In wake of Venezuela horror, it's time to stick it to Cuba
Like the totalitarian pros they are, it didn't take long for Venezuela's socialist Chavista dictatorship to start rounding up opponents. The Chavista goon squads swooped down on two leading opposition figures, Leopoldo Lopez and Antonio Ledezma, with a knock on the door and spirited the men off to parts unknown in a SEBIN (Venezuelan secret police) van. It was a familiar tactic for an experienced totalitarian state, not amateur hour for a newly minted dictatorship armed with a sham referendum to justify itself and just getting its feet wet.
This points to what is really going on in that socialist hellhole, now that Sunday's referendum, which would have you believe that Venezuelans voted themselves willingly into Cuba-style slavery, is over.
Venezuela is being run by Cuba. As Cuban-American blogger Alberto de la Cruz tweeted:
Doesn't matter if the polls are still open or that they've had a dismal turnout. The vote tallies were determined weeks ago in Havana.— Alberto de la Cruz (@albertodelacruz) July 30, 2017
This means that while President Trump was absolutely right to slap sanctions on the slimy little dictator at the top of this, Nicolas Maduro, it was only a start.
Charles Krauthammer observed that the sanctions should be extended to Maduro's family, a collection of drug dealers desecrating the presidential palace and in bed with Colombia's FARC Marxist narco-terrorists. He's right that the rot should extend to as many tyrants and their girlfriends as possible. Yet, by that logic, it would have to extend to the puppetmaster at the top of this evil chain: the Castroite Cubans who run the country – from its electricity to its internet to its passport system to its electoral machinery to its agriculture. These imperialists are all over, and what's more, they are yelling that Venezuela's sham referendum must be "respected."
"Cuba denounces the initiation of a well-orchestrated international operation, directed in Washington ... to silence the voice of the Venezuelan people," the government said in a statement published by state-run media.
"We know well these interventionist practises," the Cuban government said. The United States imposed a devastating economic embargo on the Caribbean island after its 1959 revolution that Havana says has cost it more than $100 billion.
"They think that they will manage to achieve the submission of the people to a puppet opposition that they financed," it said.
Puppet? Oh, really? Perhaps the most important reason to extend sanctions on Cuba and give the Castroite government a real taste of what a "blockade" they are always yelling about is is the fact that Venezuela has become Cuba's puppet. That kind of imperialismo is what Latin Americans have always railed against. Now it's there before their eyes, and Cuba is getting off scot-free, just sniping from the sidelines. It's time for President Trump to show Cuba what a real blockade looks like and end once and for all President Obama's zero-conditions giveaway to the Castroite regime.
As for Venezuela, all we can see now is a disaster of Cuba's making. This account of how disastrous it is, by Juan Carlos Hidalgo, is the best we have seen of all those written. The picture is ugly, and its instigators, including Cuba, must be held accountable.