I've been enjoying the renewed media coverage about Cuba and US policy towards Cuba. Certainly, with the recent news of Fidel Castro's resignation, people in the US are wondering what the whole deal is, such as the effectiveness and potential of current US policy towards Cuba, and the various political alternatives that others argue for. Yesterday, C-SPAN and NPR provided wonderful forums for debate and discussion. And, Cuban Triangle blogger Phil Peters (also Vice-President at the Lexington Institute) found himself at the two forums among the various experts who spoke at length about Cuba and US policy.
On C-SPAN yesterday morning (Washington Journal) Phil Peters appeared with Reuters correspondent Anthony Boadle, and later with Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and Rep. Bill Delahunt. Both Boadle and Peters provide their thoughts on the current situation in Cuba, and Peters answers plenty of questions from callers. Rep. Ros-Lehtinen calls in to the show (acting over-friendly as usual and awkwardly greeting Peters as "friend") and voices her support for current US policy, even supporting part of her argument by citing reports from Freedom House which receives regular funding from the US government (USAID). Of course, she dares not mention the recent statements by the two leading human rights organizations that oppose the US embargo.
DIANE REHM SHOW
Then there was NPR's Diane Rehm show, which provided an excellent 50 minutes of commentary from Phil Peters, David Adams from the St. Petersburg Times, Frank Calzon from the Center for a Free Cuba (where one need only look at their "Research Council" to know where they stand), and later with US Sec. of Commerce Carlos Gutierrez. Highlights are Frank Calzon calling himself a defender of human rights while never mentioning the fact that the leading human rights organizations have and continue to oppose US policy towards Cuba (without question his perspective on human rights is quite selective), and Phil Peters being left "speechless" and describing Sec. Gutierrez as "disconnected from basic facts" about Cuba (some one had to say it). Of course, Calzon responds to that comment and also finds himself "speechless" about Peter's comment.
Kudos to Phil for taking a stand for accuracy.