Harvard Professor Unfazed by Tyrants

Saturday, May 7, 2011
Harvard University Professor Jorge Dominguez has described Cuban dictator Raul Castro as "a very practical man... a problem solver."

It's mind-boggling how anyone could label General Raul Castro -- the head of Cuba's repressive military apparatus for the last 52 years (and domestic secret police since his purging of the Ministry of the Interior in 1989) -- as "practical."

Perhaps "problem-solver" is more fitting -- but his methods for solving problems are far from "practical." To the contrary, they have been ruthless and reprehensible.

But that doesn't stop Dominguez -- a frequent and unfettered visitor to Havana -- from heralding the farce of Raul Castro as a "reformer."

Yet, to his credit (and detriment), it seems Dominguez is at least consistent -- or maybe his years of "experience" with the Castro brothers have desensitized him towards the brutality of tyrants.

(In non-intellectual speak, that means he drank the "kool-aid.")

Last month, Dominguez traveled to Damascus, Syria to deliver the keynote address for the Harvard Arab Alumni Association's event "under the esteemed patronage of Her Excellency Mrs. Asma al-Assad, The First Lady of Syria."

The event's invitation elaborates:

"In her role as Syria's first lady, Her Excellency Asma al-Assad applies her experience, energy and influence to her country's social and cultural development. Her role reflects the significant economic, political and social change that is happening in Syria today. Asma al-Assad's work supports that of President Bashar al-Assad by fostering the emergence of a robust, independent and self-sustaining civil society."

Isn't that nice?  Another tyrant posing as a "reformer."

Of course, the reality is completely different.

While Dominguez celebrated with Mrs. al-Assad, her husband was busy beating, arresting and murdering thousands of democratic activists throughout Syria.

But hey -- why stop the party (or the "intellectual" narrative).