Thursday, August 16, 2007

Related News about Luis Posada Carriles


Radio Mambi is, of course, reporting the recent release of Osvaldo Mitat, who was arrested in 2005, along with Santiago Alvarez, for possession of illegal weapons. Both also had suspected ties to Luis Posada Carriles.

In November 2005, after a federal raid of a Broward County apartment complex owned by Alvarez, ATF agents found "
a thousand rounds of ammunition," several automatic weapons and explosives. According to the Miami Herald, "Judge Andrea Simonton refused to release the pair because their mere possession of automatic weapons, grenades and rounds of ammunition amounted to a 'crime of violence' and posed a danger to the community."

According to the arrest affidavit: "Following his arrest, Mitat made a spontaneous statement to a uniformed police officer... He told the officer... 'Unfortunately, you guys are doing your jobs and we got caught with a bunch of guns. I love the United States and would never do anything to hurt this country. These guns were not meant to be used against this country."*

Mitat and Alvarez were eventually sentenced to serve 37 and 46 month in prison respectively, but their sentences were then reduced two months ago after more illegal weapons were surrendered to the federal authorities. The June arms surrender included "over 14 pounds of plastic explosives, 200 pounds of dynamite, 4,000 feet of detonator cord, 30 semiautomatic and automatic weapons, one grenade launcher, and two handmade grenades, among other items." According to one report, it was "several grenades."

A related story also revealed that the US Coast Guard found weapons in the Bahamas connected to Alvarez. "Documents say Santiago Alvarez allegedly helped plan and pay for an 'armed incursion' in 2001 against the Cuban government."

Today, Armando Perez-Roura said that all the weapons found were aimed "para combatir ese régimen" (to combat that regime). Ziva from Babalu Blog believes Mitat and Alvarez were "brave patriots" who were furthering the "declared goal of spreading democracy."

Santiago Alvarez is scheduled to be released by the end of this year.


Cuban news outlets are reporting that "three officials includ[ing] ex Minister of Government and Justice Arnulfo Escalona, ex National Police Director Carlos Bares and ex assistant director of Migration Javier Tapia" are being charged in Panama "for breaking the law in releasing international terrorist of Cuban origin Luis Posada Carriles [in 2004]." Specifically, charges of "abuse of authority."

Luis Posada Carriles and three other men were pardoned in 2004 by Panamanian President
Mireya Moscoso (who now has a home in Key Biscayne, Florida). She believed that "if they stayed [in Panama], they would be extradited to Cuba and Venezuela, and there they were surely going to kill them there." Posada was serving a sentence in connection to a thwarted assassination plot against Fidel Castro in 2000. The US denies having any influence over President Moscoso's decision. But in Panama, "speculation was rampant that the Bush administration, indirectly or not, had pressured [the] Panamanian President." The current President of Panama, Martin Torrijos, at the time "said he disagrees with the pardons."

Cuban American National Foundation President, Francisco Hernandez, said that the 2004 pardon was "a victory for all those in exile, and a triumph of justice, beyond the strategy adopted to bring democracy to Cuba."

[*]Miami Herald, November 22, 2005, "Posada Allies Denied Release" by Oscar Corral and Jay Weaver.


CorgiGuy said...

Hello M-Watch, first time here. Enjoy reading your Blog!

I spent some time reading some of your back posts to get a sense of where you stand on things, I've run across you on other blogs and noticed you don't seem to get much love from some bloggers/posters.

Being a liberterian myself, the posts that you tagged as liberterian caught my eye. I agree with your obvservations about Milton Freedman ( mises institute ). However I didn't get the sense of where you stand on the idea of liberty and freedom and the idea of the individualism vs collectivism.

Mambi_Watch said...

Wow, big question.

First, I'm not a libertarian. Mainly because of their arguments on free markets and related human freedoms.

But, I'll admit that I have not read a lot of Friedman's work, nor of his contemporaries. I do plan to in time. Maybe you can recommend some reading.

To me, freedom and liberty are not exactly things we "fight" for or things we declare as having, but rather continuously work towards. Such as social organization and democratic decision-making and ratification. I see no connection to markets, but rather to complex human faculties that guide our lives. I would like to say more, but there is also much more research I would like to do on these subjects.

As for individualism vs collectivism, I think people should decide for themselves where to draw those lines. I see benefits in both constructs. People, as organized groups and acting democratically, should decide how they will develop those ideas for their communities.

In the case of Cuba, there is strong American support for normalization of US/Cuba relations. And, I support that idea. Not because people say so, but because they (which includes several sectors of the economy) support an idea that can have many positive results. There are many examples across the globe that show this.

I think, there are few examples of successful policies of isolation.

CorgiGuy said...

MB, here's my simple take on it.

An individualist worldview is one that values self reliance and personal responsability and individual freedom. An individualist idea of goverment is the smallest the better. Liberterian, Traditional Conservatives tend to have indidvidualist point of view.

A collectivist worldview tends to get its values from the group. Whoever controls the group defines the rules and looks at goverment as the great equalizer. Socialists, Democrats, Social Conservatives tend to have collectivist point of view.

IMHO, America empire building days is almost over, due to our recent failures in foreign policy, failurue in iraq and our domestic challenge and social ills. I see american turning more to a non-interventionist foreign policy, the new adiministration will probably turn to diplomcacy when it comes to settling cuban issues.

CorgiGuy said...

Here's a good link on Collectivism vs Individualism

Mambi_Watch said...

Thanks for the link. I'll give it a read.