Global Security Headlines

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

When will Zapatero Learn His Cuban Lesson?

In 2004, la isla heralded the election of socialista José Luis Rodrigo Zapatero as the new president of Spain in the aftermath of the 3/11 bombings of the Atocha subway station in Madrid by Al Qaeda.

Spain reversed course from the previous rightist Partido Popular (PP) and began a diplomatic dance with Cuba. Time and again, countries dealing with La Habana get burned.

In 2002, former Presidente of Mexico, Vincente Fox, learned that the coy dictator Fidel can pull a few tricks when he released the audio of a taped telephone conversation of Fox trying to persuade Castro to cut short a summit meeting so as to avoid crossing paths with then US President George W. Bush. Sneaky.

Regarding Spain, La Habana found a pliant European leader with a modicum of ideological affinity and thus Zapatero was maneuvered into granting diplomatic cover to break its relative isolation and find wiggle room in the respectable European Union. Spain under Zapatero flakked for Cuba in the European Parliament.

Lately, Spain still has not recognized the presidential elections in Honduras in wake of the Mel Zelaya´s ouster for his extra-constitutional shenanigans. Mr. Zelaya was a new recruuit for the Castro-Chavez Club in Latin America. Thus, Spain defers to La Habana´s view on the matter.

Yesterday, the Spanish national dailies reported another barring of a Spanish socialist European Parliament member visiting Cuba: Cuba prohíbe entrar al eurodiputado español Luis Yáñez (Cuba bars entry of Spanish Eurodeputy Luis Yañez) - El Pais.

The cheekiest part of this - it comes three days after Spain assumed the EU presidency in which - if you can believe it - Zapatero hopes to strengthen EU ties with Cuba!

And this was not la isla´s first snub of a Eurodeputy.

Here is one more factoid to show Castro, Inc.´s appreciation for the EU´s help in propping up the criminal regime in La Habana: "The EU is Cuba's largest trading partner, with a third of all trade, almost one half of foreign direct investment and more than half of all tourists coming from Europe."

Playing with fire means eventually getting burned.
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