Wednesday, September 20, 2006

El Nuevo Herald veteran outs himself as a Martí Moonlighter

In a column today Andres Reynaldo, an editor and 20-year veteran of El Nuevo Herald attacks The Herald and admits that between 2002 and 2004 that he "occasionally collaborated" with Radio Martí, and was compensated for his time under, authorization from his (then) supervisor Carlos Castañeda. Of his experiences with Radio Martí Reynaldo says he collaborated Martí:

...whenever the occasion was pertinent, the directors of the station allowed me to express with absolute freedom my opinions against the embargo and the government of George W. Bush. I can say, then, that I received money from the Bush administration to speak ill of the Bush administration.
He also calls out The Herald's Carl Hiaasen to whom he says "we Cubans are an amusing subject of a rather entomological nature."

He goes on to state that the damage to syndicated columnist Carlos Alberto Montaner's reputation, by a "double miscue of errors in judgment in writing and editing," is beyond repair.

According to Reynaldo:
This investigation [into the Martí Moonlighters] was announced on the 22 of August in one of the routine and public emails (I kept acopy) sent out by El Duende, a fictitious character that appears on Radio Miami, a program under the direction of Max Lesnik that is transmitted by Union Radio. One week later, it was mentioned on the program Mesa Redonda, transmitted by Cuban television. My twenty years as editor here makes me think that The Miami Herald would have unleashed the mother of all investigations if one of its exclusives had been exposed by another media outlet, local or foreign. I hope that they have at least asked Corral if he spoke with Lesnik about the investigation.


The crisis caused by the dismissal of these journalists has crossed innumerable political, generational, geographic and cultural lines. For many of my companions at El Nuevo Herald, Cuban and of other nationalities, it has been a true test of our dignity as journalists, our identity as displaced people and the entirety of our human being. I don't know how all this will turn out. It is probable that, once again life is dishing out exactly that which is not convenient to me. But I will not have to lower my head when I cross any of these ten colleagues unjustly accused of being vulgar mercenaries. For this reason, also, I left Cuba.
The really important thing to consider here is that if Reynaldo was working with the knowledge and consent of his former boss, Carlos Castañeda, then perhaps the others were too. And if so, when did the Herald's policy change? Was any change clearly communicated to employees of El Nuevo Herald? The citation from the Herald's ethics policy in MHCP president Jesus Diaz Jr.'s recent column was quite vague and did not specifically prohibit working for government entities.


Jose Aguirre said...

Great to see that Reynaldo came forward and his comments are right on; especially the one about Hiaasen!!!

Enrique said...

Recuerda que el señor Castañeda fue un cubano brillante y anticomunista.. a el no le molestaria que alguien fuera a radio marti.. Una vez Castañeda fallece la cosa cambia... te aseguro que los nuevos gerentes o supervisores actuales son partidiarios de fidel o at least no son anticomunistas.