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At 5:10 a.m., 2:10 Pacific Time, federal officers burst into the González house in Little Havana and seized Elian. Minutes later, having breakfast, I turned on CNN and caught the drama. Coverage is still going on, hours later. There is no need to repeat the story, which has however a broader significance. Elian´s foster family angrily distorted the facts. They were prepared, with photographers and lawyers in their house, and they refused to open the door, thus forcing the officers to break in. They then manipulated the media, denouncing President Clinton and even the United States, while demonstrators outside held aloft pictures of Janet Reno with devil's horns. Fortunately their operation deceived few Americans, although Cuban Americans believed it.
The important fact is the US public generally was repelled by the spectacle of a Latin American colony thus disrupting the United States. Suppose Mexican Americans get into a similar fight with the Mexican government? The disruption would be infinitely greater. This should be understood by those WAISers who take a sanguine vie of unimpeded Latin American immigration into the United States.
Ronald Hilton - 4/22/00