Just like Castro himself, Karen Bass claims she's 'not a communist'
Whom does she think she's fooling?
Karen Bass, one of Joe Biden's top-pick candidates for vice president, has declared she's "not a communist," and none of us should believe the "lies" of the Republicans.
According to this pretty hideously reported NBC news story:
"I'm not a socialist. I'm not a communist. I've belonged to one party my entire life and that's the Democratic Party and I'm a Christian," Bass told NBC News.
As Bass has emerged as a potential vice presidential pick, Republicans have seized on Bass' history of visits to Cuba. It's an overture to the significant segment of Cuban American and other Latino voters in the swing state of Florida who have backed Republican candidates over their hardline stances against the communist country.
Lies? What lies? Bass made at least eight trips to Cuba during the 1970s, back when it was illegal, and did so as reported organizing leader of the Venceremos Brigade, the hardest of the hard-left faction that favored communist Fidel Castro over the freedom of America. The name translates to "we will triumph." Over whom, you can just guess, as Henry Olsen notes here.
The Venceremos Brigade was available only through application — and those applications were read and vetted by Cuban intelligence. If Cuban intelligence checked you out and found itself unconvinced that it could trust you, you weren't going. That necessary trust went double for the organization's leaders, which Bass was. What did they do on those illegal trips to Cuba? They heard indoctrination like this, according to Humberto Fontova:
"Your country must be DESTROYED! Your duty is to DESTROY YOUR COUNTRY!" (KGB/DGI instructions to their Venceremos Brigade recruits.)
Breitbart News has this impeccable report about the nature of this beast here:
Over the years, Bass has spoken frequently about her decades-long involvement with the Venceramos Brigade (VB), starting from the time she was 19-years-old in 1973. She would make at least eight trips to Cuba in the 1970s and more in the decades that followed.
Articles about her work with the Venceremos Brigade make it sound like the Cuban equivalent of Habitat for Humanity or any other praiseworthy volunteer organization providing humanitarian assistance in poor countries.
In fact, the Venceremos Brigade was a Cuban communist front group founded in 1969 by Fidel Castro and the radical members of the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). The Brigade was run by the Cuban intelligence service, the General Directorate for Intelligence (DGI).
And it gets worse.
According to this report from a spy who testified to Congress:
In 1972, a House subcommittee published a report titled "The Theory and Practice of Communism in 1972 (Venceremos Brigade)." In a hearing leading up to the report, Richardson Preyer, a Democratic representative from North Carolina, said he hoped he would learn whether Brigade members were "idealistic, even though misguided, young people who wanted to go down to help with the crops with a regime which they are sympathetic for" or whether they were "interested in sharpening their revolutionary talents and perhaps exporting revolution." During the hearing, a sheriff's deputy from New Orleans told the subcommittee that he had infiltrated the group and been subject to extensive questioning and indoctrination sessions. "To be a member of the brigade, you had to be confirmed as a Marxist-Leninist," he said. The New York Times wrote up his testimony under the headline "Undercover Agent Tells of Cuba Trip With Red Youth Unit."
But somehow we are supposed to believe Bass, who says she wasn't a communist and she only just learned that maybe something's bad about Castro, which is probably the hollowest claim from the left.
Denying that one is a communist, in fact, is a very communist thing to do, as Carlos Eire, a Cuban exile based at Yale, pointed out on Babalu:
She is NOT a communist, she is NOT a communist, she is NOT a communist. Yeah, see…No one could ever lie about NOT being a communist. She is just a social justice warrior and a fighter for representative democracy, like Fidel back in 1959.
Wanna see? Take a look at the video below, and watch for those magical shibboleths to jump out of Fidel's mouth so earnestly: "social justice" and "representative democracy[.]"
And people who went to Cuba, again and again and again, like Bass, were the biggest targets of all for Cuban intelligence. This report, by Humberto Fontova, dating from 2014, tells us a lot:
"A preferred target are 'study abroad' programs (in Cuba,)" adds America's top Cuban spycatcher Chris Simmons, recently retired from the Defense Intelligence Agency, "as participating students (from the U.S.) are assessed as inherently sympathetic to the Cuban revolution."
And this, from Fontova:
You see during the late 60's and early 70's the terrorist offshoot from the SDS (Students for a Democratic Society) known as The Weathermen and staffed most famously by Barack Obama's future "neighbors" Bill Ayres and Bernadine Dohrn served as the Cuban DGI's (Directorio General de Intelligencia) top U.S. recruitment officers. They accomplished this recruitment primarily through their sponsorship of the then famous Venceremos Brigades.
During that heady Age of Aquarius hundreds of starry-eyed college kids were volunteering to "help build Cuban Socialism" and "fight U.S. Imperialism," mostly by joining these Venceremos Brigades (many via the Weathermen,) making their way to Cuba and joyfully cutting Cuban sugar cane.
"The ultimate objective of the DGI's participation in the setting up of the Venceremos Brigades," says an FBI report declassified in 1976 "was the recruitment of individuals who are politically oriented and who someday may obtain a position, elective or appointive, somewhere in the U.S. Government, which would provide the Cuban Government with access to political, economic and military intelligence[.]
This ought to give anyone the creeps, given that if Joe Biden picks her as his veep and in his dotage he doesn't make it to the end of his term, she's the one who's going to be sitting in the presidential chair, doing Castro's bidding.
Except she's unlikely to do it, given that Miami's Cubans and Miami's Venezuelans won't vote for her. They know the tricks and false promises of communism firsthand because they've lived it. NBC seems to think it's strange that people who have lived through communism and fled for their lives from it wouldn't want to embrace it firsthand in the states.
"What we are finding is the socialism drives people very strongly," Gamarra said. Voters are not swayed so much by the policy of Trump on Cuba or Venezuela, but "it's the way in which Republicans have said, if you vote for Biden, they are going to make the U.S. into another Venezuela, into another Cuba."
People who associate socialism with violence in countries they or their families or others were forced to flee are associating violence in protests during Black Lives Matter demonstrations with the turmoil of the countries they fled, ideas that are fed by local media coverage, Gamarra said.
The Atlantic echoes it.
Roberto Rodriguez Tejera, a Cuban American who hosts a radio show popular with Cuban Americans in Florida, told me by text that he felt sure, given her history, that Bass would take the state off the table for Biden. "It's not only about Cuba. It's about the socialist narrative. She is the poster person for it. A dream come true for the Republicans," he wrote. "It's also about any independent voter, anywhere in the country, who may be afraid of a total takeover of the Biden presidency by the radical left."
Now, gee, why would that be? And wouldn't people who lived communism firsthand have just a little incentive to oppose that failed philosophy? The Miami Cubans would know every dirty trick put on by the Castroites. They're not going to be fooled.
Image credit: Official portrait via Wikimedia Commons, public domain.