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Thu Apr 3, 2014, 03:09 AM

US secretly created 'Cuban Twitter' to stir unrest

Source: AP-Excite

By DESMOND BUTLER, JACK GILLUM and ALBERTO ARCE

WASHINGTON (AP) - In July 2010, Joe McSpedon, a U.S. government official, flew to Barcelona to put the final touches on a secret plan to build a social media project aimed at undermining Cuba's communist government.

McSpedon and his team of high-tech contractors had come in from Costa Rica and Nicaragua, Washington and Denver. Their mission: to launch a messaging network that could reach hundreds of thousands of Cubans. To hide the network from the Cuban government, they would set up a byzantine system of front companies using a Cayman Islands bank account, and recruit unsuspecting executives who would not be told of the company's ties to the U.S. government.

McSpedon didn't work for the CIA. This was a program paid for and run by the U.S. Agency for International Development, best known for overseeing billions of dollars in U.S. humanitarian aid.

According to documents obtained by The Associated Press and multiple interviews with people involved in the project, the plan was to develop a bare-bones "Cuban Twitter," using cellphone text messaging to evade Cuba's strict control of information and its stranglehold restrictions over the Internet. In a play on Twitter, it was called ZunZuneo - slang for a Cuban hummingbird's tweet.

FULL story at link.


Read more: http://apnews.excite.com/article/20140403/DACUG5K02.html





In this March 11, 2014 photo, a woman uses her cellphone as she sits on the Malecon in Havana, Cuba. The U.S. Agency for International Development masterminded the creation of a "Cuban Twitter," a communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba, built with secret shell companies and financed through foreign banks, The Associated Press has learned. The project, which lasted more than two years and drew tens of thousands of subscribers, sought to evade Cuba’s stranglehold on the Internet with a primitive social media platform. (AP Photo/Franklin Reyes)

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Reply US secretly created 'Cuban Twitter' to stir unrest (Original post)
Omaha Steve Apr 2014 OP
dixiegrrrrl Apr 2014 #1
progressoid Apr 2014 #2
hack89 Apr 2014 #5
penultimate Apr 2014 #37
progressoid Apr 2014 #39
MADem Apr 2014 #81
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #3
flamingdem Apr 2014 #69
hack89 Apr 2014 #4
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #6
hack89 Apr 2014 #9
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #10
treestar Apr 2014 #85
Zorra Apr 2014 #43
hack89 Apr 2014 #44
Zorra Apr 2014 #47
hack89 Apr 2014 #49
Zorra Apr 2014 #75
hack89 Apr 2014 #89
Zorra Apr 2014 #94
Mika Apr 2014 #96
former9thward Apr 2014 #62
dipsydoodle Apr 2014 #98
Ash_F Apr 2014 #54
hack89 Apr 2014 #55
Ash_F Apr 2014 #56
hack89 Apr 2014 #59
Ash_F Apr 2014 #70
joshcryer Apr 2014 #90
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #7
Progressive dog Apr 2014 #12
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #13
FSogol Apr 2014 #31
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #32
Laelth Apr 2014 #8
CFLDem Apr 2014 #11
DebJ Apr 2014 #14
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #15
DebJ Apr 2014 #16
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #18
DebJ Apr 2014 #19
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #20
DebJ Apr 2014 #21
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #24
joshcryer Apr 2014 #88
DebJ Apr 2014 #22
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #25
DebJ Apr 2014 #27
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #29
DebJ Apr 2014 #33
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #34
DebJ Apr 2014 #35
progressoid Apr 2014 #38
cui bono Apr 2014 #78
treestar Apr 2014 #86
MADem Apr 2014 #83
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #17
Blue_Tires Apr 2014 #40
dipsydoodle Apr 2014 #23
okaawhatever Apr 2014 #42
dipsydoodle Apr 2014 #46
flamingdem Apr 2014 #71
lunasun Apr 2014 #26
Pterodactyl Apr 2014 #28
Daniel537 Apr 2014 #30
Pterodactyl Apr 2014 #73
joshcryer Apr 2014 #87
starroute Apr 2014 #36
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #48
starroute Apr 2014 #50
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #58
starroute Apr 2014 #53
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #60
starroute Apr 2014 #63
starroute Apr 2014 #64
Blue_Tires Apr 2014 #41
LeftyMom Apr 2014 #72
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #76
warrant46 Apr 2014 #45
olddad56 Apr 2014 #51
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #61
Ghost Dog Apr 2014 #65
Nye Bevan Apr 2014 #93
apnu Apr 2014 #52
joshcryer Apr 2014 #57
Ghost Dog Apr 2014 #66
joshcryer Apr 2014 #68
Ghost Dog Apr 2014 #67
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #77
Nye Bevan Apr 2014 #74
MADem Apr 2014 #84
dipsydoodle Apr 2014 #79
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #82
LineLineNew Reply .
Ghost Dog Apr 2014 #91
Judi Lynn Apr 2014 #97
Ghost Dog Apr 2014 #99
DeSwiss Apr 2014 #80
Nye Bevan Apr 2014 #92
Zorra Apr 2014 #95

Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 03:41 AM

1. U.S. Agency for International Development is known for its dark side.

They pop up occasionally in stories about similar international games.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:02 AM

2. What a fucking waste.

That's the opposite of what we should be doing with Cuba.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #2)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:51 AM

5. No country should allow unfettered access to social media

I agree with you.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #5)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 10:25 AM

37. It's a shame the countries like the US allow things like twitter and facebook

If only we had enough sense to prevent such mediums from being used. *sigh*

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Response to hack89 (Reply #5)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 11:48 AM

39. Yes, that's not what I said.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #5)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:30 AM

81. Yes, how dare people communicate freely using 140 characters or less--it could lead to

terrible things, dangerous thoughts! Why even tempt them with text-capable cellphones? Surely pagers are "good enough," no?

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:24 AM

3. I'm stunned AP actually ran this story! They have been covering UP information like this for years.

Makes you wonder WTF is going on! Wow.

For anyone who may have never heard, the CIA has admitted that USAID currently does things the CIA used to do covertly.

It's also wildly odd they can't confirm this action has ever been approved by our President. Looks very much as if the shadow government has a life of its own:

The program's legality is unclear: U.S. law requires that any covert action by a federal agency must have a presidential authorization. Officials at USAID would not say who had approved the program or whether the White House was aware of it. McSpedon, the most senior official named in the documents obtained by the AP, is a mid-level manager who declined to comment.

USAID spokesman Matt Herrick said the agency is proud of its Cuba programs and noted that congressional investigators reviewed them last year and found them to be consistent with U.S. law.

(From your O.P. article:
http://apnews.excite.com/article/20140403/DACUG5K02.html )

Thank you, so much for posting this, Omaha Steve.

Would you please cross-post this in the Latin America forum, where it might be pondered further?

I think it's exceptional we actually got to see this published by our corporate media.

Evil machinations have been going on for so many decades in the Americas at the hands of the US military/industrial ogres. It's a great day when they are revealed even in one operation they've plotted and managed.



Joe McSpedon USAID

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #3)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:03 PM

69. Is that McSpedon playing golf in Cuba?

Suspicious!

It's great this story is getting wide play in the media. I'm guessing it's the usual suspects, they know how to work the USAID money very well.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:49 AM

4. Why can't Cubans use the real Twitter?

The story doesn't explain that.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #4)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:03 AM

6. Nor should it, that's not the purpose of the story.

But you knew that already. Nice try, anyhow.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #6)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:15 AM

9. But if Cubans had access to social media like every other free society

this story would never had happened, now would it?


Cuba is a free society, right?

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Response to hack89 (Reply #9)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:20 AM

10. No, its not. But again, thats not the point.

The point is our govt., with our tax dollars, is simultaneously trying to start revolts in foreign countries while also violating the privacy of said countries citizens. This revelation flies in the face of the repeated denials that such programs even exist, or are simply benign.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #10)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 05:32 AM

85. How can Twitter violate anyone's privacy?

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Response to hack89 (Reply #4)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 02:07 PM

43. I dunno. Why can't I head down to the airport and fly to Cuba for cheap medical care?



?

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Response to Zorra (Reply #43)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 03:08 PM

44. So it is US policy that restricts Cuban access to Twitter?

In that case, Obama should implement a policy such that the Cuban government has no impediments to providing social media access to their citizens. It is not right for America to stand in their way.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #44)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 04:02 PM

47. It is US policy that does not allow me to fly to Cuba for cheap medical care.

Cuba probably controls Twitter because the global 1% wants to own the government of Cuba (like they do the US government), so I suspect they do not want Twitter to be a vehicle for the same type of RW Fox news fascist propaganda that has turned half the US into mindless RW tools that obstruct the possibility of constructive progressive legislation every day.

I suppose that's why Cuba has had a free health care system that is about the best health care system in the world, and free education at all levels for all, for many decades, while the US is far behind many countries in many areas of social progress.

We pay a huge price, in so many ways, for allowing wealthy fascists to own and control all the media in our country.

Do you really expect these guys to bring "freedom" to Cuba?



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Response to Zorra (Reply #47)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 04:37 PM

49. So Cuba has to protect its people from the free exchange of information?

why - aren't the Cuban people smart and mature enough to make their own choices?

Would you support the US government having absolute control over social media and the internet? Should the US government be able to block certain political weapon sites (DU perhaps?) for "your own good"?

Do you think Cuba is a real democracy?

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Response to hack89 (Reply #49)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 01:53 AM

75. No, Cuba is no more a real democracy than the US is.

I would definitely not support the US government having absolute control over the media, but the US is already totally under the control of the 1%, so there would be no sense in it.

Comparing the situation in the US to Cuba is incredibly provincial

In Cuba, they are struggling to remain sovereign, and free from the rule of the 1%

“At the beginning of 1959 United States companies owned about 40 percent of the Cuban sugar lands—almost all the cattle ranches—90 percent of the mines and mineral concessions—80 percent of the utilities—practically all the oil industry—and supplied two-thirds of Cuba's imports.” ~ John F. Kennedy


"I believe that there is no country in the world including any and all the countries under colonial domination, where economic colonization, humiliation and exploitation were worse than in Cuba, in part owing to my country's policies during the Batista regime. I approved the proclamation which Fidel Castro made in the Sierra Maestra, when he justifiably called for justice and especially yearned to rid Cuba of corruption. I will even go further: to some extent it is as though Batista was the incarnation of a number of sins on the part of the United States. Now we shall have to pay for those sins. In the matter of the Batista regime, I am in agreement with the first Cuban revolutionaries. That is perfectly clear." — U.S. President John F. Kennedy, 1963


Here's what Cuba was like the last time the 1% had complete control over it, and this is what Cubans have been protecting themselves from for 55 years:

Back in power, Batista suspended the 1940 Constitution and revoked most political liberties, including the right to strike. He then aligned with the wealthiest landowners who owned the largest sugar plantations, and presided over a stagnating economy that widened the gap between rich and poor Cubans. Batista's increasingly corrupt and repressive government then began to systematically profit from the exploitation of Cuba's commercial interests, by negotiating lucrative relationships with the American mafia, who controlled the drug, gambling, and prostitution businesses in Havana, and with large multinational American corporations that had invested considerable amounts of money in Cuba. To quell the growing discontent amongst the populace—which was subsequently displayed through frequent student riots and demonstrations—Batista established tighter censorship of the media, while also utilizing his anti-Communist secret police to carry out wide-scale violence, torture and public executions; ultimately killing anywhere from 1,000 to 20,000 people. For several years until 1959, the Batista government received financial, military, and logistical support from the United States.
SNIP---
In a bid to profit from such an environment, Batista established lasting relationships with organized crime, notably with American mobsters Meyer Lansky and Lucky Luciano, and under his rule Havana became known as "the Latin Las Vegas." Batista and Lansky formed a friendship and business relationship that flourished for a decade. During a stay at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York in the late 1940s, it was mutually agreed that, in return for kickbacks, Batista would give Lansky and the Mafia control of Havana's racetracks and casinos.
SNIP---
In a manner that antagonized the Cuban people, the U.S. government used its influence to advance the interests of and increase the profits of the private American companies, which "dominated the island's economy." As a symbol of this relationship, ITT Corporation, an American-owned multinational telephone company, presented Batista with a Golden Telephone, as an "expression of gratitude" for the "excessive telephone rate increase" that Batista granted at the urging of the U.S. government.
snip---
The United States supplied Batista with planes, ships, tanks, and the latest technology, such as napalm, which he used against the insurgency. However, in March 1958, the U.S. announced it would stop selling arms to the Cuban government. Soon after, the U.S. imposed an arms embargo, further weakening the government's position, although land owners and others who benefited from the government continued to support Batista.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fulgencio_Batista


I can't understand why some people here, on other progressive sites, and the MSM, are so adamant about interfering with, and, I believe if the truth were expressed, overthrowing, the sovereign governments of Venezuela and Cuba, socialist countries that are not under the control of the 1%, but don't advocate for interfering with the far more brutal and restrictive regimes of 1% owned countries such as Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Uganda, etc.


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Response to Zorra (Reply #75)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 06:16 AM

89. So only dictatorships can protect people from the 1%?

Castro and the rest of the Cuban elite are part of the 1% - absolute unfettered power and wealth. The Koch brothers can only dream of having as much power as Castro.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #89)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 02:25 PM

94. I don't know, effective protection from the 1% predators has not been

seen in modern times, except possibly for some remote tribal folks who have not had their homelands, culture, and way of life destroyed and stolen by the sociopathic, greed driven 1% yet.

Cuba has done what they needed to do, while under constant, severe economic and propaganda attack by 1% predators pretty much since they overthrew the 1% implemented government of Batista. If the 1% was not punishing Cuba for not letting them own the country, Cuba would certainly be more free, prosperous, and democratic right now, but since they are under attack by the 1% 24/7 365, they have to do what they have to do in order to remain sovereign. (And one thing they had to do was to establish several generations of educated Cubans by providing free education to the populace.)

I believe that Cuba will slowly ease into a controlled social democracy as it learns by trial and error how to do this while still attempting to protect itself from 1% imperialism. The 1% will always be trying to take over the country, and will try to prevent the success of Cuba's establishment of a successful, working social democracy. If Cuba is not successful in fending off the !%, and establishing a more prosperous social democracy within the next decade, I predict that the attacks by the 1% will wear Cuba down, and Cuba will become the sole property of the *World Economic Dictatorship of the 1%*.

The provincial elitism, naïveté, and sense of entitlement and superiority over the dark skinned peoples of the world, expressed by conservative Americans who have no experience with, and little or no educational background in, the histories and cultures of other countries, would be funny if it wasn't life threatening.

"Iffen it's right for gawd and "Murica, it's right for everyone! We need to kill 'em all and bring 'em Fox News, McDonald's, and teach 'em about the one true gawd, and his democracy!"


http://latinamericanstudies.org/

The Miami Herald
October 8, 2000

http://www.latinamericanstudies.org/fidel/castro-family.htm

Castro's Family
Fidel's private life with his wife and sons is so secret
that even the CIA is left to wonder
snip---
Fuentes said the show of austerity by Castro and those near him is part of the
hypocrisy of a system in which the elite live better than the average Cuban but are
required to project an image of equality.

``You see the house of a top official all worn on the outside, badly in need of
paint, the grass all a mess,'' he said. ``But inside he'll have two television sets, a
VCR, a nice stereo, a new fridge.''

``Of course, anything the hijos de papi want they get -- even if no
other Cuban ever sees this stuff. Computers, nice houses, vacations, you name
it. But luxuries? With few exceptions, not really,'' said Fuentes.

``I think that when this ends, most people in Cuba will be outraged
by the relative comforts of the leadership,'' he added, "and most people in Miami
will be surprised by their low level of life.''


I've always found that it's really not a good idea to believe everything I read in US 1% owned RW media...cuz sometimes they're so convincing that they can even convince a nation to let a chimpanzee lead them in in war, and conquer a nation, simply so that the 1% can control the conquered nation and exploit and profit from their labor, and resources, such as oil.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #94)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 05:00 PM

96. Castro's big crime: Fidel has a 25 inch TV. Most Cubans have 19 inch TVs...

... this egregious example shows all what a tyrant he is!






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Response to Zorra (Reply #47)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:31 PM

62. Cuba has universal healthcare but no one suggests they are the best.

The World Health Organization ranks Cuba 40th (the U.S. is 37th).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Health_Organization_ranking_of_health_systems_in_2000

If you really want to fly down to Cuba go ahead. It is very easy. Just go through a third country. Thousands of Americans have done it. I am one of them. I have no idea if they treat U.S. citizens.

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Response to Zorra (Reply #43)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 05:55 PM

98. A condition of entry is that you have health insurance for the duration of stay.

Another is that don't have a satellite phone with like that mug Gross.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #4)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:32 PM

54. If USgov was so benevolent, they wouldn't have pulled the plug

I get where you are coming from, and agree that social media site should not be blocked in any country.

But the fact is they stopped the program because they didn't see dividends(unrest).

If you want to promote democracy, then people need to be able to trust you. This program betrayed its users from the get-go and thus was never about democracy.

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Response to Ash_F (Reply #54)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:37 PM

55. I agree with you that the program was a bad idea

I just find it ironic that something you and I take for granted in a free society - unfettered access to the internet and social media - represents a weapon when applied to Cuba. If Cuba was a free society there would have been no need for the program in the first place.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #55)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:46 PM

56. I think opening up travel/trade restrictions would go a long way towards building trust.

And along with it, democracy. The US would not be a big bad adversary to the north.

The ball would be in their court then.

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Response to Ash_F (Reply #56)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:51 PM

59. The embargo should have been dropped years ago

but I doubt that will happen until both Castros are in the grave - hopefully soon.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #59)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:05 PM

70. Or until most of our baby boomers are. /nt

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Response to Ash_F (Reply #54)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 06:20 AM

90. It was essentially a free texting service.

They probably concluded it wasn't being subversive for its costs. People were using it to communicate with one another not discuss political ideas. In Cuba political ideas are extremely suppressed.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:12 AM

7. But of course, its crazy to think we may have stirred anything up in Ukraine.

Its all for the good of the people, you see. Please, this is just business as usual for the US govt. Just last year there was a report that the military wanted to install a fiber-optic cable running from Guantanamo Bay to the rest of Cuba. Lol, yeah i'm sure that would have no nefarious intention whatsoever. Now that we know USAID was the one behind this stunt, makes you wonder if Alan Gross was connected to all this, since his alleged work was to connect Cubans to the internet.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #7)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:40 AM

12. I didnt know we brought twitter to the Ukaraine nt

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Response to Progressive dog (Reply #12)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:43 AM

13. Right, because Twitter is the only way to undermine a foreign govt.

Apparently there's a lot more you don't know about how our govt. works overseas.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #13)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:33 AM

31. If only Alexander the Great had Twitter, think of what he could have accomplished!

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Response to FSogol (Reply #31)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:36 AM

32. If only he had the IMF.

Would have never had to move an inch to take over and bankrupt an entire nation.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:13 AM

8. k&r for the truth, however depressing it may be. n/t

-Laelth

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:20 AM

11. Sounds like a waste to me.

 

Raul and Castro are liable to keel over anytime now.

I'd (literally) wage that Cuba will be the Las Vegas of the Caribbean in 10 years, anyhow.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:51 AM

14. I really can't find a problem with attempting to open communications in a society.

I really cannot.

I guess Radio Free Europe was an evil plot, too.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #14)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:57 AM

15. Open communications?

Anyone who actually reads the entire article can see that this was simply an intelligence collection op. There was nothing "open" about this program, if there was, the US govt. would have let people know what they were signing up for and the purposes behind it. We already have an equivalent of Radio Free Europe when it comes to Cuba, its called Radio Martí, which is also a waste of money. This was just another typical and criminal data-mining program to overthrow a country whose govt. we don't agree with. Hopefully one day our govt., and many citizens, will learn the definition of sovereignty.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #15)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:04 AM

16. People were allowed to communicate with each other.

The data collection was of no more than what they put out in public.

The attempts to overthrow ... would that not have been done through the will of the people
who were given access to information that they currently are cut off from?

I still don't have a problem with this.

On edit: I did read the article.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #16)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:06 AM

18. I'm sure you don't.

You weren't the one whose communications were monitored by a foreign govt. without your consent. I certainly wouldn't expect you to care.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #18)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:07 AM

19. Foreign governments can monitor my communications all they want.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #19)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:10 AM

20. Good for you.

But did you ever stop and consider that maybe these Cubans don't agree with your Orwellian worldview? Or maybe their opinions don't matter?

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #20)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:12 AM

21. They were not forced into anything. They enjoyed the service.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #21)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:19 AM

24. Yes, and the CIA enjoyed collecting all their private info and communication.

I wonder if the terms of service clearly stated that the service was run by the US govt? But no matter, sycophants like you are not interested in pesky things like honesty and transparency, much less sovereignty.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #24)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 06:14 AM

88. As if Cuba isn't doing that to them.

Not saying it's right but they probably didn't care. They got free texts.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #20)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:13 AM

22. Our own Twitter stuff is observed, no doubt. Evil thing. We should immediately stop

communicating with each other. No Twitter, Facebook, or DU.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #22)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:20 AM

25. Twitter is run by the Cuban govt.???

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #25)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:21 AM

27. Why would it matter if it was?

Posts are public. Like reading a newspaper. Nothing is being hidden.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #27)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:26 AM

29. Private messages are public as well?

And again, does it matter to you that the users were never told the service was govt run and all info was stored by the govt? I bet if it were done by the Cuban govt you'd probably feel a little different.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #29)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:38 AM

33. Actually no, I would not feel any differently.

Are there private Twitter messages? I thought the entire point of Twitter was to go world-wide.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #33)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:42 AM

34. Yeah, of course there are private twitter messages.

The fact that you don't know that speaks volumes about your ignorance on all these subjects.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #34)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:46 AM

35. Thank you for that politely delivered piece of information.

And the government can read my Facebook private messages all they want.

Any government.

One thing I am not ignorant of: post something on the interwebs, don't expect it to remain private.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #19)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 11:44 AM

38. Do you travel or do business overseas?

It's rather naive to believe that data collection is innocuous.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #19)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 03:11 AM

78. So you don't think the constitution is important? n/t

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #18)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 05:34 AM

86. Anyone can monitor what we put on Twitter

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #15)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:52 AM

83. Uh, I don't think this would have worked...

if there was, the US govt. would have let people know what they were signing up for and the purposes behind it

Castro would have shut it down in a heartbeat. It was sold as a limited commercial enterprise coming out of Spain, Ireland, etc.

Does "sovereignty" mean that it's OK to repress your own population and prevent them from using the internet or facebook or twitter, or local versions thereof? What's more important, "sovereignty" or "freedom?"

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:05 AM

17. If the US govt. really wanted to open up Cuba

it would lift the embargo and travel ban, ASAP. But of course, that's not the goal of US policy, hence why neither of those things is even on the table.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #17)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 12:15 PM

40. +1

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:14 AM

23. It is unclear whether the scheme was legal under U.S. law......

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The U.S. government masterminded the creation of a "Cuban Twitter" - a communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba, built with secret shell companies and financed through foreign banks, The Associated Press has learned.

The project, which lasted more than two years and drew tens of thousands of subscribers, sought to evade Cuba's stranglehold on the Internet with a primitive social media platform. First, the network would build a Cuban audience, mostly young people; then, the plan was to push them toward dissent.

Yet its users were neither aware it was created by a U.S. agency with ties to the State Department, nor that American contractors were gathering personal data about them, in the hope that the information might be used someday for political purposes.

It is unclear whether the scheme was legal under U.S. law, which requires written authorization of covert action by the president and congressional notification. Officials at USAID would not say who had approved the program or whether the White House was aware of it. The Cuban government declined a request for comment.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SECRET_CUBAN_TWITTER_ABRIDGED?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2014-04-03-03-43-35

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #23)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 01:16 PM

42. O course you left out the part where it said congressional investigators reviewed the program:

It's your s.o.p.

"USAID spokesman Matt Herrick said the agency is proud of its Cuba programs and noted that congressional investigators reviewed them last year and found them to be consistent with U.S. law"

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Response to okaawhatever (Reply #42)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 03:44 PM

46. The program was ended in September 2012

and last year was................2013.

As such I can only assume that by 2013 its remaining programs were consistent with U.S. law.

I'm reminded of the death of the Cuban dissident in the car crash in Cuba :

The project that put Payá on the road to Santiago has many of the markings of the secret operations carried out under “democracy promotion” programs run by the U.S. State Department and USAID. These programs are shrouded in such secrecy that not even the Congressional oversight committees are briefed on them, so ascertaining the truth of who was directing the Carromero-Modig mission and the information campaign accusing the Cuban government of murder after the accident is practically impossible. But strong circumstantial evidence has emerged. In video testimony, Modig revealed that he met in Tbilisi with two major USAID grantees involved in such operations – the International Republican Institute (IRI) and the National Democratic Institute (NDI) – just before traveling to Cuba. It is unclear whether Payá – known for eschewing foreign financial aid – was aware that Carromero and Modig’s primary objective on the trip was to hand out money to antigovernment activists. It is conceivable that he chose not to know the details. Regardless, his death represents a significant blow to Cuban activists seeking peaceful, democratic change without heavy foreign direction.

http://aulablog.net/tag/usaid/

Turned out to be death caused by dangerous driving by the driver http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-08-03/news/sns-rt-us-cuba-paya-spainbre8721ib-20120803_1_european-union-s-sakharov-prize-oswaldo-paya-jens-aron-modig

There's far more on that subject in the Latin Forum here back in the day. There's plenty on USAID contractor Alan Gross who tried to scam taking a satellite 'phone into Cuba in that forum too.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #46)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:10 PM

71. Interesting, I didn't know about the Paya, Carromero, Modig USAID connect

How terribly compromising for US policy, especially any connection to Modig and esp. Carromero who is a right wing youth politician / loser in Spain.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:21 AM

26. our taxes @ work!!!!



( )

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:23 AM

28. Very cool! Cubans needed something like that.

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Response to Pterodactyl (Reply #28)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:30 AM

30. Apparently our govt. disagrees.

They ended the program in 2012. Cubans didn't take the bait in overthrowing their govt, and USAID wasn't interested in letting them know the true origins of the service.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #30)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 10:50 PM

73. Still a good try.

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Response to Daniel537 (Reply #30)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 06:12 AM

87. They ended it because it paid for the texts.

And it wasn't being subversive enough but rather paying the Cuban government and allowing users, wealthy Cubans who already enjoy their phones, to text for free.

Cuba, being a small island, could easily install wireless transmitters across the entire island, and have an internet rivaling that of South Korea.

But, that'd be too much.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 10:05 AM

36. More on Creative Associates International

Setting up elaborate systems of front companies and offshore bank accounts is classic CIA stuff -- not normal business operations. So I checked my saved files to see what I had on the firm running this scheme and found that I'd run into Creative Associates International a few years back in the context of Iraq reconstruction boondoggles.

A story from 2003 described how CAI had "been awarded a contract worth US$ 62 million to re-build the education system of Iraq." (http://dissidentvoice.org/Articles4/Oberg_Iraq-Education.htm)

It seems they'd already been involved in Afghanistan: "On the eve of the new school year in Afghanistan, 50 metric tons of new primary textbooks were revised, printed and are being delivered to schools across Afghanistan. Under the USAID-funded $16.5 million Afghanistan Primary Education Program (APEP) and in close collaboration with the Afghanistan Ministry of Education, a consortium led by Creative Associates International completed the job. Requiring complex logistics, books were airlifted from Indonesia to meet the March 22, 2003 school season deadline. By late May, in close collaboration with the American Manufacturers Export Group (AMEG), more than 10 million new text books will have been produced and transported to Afghanistan by Creative Associates International."

Another story from the same period, titled "50 Metric Tons of Learning, Part III," covers much the same territory but also refers to the claim by an Australian publication that "CAI's past clients include the military junta that overthrew the elected government of Haiti in 1991, in a US-backed coup." (http://transnationaled.blogspot.com/2003/06/50-metric-tons-of-learning-part-iii.html)

It then goes on to say, "Now for a far more speculative step. According to John Stauber and Sheldon Rampton, in their book Toxic Sludge Is Good For You: Lies, Damn Lies and the Public Relations Industry, 'The junta transmitted these charges to the US news media through an array of hired lobbyists and PR representatives, including George Demougeot, who also represented a US apparel firm with an assembly plant in Haiti, and Stephen A. Horblitt and Walter E. Faunteroy of Creative Associates International Inc.' CAII does have an office in Haiti and did in 1991. The company has been actively involved in projects there for years. None of this means that CAII participated in a character assassination campaign conducted by an illegal military government. It only means that it is possible and that it bears further research. And that maybe we shouldn't be giving out big no-bid contracts until we understand a little more about Creative Associates International, Inc."

It's clear from both stories that CAI is deeply embedded in the Washington power establishment -- and a lot less clear whether they were being tossed no-bid contracts to do nothing in particular or whether they've been more like a front for off-the-books CIA schemes. But either way, they could use more scrutiny.

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Response to starroute (Reply #36)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 04:23 PM

48. Creative Associates International has been busy.

Thank you for having done this work already, it will help those of us who tend to care to remember the name.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #48)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 04:54 PM

50. Sometimes I think they deliberately choose forgettable names

Here's a Wikipedia listing of the top 100 US government contractors as of 2010. Creative Associates International comes in as #40, with over $1.7 billion in contracts. But it's one of only two firms in the top 50 not to have a link to a Wikipedia listing of its own. You've got to work hard to be that obscure.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top_100_Contractors_of_the_U.S._federal_government

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Response to starroute (Reply #50)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:50 PM

58. Good point! Recalls changing SOA (school of assassins, er, the Americas) to WHISC

Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation.

I'm sure you're right. They intend to make it hard to remember. Right way to handle deadly organizations, from their position.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #48)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:09 PM

53. Oh, this is fun

http://www.counterpunch.org/2012/12/05/usaid-in-afghanistan/

CAII’s track record elsewhere in the world testifies to a relentless pursuit of free market fundamentalism and vigorous counterinsurgency. Kenneth Saltman has documented CAII’s work “reintegrating Contra terrorists into Nicaraguan civil society through work training; influencing Nicaraguan elections; participating in both coups against Aristide in Haiti; and privatizing, commercializing, and Americanizing Haitian media and journalism particularly around election coverage.” In Afghanistan the purported goal of “promoting democracy” in reality fosters dependency on foreign sponsors, and privatizes and depoliticizes education and the media. Recently the Afghan Ministry of Education, which works closely with CAII, has decided to omit all recent history (read the past thirty years of war) from its curriculum. You can’t buy that kind of thought control—unless you have a few hundred million.

Of course CAII doesn’t just restrict itself to Orwellian revisionism. It also plays a part in covert operations. In 2009, Pakistani journalists Ahmed Quraishi and Shireen Mazari reported that the CAII headquarters in Peshawar was being used as a front for Blackwater/Xe mercenaries (aka the “CIA’s private army”) to stage raids into the border area between Pakistan and Afghanistan. A CAII employee was formally expelled from the country, only to return sometime later.


http://wondersofpakistan.wordpress.com/2009/08/16/american-ngo-covers-for-blackwater-in-pakistan/

American NGO Covers For Blackwater In Pakistan?
by Ahmed Quraishi

Last month a group of concerned Pakistani citizens in Peshawar wrote to the federal interior ministry to complain about the suspicious activities of a group of shadowy Americans in a rented house in their neighborhood, the upscale University Town area of Peshawar.

An NGO calling itself Creative Associates International, Inc. leased the house. CAII, as it is known by its acronym, is a Washington DC-based private firm. According to its Web site,the company describes itself as “a privately-owned non-governmental organization that addresses urgent challenges facing societies today …Creative views change as an opportunity to improve, transform and renew …” . . .

In Peshawar, CAII told Pakistani authorities it needed to hire security guards for protection. The security guards, it turns out, were none other than Blackwater’s military-trained hired guns. They were used the CAII cover to conduct a range of covert activities in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province. . . .

Pakistani security officials apparently became alarmed by reports that Blackwater was operating from the office of CAII on Chinar Road, University Town in Peshawar. The man in charge of the office, allegedly an American by the name of Craig Davis according to a report in Jang, Pakistan’s largest Urdu language daily, was arrested and accused of establishing contacts with ‘the enemies of Pakistan’ in areas adjoining Afghanistan. His visa has been cancelled, the office sealed, and Mr. Davis reportedly expelled back to the United States.

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Response to starroute (Reply #53)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:00 PM

60. OMG. Argh. I was thinking, after seeing your earlier excerpt that the books to Afghanistan

undoubtedly rewrote their history for them.

This absolutely makes one so very sick. The whole world isn't safe, right now.

I hope their is a deep respect everywhere for preserving the oral history of each culture which will be passed down through the generations. That's the only thing which can beat this system: careful, personal, truthful respect for what has already happened, and a deep desire to keep the truth alive.

I immediately saved these references before finishing them, which I will do later this evening.

Very glad to see this information which is new probably for almost anyone who will see it.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #60)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:51 PM

63. I've just been checking them out at fedspending.org

I don't know where that Wikipedia figure came from -- maybe a cumulative total? Anyway, here are the FedSpending figures:

2000 $7,100,442
2001 $15,296,000
2002 $29,182,000
2003 $77,958,305
2004 $41,721,198
2005 $10,669,050
2006 $44,296,033
2007 $31,430,182
2008 $61,419,905
2009 $225,110,577
2010 $280,737,772
2011 $76,835,700
2012 3Q * Partial year $96,518,754
*Note: FY 2012 only includes data up through part of third quarter.

So it looks like they really peaked in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. Here's the detailed breakdown for 2009 -- the Cuba contract is #15: http://www.fedspending.org/fpds/fpds.php?fiscal_year=2009&combDuns=091345579&sortp=f&datype=T&reptype=r&database=fpds&detail=3&submit=GO

And here's an article from January 1, 2011, which explains why the funding dropped off after 2010:

http://www.thefreelibrary.com/With+U.S.+subcontractor+still+in+prison,+USAID+freezes+all+new+Cuba...-a0265977189

The U.S. Agency for International Development has slammed the brakes on various controversial new Cuba initiatives. USAID and the State Department have not spent one cent of the $20 million that President Obama asked for--and Congress allocated--for the controversial Cuba program this year. . . .

Steve Horblitt, director for external relations of Creative Associates, based in Bethesda, Md., said "USAID guidelines" prevented him from speaking about his company's Cuba program. Creative Associates' staff includes Caleb McCarry, a hardliner who was the Bush administration's Cuba Transition Coordinator. In that position, McCarry urged USAID and State Department money to be used to foment dissent and civil disobedience on the island. . . .

Before President George W. Bush assumed office, most USAID Cuba grants went to exile organizations. But Bush sharply boosted funding for the program while directing more cash to groups like IRI and People in Need that had helped destabilize Soviet bloc regimes in the late 1980s. The theory was that such NGOs were most qualified to weaken the Castro regime.

But after Alan Gross, a American subcontractor for former USAID grantee Development Associates Inc., was jailed in Cuba just over a year ago, Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Rep. Howard Berman (D-CA), his outgoing counterpart in the House, held up USAID funds to change the program's focus.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #60)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 07:00 PM

64. Here's another long article that sheds light on things

I don't have time to read it all right now, but it seems illuminating. It also makes me think that when CAII boasts at its website about running a school dropout prevention program in Tajikistan, it might actually be up to something very different.

http://www.cuba-solidarity.org.uk/news.asp?index=141

The USAID shell game
26 January 2013

The Office of Transition Initiatives, or OTI, has a long list of potential targets, including Cuba. OTI, which is part of the Agency for International Development, or USAID, operates some programs openly, but disguises others so the American government role is not readily apparent. . . .

During a meeting with contractors in June 2012, Stephen Lennon, chief of OTI’s Field Program Division, highlighted the group’s ability to cloak its activities while in Colombia from 2007 to 2011. ...

For example, OTI might support an activity with the local government to repair a school. OTI would measure its success based on how that activity improved attitudes and perception toward the government in that community rather than how the refurbished school impacts educational outcomes. . . .

Records show the agency in 2008 gave Creative the first installment of what was to be a three-year $15,535,979 contract to carry out a sensitive OTI operation. The mission involved establishing a secret base in Costa Rica that would support democracy activists in Cuba.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 12:17 PM

41. So this was a USAID project?

I'd love to have seen this site's reaction if this project came from the offices of the CIA or NSA...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #41)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 09:25 PM

72. USAID is used as a CIA cover so frequently I'm amazed anybody allows them inside their borders.

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Response to LeftyMom (Reply #72)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 02:40 AM

76. Their actions get so blatant, so rancid, sometimes they get thrown out,

just as Bolivia threw them out in spite of their warnings.



USAID's Bolivian headquarters. Looks as if they came prepared to stay.

Bolivian President Evo Morales orders expulsion of USAID
By Mariano Castillo, CNN
updated 6:50 PM EDT, Wed May 1, 2013

(CNN) -- Bolivian President Evo Morales said he is expelling the U.S. Agency for International Development from his country for allegedly meddling and conspiring against the government.

"USAID is out; I ask the foreign minister to immediately communicate with the U.S. Embassy," Morales said in a speech Wednesday, according to the state-run ABI news agency.

According to USAID's Bolivia website, the agency has operated there since 1964. It says it carries out health, sustainable development and environmental programs in the country. The agency says its 2011 budget for Bolivia was $26.7 million.

The State Department called the decision regrettable and said the ones who will be hurt by the expulsion will be ordinary Bolivians.

"We deny the baseless allegations made by the Bolivian government," State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell said of the accusations that the agency meddled in Bolivian affairs.

More:
http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/01/world/americas/bolivia-usaid-expelled



Patrick Ventrell

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 03:11 PM

45. The Exploding Cigar Didn't Work so they tried a New Approach

Amazing how clueless the CIA can be

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 04:57 PM

51. How about we just leave others alone.

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Response to olddad56 (Reply #51)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 06:02 PM

61. Been trying to own Cuba for over 100 years. No respect for the people who live there. n/t

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #61)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 07:04 PM

65. It's neocon/lib (ie. post-Nazi) Imperialism. n/t

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #61)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 08:00 AM

93. Yeah, they keep electing a Castro as their leader.

Who are we to interfere with their thriving democracy?

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:03 PM

52. I'm holding my breath for the next Republican to tell me Obama's a communist.

I don't think I'll have to hold my breath for very long.

Not going to dig into what's right or wrong about this project or what's right or wrong with US policy towards Cuba.

But I can't wait for the Republicans (and Republican twits I personally know) to explain to me how Obama is still a secret Socialist-Communist after working to undermine Cuba's Communist regime.

Its really going to be fun listening to them explain that.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 05:47 PM

57. Cuba is absolutely terrified, TERRIFIED, of social media.

All email communications in Cuba are monitored at NSA levels.

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Response to joshcryer (Reply #57)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:14 PM

66. Original AP source has comments. First comment reads:

CableNewsGuy • 12 hours ago

This coming from a government that can't build a website with over a half billion dollars at their disposal? It's more likely that this cloned Twitter service was a test run for something to be used on the American people, who knows maybe Twitter isn't Twitter anymore.

/... http://bigstory.ap.org/article/us-secretly-created-cuban-twitter-stir-unrest

- See also: https://twitter.com/alberarce

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #66)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:35 PM

68. The USA considers communication subversive.

Cuba doesn't disagree.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Thu Apr 3, 2014, 08:28 PM

67. White House defends 'Cuban Twitter' to stir unrest

Apr 3, 6:25 PM (ET) By DESMOND BUTLER, JACK GILLUM and ALBERTO ARCE

(AP) Students gather behind a business looking for a Internet signal for their smart phones in Havana,...
Full Image <-- No need to hide, note

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Obama administration on Thursday defended its creation of a Twitter-like Cuban communications network to undermine the communist government, declaring the secret program was "invested and debated" by Congress and wasn't a covert operation that required White House approval.

But two senior Democrats on congressional intelligence and judiciary committees said they had known nothing about the effort, which one of them described as "dumb, dumb, dumb." A showdown with that senator's panel is expected next week, and the Republican chairman of a House oversight subcommittee said that it, too, would look into the program.

/... http://apnews.excite.com/article/20140403/DACUTVLG0.html

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #67)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 02:59 AM

77. Interesting seeing this in your article:

USAID's top official, Rajiv Shah, is scheduled to testify on Tuesday before the Senate Appropriations State Department and Foreign Operations Subcommittee, on the agency's budget. The subcommittee's chairman, Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., is the senator who called the project "dumb, dumb, dumb" during an appearance Thursday on MSNBC.

Good for Senator Leahy.

Hideous behavior coming from the big bully from the who has been conducting a 50+ year old economic war on Cuba, as well as isolating Cuba, and shoving other countries around who attempt to do ordinary business with Cuba, and a war of terrorism via the Cuban "exiles" and their paid goons since the revolution ended, including the Bay of Pigs invasion, the bombing of a Cubana airliner with 73 souls on board, including children, and bombing hotels and discos on the island to try to destroy Cuba's tourist trade, etc., etc., etc.

Thanks for posting the new article.

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 12:24 AM

74. Why don't the Cubans simply elect a government that permits the real Twitter?

Since they have chosen a simpler existence, free from social media, who are we to interfere?

Surely their next election must be coming up soon?

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #74)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:53 AM

84. What, and allow all that awful freedom in? Can't have that! nt

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 03:28 AM

79. 'Cuban Twitter' heads to hearings in Congress

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The head of the U.S. government agency that secretly created a "Cuban Twitter" communications network designed to undermine the communist government in Cuba is expected to testify next week before a senator who thinks the whole idea was "dumb, dumb, dumb." The congressional hearing could resolve key questions around the clandestine program, including whether the Obama administration adequately informed lawmakers about its plans.

Administration officials on Thursday defended the program, saying it had been "debated" by Congress and wasn't a covert operation that required White House approval. But two senior Democrats on congressional intelligence and judiciary committees said they had known nothing about the effort.

An Associated Press investigation found that the network was built using secret shell companies and financed through a foreign bank. The project, which lasted more than two years and drew tens of thousands of subscribers, sought to evade Cuba's stranglehold on the Internet with a social media platform.

The program aimed first to build a Cuban audience, mostly young people. Then the plan was to push them toward dissent.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SECRET_CUBAN_TWITTER?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2014-04-04-03-19-44

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #79)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:40 AM

82. Pathetic, isn't it? They even found a Republican who disapproves of this. Thanks. n/t

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Response to dipsydoodle (Reply #79)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 06:28 AM

91. .


Josefina Vidal, director of U.S. affairs at Cuba's Foreign Ministry, said late Thursday that the ZunZuneo program "shows once again that the United States government has not renounced its plans of subversion against Cuba, which have as their aim the creation of situations of destabilization in our country to create changes in the public order and toward which it continues to devote multimillion-dollar budgets each year."

"The government of the United States must respect international law and the goals and principles of the United Nations charter and, therefore, cease its illegal and clandestine actions against Cuba, which are rejected by the Cuban people and international public opinion," the statement said.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #91)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 05:26 PM

97. Good for Sra. Vidal. The US has been trying to control Cuba longer than she has lived.

I have to add this passage from the memorandum written Christmas Eve of 1897, by the U.S. Undersecretary of War, John Breckenridge:

~ snip ~

The island of Cuba, a larger territory, has a greater population density than Puerto Rico, although it is unevenly distributed. This population is made up of whites, blacks, Asians and people who are a mixture of these races. The inhabitants are generally indolent and apathetic. As for their learning, they range from the most refined to the most vulgar and abject. Its people are indifferent to religion, and the majority are therefore immoral and simultaneously they have strong passions and are very sensual. Since they only possess a vague notion of what is right and wrong, the people tend to seek pleasure not through work, but through violence. As a logical consequence of this lack of morality, there is a great disregard for life.

It is obvious that the immediate annexation of these disturbing elements into our own federation in such large numbers would be sheer madness, so before we do that we must clean up the country, even if this means using the methods Divine Providence used on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

We must destroy everything within our cannons’ range of fire. We must impose a harsh blockade so that hunger and its constant companion, disease, undermine the peaceful population and decimate the Cuban army.
The allied army must be constantly engaged in reconnaissance and vanguard actions so that the Cuban army is irreparably caught between two fronts and is forced to undertake dangerous and desperate measures.

More:
http://www.historyofcuba.com/history/bmemo.htm

Purely angelic sentiments, aren't they? Bless his heart.

Clearly he spoke for many, considering what they had already done to destroy the Native Americans by then, and next the African Americans they invited to do all their work for them, for nothing, all the time, until they died.

Amazing.

Had to go to find a photo of the new head of the Interests Section, found two:





Here she is, meeting former Jimmy Carter on his last trip to Cuba.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #97)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 11:52 PM

99. AP's latest on the subject (" trumpeting in the island's official media"):

HAVANA (AP) — Revelations of a secret U.S. government program to set up a cellphone-based social network in Cuba are being trumpeted in the island's official media as proof of Havana's repeated allegations that Washington is waging a "cyber-war" to try to stir up unrest...

... State news agency Prensa Latina recalled a Jan. 1 speech in which President Raul Castro warned of "attempts to subtly introduce platforms for neoliberal thought and for the restoration of neocolonial capitalism."

"Castro's denunciations of the U.S. government's destabilizing attempts against Cuba were corroborated by today's revelation of a plan to push Cuban youth toward the counterrevolution, with the participation of a U.S. agency," Prensa Latina said...

... On the streets of Havana, some echoed their government's complaints about U.S. interference and ZunZuneo.

"Coming from them (the United States), nothing can surprise us anymore," said 25-year-old Claudia Garcia...

/... https://in.news.yahoo.com/cubas-official-media-abuzz-over-secret-twitter-171706964.html

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Response to Omaha Steve (Original post)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 04:27 AM

80. America is cancer to other countries.

- And other living things. Will they ever find a cure?

K&R

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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #80)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 07:57 AM

92. Yes, what next? Will we create a Cuban Flappy Bird?

The sheer evil is simply breathtaking.

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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #80)

Fri Apr 4, 2014, 02:38 PM

95. America is just doing their job as Department of Global Enforcement of The Law of the 1%.

Our World Police Agency serves at the pleasure of global wealthy private interests, not distinctly wealthy American private interests. If it was up to your average American, not acting under the influence of 1% propaganda none of this evil imperialism would be happening.

But, as we all learned so well under Bush, "It's never fascism when we do it!"

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