Tree of Eden

Fidel is a happier man (U.S. turns off Havana news ticker that angered Cuba via Reuters)

Posted in Uncategorized by T.Salami on July 28, 2009

It is highly likely that pundits will use this event to portray Obama in a negative light.

You know, the typical: he has no security credentials; he is weak on weak on dictatorial regimes; and all of that good political stuff employed in making character assassinations.

HAVANA (Reuters) – The United States has turned off a news ticker at its diplomatic mission in Havana that long had irritated the Cuban government, the U.S. State Department said on Monday, in another sign of efforts to improve relations with Cuba.

The five-foot-high (1.5-meter) news ticker ran across 25 windows on the outside of the fifth floor of the U.S. diplomatic mission’s building on Havana’s busy seaside Malecon drive. It streamed news, political statements and messages blaming Cuba’s problems on the country’s communist system and socialist economy.

The ticker infuriated Cuban President Fidel Castro when it was turned on by former U.S. President George W. Bush’s administration in 2006…

After the United States launched the ticker, Cuba erected obstructions so it could not be seen and put up anti-U.S. billboards. Cuba took down those billboards earlier this year.

State Department spokesman Ian Kelly told reporters in Washington that the news ticker was turned off in June

Kelly said the ticker was “really not effective as a means of delivering information to the Cuban people” and, together with the earlier Cuban billboards, was “not serving the interests of promoting a more productive relationship.”

“It was evident that the Cuban people weren’t even able to read the billboard because of some obstructions that were put in front of it,” Kelly said.

The turn-off of the news ticker comes amid moves by U.S. President Barack Obama to ease nearly half a century of enmity between the United States and Cuba following Fidel Castro’s 1959 revolution.

“Like other Bush initiatives, (the ticker) caused lots of fanfare in Miami (home to many Cuban-Americans) and very little impact in Cuba, and President Obama is right to bury it,” said Phil Peters, a Cuba expert at the U.S.-based Lexington Institute think tank.

Ahh all along did the ticker have a political benefit for the Republican party by wooing Cuban Americans?

If this think tank guy – Phil Peters – was a Democratic Party official, I would have said that removing the ticker was all part of a reverse strategy to woo Cuban Americans.

But he isn’t.

via U.S. turns off Havana news ticker that angered Cuba | U.S. | Reuters .

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