Bush to pull out the Cuba RAGDOLL and beat it again
Bushco Rethuglicans bring out the CUBAN RAGDOLL in order to beat it
again for "whatever" they can get out of it. They are running of the
usual "ragdolls" and are down to the old standby>>>>>>>"our national security is at risk with Cuba only 90 miles from our shores...etc. etc.
..blah! blah!..." The same old song I've heard since the early 1960's!
What's happening? These unimaginative joker's have their record stuck
on same song? Time to throw away the record, the record player, and
the players playing the record and record player"! Viva la Cuba! Viva
la Castro! Fight on! Even though old, don't kowtow now! Intelligent
people worldwide and even here in USA are rooting for you! Go Cuba!
February 26, 2004
Bush Tightens Rules on Travel to Cuba
By TERENCE HUNT
WASHINGTON (AP) -
President Bush tightened U.S. travel restrictions against Cuba on Thursday, a move likely to strengthen his election-year standing in politically important Florida and heighten tensions with Fidel Castro's communist regime.
Bush's order, less than two weeks before Florida's presidential primary, said Castro's government had used sometimes deadly force against American and Cuban citizens over the past decade and might do so again. Such an incident "could threaten a disturbance of international relations," Bush said.
Bush's action expands the government's authority to prevent the unauthorized departure of Cuban-bound ships from U.S. waters. U.S. authorities would be empowered to inspect any vessel in U.S. territorial waters, place guards on ships and take possession under certain circumstances.
Castro's most ardent Cuban-American opponents represent a vital voting bloc in Florida, the state whose contested election results in 2000 gave the presidency to Bush. Since taking office, Bush has traveled 19 times to Florida, where his brother, Jeb, is governor.
The United States has enforced a trade embargo against Cuba for more than more than four decades, and relations have been deteriorating over the last year.
The State Department's recently canceled talks on migration issues, which normally are held every six months. U.S. officials said Cuba has not been cooperating in achieving the goal of safe, orderly and legal immigration.
The Bush administration has accused Cuba of meddling in Latin America, sometimes in collaboration with the country's main South American ally, Venezuela.
The tightening of Cuban restrictions came on the same day that Bush rescinded a travel ban on Libya. The United States moved toward better relations with Tripoli in December after Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi renounced terrorism and development of weapons of mass destruction.
On another front in the turbulent politics of the Caribbean, Secretary of State Colin Powell on Thursday openly questioned whether President Jean-Bertrand Aristide can continue to serve effectively as Haiti's leader. It was the closest Powell has come to suggesting that Aristide bow out as president before his elected term ends in February 2006.
Bush has pledged to turn back any Haitian refugees who attempt to reach U.S. shores. The Coast Guard said it has intercepted about a dozen small vessels within 50 miles of the Haitian coast during the past three to four days.
The action against Cuba was hailed by Rep. Lincoln Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., a leading anti-Castro lawmaker. He said it was "another clear sign of President Bush's commitment to enforcement of the law and his support for democracy in Cuba."
In Havana on Thursday, Castro's government confirmed that most Cuban-born people living outside the island can visit the country without a visa starting June 1 if they have a valid Cuban passport.
In his order, Bush said Cuba "has over the course of its 45-year existence repeatedly used violence and the threat of violence to undermine U.S. policy interests. This same regime continues in power today, and has since 1959 maintained a pattern of hostile actions contrary to U.S. policy interests."
Bush said that over the past year, Cuba has taken a series of steps to destabilize relations with the United States, such as threatening to rescind migration accords and to close the U.S. interests section in Havana. Further, he said top Cuban officials have said repeatedly that the United States intended to invade Cuba, despite explicit denials from the United States.
The president noted that the United States had warned Cuba last May 8 that any political moves that resulted in a mass migration would be viewed as a hostile act.
Bush directed Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge to develop new rules to keep "unauthorized U.S. vessels" out of Cuban territorial waters.
The president said the passage of American boats into Cuban waters could bring injury or death to anyone on the vessels, "due to the potential use of excessive force, including deadly force, against them by the Cuban military." Crossing into Cuban territorial waters is already against U.S. law for unauthorized vessels, he said.
Moreover, such boats and ships bring money and commerce into Cuba, which runs contrary to U.S. policy aiming to "deny resources to the repressive Cuban government," Bush said. Castro's government may use such cash to support terrorist activities, he said.
Scores, perhaps even hundreds, of yachts sail to Cuba from the United States without permission annually, most of them docking at the Marina Hemingway in western Havana. On any given day, usually a few American-based yacht can be seen docked the marina. Not a single vessel flying a U.S. flag was spotted late Thursday afternoon.
Bush cited long-standing U.S. grievances against Cuba, calling it a state-sponsor of terrorism and saying that it has demonstrated "a ready and reckless willingness to use excessive force" against U.S. and Cuban citizens. He pointed to incidents in the 1990s, including the shooting down of two unarmed U.S.-registered civilian aircraft, the use of force against U.S.-registered vessels and the sinking of an unarmed Cuban vessel that resulted in the deaths of 41 Cuban citizens in 1994.
The new rules governing American boats' movement to Cuba expand restrictions that have been in place for years. Those rules covered vessels originating in Miami, while Ridge's new rules will apply to boats leaving from anywhere in the United States, White House and congressional officials said.
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