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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Ros-Lehtinen closes opening between Jerusalem and Havana

Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the incoming chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, acted to close an opening between Jerusalem and Havana earlier this year (Hat Tip: Memeorandum).
Israeli leaders reacted warmly to an unexpected defense of Jews and Israel, and criticism of Iran, from Cuban leader Fidel Castro in an interview with Jeffrey Goldberg. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praised Castro's "deep understanding" and President Shimon Peres wrote in a warm letter to Castro that the comments were "a surprising bridge between the hard reality and a new horizon." Israeli officials, I'm told, saw the moment as an opportunity to widen a fissure in the hostility of the global left toward Israel.

But Florida Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen — a key player because of her position on Foreign Affairs, and a longtime supporter of Israel —- was less pleased by the opening. A Cuban exile and fierce Castro foe, she made her displeasure known to the Israelis — and even received an apologetic call from Netanyahu, which appears effectively to have squelched the unlikely dialogue with Cuba.

“I just said look, this guy has been an enemy of Israel, just because he said something that a normal person would say — after 50 years of anti-Israel incitement, it’s one phrase from an old guy who doesn’t even know where he’s standing,” Ros-Lehtinen told me of the exchange.
Yes, she's right. Castro has never been and will never be a true friend of Israel. Two months before he met with Goldberg, Castro told UN diplomats in Geneva that the swastika is Israel's banner.

Sometimes we're too desperate for friends.

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At 2:45 AM, Blogger Sunlight said...

Think of poor Africa, who worked hard to send the Euros out and then allowed in the Ruskies and the Cubans (Castro! Che!) to squash them with marxism... Cuba is no friend to anyone as long as they sit still under the marxists. I'm glad to hear Mr. Netanyahu is noting this factor...

At 4:54 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

There are some friends Israel should never have. A Communist thug isn't one of them.


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