Why Do Ted Cruz and His Father Keep Changing The Story of Rafael's Exodus From Cuba?
From the Dallas Morning News:
Cruz has remained silent as journalists and political activists repeatedly — and incorrectly — placed his father among the many Cubans who fled after Castro took power.
Cruz’s father, Rafael, was a guerrilla who fought to topple Batista, though he departed for Texas before the Cuban revolution succeeded.
Cruz, a Republican and former state solicitor general, said this week he felt no obligation to correct others’ mistaken impressions.
“I have many, many times described the full context of his fighting with Castro — in the broader sense … not side by side but on the same side as Castro,” Cruz said in an interview Monday.
A review by The Dallas Morning News of dozens of speeches and interviews Cruz has given since 2005 found no instances of his incorrectly describing when his father fled from Cuba, as U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., recently acknowledged doing.
Last week, The Washington Post reported that Rubio said on three occasions since 2006 and on his official Senate website that his parents came to the U.S. after Castro’s forces overthrew Batista in January 1959. They actually arrived more than 21/2 years earlier. Rubio has said his parents wanted to go back to Cuba but couldn’t because of Castro’s Marxist oppression.
Rubio was born in the U.S. Cruz was born in Canada, where his parents were working at the time, but he was born a U.S. citizen because his mother is one. She and Rafael Cruz met in Houston and ran an oilfield service business.
Cruz, a Republican conservative firebrand, has shaped and reshaped the story of his father, who is now 72 and lives in Carrollton, since 2009, when the younger Cruz ran briefly for state attorney general.
Last January, Ted Cruz threw his hat into the ring for the seat of retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, and he now faces a crowded March primary field. Until August, Cruz routinely said in public appearances that in 1956, under the Batista regime, his paternal grandfather bribed guards to free his father from prison.
Rafael Cruz, though, recently told his son that wasn’t accurate.
“My dad said, ‘No, that that piece is not the case, I don’t believe that is right,’ and so I’ve stopped saying that,” Ted Cruz said. He said his father, then 17, was tortured and “beaten almost to death.”
In at least seven speeches and radio interviews last month and this month, Cruz talked about his father’s flight from Cuba but mentioned neither the date nor Batista, The News found.
In an appearance earlier this month at the Values Voter Summit in Washington, Cruz quoted his father as saying in a speech at a 2009 Dallas Tea Party rally: “When I was a young man, I saw a young charismatic leader come to power, and he promised hope and change.”
Ted Cruz acknowledged Monday that his father was talking about Castro’s early years in power. “He didn’t say he was there firsthand, suffering it. He just described it,” the younger Cruz said.
In a 2006 report, the Austin American-Statesman quoted Cruz as saying his father “was a guerrilla, throwing Molotov cocktails and blowing up buildings.”
By the early 1960s, Rafael Cruz was alarmed that his younger sister was imprisoned and tortured by Castro’s regime, and Rafael had become a firm Castro opponent, Ted Cruz explained.
“Anytime one is recounting oral history of your family, there are necessarily some vagaries that come with memories 50, 60 years ago,” Cruz said. “There is nothing to hide.”This article is from October 25, 2011. I find it odd that, way back then, the Cruz family was constantly shaping and re-shaping their history.
What can we believe about them? I mean, if they say it, do we believe it?