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Not Your Father's Embargo

Added: (Tue Sep 04 2001)

Pressbox (Press Release) - Edgar Veytia

Not your Father's Embargo

Los Angeles , CA, 9/10/2001 — As the old guard Cuban-Americans retire or die off, the next generation is taking over the anti-Castro cause, but not without controversy.

For forty years, the Cuban-American community has held a hard unwavering line against their arch nemesis, Fidel Castro. But with age taking its toll, a new generation of Cubans is taking over the watch. "I think Fidel Castro's worst nightmare is that there's a younger generation here that has not forgotten Cuba," says Jorge Mas Santos, recent heir as chairman of Cuban American National Foundation, the powerful anti-Castro movement based in in Florida. The transition however, is anything but business as usual.

Mas Santos has unleashed a storm of controversy, leading to the resignations of many of the founding members of CANF by suggesting that the foundation "look past Castro" to the future. In reflecting the sentiments of a younger generation, many of whom were born in the U.S. or emigrated here as children, Mas Santos is the most notable figure to join a growing debate about what to do about Castro.

"The Miami old guard undermined much of their credibility in the eyes of the American public through a series of events, especially in how they handled the Elian Gonzalez debacle," says, Edgar Veytia, founder of Cubanos.org, a progressive Cuban-American organization whose web site is quickly becoming a central meeting place for Cubans debating their future.

"Other viewpoints have been around for a while, especially among Cubans living far away from the Miami community," adds Veytia, "Frustration has been enormous in Cubans everywhere, though few have ever dared challenge the views espoused by the exile community's hard line leaders. Some Cubans have been afraid of retaliation but mostly we Cubans have not wanted to appear disloyal or send the wrong message to Castro."

Even the long standing policies of the U.S. government have come under mounting pressure in recent months. Resolutions are advancing in Congress aimed at easing travel and trade restrictions, even suggesting an end to our 40 year old quarantine of Cuba. With the Miami based leadership in transition, many Cuban-Americans, especially those outside of Miami, feel emboldened to take a fresh look and talk about it openly.

"Momentum is building toward a new concensus, but it won't be pretty and it won't be neat until a lot of public debate takes place. There are many Cubans scattered all over the United States with deep feelings that need to voice their opinions openly." says Veytia, "It's a healthy thing that's taking place, not a sign of weakness."

With web sites like Cubanos.org offering a safe haven for dynamic debate, the new look of the Cuban-American community will be that of many fresh faces and shaped by many new voices, and they're not all coming out of Miami.



For additional information, contact:
Edgar Veytia

Organization History:
Cubanos.org is operated by progressively minded Cuban-Americans and is dedicated to the Cuban cause offering visitors a comprehensive range of services such as:

• Cuban Resource Directory - The most comprehensive, organized, and well maintained listing of web sites that relate to every aspect of Cuban matters.
• Community Forums - A place for dialog among visitors
• Cuban News - Feeds & highlighted stories with links to the Forum for commentary and discussion.
• Action Tools - for anyone inspired to get involved: Tools for leadership and lists of organizations committed to serving the Cuban cause.
• Postcards - On a lighter note, a wonderful selection of vintage Cuban e-postcards that can be sent to friends and family anywhere.

Cubanos.org is privately funded, displays no advertising, and has strict privacy policies that effectly bar the tracking and sharing of individual information without consent.

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