A great American and steadfast friend of the Cuban people is dead.
There are so few opportunities to use that phrase nowadays and when the occasion presents itself it is almost always to pay tribute to a deceased ally.
So it is this time.
Jesse Helms' commitment to the cause of Cuban freedom was sincere and profound, and his contribution to its realization may prove the greatest made by any American of his generation. He has bequeathed to all Cubans a powerful weapon with which to defeat the appeasers and accommodationists who wish to surrender unconditionally to Castro. Under the Helms-Burton Law the United States cannot recognize any future Cuban government which includes Fidel or Raúl Castro. How prescient of Senator Helms to include Raúl in the original legislation and how tragic if he had not!
Jesse Helms stood with us when few would. Some day the shame of those who forsook us will be the greater because there were men like Jesse Helms who did not.