Democrats from coast to coast have condemned Bernie Sanders’ comments made on 60 Minutes last Sunday about the Communist revolution in Cuba and Fidel Castro.
“We’re very opposed to the authoritarian nature of Cuba,” said Sanders, I-Vt., in a “60 Minutes” interview on Sunday night, “but you know, it’s unfair to simply say everything is bad.”
He added: “When Fidel Castro came into office, you know what he did? He had a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing? Even though Fidel Castro did it?”
Democrats were not only mad about Sanders showing Castro the love, but they are also terrified. They know that those who remember Castro and communism will take their anger out on Democrats from the top of the ballot to the bottom if Sanders is the nominee.
But there’s one place that only had glowing praise for Sanders’ kind words about the mass murderers who ran the Cuban Revolution. The Communist newspaper Granma thought Sanders’ comments were just great.
Granma, which has published several reports bashing [P]resident Donald Trump, highlighted that Sanders, who calls himself a democratic socialist, supported the reestablishment of diplomatic relations with Cuba under Barack Obama and has called for the elimination of the embargo.
The report also mentions that Sanders had recognized the role of Cuba in sending “doctors all over the world,” another Castro initiative, but incorrectly attributed these comments, made during a debate in the 2016 elections, to the interview with Cooper.
“As expected,” Granma wrote, “his comments sparked the anger of the most extremist sector of Cuban-Americans in South Florida, who oppose any rapprochement with the Caribbean island.”
Funny how they didn’t mention that the anger at Sanders was national and certainly not confined to Cuban-Americans in South Florida.
Nevertheless, that’s where Sanders’ words hit like a hurricane and sparked anger and sadness among the Cuban ex-pat community.
Sanders’s comments angered many Cuban exiles and Cuban Americans who pointed out on social media that the literacy program carried out by Castro after coming to power in 1959 was highly politicized — as was the resulting educational system — and the senator was selective in avoiding references to the repression on the island, or the executions that Castro organized at the beginning of the revolution.
But the negative reactions came not just from Cuban exiles or Republican politicians but from Democratic members of Congress as well as several political analysts and Democratic Party advisers.
“If you want Cuban-Americans to respect your views on Cuba, you cannot sound dismissive of their pain and lived experience,” said Ric Herrero, who advised the Obama administration on Cuba policy and is currently the executive director of the Cuba Study Group. “Doing so triggers the same wounds that have shaped their identities for decades. And it just makes the change more difficult.”
Sanders could have given a mea culpa. He might have taken the opportunity on 60 Minutes to apologize for his past praise of communist dictatorships and thugs like Fidel Castro. He could have then faintly praised Castro for his literacy and health care programs.
Instead, he went full bore commie and dared people to vote against him for it. This they are going to do with relish. If Sanders really thinks his views on communism don’t matter, then he’s a fool and deserves to lose the election.