Jesse Jackson's ( public) objections to Rush Limbaugh's NFL ownership plan ran roughly as follows: "Rush Limbaugh made his wealth appealing to the fears of whites with an unending line of insults against blacks and other minorities...the National Football League has set high standards for racial justice and inclusion."
"Viva Fidel!" bellowed Rev. Jesse Jackson during his speech at the University of Havana in June 1984, while trailing a 300 person entourage that included Rev. Jeremiah Wright. "Viva Che Guevara!" he yelled again with fists raised high. "Long Live our cry of freedom!"
"He (Jesse Jackson) is a great personality," reciprocated a beaming Fidel Castro, "a brilliant man. Jackson's main characteristic is honesty. He is sincere and there is no hint of demagoguery in his speech."
As mentioned, this was summer of 1984, so at the time, the world's longest-suffering black political prisoner suffered his incarceration and tortures in stoic defiance. "Nigger!" taunted his jailers between tortures. "We pulled you down from the trees and cut off your tail!"
I do not refer to Nelson Mandela. No, this prisoner was being tortured a few miles away from the Revs. Jackson, Wright and their entourage of black American luminaries. The prisoner was a black Cuban named Eusebio Penalver and he was being tortured by Reverend Jackson's gracious hosts. Mr Penalver's incarceration and tortures stretched to 29 years which makes him the longest-suffering black political prisoner in modern history, surpassing Nelson Mandela's record in time behind bars and probably doubling the horrors suffered by Mandela during this period.
Eusebio Penalver was bloodied in his fight with Castroism but unbowed for almost 30 years in its dungeons. He's what Castroites call a "plantado"--a defiant one, an unbreakable one. "Stalin tortured," wrote Arthur Koestler, "not to force you to reveal a fact, but to force you to collude in a fiction."
"The worst part of Communism," wrote Solzhenytzin, "is being forced to live a lie."
Eusebio Penalver refused to collude in this lie. He spit in the face of his liar jailers. He scorned any "re-education" by his jailers. He knew it was they who desperately needed it. He refused to wear the uniform of a common criminal. He knew it was they who should don it. Charles Rangel, Jesse Jackson, Jeremiah Wright, Sheila Jackson Lee, Maxine Waters, Ron Dellums, etc. etc. etc. all toast his torturer. But through almost 30 years of those tortures Eusebio Penalver stood tall, proud and defiant.
Shortly before his death in 2006, your humble servant here had the honor of interviewing Senor Penalver. "For months I was naked in a 6 x 4 foot cell," Eusebio recalled. "That's 4 feet high, so you couldn't stand. But I felt a great freedom inside myself. I refused to commit spiritual suicide."
Sr Penalver served several months of this 30 year sentence naked in a "punishment cell" barely big enough to stand in, where he languished naked and in complete darkness. "Castro's apologists, those who excuse or downplay his crimes -- these people be they ignorant, stupid, mendacious whatever--they are accomplices in the bloody tyrant's crimes, accomplices in the most brutal and murderous regime in the hemisphere."
But have you ever heard of Eusebio Penalver? He became a U.S. citizen and lived in Miami for almost 20 years and would have been a cinch for the media to track down. Ever see a CNN interview with him? Ever see him on "60 Minutes"? Ever read about him in The New York Times? The Washington post? The Boston Globe? Ever hear about him on NPR during Black History Month? Ever seen anything on him on the History Channel or A&E? Ever hear the NAACP or Congressional Black Caucus mention him?
Why do I bother asking? He was a victim of the Left's premier pin-up boys...nuff said..
The black Cuban doctor, Oscar Elias Biscet (an Amnesty Int. prisoner of conscience) presently suffers a sentence of 25 years in Castro's torture chambers essentially for saying things about Castro similar to what Nancy Pelosi, Bill Maher and Michael Moore made a career of saying about President Bush. Dr Biscet also denounced the Castro regime's policy of forced abortions. This latter "crime" goes a long way towards explaining why you've never heard of him (and won't) in the MSM. For the record: President Bush awarded Dr Biscet the Presidential Medal of Freedom two years ago. (in a ceremony virtually blacked out by the MSM.)
Today the prison population in Stalinist/Apartheid Cuba is 90% black while only 9% of the ruling Stalinist party is black. As the Congressional Black Caucus cavorted in Cuba recently, a black Cuban anti-communist named Antunez, who suffered 17 years in Castro's dungeons (essentially for quoting Martin Luther King and the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights in a public square), was on a hunger strike against Castroism. I will quote his sister from a samizdat smuggled out of Cuba last year while he was still in prison:
"The Cuban government tries to fool the world with siren songs depicting racial equality in our country. But it is all a farce, as I and my family can attest, having suffered from the systematic racism directed at us by Castro's regime. My brother suffers the scourge of racial hatred every day. The beatings are always accompanied by racial epithets. They set dogs on him. They deny him medical attention. They kept him from attending his mother's funeral. The only thing I have to thank the Cuban revolution for," she quoted her brother, "is for restoring the yoke of slavery that my ancestors lived under."
"VIVA FIDEL!-- VIVA CHE GUEVARA!" (Jesse Jackson, June, 1984)
Humberto Fontova is the author of four books including Exposing the Real Che Guevara. Visit hfontova.com.