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Castro making enemies and losing friends
Houston Chronicle ^ | June 18, 2003 | staff

Posted on 06/18/2003 12:34:08 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

Fidel Castro, who normally is as cunning as any fox that ever watched over a chicken coop, has managed to turn his island nation's best commercial trading partner into a hostile critic of his regime.

The European Union, often little more than a Castro apologist, has decided to restrict high-level government visits and cut participation of its 15 member-states in Cuban cultural activities.

The EU is responding to Castro's recent sham trials and imprisonment of 75 Cuban dissidents and his ordered execution of three men who hijacked a ferry boat and tried to make it to freedom in the United States.

This is quite a turnaround for the EU.

Castro has been a master at winning the propaganda war since taking power in 1959, but his jailing of the dissidents and the executions of the hijackers shocked the civilized world. At the ripe old age of 76, Cuba's usually clever tyrant may be losing his famous touch.

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: communism; fidelcastro

Cuban President Fidel Castro addresses the crowd, as a bodyguard stands near him, during a political rally in a working class suburb of Havana, June 7, 2003. Thousands of people gathered while Castro expressed his annoyance with the European Union, for its decision to cut back diplomatic and political ties due to a recent crackdown on the island's dissidents. REUTERS/Claudia Daut

Cuba Takes Control of Spanish Center *** HAVANA - Fidel Castro's communist government took its first major step in its anti-Europe campaign Saturday, taking control of the Spanish Embassy's cultural center - a showcase of Iberian tradition Havana says was used to nurture the opposition. The Foreign Ministry announcement came two days after Castro led hundreds of thousands of people on marches outside the Spanish and Italian embassies in the capital to protest European alignment with U.S. policies supporting pro-democracy dissidents.

Havana was responding to the 15-member European Union's announcement last week that it would review its relations with the island after a crackdown on the opposition and the firing-squad executions of three men who tried to hijack a ferry to South Florida. A government statement Saturday said Cuba was canceling its agreement with the Spanish Embassy, first signed in 1995 and renewed in September, to operate the cultural center in a renovated historic building facing the ocean in the capital's Old Havana district.***

1 posted on 06/18/2003 12:34:09 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
I wonder if Oliver Stone will continue his friendship with Castro? Mabey we should check in with Oliver and get his opinion on this situation.....NOT!
2 posted on 06/18/2003 4:39:20 AM PDT by Arpege92
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