Tuesday, May 11, 2004

George Bush's new plan to hasten the demise of Fidel Castro's rule has met with criticism from Cuban dissidents:
Leading dissident Oswaldo Paya said it was up to Cubans, not the US, to bring about change in the country.

US President George W Bush on Thursday endorsed new sanctions and a $36m plan to promote change in Cuba.

Two other Cuban dissidents handed in a protest letter at the US diplomatic mission in Havana.

One of the authors, Manuel Cuesta, said the US had "no right to set the pace of a transition in Cuba".

The other, fellow dissident Eloy Gutierrez Menoyo, said: "This is a total interference that does not benefit the building of democracy in Cuba."

"It is not appropriate or acceptable for any forces outside Cuba to try to design the Cuban transition process," said Mr Paya, winner of the European Parliament's Andrei Sakharov human rights prize, in a separate statement.

Veteran Cuban human rights activist Elizardo Sanchez described the proposals as "totally counterproductive and clearly involve meddling" from abroad.
If this is a just a stunt to gain valuable Cuban-American votes for Bush in Florida this fall, it could end up backfiring. If nothing else it shows that Bush hasn't learned his lesson about meddling in the affairs of foreign countries. How does the saying go..."The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results."