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Obama Appoints Castro's Lawyer as White House Counsel

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Obama Appoints Castro's Lawyer as White House Counsel

Mensaje por freedom of expression el Jue Nov 20, 2008 5:28 pm

By Humberto Fontova
Among the throng of Clinton
regime retreads recruited for the Obama administration we find Gregory
Craig. Craig served as Obama's advisor on Latin American during the
campaign, and was appointed last week as chief White House Counsel.

MSM has mentioned Craig's role as Bill Clinton's impeachment lawyer,
but mostly has omitted mention of Craig's role as chief facilitator for
Fidel Castro's shanghaiing of Elian Gonzalez.

Craig served as attorney for Elian's father, Juan Miguel Gonzalez. This
humble man worked as a hotel doorman in a nation where the average
monthly salary is $16. The high-rolling Gregory Craig worked for
Washington D.C.'s elite firm, Williams & Connolly, one of America's
highest-priced law firms.

accepting the case, Gregory Craig had flown to Cuba for a meeting with
Fidel Castro. Craig's remuneration, we learned shortly after his
return, came from a "voluntary fund" set up by the United Methodist
Board of Church and Society and "administered" by the National Council
of Churches. The same reporters and pundits, who routinely erupt with
snide snorts midway through any statement by a Republican press
secretary, reported this item with a straight face.

then, this media also reports that Castro's Cuba provides free and
exquisite health-care. And the explanation of Craig's funding issued
from the same source.

an interview with Tim Russert on June 6, 2000, Gregory Craig explained
his motivation for accepting the case: "What I want to do is to set
Juan Miguel free. I want the father to make a decision uncoerced from
Havana, uncoerced from Miami, uncoerced by the press, independently and
freely to make a decision where and how he wants to raise his family.
That's all I'm concerned about."

for Mr. Craig we have an eyewitness to his definition of "uncoercion."
During the taping of Dan Rather's 60 Minutes interview with Juan Miguel
Gonzalez in April 2000,Pedro Porro served as Rather's in-studio
translator. Dan would ask the question in English into Porro's earpiece
and Porro would translate it into Spanish for Elian's heavily guarded

Miguel was never completely alone," says Pedro Porro. "He never smiled.
His eyes kept shifting back and forth. It was obvious to me that he was
under coercion. He was always surrounded by security agents from the
Cuban Interest Section, as they called it. When these agents left him
alone for a few seconds, Gregory Craig himself would be hovering over
Juan Miguel."

Gregory Craig had led the Juan Miguel/Cuban-Security entourage into the
studio, then presided over the interview as a movie director. "Most of
the questions Dan Rather was asking Elian's father during that 60
Minutes interview were being handed to him by Gregory Craig," says
Pedro Porro. "It was obvious that Greg Craig and Dan Rather where on
very friendly terms. They were joshing and bantering back and forth, as
Juan Miguel sat there petrified. Craig was stage-managing the whole
thing. The taping would stop and Craig would walk over to Dan, hand him
a little slip of paper, say something into his ear. Then Rather would
read straight from the paper."

one point Craig stopped the taping almost like a movie director
yelling, 'Cut!' I was confused for a moment, says Porro, "until Greg
Craig complained that Juan Miguel's answers were not coming across from
his translator with "sufficient emotion." "So Dan Rather shut
everything down for a while and some of the crew drove to a drama
school in New York. They hired a dramatic actor to act as a translator,
and brought him back."

Okay roll 'em!

probably should have walked out," says Porro. "But I'd been hired by
CBS in good faith and I didn't know exactly how the interview would be
edited -- how it would come across on the screen. I mighta known, but
you never know these things play out until you actually see it."

through watching that "60 Minutes" broadcast, "I felt like throwing
up," says Porro. "My stomach was in a knot." His worst fears were

week later Reno's INS maced, kicked, stomped, gun-butted and
tear-gassed their way into Lazaro Gonzalez's house. Heavily armed INS
agents wrenched a bawling 6-year-old child from his family at
machine-gun point, and bundled him off to a Stalinist nation (against
his father's true wishes.) They left 102 people injured, some
seriously. Many of the injured were ladies who had brandished dangerous
weapons. These weapons were rosaries. No "60 Minutes" "investigative
report" on that however.

The New York Times' incomparable Thomas Friedman
could not contain himself: "Yup, I gotta confess, that now-famous
picture of a U.S. marshal in Miami pointing an automatic weapon ...
warmed my heart."

getting a major TV network to act as unpaid aides, consultants, props
and publicists for your case -- and during prime time. To cap it all,
Gregory Craig at the time worked for the law firm Williams &
Connolly -- that also represented CBS.

mentioned, upon accepting the case, Gregory Craig had flown to Cuba to
confer with "El Lider Maximo" (translates almost exactly to Führer in
German). To effectively stage-manage the boy's shanghaiing, Craig
explained to Castro, he needed Juan Miguel in the U.S. According to
most accounts, Castro balked at this. No plantation owner likes his
slaves traveling (unescorted) outside his plantation. Plus, Castro was
no doubt privy to Juan Miguel's early communications with his Miami
cousins, thanking them profusely and saying he'd be soon make his own
escape and join Elian.

it took a little doing, but Craig finally prevailed -- that Castro's
"escorts" would constantly accompany Juan Miguel in the U.S. (as
witnessed by Pedro Porro) was probably the gist of the deal with Craig.

in effect, the man who will serve as chief White House Counsel, once
agreed to function as a fully deputized agent for a Stalinist regime's
KGB-trained secret police.

revelations appeared in a documentary by Cuban-American filmmaker
Agustin Blazquez titled "The Rats Below." After interviewing Pedro
Porro for my book, Fidel: Hollywood's Favorite Tyrant, this writer was asked to confront Craig with the accusations during a radio debate on a show by Accuracy In Media.

"You bet," I replied.

Craig responded in print that my charges were unsound. Porro, he
related, had turned out to be a very poor translator, barely knowing
the English language, and obviously didn't understand what was going

has lived in the U.S. for 45 years (outside of Miami), earned two
college degrees from major U.S. universities and served for years as
the U.S. Treasury Department's head architect. True, his profession did
not require quite the glibness of Craig's. But he speaks better
English, I suspect, than 70% of the native born.

to hear I was a lousy translator five years after the translation!"
laughed Pedro when I conveyed Craig's accusation." CBS, which hired me
for the job, complimented me on it and paid the entire fee without

Needless to say, no debate took place during the Accuracy In Media show. Craig was a no-show.

Humberto Fontova is the author of four books including Exposing the Real Che Guevara. visit
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