- The Washington Times - Monday, September 9, 2002

Happy to see her go
She criticized Fidel Castro, encouraged dissidents and distributed thousands of short-wave radios, so Cubans could listen to the U.S. government station, Radio Marti.
Vicki Huddleston did her best to annoy Castro in her three years as the top diplomat at the U.S. Interests Section in Havana.
"They are happy to see me go," Mrs. Huddleston told reporters on Friday, as she prepared to leave Havana and take the position of U.S. ambassador to Mali in West Africa.
She said she believes the Cuban people are losing their fear of the Castro regime and dissidents are gaining international respect with their opposition to the repressive 43-year-old Cuban revolution.
"The activists who used to be non-people are now people, and they have proven that through Project Varela," she said, referring to a referendum drive that gathered 11,000 signatures calling for civil liberties, property rights and the release of political prisoners.
Mr. Castro, however, trumped the movement when his government sponsored a competing petition with 9 million signatures that opposed the reforms.
Mrs. Huddleston said the best way to topple the Castro regime is through an education system that relies on learning instead of propaganda.

Bush picks new envoys
President Bush has selected career diplomats for ambassadorial positions in Bolivia and Congo.
David Greenlee, deputy chief of mission in Paraguay, would become ambassador to Bolivia, the South American nation that was once a battleground in the war on drugs. He had served as special coordinator for Haiti and political adviser to the Army chief of staff.
Robin Renee Sanders was selected to serve as ambassador to Congo, the war-ravaged African nation. She served on the National Security Council under Mr. Bush's father and President Clinton and was director of public diplomacy in the State Department's Africa bureau.

Diplomatic traffic
Foreign visitors in Washington this week include:
Today
Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov, who meets Secretary of State Colin L. Powell. Tomorrow he meets Vice President Richard B. Cheney.
Indian Foreign Minister Yashwant Sinha, who meets Mr. Powell, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill and Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Tomorrow he meets congressional leaders and addresses the Brookings Institution.
Chinese Finance Minister Xiang Huaicheng, who meets Mr. O'Neill as part of the annual U.S.-China joint economic meeting.
Savitri MacCuish and Andrew Wells, co-directors of the Life Foundation International, who are promoting the Sept. 27 lighting of a peace flame memorial at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tenn., and plans for a similar memorial in Washington.
Tomorrow
Bolivian Vice President Carlos Mesa, who addresses invited guests at the Inter-American Dialogue.
Polish Foreign Minister Wlodzimierz Cimoszewicz and South Korean Deputy Foreign Minister Cho Chang-beom. They discuss global efforts to promote democracy at a forum hosted by Freedom House. Mr. Cimoszewicz also meets Miss Rice and addresses the European Institute.
Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou, who meets members of Congress.
Oil Minister Vladimir Shkolnik of Kazakhstan, who attends the first Cabinet-level meeting of the U.S.-Kazakhstani Energy Partnership Commission with Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham.
Yaakov Yisraeli, president of the Tel Aviv-based Israel-American Chamber of Commerce and Industry, who addresses the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.
Wednesday
Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa, who delivers the homily at the Washington National Cathedral's 8 a.m. memorial service on the anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks.
Thursday
Indonesian Foreign Minister N. Hassan Wirajuda, who addresses the United States-Indonesia Society's annual dinner.


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