As tensions grow in Cuba, citizens continue to take to the streets to protest the oppressive communist regime. Some of the largest anti-government protests in decades have filled the streets with people shouting “freedom” and “yes we can.”
While the Cuban people march in the streets demanding freedom and an end to the dictatorship, a problem arises for the American media.
Rubio criticized President Joe Biden for remaining silent all weekend, and pointed to one State Department official who claimed that the unrest was due to “COVID cases/deaths and medicine shortages.”
Rubio also called out social media for what he says is assisting American news outlets by “undermining the historic nature of what is occurring in Cuba.” He continued, “This is not just a response to the COVID outbreak, but an unambiguous rejection of six decades of suffering under totalitarian socialism and communism.”
Rubio also called on the Biden administration to develop a clear plan of action and assistance to the Cuban people: “The Biden administration should also convene a United Nations Security Council meeting, as well as engage with allies in the European Union and the Organization of American States to provide support to the Cuban people.”
He added that the administration needs to communicate clearly that any sort of boat lift will be looked at as a hostile act – trying to head off a repeat of the disastrous Mariel boatlift of 1980.
Peaceful protests are growing in #Cuba as the Cuban people exercise their right to peaceful assembly to express concern about rising COVID cases/deaths & medicine shortages. We commend the numerous efforts of the Cuban people mobilizing donations to help neighbors in need.
A group called Movimiento San Isidro has published a list of people they claim have been detained by government authorities. The government will not say how many have been arrested or injured.
On Sunday at the start of the protests, Cuban President Diaz-Canel blamed heightened U.S. trade sanctions for much of the nation’s economic woes. He also ordered his supporters to confront anti-government protesters: “The order to combat has been given. Revolutionaries need to be on the streets.”
President Joe Biden has warned the Cuban government not to crack down on protesters, whom President Diaz-Canel referred to as “criminals.”
Secretary of State Tony Blinken responded to the Cuban government placing blame on the United States: “It would be a grievous mistake for the Cuban regime to interpret what is happening in dozens of towns and cities across the island as the result or product of anything the United States has done.”
He continued, “That is what we are hearing and seeing in Cuba, and that is a reflection of the Cuban people, not of the United States or any other outside actor.”
Since the outbreak of anti-government protests in Cuba, those in Congress who are self proclaimed “Democratic socialists” have been silent on what is happening there.
To his credit, the lone exception seems to be Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders:
All people have the right to protest and to live in a democratic society. I call on the Cuban government to respect opposition rights and refrain from violence. It’s also long past time to end the unilateral U.S. embargo on Cuba, which has only hurt, not helped, the Cuban people.
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