[Marxism] Hillary Clinton on Cuba at her confirmation hearing
ffeldman at bellatlantic.net
Wed Jan 14 21:54:57 MST 2009
Louis Proyect quotes from Walter Lippmann's post:
CLINTON: Let those political prisoners out. Be willing to, you know, open up
the economy and lift some of the oppressive strictures on the people of
Cuba. And I think they would see that there would be an opportunity that
could be perhaps exploited.
And Louis commented:
Exploited? Finally an honest word out of this crappy politician's mouth.
Walter Lippmann quoted:
CLINTON: Senator, the president-elect is committed
to lifting the family travel restrictions and the
remittance restrictions. He believes, and I think
it's a very wise insight, that Cuban-Americans are
the best ambassadors for democracy, freedom and a
free market economy.
And as they are able to travel back to see their
families, that further makes the case as to the
failures of the Castro regime -- the repression,
the political denial of freedom, the political
prisoners -- all of the very unfortunate actions
that have been taken to hold the Cuban people back.
You know, our policy is, first and foremost, about
the freedom of the Cuban people and the bringing of
democracy to the island of Cuba. We hope that the
regime in Cuba, both Fidel and Raul Castro, will
see this new administration as an opportunity to
change some of their typical approaches.
Let those political prisoners out. Be willing to,
you know, open up the economy and lift some of the
oppressive strictures on the people of Cuba. And
I think they would see that there would be an
opportunity that could be perhaps exploited.
But that's in the future, whether or not they
decide to make those changes.
Louis seems to have insisted that Clinton's comment about exploiting Cuban
concessions, if any, on political prisoners on economic questions, is the
only factually true statement from this "crappy politician's mouth", I
assume he stands behind the suggestion that everything else she said is a
I therefore assume that Louis holds that the following statement was a
deliberate lie: "Senator, the president-elect is committed to lifting the
family travel restrictions and the
remittance restrictions." was a deliberate lie -- the president-elect has no
such intentions. Apparently, in Louis' view, her assessment, for imperialist
reasons (what other reasons could an imperialist administrator in an
imperialist administration have?) that this was a "wise" policy was also a
deliberate conscious lie.
This is in line with the view that Obama's appointments represented a
rejection of the positions he had campaigned on in all cases, and an
adoption of the positions that those he appointed had put forward. In both
the cases of Cuba and Iran, Clinton put forward the imperialist policies he
had put forward rather the ones she had insisted on in her campaign for the
Democratic nomination against him. Obviously, if she claims she has now
adopted his positions, she is lying for her appointment could only mean that
he had adopted her past positions. Q.E.D.
I assume that Louis is not simply being demagogic. I also assume he is not
opposed to weakening any aspect of the blockade because this would
strengthen a counterrevolutionary "Chinese current" (whose existence,
weight, and real objectives are all debatable). This alleged current
allegedly favors open or de facto total institution of capitalist relations
and, we are told, imagines that little Cuba could do this and remain
independent of the United States (something more possible for China, whether
or not this is what has happened there).
My impression, on the contrary, is that Louis is opposed to the current
embargo and, like the Cubans, in favor of any relaxation of economic
dealings or travel bans wherever they take place. And that his opposition to
the US blockade is unconditional.
My own view is that her statement indicates that the aspects of the blockade
will be lifted, as promised, by the Obama administration, despite Louis'
clear statement that everything she said except the clear support for
counterrevolution was a dirty lie.
The US imperialist support for counterrevolution is a given. Frankly, if
Obama had appointed someone beloved of bourgeois liberals like those who
haunt the pages of the Nation or American Prospect as Secretary of State,
the position on Cuba would have been pretty much the same, in my opinion.
The main problem with the determined imperialist linkage of adjustments in
the blockade to short-term counterrevolutionary expectations is that if the
Cuban leadership and people do not abandon the revolution -- despite the
fairly widespread view on the far left that the revolution will surely
dissolve under the impact of weakening of the blockade due to the invincible
power of the alleged "Chinese current" under such circumstances -- the
weakening of the blockade could prove to be shortlived, as happened with the
lifting of the travel ban under the Carter administration.
I see no sign whatever that Cuban sovereignty and independence are for sale,
and I hope (not optimistically) that the US imperialists, despite their
unchanging counterrevolutionary goals, will decide it is best to live with
this fact for more than 2 or 3 years, as has tended to be the case in
I think her statements should be taken not as deliberat
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