The father of Republican presidential hopeful Ted Cruz escaped the horrors of Cuba during the communist revolution there and says the U.S. is making a huge error by re-engaging the Castro regime without any concessions, and President Obama’s actions there amount to treason.
“It is a drastic, drastic, drastic mistake,” said Rafael Cruz, who fled Cuba in 1957.
Cruz is now an ordained minister and the author of “A Time for Action: Empowering the Faithful to Reclaim America.” As a teenager, he intensely resisted the brutal rule of dictator Fulgencio Batista, and initially aligned himself with Fidel Castro, who led the revolution under false pretenses.
“I was involved in the revolution with Castro, thinking that he was a freedom fighter,” Cruz told WND and Radio America. “I was imprisoned and tortured (by the Batista regime) as a result. I came to the states in ’57.”
He said he still didn’t realize Castro’s true agenda until returning shortly after the revolution.
“In ’59, when I went back, something didn’t look right,” he said. “They were starting to talk about how the rich were evil, how they oppressed the poor, about the need to redistribute the wealth. Soon thereafter, he called himself a Marxist-Leninist and began confiscating private property, freedom of religion (and) freedom of the press.”
Cruz added, “I felt like I was duped, like many of us kids. We were high-school kids when we were involved, and we didn’t know any better. Thinking about what Obama is doing nowadays, trying to extend the lifeline to Cuba is really a horrible situation.”
Cruz said the most alarming aspect of Obama’s olive branch to the Castros is that the regime is not changing its behavior one iota. He said the legacy is clear of Cuba pouring 25,000 troops into Angola in 1979 to assist in a communist revolution and to this day training the terrorists of FARC to destabilize Columbia.
Even in the lead-up to Obama’s initial announcement that he would pursue normal relations with Cuba, Cruz said Cuba was still fostering terrorism.
“A year before Obama approached Cuba about normalizing relations, there was a merchant ship from North Korea leaving Cuba,” he said. “It was stopped in Panama, sacks of sugar on top, thousands of tons of weapons in the bottom manufactured in Cuba and going to North Korea. Cuba is still exporting terrorism and insurrection throughout the world.”
Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Rafael Cruz:
Cruz also slammed Obama for severely damaging national security, both in restoring ties with the regime in Havana and for releasing as many detainees from Guantanamo Bay as possible.
He didn’t hold back in his characterization of the president’s actions.
“Today, Obama is bent on releasing all of those terrorists from Guantanamo Bay,” Cruz said. “Every time he releases some of those, they go join ISIS or join al-Qaida to kill more Americans. That’s treason.
“Beyond that, he wants to empty Guantanamo Bay, and I’m sure that after that, he will want to give that base back to Cuba.”
He explained his greatest fears if the U.S. relinquishes control of our naval base at Guantanamo Bay.
“Think about this for a moment,” Cruz said. “Suppose Cuba decides to put that base up for bids, maybe to Russia, maybe to China, maybe to North Korea, maybe to Iran. This could be disastrous. This is a matter of national security.”
Cruz said he does not know exactly what his son’s policy would be toward Cuba if elected president, but he assured voters a President Cruz would chart a very different course.
President Obama believes lifting the trade embargo would be a win-win for the American and Cuban peoples given the greater demand for goods and the new jobs needed to meet it. But Cruz said there is no good news here for the Cuban people.
“Raul Castro made a statement, saying that if an American company hired a Cuban worker, that salary had to be paid to the Cuban government,” he said. “The Cuban government would retain 92 percent of that money and pay the worker the other eight percent. So all it would do is fatten the fat cats while they continue to exploit the Cuban people.”
Finally, Cruz is unimpressed by Obama’s appeal for Cuba to embrace religious freedom. He said Obama’s own actions and policies show the president believes in a freedom to worship, rather than the freedom of religion. He said there’s a huge difference.
“What he wants to promote is, ‘You keep your religion inside the four walls (of the church), but the moment you step outside that church this is a secular society.’ He wants to promote that the religion of America is secular humanism,” Cruz said. “That means there are no more values, no more absolutes.”
He said the consequences of that in society are devastating, and we are already seeing them.
“What we see as a result of that is a total decay on our moral values. We see chaos. We see immorality. We see a society that is crumbling, even a direct attack on the traditional family,” Cruz said. “The natural consequence of that is the destruction of society as we know it.”