From: Flexner, Allison
Sent: Tuesday, February 19, 2008 7:46 AM
To: *CNN Superdesk (TBS)
Cc: Neill, Morgan; Darlington, Shasta
Subject: Castro guidance
Some points on Castro – for adding to our anchor reads/reporting:
* Please say in our reporting that Castro stepped down in a letter he wrote to Granma (the communist party daily), as opposed to in a letter attributed to Fidel Castro. We have no reason to doubt he wrote his resignation letter, he has penned numerous articles over the past year and a half.
* Please note Fidel did bring social reforms to Cuba – namely free education and universal health care, and racial integration. in addition to being criticized for oppressing human rights and freedom of speech.
* Also the Cuban government blames a lot of Cuba’s economic problems on the US embargo, and while that has caused some difficulties, (far less so than the collapse of the Soviet Union) the bulk of Cuba’s economic problems are due to Cuba’s failed economic polices. Some analysts would say the US embargo was a benefit to Castro politically – something to blame problems on, by what the Cubans call “the imperialist,” meddling in their affairs.
* While despised by some, he is seen as a revolutionary hero, especially with leftist in Latin America, for standing up to the United States.
Any questions, please call the international desk.
Allison Flexner is, as confirmed by a Google search, a producer for CNN. She’s covered Cuban events before, and has been seen elsewhere at CNN. Here’s a profile at Spoke, which confirms Flexner’s employment at CNN in Atlanta.
Wouldn’t want to portray a dictator in a negative ligh, now would we?