Saturday, February 7, 2009

Lipset on The New York Times, Republicans and Fidel Castro

"...True, the United States worked with Batista before he was overthrown, as did the Cuban Communist party. But Castro's rise was made possible by American help and sympathy. The New York Times, the paper with closest connection with the State Department, was the first to bring Castro's struggle to the attention of the American people and world public opinion in a highly sympathetic series of articles, published at a time when his armed supporters numbered in the hundreds. Although the American military co-operated with Batista until his fall, Castro was able to secure arms from America, and the State Department clearly opposed Batista long before he left Cuba, and demanded he hold genuinely free elections and give up office. Right wing senators and organs of opinion in the United States have, in fact, blamed State Department policy for Castro's rise to power. American officials, including then Vice-President Nixon have reported that they sought to discuss financial aid to Castro during his first tour of the United States, but that he refused, a contention that has been confirmed by Castro's former finance minister and others of his entourage before they broke with him."

---Seymour Martin Lipset, Political Man: the Social Bases of Politics.

Fidel Castro can truly say, "I got my job through the New York Times." And what of the difference between Republicans and Democrats? It would seem that international relations and the State Department reflect a field dominated by quacks.

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