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Black Lives Matter’s support for dictator Fidel Castro and convicted cop-killer Assata Shakur has re-emerged in the wake of a “deplorable” statement blaming the suffering of the Cuban people on the American embargo and not the island’s brutal communist regime.
The group, which was co-founded by a self-described Marxist, Patrisse Cullors, is already facing a backlash from both the left and the right over its statement on Cuban pro-democracy protests, which blamed the ongoing demonstrations on an American embargo and called on President Joe Biden to lift the “forced pain and suffering” that they claimed was “cutting off” food and medicine.
“Black Lives Matter condemns the U.S. federal government’s inhumane treatment of Cubans, and urges it to immediately lift the economic embargo,” BLM said, in part. “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. Since 1962, the United States has forced pain and suffering on the people of Cuba by cutting off food, medicine, and supplies, costing the tiny island nation an estimated $130 billion.”
The post, however, brought renewed scrutiny to the group’s former missives praising erstwhile Cuban dictator Fidel Castro on the occasion of his death in 2016.
The group hoped Castro would “Rest in Power,” according to a tweet issued shortly after Castro’s death — a tweet that remains up.
Rest in Power #FidelCastro
— Black Lives Matter (@Blklivesmatter) November 26, 2016
Fox News unearthed an additional post, extolling Castro’s virtues on the occasion of his death, and coming to the brutal dictator’s defense as a way of processing their “overwhelming sense of loss, complicated by fear and anxiety.”
“We are feeling many things as we awaken to a world without Fidel Castro. There is an overwhelming sense of loss, complicated by fear and anxiety. Although no leader is without their flaws, we must push back against the rhetoric of the right and come to the defense of El Comandante,” BLM mused.
“From Fidel, we know that revolution is sparked by an idea, by radical imaginings, which sometimes take root first among just a few dozen people coming together in the mountains,” they continued.
“As Fidel ascends to the realm of the ancestors, we summon his guidance, strength, and power as we recommit ourselves to the struggle for universal freedom,” the post concluded, per Fox News. “Fidel Vive!”
The post also heaped praise on Castro for offering safe harbor to Assata Shakur, who remains in exile in Cuba because she is one of the FBI’s most wanted criminals.
“Shakur, also known as JoAnne Chesimard, was convicted of being an accomplice in the 1973 slaying of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster, who left behind a wife and 3-year-old son. Shakur later escaped prison and fled to Cuba, where former Cuban Prime Minister Fidel Castro granted her asylum,” Fox News noted in a report Wednesday.
BLM co-founder Cullors has spoken out regularly in praise of Shakur and has credited Shakur with inspiring the Black Lives Matter movement.
“Over the past year we have seen the movement and people at large elevating Assata worldwide chanting the excerpt from her letter and proudly wearing Assata Taught Me sweatshirts. Today…we ask that people take a moment to uplift our sister Assata Shakur by posting on social media how Assata has inspired them and why she is important to the current Black Lives Matter movement.”