US Wages Secret Cyber-War Against Cuba. Not Surprisingly It Fails. Again.

17

April 5, 2014 by gregrabidoux2013

Cuba pic

Behind these wall Twitter accounts of revolution are blowing-up. Not so much.

This week revelations surfaced that the US has been waging a “super-secret” cyber-war against Cuba. The goal apparently is to “stir up” anti-Castro sentiments and cultivate a new wave of young, socially conscious Cuban-hipsters. These new and improved, politically savvy Cubanos, will then, if all goes according to the master-plan hatched inside the cubicles of the USAID offices in Washington DC, rise up against their Communist/Dictatorship government. Armed only with their smartphones and their Twitter account feeds from the USAID they will collectively unleash a Havana-Hurricane of revolutionary upheaval. A political storm that will dramatically alter the future of this island which sits a mere 88 miles off the coast of Miami.

Or something like that.

Cubano students

Cubano students on social media similar to what has been being secretly sent by our USAID

You see, we’ve been hatching and “master-minding” plots to stir things up in Cuba, cultivate anti-Castro sentiment and help lead a revolution on this tiny island for oh, close to 60 years now. And they’ve all been, as you can plainly see, wildly successful. And with each “super-secret” plan that goes kablooey in our face like a defective Cohiba Cuban cigar it’s us who’s left to pick up the ashes of our own lost credibility and moral authority.

If you are new to the game called “Let’s De-Stabilize Cuba” here’s a quick primer. Fidel Castro lead a revolution between 1953-1959 that ousted strongman dictator Fulgencio Batista. Initially, the US supported this charismatic leader, hoping he would make good on his promises of a more open and just Cuba. For a short while he became the “darling” of the avant-garde press, posing for magazine covers, giving interviews and encouraging the kind of adulation usually reserved for rock stars like the up and coming Beatles.

Beatles

You’ll never know if the CIA asked us to knock-off Castro, at least not now.

But soon the political tide of good will from the West went out and Castro turned against the US as he consolidated his own power base. From 1959 to 2008 he ruled Cuba with an iron, ruthless and often deadly fist, effectively serving as a dictator, regardless of what title he chose to anoint himself with through the years. In 2008 he officially turned power over to his brother, Raoul, who over the years had served as an even more ruthless henchman and enforcer for his dictator-brother. Now, at age 88, Fidel is seen as more a symbolic presence but still rules when needed from behind the scenes despite his ill-health.

But man, what a rocky, Cuba-Libre ride this has been since 1959. In 1975, then US Senator Frank Church lead an investigation into secret and illegal CIA run activities we had sponsored since Castro’s rise to power. The Committee publicly verified that under James-Bond type programs like “Operation Mongoose,” we had tried to assassinate Castro at least 8 times with no success.

These attempts included wildly creative if not inevitable failures like an exploding cigar, a poisonous Conch shell, a poison-laden scuba diving suit we gave as a “gift” to Fidel, deadly bacterium we tried to put in his boots at the UN in New York, poisoned fish and even out and out contracts we took out on him via that tried and usually true method of assassination, the mafia.

If you are curious, yes, the man is still alive. At least as far as I know.

Fidel Castro Rallies Cubans In Havana

Si, I plan on living forever. And that exploding cigar trick, I still chuckle. You know inside.

Of course, all of this stirring-up took place after the notorious “Bay of Pigs” invasion which was finally given the fateful green-light by new president John F. Kennedy. The idea was roughly that we would train Cuban freedom fighters and along with CIA help, invade the shores of Cuba, drop lots of propaganda leaflets onto the island and along with “super-secret” radio broadcasts the “people” of Cuba, the true democratic-loving Cubanos would join these heroic freedom-fighters and soon Castro would be toppled. This “master-plan” failed horribly. The CIA backed revolutionaries were slaughtered.

Stop me if this sounds all too familiar.

Emboldened by this astonishing lack of good judgment, Castro covertly worked with the Soviets and planted and aimed missiles at the US, threatening to cause widespread death and damage to the mainland US.

That led to the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.

Thankfully, Castro and the Russian leader Nikita Kruschev, who had famously promised to “bury the US” at a United Nations meeting prior, backed down. The missiles were removed. An unstable era of peace between the US and Cuba was ushered in.

Nikita K Russia

Before Putin, there was Kruschev. At least he kept his shoes on in this photo.

But not without a political and economic price.

Before Castro, Havana was a thriving if not a decadent, destination for jet-setters and international (Western mostly) tourism. Elegant beachfront hotels, nightclubs, gambling, shopping, and yes, prostitution, Havana, Cuba was a mecca for big-money and even bigger crime bosses.

Havana pic

Havana, Cuba today.

Outside of Havana, the US had a lively and mutually profitable trade relationship with its Cuba neighbor.

For the past six decades though, the US when not trying to bump-off Castro, has imposed economic sanctions on Cuba and refused to recognize it as a nation, designating it as a country who sponsors terrorism. Nearly all trade has been halted over the years. Cuba claims its cost US companies about $1.25 trillion. The US downplays this figure.

Either way, while Cuba has lifted some of the travel restrictions recently, Beyoncé and Jay-Z recently went there for a quick vay-cay (angering many Cuban exiles in Miami) there remains much tension and claims of “master-plans” to de-stabilize the island.

beyonce

Travel restrictions? What travel restrictions? Viva Cuba!

In 2008, Alan Gross, a USAID sub-contractor was accused of setting up secret communications aimed at de-stabilizing the Cuban regime and was imprisoned. Between his imprisonment in Cuba and our holding of accused Cuban nationals, we have well, not a Mexican stand-off but a Cuban-Countdown to hostilities. Again.

Which brings us back to where this whole bizarre chapter of US-Cuban history began. “Super-secret” plots at de-stabilization, Twitter accounts and covert feeds that will lead to revolution. And US tax dollars being sent to try one more time at getting the Cubanos to shout a hearty “No” to Castro’s Communism and a resounding “Si” to Democracy.

Look, I would love for Cuba to get out from under the yoke of its thinly veiled, Castro-Family led Communist-Dictatorship. I would like nothing more than one day to see Cuban-Americans and Cuban exiles be able to once again embrace their beloved Cuba as a democratic, peace-loving, fully recognized nation among nations.

It’s just I don’t see that happening until Cuba runs out of Castros. And who knows when that will be.

But I also wish that just once, when all our “super-secret” plans are being hatched by the well-intentioned men and women in government cubicles throughout Washington DC that someone stops for a moment and wonders aloud, “Gee, boys, haven’t we already tried that plan before?” And, “Didn’t similar plans fail miserably?”

Bond

You do know I am just an actor in a movie, right?

The truth is covert plans at de-stabilization only seem to work in old James Bond movies. In real-life, the covert plan is quickly uncovered for all to see it for what it is-a really, bad idea.

What’s worse, with every secret plan that goes flatter than a week old Cuba-Libre drink, our moral integrity and authority to influence new generations of Cubanos goes out to sea.

cuba-libre

A non-flat Cuba-Libre! With enough of these to go around world peace is still a possibility!

As one Cubano said after the news broke about our efforts to wage “cyber-war” against Cuba, “Nothing surprises us about the US anymore…they are just as bad as the worst of what is here.”

Gee, I hope not. I’d really like to visit Havana someday as part of a new, Cuban democracy.

bengal-tiger-why-matter_7341043

 

 

 

 

 

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17 thoughts on “US Wages Secret Cyber-War Against Cuba. Not Surprisingly It Fails. Again.

  1. Sondra P says:

    Viva to better US-Cuba relations but a big No to silly, super-secret spying!

  2. Martina Alvarez-G says:

    My beloved Cuba will one day be a flourishing country but not because of US meddling or secret twitter accounts. Mi tierra.

  3. Kyle B says:

    The United States has always had a problem with worrying about other countries more than our own. It made some sense back during the 60’s to worry about communism and dictatorships (red scare.) But today, has anyone honestly considered for two seconds that Castro’s dictatorship is going to spread and become some sort of worldwide phenomenon? No. The U.S. is going to continue to intervene in other countries, because we think we’re the police of the world. I honestly feel that Cuba will work out their issues in time. When Castro dies, we’ll see.

  4. Burton says:

    I would not travel to Cuba like Jay-Z and Beyoncé. I wouldn’t trust the relaxed travel status that the Castro’s have in place, but that’s just me. I don’t understand why Washington D.C. has not learned from their errors of the past in relation to dealing with Cuban Communism as Dr. Rabidoux clearly points out in this article/blog. The United States has two ways to handle the Cuban Communist issue in my opinion. The first way is to except Cuba as a communist country from this point forward and resume regular trade practices. The second way is to stop dilly dallying and put a strong end to the Castro family dictatorship. If not now when? The time is perfect in my opinion. Cuba is in a transition from a bedridden dictator to an inexperienced brother leading. The Russian President Putin would be unwilling to offer much if any support as Russia is currently consumed with the Ukrainian peninsula take over in my opinion. But, then again the Arab Spring started with Twitter and other social media communication. Whatever is best for the USA that’s the way I am leaning.

    • Yep, as much as Havana is tempting I wouldn’t trust it either…not now.

      • Cara says:

        You both make a valid point. Looks like I should cancel my vacation and reschedule to somewhere that I know I wont be scooped up and locked away. As a court reporter with a TS clearance, I have been asked to go to Guantanamo; however, I have declined the request because of other obligations. I have also discussed on numerous occasions with my employer, about expanding our construction contracting company to Havana as we specialize in services that may be needed there. This article is quite educating and uncovers the real risks of US travel to the island during its secret attempts to de-stabilize their regime. I would not like to have to answer to the Castro’s, or anyone’s space we are invading for that matter. Hmmm… maybe I’ll try Bermuda 🙂 Great blog Dr. Rabidoux!!! And great responses!

      • Cara-Well, I know where I’d go if given the choice…Bermuda, here we come!Although, 2 years ago there were problems there with lots of kidnappings of American tourists, but that’s a story for another day!

  5. Justin L says:

    Honestly, reading this doesn’t surprise me the least bit. I had no idea we were trying to start “uprisings” against the Cuban leadership over the past 40 years or so, but it is definitely something our government would do hidden from the news headlines instead of dealing with our own detrimental problems. In my opinion, we need to stop getting involved in other countries and work on our issues (because we definitely have plenty of our own). Eventually, Castro will die, his faithful few will die, and Cuba will become another country similar to that of which we are currently dealing with in the Middle East – a war torn country with “elections” to put corrupt people in power.
    Who knows though, maybe one day we can all take a nice trip to Cuba and relax in the sun, but I don’t think we will see this for another 15-20 years.

  6. Wade M says:

    Being a “baby-boomer”, it will take a lot for me to have any trust with Cuba going forward. I have a built-in bias just based on years of what I have seen and heard in newspapers and television news. In relation to the spying, I have no expertise on whether or not this is in our country’s best interest. I just have to be hopeful that our national leaders know what they are doing. As far as taking a trip to Cuba, I am not interested even though I have flown over Cuba several times on Caribbean vacations.

  7. Jasen P says:

    I do not understand why the US can not get there big nose out of everyone’s business. We have way too many problems here in the US to be spending our hard earned tax money on something stupid as trying to overthrow a country via social media. How bout we use the money in a useful way instead of blowing it all the damn time. This is the kind of retarded stuff that got us in debt in the first place. Wasting money on nonsense stuff.

  8. Julie M says:

    US Policy towards Cuba seems fairly consistent over the years. Recent disagreement with that policy calls for the US to discard the embargo, and allow capitalism to influence the country naturally through free trade. But the use of outsider social media campaigns to encourage an uprising among youth seems doomed to fail simply because we who are creating the campaign have no real idea what youth in Cuba are thinking or what their situation is. Social media is a great way to begin a conversation and introduce new ideas, but if there is still an “us against them” mentality, outsider social media campaigns may be seen as only further reinforcing the rebellion and reaction against the US. But something that happens naturally through social media could really start a different discussion.

  9. Marley Burke says:

    I really disagree with the US using the internet in such a way, not that they don’t already do it on a regular basis. The worst part is that they normally do it in a horrible way. The dark net (sometimes called the deep web), created by the Navy but accessible to anyone, makes up 98% of all information on the internet. This is information is not searchable through normal engines like Google and must have a completely seperate browsers all together. It is also completely anonymous. That means that the government uses the same methods that criminals do. The deep web contains the silk road (cyber drug market), assasins, child pornography producers, and hackers. The US government, instead of face-to-face communication, chooses the most underhanded and deviant way to take a jab at Cuba.

  10. Nick C says:

    To me this seems like a waste of time and money for the US government. While I believe that a Cuban democracy would be great the article says I would like nothing more than one day to see Cuban-Americans and Cuban exiles be able to once again embrace their beloved Cuba as a democratic, peace-loving, fully recognized nation among nations. It’s just I don’t see that happening until Cuba runs out of Castros. And who knows when that will be. I think that time is coming quickly they are both very old and sick the US should slowly lean on the Cuba government and when Fidel dies put a not so secret plan in place and establish a democratic government.

  11. Casey H says:

    You’d think we would learn from our mistakes but apparently not. This method, albeit by different means, failed before and it has failed again. I know our relationship with Cuba isn’t the best, but these types of things are only going to hurt our relationship with them even more. Peaceful means should try to be achieved. We don’t trust them, obviously, but they are never going to trust us as long as these things occur.

  12. Autron H says:

    The best way for Cuba to change is for the U.S. to end its embargo. I see no need for it. When something that has been in effect for over 30 years and it does not work try something else. I think by having open trade and borders that will speed up the day that Cuba can once again be a major tourist star in the Caribbean for Americans to visit.

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