Sean Penn Discusses Dick Cheney

What does actor Sean Penn have to say about former Vice President Dick Cheney?  On March 18th, he discussed it with talk show host Conan O’Brien.  They also discussed Cuba and ISIS.

Video by Team Coco

Travel Company To Offer Direct Flight From JFK To Cuba

Travel company starts offering direct flight from JFK to Cuba

Cuba Travel Services will offer seats on a Boeing 737 flown by Sun Country Airlines from JFK Airport to José Martí International Airport on Tuesdays.

Long off limits to Americans, Cuba is about to become a little more accessible to New York-area travelers, according to the New York Post.

Starting Tuesday, a tour operator will begin offering what it says are the first regularly scheduled direct charter flights from New York City to Havana since President Obama restored diplomatic relations with Cuba in December.

(Updated post)

U.S. Won’t Return Guantanamo To Improve Cuban Ties

The Obama administration on Wednesday ruled out handing over the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, rejecting a central demand of Cuban President Raul Castro for restoring normal relations between the two countries.

Roberta Jacobson, the top U.S. diplomat for Latin America, also said the U.S. would continue transmitting radio and television broadcasts into Cuba that are opposed by Castro’s government.  Washington believes that the broadcasts and Guantanamo are not likely to stand in the way of U.S. and Cuban embassies being re-established after a half-century interruption.

However, Raul Castro laid out last week his long-term objectives for the rapprochement, according to the AP.

They do include the U.S. returning the Guantanamo base and prison, lifting the embargo and compensating his country for damages. The U.S. established the naval base in 1903; Cuba’s communist government has sought its return since coming to power in 1959.

The U.S. is hoping to clinch an agreement with Cuba on embassies in the coming months.

An Associated Press-GfK poll found broad support in the United States for warmer ties with Cuba.

Forty-five percent of those surveyed supported full diplomatic relations between the Cold War foes, with only 15 percent opposing. Sixty percent backed the end of the U.S. economic embargo of Cuba, with 35 percent for its continuation.

But the views expressed at Wednesday’s government hearing were different than those in the poll.  Senior Republicans and Democrats took turns excoriating President Barack Obama for negotiating in secret a December spy swap that also included promises from him and Castro to turn a new page in the U.S.-Cuban relationship.

What Was ‘Batista Cuba?’

 

According to About.com, Fulgencio Batista (1901-1973) was a Cuban army officer who rose to the presidency on two occasions, from 1940-1944 and 1952-1958.

He also held a great deal of national influence from 1933 to 1940, although he did not at that time hold any elected office.

He is perhaps best remembered as the Cuban president who was overthrown by Fidel Castro in the Cuban Revolution of 1953-1959.

Ring of Fire video with Thom Hartmann and Mike Papantonio.

President Barack Obama Vows To ‘Do Everything I Can’ To Close Guantanamo

President Barack Obama said in a CNN TV interview set for broadcast on Sunday that he will do “everything I can” to close the US military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, after four Afghan detainees held there were sent home.

“I’m going to be doing everything I can to close it,” Obama said on CNN’s “State of the Union with Candy Crowley,” program, which was taped on Friday.

The president promised to shut the internationally condemned prison when he took office nearly six years ago, saying it was damaging America’s image around the world.

He has been unable to do so, according to the publication DNA India, partly because of obstacles posed by the US Congress.

“It is something that continues to inspire jihadists and extremists around the world, the fact that these folks are being held,” he said.

“It is contrary to our values and it is wildly expensive. We’re spending millions for each individual there. And we have drawn down the population there significantly,” he added.

In the latest step in the gradual push to close the prison, four Afghans held for over a decade at Guantanamo were sent home, the Pentagon said on Saturday.

More:

http://www.dnaindia.com/world/report-us-president-barack-obama-vows-to-do-everything-i-can-to-close-guantanamo-2045917

Guantanamo Prisoners Who Were Locked Up For More Than A Dozen Years Enjoy Freedom In Uruguay – No One Dies

Out and about: Ajuri, front, and Faraj, back, both Syrians, walk through a residential part of MontevideoFour of the six men released this week more than a decade incarcerated in Guantanamo Bay took their first walk in freedom on Friday in Uruguay, stopping to buy a bit of cheese and bread on a stroll through Montevideo, the capital. No one died.

According to the U.K. Daily Mail, the men – four Syrians, a Tunisian and a Palestinian – are staying at a house in a middle class neighborhood as guests of a major labor union, which has been asked to help by President Jose Mujica.

The union’s executive secretary, Gabriel Melgareo, said Friday that four of them managed to avoid journalists and went on a 6-mile walk along the Rio de la Plata river on Thursday.

The men have been accepted as refugees by Uruguay.

“They were enchanted by the blue sky of Montevideo, the tranquility of the city, the ability to walk through the streets in absolute calm,” Melgareo said.

Bakery worker Laura Larrobla said of the men who stopped by to purchase cheese, yogurt and bread, “They looked good, although they only talked through an interpreter,” she said.

More:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2872022/Ex-Guantanamo-prisoners-stroll-streets-Uruguay.html#ixzz3LpTZUDh1