U.S. gov’t pays $19 million to unnamed contractors

The U.S. Agency for Global Media paid $38,280,250 to artists, writers, performers and musical groups from 2018 to 2020, records show. Nearly half – $19,106,558 – were identified as “miscellaneous foreign contractors,” making it almost impossible to identify the recipients. Records named the remaining 258 contractors, who received a total of $19,173,692. The top three … Read more

Big bucks for “battle of ideas”

The U.S. government spent $204,478,658 on democracy promotion projects targeting Cuba from 2001 through 2019, records show. The top three recipients were: Grupo de Apoyo a la Democracia, with $16,869,165 Pan-American Development Foundation, $16,098,509 International Republican Institute, $14,985,461 Most of the money – $121,801,254 – went toward “democratic participation and civil society.” Records show $23,516,054 … Read more

Like father, like son: The urge to rebel

Juan Juan Almeida, son of a revolutionary who fought with Fidel Castro, grew up around Cuba’s political and military elites. He studied criminal law and became a lawyer. In 2009, he wrote “Memoirs of an unknown Cuban guerrilla fighter,” a novel that satirized the ruling class. He wanted to leave the country, but authorities wouldn’t … Read more

Gitmo’s $32 million Internet connection

From 2014 to 2017, the U.S. Department of Defense paid a Texas contractor $32,751,360 to build an undersea fiber-optic cable from Dania Beach, Florida, to the Naval Station at Guantánamo, Cuba. Ronald Bechtold, former chief information officer under then-Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, testified in 2013 that the Pentagon planned to eventually extend the cable … Read more