted it, the only witness to the mother's abuse was the girl's older brother. The father, by his own admission, never saw the abuse because he only visited his daughter once every two weeks though they lived in the same small town and no one had restricted his visitation rights (certainly not the girl's mother, his mistress). The grandparents, who for a time looked after the children owing to the mother insanity, claim that they didn't see the abuse either. But the brother both saw it practiced on his sister and experienced it himself. He told Elenita's father and grandparents (whom he claims also witnessed it). But in the Pérez-Izquierdo families, apparently, seeing is believing, and since they claim they never saw the abuse taking place, they never did anything about it.

The father, in particular, was the most blind of them all; for he granted the mother legal authorization to take this matter outside everybody's view by removing the girl to the United States, where Pérez's Miami relatives made sure that they saw even less by kicking her and her children out of their house on the second day of their arrival from Cuba. Once his daughter was out of Cabaiguan, Izquierdo never wrote, phoned or had any contact whatever with daughter or mother. It was as if he had symbolically buried his own daughter. And so he had, until Fidel reawakened in him long dormant paternal instincts and instructed him to bring his daughter back to Cuba.

If it had been any other abused little girl, it wouldn't have mattered to Fidel: they're a dime a dozen in Havana's streets; but this particular little girl was important to Castro because he detested her foster father, sports agent Joe Cubas, who wanted to adopt Elenita as he had her brother. Castro hated him because Cubas had "stolen" Castro's prized slaves off his plantation and brought them to freedom in the U.S., where they were finally able to use their God-giving talents on their own behalf rather than the State's. Because Cubas had robbed him of his propaganda tools, Castro was determined to turn the child that Cubas wanted to adopt into a propaganda tool herself at 4 years of age. This case was never anything but Fidel Castro's own personal vendetta played out in a U.S. courtroom, with a little girl's life hanging in the balance.

The testimony of the abused little girl's 13-year old brother made clear just how monumentally unfit mother and father, and, indeed, the whole Izquierdo clan in Cuba, are to raise his 4-year old sister. In fact, they all belong in jail as abusers and enablers of abuse, as do the Izquierdo lawyers, Kurzban and Montiel-Davis, for suborning perjury and purloining and fabricating evidence. Ironically, the only people that stand to be punished in Circuit Judge Jeri B. Cohen's courtroom are the abused little girl, her brother and his adoptive parents José and María Cubas if the girl is returned to her father's custody, as the judge has on repeated occasions threatened to do throughout the trial.

Testifying via video feed to the courtroom, the boy recounted a harrowing story of abuse at his mother's hands that spanned all his years with her: lashed with a belt; kicked while on the ground; beaten with a stick; choked; forced to struggle with knife-wielding mother; and now compelled to relive those horrible days in an American courtroom. But he is the "lucky" one. After testifying, the boy can return home to his "papi" and "mami," as he calls his adoptive parents, certain that he will never be hurt again by his birth mother but far from happy, because his sister's life is still at stake. He had come to the courtroom with a mission — to save her. He had done so many times before; the only member of his family who had ever tried.

The point at issue, of course, is not whether the boy or his sister were abused by their mother. The mother has confessed to that abuse, repeatedly, although The Miami Herald and other media outlets still insist on referring to it as "alleged abuse."

What matters in this case is whether the girl's biological father, Rafael Izquierdo, knew of the abuse or tried to stop it. The brother's testimony leaves no doubt that he did know. The boy told Izquierdo himself of the abuse on one of his twice-monthly visits to see his daughter, one of the bravest acts that any child can commit, since it entailed "betraying" the mother in order to save his sister (with all attendant consequences of such a "betrayal"). His own abuse he had endured in silence for years; but it was only when his mother visited it on his infant sister as well that he dared to speak out.

And what did Izquierdo do to protect the daughter that he had wanted his lover to abort? He did nothing.

The boy also testified that his mother wanted to leave his baby sister with Izquierdo when she won a visa lottery that allowed her to immigrate legally to the U.S.; the father, however, refused.

The abuse Izquierdo had sanctioned by his inaction in Cuba, he further sanctioned, and, indeed, perpetuated, by allowing the mother to take her to the U.S., where he wouldn't have been able to stop the abuse even were he so inclined. In fact, so sure was Izquierdo that the abuse would continue, and so determined not to be bothered with it, that he severed immediately all lines of communication between himself and his daughter and her mother.

Again, in the U.S., it became the boy's responsibility to save his sister and himself when his mother attempted to commit suicide with a knife on a day in December 2005, in the very bedroom where his sister was sleeping.

"I started crying and screaming. Please stop. Please stop," he recounted. "After 25 seconds, I stopped crying and got angry, and I said, "If you are going to do this, please call the police first."

She did call the police, so that they would take her children away. She had already spent months trying to give them away to acquaintances and strangers.
The birth mother was present in the courtroom during most of her birth son's testimony but was finally led away it in an apoplexy of tears.

Outside the courtroom, she read a letter to her son, where she again admitted abusing him and excused herself on the grounds that she didn't know better because it was part of the "culture of abuse" in which she herself had been raised. I wonder who schooled her on the politically-correct language which she used to justify her abuse? No doubt the same people (Izquierdo's lawyers) that presented her with fake letters from Izquierdo to submit as evidence of his concern for his daughter or asked her to provide them with photographs of the child so that Izquierdo could claim that he ever asked her for any.

By surrendering custody of her son and consenting to his adoption by José and María Cubas — the only thing she ever did for him besides not aborting him — Elena Pérez will have no further contact with her son and his words are the last that she will ever hear from him, or at least the last that she deserves to hear. He is save from her now, protected by parents who can give him something which she never could — love. Still, in his noble child's heart, he admitted that in some corner of it he still loved her.

But he can afford to love her from afar. His sister is not as lucky. She is not out of her mother's reach yet. The birth father Rafael Izquierdo has said that if he is given custody of her, he will not deny the mother access to her. On the contrary he promises to share custody with her in Cuba. The mother herself has said that she will herself return to the island the moment that her daughter does.

So what, exactly, makes this case such a difficult one for Circuit Judge Jeri B. Cohen to decide? Well, the evidence so far all tilts in one direction, and she has to find a way to make it tilt the other way. Each day that becomes even more difficult. In the end Judge Cohen may even be forced to do the right thing because she will have no other viable option. Let us hope so.

11 comments:

Cari said...

Manuel,

I'm not sure if this is true because it isn't being reported anywhere else, but I heard on the TV show "A Mano Limpia" that the girl was the product of an adulterous relationship since the father was married and has another daughter who is now 6 years old.

I would think that this would be relevant since it would show that the father indeed just wanted to get rid of the problem. What better way to do so than to let the crazy woman and the baby leave Cuba forever?

Fantomas said...

I dont know if it is the quality of the writtings or the lack of support but I glance RCAB and I can only see 1 comment here , 1 comment there

Manolo,que esta pasando, time to close down this blog already?

just an observation not a critica

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

fantomas:

The "quality of [my] writtings [sic]" will no doubt discourage many from reading this blog who are not up to the intellectual challenge. I see, though, that it hasn't stopped you from trying, and since you are the lowest denominator, I suppose that even those "challenged" as yourself may be able to meet the challenge if they take their medication.

Don't worry about RCAB blogs — it is setting new records everyday. Attend to your own blog which is in desperate need of it, as you confessed not too long ago.

Cari said...

Why does this fanto guy only comment to try and bait Manuel?

He rarely comments on the issues being set forth...this is important and he only talks about trivialities.

Se ha pasado de pendante.

Charlie Bravo said...

Manuel, since this case have not been tossed, and another trial for perjury have been started against the fraudulent duo of Kurzban-Montiel, we can safely say that this is all about giving fidel castro his last wish in his death bed.
The worst part is that the American justice system is being manipulated by the marionette operators in Havana, while resorting to what they do in Cuba, lies, fabrications, pressure, intimidation....
The public opinion do not have the cojones to take onto this, and if this were a case involving two American families, the adoptive family would have not experienced anything this harrowing.
We all know that this is a case against an abolitionist, just like in the good ole days of slavery.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Cari:

It's hard to keep the scoreboard for Elena Pérez's liaisons and adulteries. She was indeed the mistress of Rafael Izquierdo, Elenita's father. Her birth son's father has not yet materialized, though he approved Joe Cubas's adoption of the son he had never seen. Her husband — the man with whom she came to the U.S. in 2005 — has since returned to Cuba, as both Pérez and Izquierdo promise to do once they can present Fidel with his quarry.

Loathesome people. All of them.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

P.S.: Fantomas is the village idiot of this blog. Every blog needs a village idiot and RCAB has been blessed with the biggest idiot of them all.

Manuel A.Tellechea said...

Charlie:

The facts of this case are ignored by everyone — the judge; the reporters; the pundits; and every Anglo in this country who hates Cubans in particular or foreigners in general.

As I've commented before, Judge Jeri herself appears to be auditioning for the role of TV's Judge Judy. Never has such an incompetent sat on the bench or such a blowhard.

Charlie Bravo said...

Even the press refuses to cover this case with honesty, Manuel.
I sometimes wonder if journalism ceased to be a profession of gentlemen. Fortunately, blogging is rising as the new journalism, and the major press outlets feed themselves on the opinions and reports from bloggers -albeit they bestow no credit to them.
The press, specially outlets like The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Miami Herald are just repositories of jingoism in a way not seen since the heyday of Randolph Hearst and his xenophobe and cubanophobe manufacturing of news to provoke the so-called Spanish American war.
Now the press -still the old cubanophobes, xenophobes, and good-ole-timers racists, are creating the conditions for the legitimization of the nouveau regime in Havana, since they failed in getting the ancien regime fully and officially recognized by the American government. They were close to it, I have to say.....

Vana said...

Manuel:

I cannot believe this case is still in the courts, for Christ's sake end this charade already.

They all cannot wait to high tail it back to Cuba, the mother because she still wants Izquierdo, that is probably why she tried to commit suicide, she was too far from her lover, that poor boy the things they made him recount on the stand, that alone should be enough to take the little girl away from those monsters, as you say seems judge The Barbarian Cohen is trying to tilt the scales the other way, we shall have to wait and see

Fantomas said...

On the other hand it may not be the awful writting but maybe the chosen topic