But things indeed have changed: The Castro regime briefly hooked up with the Rolling Stones for the simple expedient of filling its coffers with millions more in tourist money. Yes, it was billed as a “free concert,” like Woodstock and Altamonte. In fact, the AP estimated that half the fans in the front sections were foreigners.
In the meantime, Castro’s subjects — while allowed to boogie a bit — essentially remain the impoverished and oppressed subjects of a totalitarian regime.
Indeed, repression has actually cranked up steadily in direct proportion to the Stalinist regime’s enrichment through tourism, especially owing to President Obama’s policies that recently swamped Cuba with more than half a million visitors last year from the United States and contributed an estimated $5.6 billion in remittances and travel expenditures to the regime’s coffers.
As a direct result, desperate Cubans are risking their lives to flee Cuba at a rate unseen in decades. MORE