Democracy fund draws protests
The week's news at a glance.
The Bush administration this week established an $80 million fund to help speed Cubas transition to democracyprompting immediate protests from the Cuban government. The fund will be used to buy supplies such as computers and fax machines for pro-democracy activists in Cuba, as well as for their backers in the U.S. It was one of several measures recommended by a high-level U.S. commission that also called for tightening trade sanctions against the Castro regime. Ricardo Alarcon, president of Cubas National Assembly, denounced the initiative as a covert plan to annex Cuba to the U.S., saying it would cause harm and suffering and deprivation to individuals. Some prominent democracy activists in Cuba also voiced concern, saying they feared the fund would make them look like Washingtons pawns, rather than homegrown reformers.