There Was no “Tear Down This Wall” Moment for Obama in Cuba

I would love to see Cuba give up its Communist ways. During Pres Obama’s visit, Fidel and Raul Castro complained that America lacks economic equality, and they would be right. It’s also true that there is near economic equality in Cuba. The vast majority of the Cuban people are equally poor.

Like the majority of politicians and political elites in the United States who benefit from the way our nation’s political system is rigged, Cuba’s Castros are multimillionaires. Forbes puts Fidel’s net worth around $900 million.

Once again, President Obama apologized for the imperfections of America. Compare Obama’s Cuban visit with a third-rate dictator like Castro with the way Ronald Reagan confronted Mikhail Gorbachev, the leader of a real super power.

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Reagan knew he needed to confront the opposition directly even if it wasn’t politically polite. President Obama refused to make such a forceful confrontation. If business comes to Cuba, you can be sure the Castros will have their hand deep in the pie. True freedom would mean a change in government, and the Castro brothers will never agree to such a revolutionary change.

I’m sure Obama was told to go easy. Don’t offend the government bosses. Play nice. Reagan was given similar advice. Reagan’s administration officials wanted him to cut the line “tear down this wall” from his Brandenburg Gate/Berlin Wall speech because they believed it to be an “outright affront to the Soviet leadership.” Here’s what Peter Robinson, Reagan’s speechwriter, says happened:

“[T]he speech was circulated to the State Department and the National Security Council. Both attempted to squelch it. The assistant secretary of state for Eastern European affairs challenged the speech by telephone. A senior member of the National Security Council staff protested the speech in memoranda. The ranking American diplomat in Berlin objected to the speech by cable. The draft was naive, it would raise false hopes. It was clumsy, it was needlessly provocative. State and the NSC submitted their own alternate drafts — my journal records that there were no fewer than seven, including one written by the diplomat in Berlin. In each, the call to tear down the wall was missing.”

Reagan ignored their advice and confronted Gorbachev directly and publicly. The Berlin Wall came down, East and West Berlin reunited, and the Soviet Union collapsed. The Eastern Bloc nations regained their sovereignty and borders.


Gary DeMar

Gary DeMar was raised in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University (1973) and Reformed Theological Seminary (1979). He has served as researcher and writer at the Christian Worldview ministry American Vision since 1980 and President since 1984. Today he serves as Senior Fellow at American Vision where he lectures, researches, and writes on various worldview issues. Gary is the author of 30 books on a variety of topics – from "America’s Christian History" and "God and Government" to "Thinking Straight in a Crooked World" to "Last Days Madness." Gary has been interviewed by Time magazine, CNN, MSNBC, FOX, the BBC, and Sean Hannity. He has done numerous radio and television interviews, including the “Bible Answer Man,” hosted by Hank Hanegraaff and “Today’s Issues” with Tim Wildmon and Marvin Sanders. Newspaper interviews with Gary have appeared in the Washington Times, Toledo (Ohio) Blade, the Sacramento Bee, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Marietta Daily Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, The Orlando Sentinel, and the Chicago Tribune.

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