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Category Archives: President Obama

Sí, se puede!

Habana_P3

Beautiful Havana, the capital of Cuba
Picture credit: Vgenecr

 

In a move that I believed would never happen in my lifetime, resuming relations with a tiny country just 90 miles offshore from Florida, the President of this Country, has just changed the political status of our two countries once again.

The Island Nation of Cuba has until today, been rejected, cut off and shunned by us for more than 50 years.

This has always struck me as two-faced, as we have had, although frosty at times, relations with other Communist Countries, like China, Russia and Viet Nam  for many years and this seemed  a pretty cold-hearted way to treat this once much admired and loved Island Nation just to our South.

In our efforts to punish the Castro Regime, we ended up instead, mostly hurting only the people.

Yes, there will still be problems, diplomatic and political issues to be worked out, but with this new thinking, the thousands of Cubans who already live here, may soon be able to finally go home and see family that they had lost all hope of ever seeing again.

The fact that we should be willing to treat Cuba as well as we do the others, was so long in coming for some fairly ugly reasons, they did not, as do the others  we have kept relations with, have anything that we want.

We tend to only ” forgive” those who have a product or “other”  that we can use to our benefit.

As for this day, today people were exchanged, secrets were kept secret and assurances may have been made.

Will this be the first step in Global efforts to embrace our differences with the other smaller nations who like Cuba,  offer us little more than trade benefits?

Hopefully other big Nations will begin to think about the Humanitarian reasons to also engage.

As President Obama said today, none of the reasons for cutting our ties with Cuba have had either much impact, or truly changed the situation.

America’s total and complete embargo of Cuba, failed to achieve the desired results.

So, millions have suffered for more than fifty years, for little more than pride and vanity on both sides.

The Castro Regime and the Americans at the helm here, both dug in their heels and innocent people on both shores have suffered.

Each and every week here in Florida, boats are washed ashore with those who risk all, just for the chance to either be free, or to rejoin other family members here.

Historically, the impact of Cuban people here in America is legendary.

They have representation in every imaginable aspect of our Culture from the arts, in  film, and music, and especially in sports, they are extremely well represented in all professions and every corner of our American society.

They are also quite well represented in our political forums and as with all who come here, the great joys of political freedom, also comes with tinges of pain, when thinking of those that are left behind.

Now, on this day, President Obama, working with many others including the Government of Cuba, has changed all of this.

For the people from Cuba, more than fifty long and painful years will hopefully soon come to an end and Cubans can rejoice with those of us who have friends and family from the Cuban Nation.

It is looking good just now because starting today, we will renew a friendship that has been painfully put on hold.

Once again America and Cuba can be allies for their people with a potential prospect for Peace.

Let freedom ring.

I for one, am thrilled at the imminent good things yet to come.

Yes, we can,  America and Cuba,  Sí, se puede!

 

Places to learn more:

Obama: US re-establishing relations with Cuba

Cuba releases American Alan Gross, paves way for historic easing of American sanctions

President Obama’s statement on Cuba policy change

Obama: US re-establishing relations with Cuba

 

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Tibet: A Country, a People, in Crisis

Tibet-claims    People_of_Tibet
Left: Tibet, the Roof of the World
Picture credit : Ran

Right: Kids in the Kham (in a horse festival)
Picture credit: Antoine Taveneaux

 

Tibetans are frequently in the news and the stories are sometimes alarming, as with another who has set themselves on fire in protest, or being brutalized by a member of the Chinese Military.

This act is called,  Self-immolation  and since 2009 more than 125 Tibetans have died this way,  they simply have given up and see no other way of escaping the suffocating Chinese rule.

Please refer to this excellent source for the details on this:   Self-immolation protests in Tibet

Another example of the ongoing tragedies: Tibetan Man Kills Himself to Avoid Arrest in Statue Controversy

Groups protesting in support of the people of Tibet, who are hoping to help them become free of China,  have now become a common occurrence all over the world.

Petition to remove China and others from the UN Human Rights Council: Geneva Summit For Human Rights

This week President Obama welcomed the Dalai Lama to the White House, knowing quite well that he will suffer the full, unmitigated wrath of China for doing so:

Barack Obama risks China’s anger with Dalai Lama visit

Also this week,  a story of selflessness and love of a fellow-creature, as three Tibetan monks were held after saving 300 Yaks from  being slaughtered:

3 Tibetan Monks held after saving 300 Yaks from Chinese Butchers

The Yak is to the Tibetans,  what the Bison/ Buffalo is/was to the Plains Indians in the United States.

These three Tibetan Monks bought the Yaks that were about to be slaughtered, and by doing so have put themselves in harm’s way:

Three Tibetan Monks Detained for Freeing Yaks Headed to Slaughter

 

The Tibetan Yaks

Yak_at_Nam_Tso_Tibet    tibetanyak

Left: Yak at Nam Tso Tibet Picture credit: Paxse

Right: Yak near Yamdrok lake, Tibet. Picture credit: Dennis Jarvis

 

One positive thing that these frequent Global news stories do, even the tragic ones,  is keep the attention of the world on the plight of the Tibetan people.

There are many around the world who understand what they suffering because of China and want to help.

China has been making the lives of Tibetans hell since their invasion and takeover in the 1959 Rebellion.

Those who were able to escape,  found  freedom in Dharamsala, India, including the Dalia Lama.

But many Tibetans do not wish to live out of their country, they want to go home and they want their Spiritual leader back in place.

As the Chinese have repeatedly demonstrated that they have absolutely no intention of leaving, the prospects for this ever happening are slim.

It is tragic that a place of such breathtaking beauty, with one of the world’ most unique people and distinctive cultures, is being held hostage and remains at the mercy of one the planet’s biggest Bullies.

China has a strangle hold on millions of people, not just those in Tibet and they show no signs of slowing down or backing off, so those in their tight grip, will continue to suffer.

A new trend in political controls is happening now across this country, some of our most prestigious schools are teaching Chinese propaganda and many students do not know what the truth is any more. Some schools are now even turning away American students, while accepting wealthy Communist ones. Please do read this, these students who are being educated here, are then going back to China,  better armed to help defeat us around the world:   Stanford University Welcomes Chinese Regime

Even if the whole world were to attempt to unite against China, which is highly unlikely, they could not break these chains, China has simply become an undeniably dominant force on the Earth.

 

These are several places to learn more about Tibet:

The official Tibet Source:  Central Tibetan Administration

A good place to learn about Tibet’s struggles:   The History of Tibet from 1950 to present

Please visit this very informative website if you wish to learn more about Tibet:  Free Tibet

A timeline in the tumultuous History of Tibet:   Tibet’s History

Another excellent source of information:  Radio Free Asia – Tibet

 

A look at Tibetan Culture, the places and faces of Tibet

Potala_palaceThe Potala Palace — A Buddhist temple complex in Lhasa, Tibet.
Picture credit: Antoine Taveneaux

 

Ranjana_prayer_wheels

Prayer wheels at Swayambhu, Kathmandu depicting three Sanskrit mantras in Ranjana script
Picture credit: Kamal Ratna Tuladhar

 

PrayerflagsNepal

Lung ta prayer flags hang along a mountain path in Nepal.
Picture credit: public domain

 

The Monks and their daily lives

Tibetan Monks are called Bhikkhu.

Lamas_Rumtek    Kalachakra

Left: Tibetan Monks attending the 2003 Kalachakra in Bodhgaya, India.
Picture credit:  Morrisjm

Middle: Lamas at the Rumtek monastery in Sikkim.
Picture credit: Amar

The lives that the Monks lead are called the patimokkha.

Sakya_Monastery,_Sakya,_Tibet    Tibetan_monk_in_Tashilhunpo_Monastery

Left: Sakya Monastery, Sakya Tibet
Picture credit: Moszczynski

Right: Tibetan monk in Tashilhunpo Monastery, Shigatse, Tibet Autonomous Region, China
Picture credit:  B_cool

 

 

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