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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Elian Gonzalez; Ten Years Later

    Ten years ago this month, the saga of a Cuban boy named Elian Gonzalez captivated the nation and much of the world. Elian, 6, was found floating on an inner tube off the coast of Florida, after his mother drowned trying to reach America.



    The Cuban immigrant community in Florida embraced the boy as a symbol of the struggle of ordinary Cubans to flee the oppression of Fidel Castro's communist regime, and rallied behind the boy's extended family in Miami, which sought custody of young Elian.



    But U.S. immigration officials insisted that the boy be returned to his father in Havana. Agents of the Immigration and Naturalization Service conducted an armed raid on Elian's adoptive Miami home - yielding a powerful image of paramilitary forces in America menacing a frightened 6-year-old. Florida's Cuban immigrant community brandished that infamous photo as a reminder of what they considered American power effectively doing the bidding of a heartless Castro government.

    A decade later, however, there are new photos of a nearly grown-up Elian Gonzalez - and they present a very different kind of propaganda image.

    The new pictures show a serious-looking 16-year-old sporting a closely cropped haircut, wearing an olive-green military school uniform with red shoulder patches, as he attends a Young Communist Union meeting. The Cuban government press released the images under the none-too-subtle headline "Young Elian Gonzalez defends his revolution in the youth congress."



    Since winning Elian's return to Cuba in 2000, the Castro regime has closely tracked the boy and his father. (Indeed, Cuban State Security has a monitoring station next to their home.) In his homeland, Elian Gonzalez is hailed as a national hero who embodies the triumph of Cuba over the United States. Every few years, the Cuban government has floated news updates and photographs trumpeting Elian's progress as a model young citizen of the Castro regime.

    In 2004, NBC's Keith Morrison traveled to Cuba to interview Elian's father, Juan Miguel Gonzalez, and filmed footage of a communist museum that houses a bronze statue of Elian raising a clenched fist. After Elian's return home, his father was made a member of the Cuban National Assembly, and Castro has been known to show up at Elian's birthday parties and school graduation ceremonies. In 2005, in an interview with CBS' Bob Simon for "60 Minutes," Elian referred to Castro "not only as a friend, but also as a father." In 2008, Elian joined Cuba's Young Communist Union.

    While Cuba has played up Elian Gonzalez's symbolic value in stoking nationalist sentiment, he still remains a more divisive figure in the United States, provoking fierce reactions on the American left and right.
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
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    Wow. Can't believe that was ten years ago already.
    "What we are dealing with here, is a complete lack of respect for the law" - Jackie Gleason, Smokey and the Bandit

    www.geocaching.com - The site where you are the search engine.

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk
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    07.24.11 @ 04:36 PM
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    That all went down directly across the street from my aunt and three houses down from my grandfather. What a cluster fuck all of that was.
    Stay out of it, dude.


    I am Van Halen.

  4. #4
    PM Goo with your concerns OLO's Avatar
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    12.10.17 @ 09:52 PM
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    I am almost sure we had a thread on that entire deal. I cant find it though, it may have gotten lost in the hack.
    ((Just My Two Cents))
    And thats about what its worth.

  5. #5
    Baluchitherium
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    12.10.17 @ 11:47 AM
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    I remember all of those arguments like they were yesterday! Many threads were closed because of this topic.
    "Alcoholism, is like, the only disease you can get yelled at for having" - Mitch
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  6. #6
    Atomic Punk
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    Quote Originally Posted by OLO View Post
    I am almost sure we had a thread on that entire deal. I cant find it though, it may have gotten lost in the hack.
    Yeah, I searched for it, but long gone...
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

  7. #7
    Atomic Punk Viking's Avatar
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    I wonder if ACORN got Elian registered to vote here, so he could vote for Obama.
    "Viking - last to sleep, first to rise, last to leave, that's how the Nords of old rocked the house." ~ timmac in the 'Texas Linkers' thread talking about yours truly. :-)

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk
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    HAVANA Elian Gonzalez says he's not angry at his Miami relatives who fought to keep him in the United States during a nasty international custody battle a decade ago, and is thankful "a large part of the American public" supported him being reunited with his father in Cuba.

    Now 16, Gonzalez's first comments to foreign reporters in years came after President Raul Castro attended a state celebration Wednesday night marking the 10th anniversary of the famous ex-castaway's return to the island.

    "Even though they didn't help me in every way possible, they didn't help me move forward, they are still my own family," Gonzalez said of his South Florida relatives, speaking in a shy, almost timid voice.

    "I don't have anger for them," he said. "It's only that it wasn't the best effort possible, and thanks to a large part of the American public, and our public, today I'm with my father and I feel happy here."

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100701/...10_years_later
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack. -- Gen. George S. Patton

 

 

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