Abby Martin goes over of an Associated Press article which exposes USAID’s secret attempt to monitor and influence dissent in Cuba through a social messaging service called ZunZuneo.
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A Cuban social media platform called ZunZuneo with tens of thousands of users was in fact an espionage project concocted by the U.S. government. Although, what social network isn’t about covert data mining? The Independent reports:
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In an apparent throwback to the Cold War, the US government spent $1.6m building a social media network with the aim of undermining the communist government in Cuba, it has emerged.
Documents obtained during an investigation by the Associated Press show that the project, which lasted more than two years and drew thousands of subscribers, was built with secret shell companies and was financed through foreign banks.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) was reportedly behind the project which saw the creation of a ‘Cuban Twitter’ dubbed “ZunZuneo” – slang for a Cuban hummingbird’s tweet. Users of “ZunZuneo” were entirely unaware of the involvement of the United States government agency and that American contractors were gathering personal data about them.
Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea is the story of Santiago, an elderly fisherman struggling to reel in a giant marlin.
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More than year after the National Security Archive sued the CIA to declassify the full “Official History of the Bay of Pigs Operation,” a U.S. District Court judge today sided with the Agency’s efforts to keep the last volume of the report secret in perpetuity. In her ruling, Judge Gladys Kessler accepted the CIA’s legal arguments that, because Volume V was a “draft” and never officially approved for inclusion in the Agency’s official history, it was exempt from declassification under the “deliberative process privilege” despite having been written over 30 years ago.
The National Security Archive called the decision “a regrettable blow to the right-to-know” and vowed to press the Obama administration to force the CIA to adhere to the President’s Executive Order 13526 that “no information shall remain classified indefinitely.”
The volume, titled “CIA’s Internal Investigations of the Bay of Pigs Operations,” was written by CIA historian Jack Pfeiffer in 1981.
Via The Guardian:
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A previously unpublished diary kept by Ernesto “Che” Guevara during the guerilla campaign he fought alongside Fidel Castro has been released in Cuba.
Diary of a Combatant covers the period from 1956 until late 1958, beginning with Guevara’s arrival in Cuba aboard the yacht Granma with Fidel and Raúl Castro and going on to cover his march from the east of the island to Havana.
The book was unveiled in the Cuban capital on Tuesday on what would have been the Argentine-born revolutionary’s 83rd birthday. His widow, Aleida March, was on hand with one of his daughters to sign copies and said that the purpose of publishing the diary was “to acknowledge his thoughts, life and work”.
The book was edited by the Che Guevara Studies centre, which is directed by March, and published by Australian firm Ocean Press/Ocean Sur.
One reason why the publication of the diaries had been put off was that some of the hand-written notebooks in which they were kept were missing, a press conference was told.
Nina Lakhani writes in the Indepedent:
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They are the real heroes of the Haitian earthquake disaster, the human catastrophe on America’s doorstep which Barack Obama pledged a monumental US humanitarian mission to alleviate. Except these heroes are from America’s arch-enemy Cuba, whose doctors and nurses have put US efforts to shame.
A medical brigade of 1,200 Cubans is operating all over earthquake-torn and cholera-infected Haiti, as part of Fidel Castro’s international medical mission which has won the socialist state many friends, but little international recognition.
Observers of the Haiti earthquake could be forgiven for thinking international aid agencies were alone in tackling the devastation that killed 250,000 people and left nearly 1.5 million homeless. In fact, Cuban healthcare workers have been in Haiti since 1998, so when the earthquake struck the 350-strong team jumped into action. And amid the fanfare and publicity surrounding the arrival of help from the US and the UK, hundreds more Cuban doctors, nurses and therapists arrived with barely a mention.
CUBA: The municipal elections have come to a close on May 19 with the constitution of the Municipal Assemblies and the election by the delegates of the presidents and vice-presidents from amongst the newly elected delegates.
Prior to this last step, thousands of neighbourhood nomination meetings took place between February 24 and March 24 in all 169 Municipalities across the island. From among those nominated by the citizens, a secret universal suffrage ballot election took place on April 25 to elect the 15,093 delegates for all municipalities from among the more than 45,000 nominated directly by the citizens. On that Sunday a candidate, from a minimum of two to a maximum of eight nominees in each constituency (riding or ward), would have to garner at least 50% of the valid votes in order to be elected.
A second round took place on May 2 in those constituencies which none of the candidates garnered at least 50% of the valid votes.… Read the rest
Juan O. Tamayo reports in the Miami Herald:
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Juanita Castro, sister of Cuban rulers Fidel and Raúl Castro, cooperated with the CIA in the 1960s — a time when the U.S. agency was plotting to assassinate Fidel and overthrow his revolution — according to an exclusive Univisión-Noticias 23 report on her newly published book.
The report also revealed that Juanita, who broke with her brothers’ revolution in 1964, hid government opponents in her home; that Fidel refused to visit her because the house was “surrounded by worms;” and that their mother often intervened with Raúl to help Castro critics, jailed or fugitive.
Described as the Castro family’s best-kept secret in the weeks that preceded the release of her book Monday, Juanita’s revelation of her link with the CIA came as a short teaser at the end of a Univisión-Noticias 23 report on the book broadcast at 11 p.m. Sunday.
Juanita told the program that a person close to her and Fidel told her that “The CIA wanted to talk with me .