We at Cuban Americans for Engagement express our indignation for the attack launched against Congresswoman Kathy Castor of Tampa, Florida by TV-Radio Martí at the service of right-wing Cuban-Americans. In response to a visit to Tampa by the Chief of Mission of the Cuban Interests Section in Washington, TV-Radio Martí, an entity of the U.S. government, paid for by U.S. tax dollars, questioned the judgment of Rep. Castor and speculated on a hidden agenda behind the visit, which had been authorized by the Department of State.
The reporting of Jorge Rio Pedre, propagandist known for his unwarranted attacks on Cuban-Americans who oppose the U.S. embargo against Cuba, displays a lack of balance, at the least, as he did not bother to interview any of the organizations that represent the Cubans residing in the U.S. and other U.S. citizens who support Rep. Castor’s activities that favor better relations between the two countries.
It is time for the Obama administration to demand from TV-Radio Martí a modicum of order and coherence with our national interests, or at least with the policies of the Department of State. Under the management of the current director Carlos García, TV-Radio Martí has attacked Cuba’s Catholic Church, in the person of Cardenal Jaime Ortega; anti-embargo-Cuban-Americans, accusing them of being agents of Cuba’s government; and now Rep. Castor—all using U.S. tax dollars. The U.S. government has not authorized and the Congress has not appropriated for TV-Radio Martí’s rogué policy. To be against the embargo is a position protected by the First Amendment and U.S. tax dollars should not be used for McCarthyist campaigns against a federal representative, insinuating inappropriate relations with a foreign government.
The only thing worse than having a bad policy toward Cuba is having two. Apparently, someone agrees with us, because the original Radio Marti link to the video-report has been eliminated (http://www.martinoticias.com/media/video/tampa-cuba-cabanas-visita-camara-de-comercio-/31603.html). However, it is still available on their YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8Yj8FGvCNg