In Florida newspapers, dubiousness about Radio and TV Martí.

Posted: 15 Nov 2009   Print   Send a link
"The dirty little secret of 'la lucha,' the struggle against Castro, is what a federal cash cow it has been for some exiles. Non-Cuban Americans will be surprised when they read of the millions of their tax dollars wasted on boondoggles such as Radio and TV Marti. As for the three hyphenated-named congresspersons from Miami who are largely responsible for this largesse, Bardach singles out Castro's nephew by marriage, Lincoln Diaz-Balart, for opprobrium." From review of Ann Louise Bardach, Without Fidel: A Death Foretold in Miami, Havana, and Washington, by Ariel Gonzalez, Miami Herald, 14 November 2009.
     "Unfortunately, U.S.-Cuba policy seems wedded to 20th century technology — meaning Washington is still putting a lot of emphasis on speading the message of change through Radio and TV Marti broadcasts. The growing popularity of Cuban bloggers shows that maybe a more effective catalyst for change in the 21st century is to help Cubans tell the story themselves via the Web." Editorial, South Florida Sun-Sentinel, 14 November 2009.
     The fiscal efficiency of US broadcasts to Cuba can be debated. But, given Cuba's continued control of domestic media and limitations on press freedom, Cuba remains a logical target for US international broadcasting. As for helping Cuban bloggers "tell the story themselves," fine, but there are limitations to this. Bloggers, for the most part, are not journalists. Furthermore, the internet, involving landlines within Cuba, can be blocked, whereas international radio and even satellite television, dropping into Cuba wirelessly, are more difficult to interdict.