Ted Turner's lies about Cuba

Last week during a FoxNews interview with Bill O'Reilly, Ted Turner, who founded what has become (in their own words) "the world's largest cable news network "claimed that Fidel Castro's Stalinist regime has never killed anyone.
O'REILLY: Fidel Castro, do you admire the man?

TURNER: Yes.

O'REILLY: Now he has murdered people. He's imprisoned people. There are political prisoners now. He won't let his people use the Internet. Nobody can use that. And you admire the guy?

TURNER: Well, I admire certain things about him. He's trained a lot of doctors, and they've got one of the best educational systems in the developing world. And you know, he's still popular with a lot of people down there. ..

REILLY: But he's a killer. He's a killer. He's a guy who...

TURNER: But that has never, to my knowledge, that's never been proven. I mean...

O'REILLY: He's executed political prisoners. I mean, he enslaves people who don't see it the way he sees it. Come on. He runs a dictatorship.

For the record in 1958 ( year before Castro took over) Cuba had a higher standard of living than Ireland and Austria, almost double Spain and Japan's per capita income, more doctors and dentists per capita than Britain, and lower infant mortality than France and Germany - the 13th-lowest in the world, in fact. Today, Cuba's infant-mortality rate - despite the hemisphere's highest abortion rate, which skews this figure downward - is 43th from the top.

So, relative to the rest of the world, Cuba's health care has worsened under Castro, and a nation with a formerly massive influx of European immigrants needs machine guns, water cannons and tiger sharks to keep its people from fleeing, while half-starved Haitians a short 60 miles away turn up their noses at any thought of emigrating to Cuba.

But let's get to the heart of the matter. Ted Turner is demonstratively a brilliant businessman. Back in 1997 when CNN craved a Havana Bureau, his sales pitch was not particularly subtle: "Castro is one helluva guy!" he gushed to a capacity crowd at Harvard Law School during a speech. "You people would like him! Most people in Cuba like him."

Within weeks CNN was granted its coveted Havana Bureau, the first ever granted by Castro to a foreign network. By the way, two years ago that CNN bureau's longtime reporter, Lucia Newman, jumped over to Al-Jazeera. A "lateral career move," I think they call this.

To put it bluntly: Ted Turner is very far from a space-cadet. He cannot possibly believe what he said on the O'Reilly Factor. The Castro regime's own henchmen have never claimed anything so transparently preposterous-no Communists ever have. Indeed, like Al Qaeda generations later, terror in the form of mass murder (often public) , was always key to the Communist quest and maintenance of power. Communists have always wanted this to be known, as a means to cow opposition.

"We will make our hearts cruel, hard, and immovable ... we will not quiver at the sight of a sea of enemy blood. Without mercy, without sparing, we will kill our enemies in scores of thousands; let them drown themselves in their own blood! Let there be floods of the blood of the bourgeois - more blood, as much as possible."  Felix  Dzerzhinsky, the head of the Soviet Cheka in 1918:


"Crazy with fury I will stain my rifle red while slaughtering any enemy that falls in my hands! My nostrils dilate while savoring the acrid odor of gunpowder and blood. With the deaths of my enemies I prepare my being for the sacred fight and join the triumphant proletariat with a bestial howl!" Ernesto Guevara from the book that became the Motorcycle Diaries.

"We stand for organized terror - this should be frankly admitted. Terror is an absolute necessity during times of revolution. Our aim is to fight against the enemies of the Soviet Government and of the new order of life. We judge quickly." V.I Lenin.

"To send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary. These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution! And a revolutionary must become a cold killing machine motivated by pure hate. We execute from revolutionary conviction!" Ernesto "Che" Guevara.

"Executions? Certainly we execute!And we will CONTINUE executing as long as it is necessary! This is a war to the DEATH against the revolution's enemies!" Che Guevara while addressing the U.N. General Assembly on December 9, 1964.

According to the Black Book of Communism, published in Paris, 14,000 men and boys were executed in Cuba by that stage -- the equivalent, given the relative populations, of over 3 million executions in the U.S. "VIVA CHE! VIVA FIDEL!" bellowed  Jesse Jackson while arm in arm with the agent of that appalling bloodbath (Fidel Castro) at the University of  Havana in 1984.  Jesse Jackson, by the way, wrote a book condemning capital punishment.

Please note: all of Guevara's above quotes are found in the sadist/coward's (alas, the "acrid odor of gunpowder and blood" never reached Guevara's nostril from actual combat. It always came from the close-range murder of bound, gagged and blindfolded men) own diaries. Some of these diaries were fashioned into a movie 4 years ago by Robert Redford (The Motorcycle Diaries); Others provided the screenplay for the  4 ½ hour "epic hagiography" (as described by The New York Times) directed by Stephen Soderbergh and starring Benicio Del Toro titled "Che," and released stateside just last week.

The above-mentioned directors and producers profess rigid fidelity to Che's complete diaries. But you will search these movies in utter vain for these dramatic soundbites, much less their much more cinematically dramatic fulfillment.

When Che Guevara entered the Cuban city of Santa Clara during the anti-Batista skirmishing he promptly ordered the firing squad murder of dozens of Batista "war-criminals." A "battle" that added up to six casualties on both sides , but which Soderbergh and Del Toro-mindlessly sycophantic to their Castroite sources--depict as a Caribbean Stalingrad/Iwo Jima, somehow produced scores of war criminals on one side! The New York Times, who "reported" on this "battle" as it "raged," didn't bother to look into this peculiar numerical discrepancy.

The Cuban Stalinists televised some of their Santa Clara atrocities for essentially the same reason Al Qaeda televised Nick Berg's be-heading. Please click here Mr Turner, for stark proof of what Bill O'Reilly was telling you on his show.

This valiant man, Col. Cornelio Rojas, refused a blindfold and walked to his execution (murder , actually, Che Guevara didn't even bother with one of his bogus trials) unescorted. Compare Senor Rojas death to Guevara's capture--'Don't shoot!" whimpered the quaking "guerrilla". "I'm worth more to you alive than dead!"

Blanco Rojas, Senor Rojas wife of forty years, died of a heart arttack while watching her husband's Che-ordered murder on Cuban national TV. Cornelio Rojas 17 year old nephew , Pedro, volunteered for what came to be known as the Bay of Pigs invasion. After fighting to his last bullet (and denied more by JFK's Best and Brightest) the defenseless Pedro was murdered in cold blood by a suddenly blustering and sneering Communist who served until recently as Cuba's "Minister of tourism," Osmany Cienfuegos. 

Humberto Fontova is the author of four books including Exposing the Real Che Guevara. Visit hfontova.com.
Last week during a FoxNews interview with Bill O'Reilly, Ted Turner, who founded what has become (in their own words) "the world's largest cable news network "claimed that Fidel Castro's Stalinist regime has never killed anyone.
O'REILLY: Fidel Castro, do you admire the man?

TURNER: Yes.

O'REILLY: Now he has murdered people. He's imprisoned people. There are political prisoners now. He won't let his people use the Internet. Nobody can use that. And you admire the guy?

TURNER: Well, I admire certain things about him. He's trained a lot of doctors, and they've got one of the best educational systems in the developing world. And you know, he's still popular with a lot of people down there. ..

REILLY: But he's a killer. He's a killer. He's a guy who...

TURNER: But that has never, to my knowledge, that's never been proven. I mean...

O'REILLY: He's executed political prisoners. I mean, he enslaves people who don't see it the way he sees it. Come on. He runs a dictatorship.

For the record in 1958 ( year before Castro took over) Cuba had a higher standard of living than Ireland and Austria, almost double Spain and Japan's per capita income, more doctors and dentists per capita than Britain, and lower infant mortality than France and Germany - the 13th-lowest in the world, in fact. Today, Cuba's infant-mortality rate - despite the hemisphere's highest abortion rate, which skews this figure downward - is 43th from the top.

So, relative to the rest of the world, Cuba's health care has worsened under Castro, and a nation with a formerly massive influx of European immigrants needs machine guns, water cannons and tiger sharks to keep its people from fleeing, while half-starved Haitians a short 60 miles away turn up their noses at any thought of emigrating to Cuba.

But let's get to the heart of the matter. Ted Turner is demonstratively a brilliant businessman. Back in 1997 when CNN craved a Havana Bureau, his sales pitch was not particularly subtle: "Castro is one helluva guy!" he gushed to a capacity crowd at Harvard Law School during a speech. "You people would like him! Most people in Cuba like him."

Within weeks CNN was granted its coveted Havana Bureau, the first ever granted by Castro to a foreign network. By the way, two years ago that CNN bureau's longtime reporter, Lucia Newman, jumped over to Al-Jazeera. A "lateral career move," I think they call this.

To put it bluntly: Ted Turner is very far from a space-cadet. He cannot possibly believe what he said on the O'Reilly Factor. The Castro regime's own henchmen have never claimed anything so transparently preposterous-no Communists ever have. Indeed, like Al Qaeda generations later, terror in the form of mass murder (often public) , was always key to the Communist quest and maintenance of power. Communists have always wanted this to be known, as a means to cow opposition.

"We will make our hearts cruel, hard, and immovable ... we will not quiver at the sight of a sea of enemy blood. Without mercy, without sparing, we will kill our enemies in scores of thousands; let them drown themselves in their own blood! Let there be floods of the blood of the bourgeois - more blood, as much as possible."  Felix  Dzerzhinsky, the head of the Soviet Cheka in 1918:


"Crazy with fury I will stain my rifle red while slaughtering any enemy that falls in my hands! My nostrils dilate while savoring the acrid odor of gunpowder and blood. With the deaths of my enemies I prepare my being for the sacred fight and join the triumphant proletariat with a bestial howl!" Ernesto Guevara from the book that became the Motorcycle Diaries.

"We stand for organized terror - this should be frankly admitted. Terror is an absolute necessity during times of revolution. Our aim is to fight against the enemies of the Soviet Government and of the new order of life. We judge quickly." V.I Lenin.

"To send men to the firing squad, judicial proof is unnecessary. These procedures are an archaic bourgeois detail. This is a revolution! And a revolutionary must become a cold killing machine motivated by pure hate. We execute from revolutionary conviction!" Ernesto "Che" Guevara.

"Executions? Certainly we execute!And we will CONTINUE executing as long as it is necessary! This is a war to the DEATH against the revolution's enemies!" Che Guevara while addressing the U.N. General Assembly on December 9, 1964.

According to the Black Book of Communism, published in Paris, 14,000 men and boys were executed in Cuba by that stage -- the equivalent, given the relative populations, of over 3 million executions in the U.S. "VIVA CHE! VIVA FIDEL!" bellowed  Jesse Jackson while arm in arm with the agent of that appalling bloodbath (Fidel Castro) at the University of  Havana in 1984.  Jesse Jackson, by the way, wrote a book condemning capital punishment.

Please note: all of Guevara's above quotes are found in the sadist/coward's (alas, the "acrid odor of gunpowder and blood" never reached Guevara's nostril from actual combat. It always came from the close-range murder of bound, gagged and blindfolded men) own diaries. Some of these diaries were fashioned into a movie 4 years ago by Robert Redford (The Motorcycle Diaries); Others provided the screenplay for the  4 ½ hour "epic hagiography" (as described by The New York Times) directed by Stephen Soderbergh and starring Benicio Del Toro titled "Che," and released stateside just last week.

The above-mentioned directors and producers profess rigid fidelity to Che's complete diaries. But you will search these movies in utter vain for these dramatic soundbites, much less their much more cinematically dramatic fulfillment.

When Che Guevara entered the Cuban city of Santa Clara during the anti-Batista skirmishing he promptly ordered the firing squad murder of dozens of Batista "war-criminals." A "battle" that added up to six casualties on both sides , but which Soderbergh and Del Toro-mindlessly sycophantic to their Castroite sources--depict as a Caribbean Stalingrad/Iwo Jima, somehow produced scores of war criminals on one side! The New York Times, who "reported" on this "battle" as it "raged," didn't bother to look into this peculiar numerical discrepancy.

The Cuban Stalinists televised some of their Santa Clara atrocities for essentially the same reason Al Qaeda televised Nick Berg's be-heading. Please click here Mr Turner, for stark proof of what Bill O'Reilly was telling you on his show.

This valiant man, Col. Cornelio Rojas, refused a blindfold and walked to his execution (murder , actually, Che Guevara didn't even bother with one of his bogus trials) unescorted. Compare Senor Rojas death to Guevara's capture--'Don't shoot!" whimpered the quaking "guerrilla". "I'm worth more to you alive than dead!"

Blanco Rojas, Senor Rojas wife of forty years, died of a heart arttack while watching her husband's Che-ordered murder on Cuban national TV. Cornelio Rojas 17 year old nephew , Pedro, volunteered for what came to be known as the Bay of Pigs invasion. After fighting to his last bullet (and denied more by JFK's Best and Brightest) the defenseless Pedro was murdered in cold blood by a suddenly blustering and sneering Communist who served until recently as Cuba's "Minister of tourism," Osmany Cienfuegos. 

Humberto Fontova is the author of four books including Exposing the Real Che Guevara. Visit hfontova.com.