Under the Radar

Here’s an interesting little article that seems to have flown under the radar. I originally found it at Clandestine Radio.


U.S. leaflets new tactic in propaganda war against Castro

When Minerva Alvarez gazed out of her window as dawn broke two weeks ago, she spotted something colorful lying on the bare concrete patio in her front yard.

Stepping out of her low-slung house, Alvarez walked a few steps, leaned over and picked up two small pamphlets. She recoiled when she saw a photograph of President Bush on one of them.

“I took it straight to my husband,” she said. “I didn’t want to read it.”

What Alvarez and scores of residents of her impoverished Havana neighborhood found at their doorstep was a pocket-size reprint of Bush’s Jan. 20 inaugural address in which he vowed to free the world of tyranny.

The speech and a second pamphlet containing the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights arrived anonymously in the dead of night and are part of an escalating U.S. government program to spur political change in this one-party state.

For decades, the U.S. government’s attempt to penetrate Cuba with information has had limited success. Cuban authorities routinely jam Radio and TV Marti, the anti-Castro broadcasts produced in Miami, and Internet access on the island is limited.

The clandestine, door-to-door leafleting is the latest in the Bush administration’s stepped up effort to reach citizens who have little access to public information outside Cuba’s government-controlled media.

Wow. Now that was news to me.

We’re littering Cuba with anti-Castro pamphlets?

I wonder, exactly what federal agency is responsible for the distribution of these pamphlets? Surely it is not the United States Post Office.

What if we were to turn the tables? Would our government appreciate people going around passing out pamphlets with Kim Jong Il on the front?

Is it terrorism when the government of one nation distributes contraband to the citizens of another nation?

Does anyone ever read pamphlets anyway?

Lots of questions… not a lot of answers. :)

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