While thousands of Cubans have been protesting against the totalitarian regime in the country headed by Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel, Black Lives Matter recently released a statement that was completely dismissive of what the protests have been about in Cuba and is instead blaming the United States for the current unrest in the country.
— New York Post (@nypost) July 15, 2021
In the statement released by Black Lives Matter in the midst of protests where Cubans are demanding more freedoms, resources and access to vaccines in their country, the organization claims that the U.S. embargo against Cuba as being the main problem in Cuba:
“Black Lives Matter condemns the U.S. federal government’s inhumane treatment of Cubans, and urges it to immediately lift the economic embargo. This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cuban’s right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba’s current crisis.”
Black Lives Matter has released a statement on Cuba: pic.twitter.com/NgnT1o1oZE
— Sabrina Rodríguez (@sabrod123) July 15, 2021
“Since 1962, the United States has forced pain and suffering on the people of Cuba by cutting off food, medicine and supplies, costing the tiny island nation an estimated $130 billion.”
The notion that the United States embargo against Cuba is “cutting off food, medicine and supplies” is an outright lie. While the embargo against Cuba used to halt trade of the aforementioned to Cuba, it hasn’t been in effect in roughly 20 years.
Through the agriculture appropriations act of fiscal year 2001, Congress arranged the removal of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of things like food, agricultural products, medicine, and medical products/supplies to Cuba.
The statement from BLM continued, claiming that the alleged negative monetary impact from the United States embargo against Cuba has prevented the country from obtaining medical equipment to develop their own COVID-19 vaccines:
“Without that money, it is harder for Cuba to acquire medical equipment needed to develop its own COVID-19 vaccines and equipment for food production.”
Once again, this statement from Black Lives Matter is highly misleading, considering that Cuba has already developed their own COVID-19 vaccine that has an efficacy rate of 92.28%, which stacks up fairly well alongside Pfizer’s and Moderna’s at 95% and far outshines AstraZeneca’s at 76%.
Cuba has approved its homemade Abdala coronavirus vaccine for emergency use. The manufacturers said it's more than 92% effective against COVID-19 infections. https://t.co/2c755sWfLF
— DW News (@dwnews) July 9, 2021
BLM’s statement completely ignored what Cubans have been protesting against – their own government – and instead is somehow alleging that the United States is why the country is in the midst of unrest.
This sentiment shared by BLM also happens to be the same position that Cuban President Díaz-Canel has claimed, where the Cuban president urged his supporters to physically attack Cubans protesting the government earlier in July.
The Cuban government was also barring people entering the country from bringing in the likes of “food, medicines and hygiene products”, according to CNN. However, the Cuban government announced on July 14th that said restrictions would be lifted temporarily.
While the BLM statement blames the U.S. embargo for all the peril ongoing in Cuba, and called for President Joe Biden to “end the embargo”, even President Biden is siding with the protesters and is blaming the Cuban government:
“We stand with the Cuban people and their clarion call for freedom and relief from the tragic grip of the pandemic and from the decades of repression and economic suffering to which they have been subjected by Cuba’s authoritarian regime.”
The Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation criticized the U.S. embargo on Cuba and lauded the Cuban government, but critics say the statement misses the mark—especially regarding Black activists protesting in Cuba. By @CiCiAdams_ https://t.co/TU9WzxjCWL
— NBC Latino (@NBCLatino) July 16, 2021
Danielle Clealand, associate professor of Mexican American and Latina/o studies at the University of Texas, was among those highly critical of BLM’s hot take on the Cuban protests:
“It was surprising to me that Black Lives Matter came out with a statement focusing solely on the U.S. and not talking about why all of those folks are protesting, not coming out in solidarity of Black folks on the ground who are protesting.”
“It’s just disappointing that the statement took this kind of stance that ‘This is all the U.S.’ when we know there is a lack of civil liberties in Cuba.”
Clealand says the situation in Cuba bears a lot of “nuance”, and while she is aware that many Cubans would like to see the embargo lifted, the people on the streets are not protesting because of the embargo:
“Folks on the ground are fighting for freedom, and they’re not talking about the U.S. embargo. The embargo is widely hated in Cuba, but it’s really not the center.”
Do you want to join our private family of first responders and supporters? Get unprecedented access to some of the most powerful stories that the media refuses to show you. Proceeds get reinvested into having active, retired and wounded officers, their families and supporters tell more of these stories. Click to check it out.
The BLM organization has quite the track record of siding with violent regimes.
Back in May, we at Law Enforcement Today shared a reported noting how BLM came out in solidarity with Palestine and Hamas during the conflict between the territory and Israel.
Here’s that previous report from May.
GAZA CITY, GAZA STRIP – Black Lives Matter has announced its full support of the Palestinians in the ongoing violence between Hamas supporters and Israel, a week after terrorists in Gaza began firing rockets onto Israel’s civilian population.
The United Nations' casualty count from hostilities in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel on Wednesday (May 19) showed 256 people dead – including 69 children and an Israeli soldier – and thousands of people injured. pic.twitter.com/zcd4R2iQf3
— ShanghaiEye (@ShanghaiEye) May 20, 2021
Black Lives Matter posted its solidarity with the Palestinians on its Twitter page on Monday:
“Black Lives Matter stands in solidarity with Palestinians. We are a movement committed to ending settler colonialism in all forms and will continue to advocate for Palestinian liberation. ( always have. And always will be ).”
The post featured the hashtag #freepalestine.
Black Lives Matter stands in solidarity with Palestinians. We are a movement committed to ending settler colonialism in all forms and will continue to advocate for Palestinian liberation. ( always have. And always will be ). #freepalestine
— Black Lives Matter (@Blklivesmatter) May 17, 2021
The tweet caught the attention of the BDS Movement, an anti-Israeli organization calling for a boycott of any Israeli companies and any foreign companies that “are complicit in the violations of Palestinian rights.”
The BDS Movement responded to the BLM tweet saying:
“Thank you for your solidarity. From Ferguson to Palestine, our struggles against racism, white supremacy and for a just world are united!”
Thank you for your solidarity. From Ferguson to Palestine, our struggles against racism, white supremacy and for a just world are united!
— BDS movement (@BDSmovement) May 18, 2021
The tweet compared the conflict in Gaza with the anti-police movement in the United States championed by Black Lives Matter. Ferguson, Missouri, was the city where Michael Brown was killed in a fatal police shooting.
The shooting of Michael Brown led to a false narrative that he had his hands up when he was shot on August 9, 2014. The incident resulted in a rise in calls for police reforms, despite the shooting being ruled justified when it was proven that Brown attacked the officer and tried to take the officer’s gun.
The incident is often considered the birthplace of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Violence between Israel and Hamas militants heated up on May 10 when Hamas terrorists began firing rockets into civilian populations in Jerusalem following a violent clash between Israeli police and Palestinian protesters at the al-Aqsa mosque.
Do you think Hamas care where these go?
What Israeli children these hit? The iron dome protection or thousands would have been injured or killed
One is a democratically elected government, the other a Iranian armed terrorist organisation. Only one gives warning (It’s not Hamas) https://t.co/YvGeOLLrKL
— Blackrose (@Blackro85216622) May 15, 2021
Israel launched airborne counterattacks and activated its Iron Dome defense system.
Gaza’s death toll on Wednesday crossed 227, including 64 children and 38 women. Over 12 people have died in Israel.
A delegation of BLM leaders traveled to GAZA in 2015, the first of several trips to the region, according to BLM co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors. In an interview with Ebony Magazine in 2015, Cullors said:
“This is an apartheid state. We can’t deny that and if we do deny it, we are a part of the Zionist violence.”
Cullors has said in an interview on the Laura Flanders Show that black people in America feel a “kindred-ness” with the Palestinians because of their “eerily similar” experiences:
“We are in deep solidarity with them, and frankly believe that Palestine is the new South Africa.”
Some local BLM chapters joined the national foundation in their support of the Palestinians in the conflict. BLM Paterson in New Jersey said in a press release:
“Our deep roots of solidarity are part of a rich tradition of mutual support and exchange between Palestine and US-based liberation movements, from the Black Panthers to the most recent communication between activists in Gaza and Ferguson, MO.
“Our struggles are connected in many ways, not least because the same Israeli forces forcibly expelling the original inhabitants of Sheikh Jarrah train repressive police forces around the world, including the US.”
The group made a demand that the United States government turn its support from Israel, long an ally of the United States, and re-direct $3.9 billion in US aid from Israel to the Palestinians:
“We stand together with our Muslim brothers and sisters during the holy month of Ramadan and demand that Senator Cory Booker, Senator Robert Menendez, our 12 U.S. Representatives from New Jersey, and the Biden Administration join us in condemning these senseless acts of violence and work to end the state of Israel’s campaign of terror against the Palestinian people.
“We demand that the 3.9 billion dollars in U.S. aid earmarked for Israel be diverted to help the victims of violence being perpetrated against the Palestinian people. The People United will never be defeated!”
The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have announced airstrikes ahead of time to allow civilians in Gaza to flee, but many civilians have been killed despite the effort. Palestinian rockets fly indiscriminately and without warning.
IDF posted a reaction to the violence on its Twitter account. The post includes a video purportedly showing Palestinians being used as shields for Hamas equipment and facilities, and rockets being fired into Israel.
The IDF said:
“Israel fights to protect its civilians. Hamas uses civilians to protect itself.”
Israel fights to protect its civilians.
Hamas uses civilians to protect itself. pic.twitter.com/J6WVye1Lqy
— Israel Defense Forces (@IDF) May 18, 2021
Hamas is a U.S.-designated terrorist organization that has killed hundreds of Israeli citizens, as well as Americans, in suicide bombings and other terrorist attacks.
Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today? With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.