Saturday, August 26, 2006

Beyond cigars, rumba and endless sunshine

I have blogged previously about a most strange journalistic phenomenon: hard-bitten, normally cynical, highly intelligent Western reporters who visit Cuba for a few days and return home to write what can only be described as surprisingly positive stories about Fidel Castro and his regime.

It’s as if they automatically leave behind the very abilities and skills that made them successful journalists in the first place, like that inbuilt scepticism about governments and rulers of all stripes and colours. Very strange.

Well, some journalists know better.

One of them is Caroline Overington, an Australian journalist who has worked in the past for The Age in Melbourne, as a foreign correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and at present, as a senior columnist with The Australian. She is also a past winner of the Walkley Award for Investigative Journalism, the most prestigious journalistic award in the country.

In her column in The Australian this morning, Ms Overington tells of a visit to Cuba two years ago that changed her views about Castro forever. It’s an eye-opener.

As you will see, she uses her recollections of that visit as a reference point to my new book, Child of the Revolution: Growing up in Castro’s Cuba. So, yes, I have a personal interest in her column, but that's irrelevant in this case.

Make up your own mind. Read her column here.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

10:42 pm  
Blogger Alfredo said...

tears to my eyes! a journalist finally has the guts to tell the truth and does she ever!

6:20 am  
Blogger Henry "Conductor" Gomez said...

She has done in one column what the "top" American journalists like Dan Rather and Barbara Walters haven't been able to do in 47 years: tell the truth about Castro's Cuba. She deserves many more accolades for telling the truth even though she admits she went in with a different mindset.

7:41 am  
Blogger Aussiegirl said...

Mr. Garcia, thanks for your comment on Ultima Thule. This was a suprising column in that we are more used to the useful idiot type of panegyrics usually forthcoming from journalist types. Articles such as those published in the New York Times by Walter Duranty during the Ukrainian Genocide Famine of 1933 engineered by Stalin in which more than 7 million Ukrainians perished. Duranty was the useful idiot who reported that there was no famine, even though he knew that there was. Finally, we have a journalist who went in with her eyes open, and not covered by the rose-colored glasses of the leftist toady.

4:14 am  

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