- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 15, 2021

Black Lives Matter responded to the pro-freedom protests in Cuba by blaming the U.S. government for the unrest, calling for the removal of the economic embargo and blasting U.S. efforts to “crush this Revolution.”

The Black Lives Matter Global Network, co-founded by self-described Marxist Patrisse Cullors, said Wednesday on social media that the U.S. government since 1962 has “forced pain and suffering on the people of Cuba by cutting off food, medicine and supplies” at a cost of $130 billion.

Black Lives Matter condemns the U.S. federal government’s inhumane treatment of Cubans, and urges it to immediately lift the economic embargo,” the post read. “This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cubans’ right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba’s current crisis.”

The effort to pin the unrest and suffering on U.S. policy versus the repressive communist regime met with immediate blowback, starting with Sen. Marco Rubio, Florida Republican.

“The extortionist ring known as the Black Lives Matter organization took a break today from shaking down corporations for millions & buying themselves mansions to share their support for the Communist regime in #Cuba,” Mr. Rubio tweeted Thursday.

Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, tweeted: “Shameful. The group Black Lives Matter (funded by major players in corporate America) was founded by avowed Marxists and — as millions of Cubans risk their lives to rise up for freedom — BLM stands with … the communist dictatorship.”

American Conservative Union Chair Matt Schlapp tweeted that in siding with “Communist overseers in Cuba BLM Inc has laid bare to the world that it was never about race so much as destroying America and pushing Marxism.”

“Siding w Castroism over oppressed Afro Cubans is a tipping point. But maybe BLM got a beachfront house out of the deal,” Mr. Schlapp said.



In its post, the BLM also credited Cuba for “protecting Black revolutionaries like Assata Shakur,” formerly JoAnne Chesimard, who escaped from jail and was granted political asylum by the communist government after being convicted in the murder of a New Jersey state trooper.

“United States leaders have tried to crush this Revolution for decades,” said the BLM post, which praised Cuba‘s “strong medical care.”

Last year, Black Lives Matter reported raising $90 million in the aftermath of the nationwide protests against racism spurred by the May 2020 killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, who was convicted of second-degree murder.

Ms. Cullors, who served as the group’s executive director until May, has been criticized for espousing leftist politics even as she purchased four high-end homes, including a $1.4 million house in March in the exclusive Topanga Canyon neighborhood in Los Angeles County.

Thousands of protesters in Cuba shouting “freedom” and touting “Patria y Vida,” an anti-government slogan, have taken to the streets demanding an end to the communist dictatorship amid devastating food shortages.

• Valerie Richardson can be reached at vrichardson@washingtontimes.com.

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