Juan Cristobal says: - Everyone knows Venezuelan women are beautiful and win lots of pageants. Like populists and ball players, beauty queens are one of those things that we seem to produce excellent specimens of, our own "non-traditional exports."
However, with the latest news coming out of Cuba, it seems like we're gonna have to recall some of our exports and apologize to the world.
You see, our very own Dayana Mendoza, the lovely Miss Universe 2008, could not find a better use of her time than to drop by Guantánamo Bay military base for a little tour. This, in and of itself, would be a tricky PR-situation and would likely raise some eyebrows. However, it would not have been scandalous were it not for Dayana's blog entry about the trip.
Gitmo is "incredible." They "took a ride around the land" and it was "a looot of fun!" They got to meet the "Military dogs", who did a "very nice demonstration of their skills." Yeah. Them pooches sure are cute.
Apparently, Dayana disagrees with the Red Cross, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and a host of other human rights NGOs. Detainees have, according to Dayana, comfortable facilities, including "showers", and places where they "recreate themselves with movies, classes of art, books."
In the end she found the beach so "beautiful," she found Guantánamo "such a relaxing place," she didn't want to leave.
Just call her a Frenemy Combatant and put her in a cell. She'll love it.
Dayana's fanta-bulous Caribbean-vacation-cum-PR-disaster makes you long for the days when the biggest trouble our beauty queens got into was for being filmed while having sex.
PS.- Don't miss the incensed comments from NYT readers. One of them said, "Ought to send these beauty contest winners to Auschwitz and Hiroshima. Maybe killing fields in Cambodia as well. They’re sure to have a swell time bs’ing with local security, seeing the sights, swooning over the natural beauty. Think of the swell souvenirs they can bring home after a day of soooo much fun. In fact, they might not want to leave."
PS2- Huffington Post readers have their say too. My favorite comment: "(Huffington Post) has been orchestrating a sleek campaign against Venezuela for some time now. Don't know why. CIA funding, maybe?" No word yet on whether Quico met Dayana in their Langley training sessions.
UPDATE - Dayana's blog entry was deleted. Instead, there is a statement from the Miss Universe Organization. The New York Times has an update.