Well, ¡Cuba!, anyway:
Who and where are the 53 Cuban political prisoners that President Obama promised would be freed by Havana as part of a deal to liberate three convicted Cuban spies serving lengthy sentences in the U.S.?
I asked the State Department this last week. State referred me to the White House. White House officials declined to provide the list of names citing “concern that publicizing it would make it more difficult to ensure that Cuba follows through, and continues with further steps in the future.”
Bottom line: The U.S. government cannot confirm that they have been released and is not certain they’re going to be released, even though the three Cuban spies have already been returned.
A government official told me that keeping the names of the 53 quiet will give Cuba the opportunity to release them as a sovereign measure, rather than at the behest of the U.S., and that this could allow for additional releases.
In other words, the Castros are sensitive boys who throw despotic tantrums when their absolute power is questioned. Asking them to keep their word is apparently a trigger.
In other other words, the Castros have learned from the Iranian hermanos that you can string along this wet-behind-the-ears (and that’s some wet!) nincompoop for as long as you like, and he won’t mind. He seems to like it, in fact.
In the weeks since Mr. Obama’s rapprochement with Cuba, reports from the island say that more than 50 dissidents have been arrested, including the husband of the dissident blogger Yoani Sánchez. Most have been released but some remain in prison.
Don’t expect much outrage from Washington. Mr. Obama wouldn’t want to damage his newly reconciled relationship with the police state.
That’s a nice ending, but my favorite part was this, which is yet another example of Obama lying for the sake of lying:
[Obama’s] promise to review Cuba’s designation as a state sponsor of terror sounded like he had already made up his mind. “At a time when we are focused on threats from al Qaeda to ISIL, a nation that meets our conditions and renounces the use of terrorism should not face this sanction,” Mr. Obama said.
That would complete the concession trifecta. Cuba still supports the FARC, the Colombian terrorist group, it got caught in 2013 trying to smuggle weapons through the Panama Canal to North Korea, and credible intelligence analysts say Cuba has provided Venezuela the technology it needs to falsify identities for Middle East terrorists.
And Mexico is a sleepy little land of happy peasants and stubborn burros. Why peddle such obvious lies? Does he believe everything that comes out of his own mouth? That his saying it makes it so? What an odd, odd man.